Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Investment at Pixar!

Pixar's area of expertise is in the production and distribution of animated motion picture films.By putting a value on a stock requires so many steps, few of which relate to the actual technology or industry. Familiarity with an industry can be helpful in this process, but that's usually a minor factor really. What's more important is how they're going to generate earnings over the long haul, at a rate greater than that of the overall market, relative to the equity or capital invested - that's what generates value and justifies buying a stock. Knowing that requires intimate knowledge of their customers, competitors, pricing, and ability to maintain advantages in all of these areas, as well as - very important - their finances. If anything, I believe that industry familiarity can be a bad thing, because it leads to investments driven by interests and product preferences rather than by analyses about "what's likely to make me the most money, at reasonable risk, over the long haul?" At the end of the day, that's the reason to buy a stock.

 You may know about growth plans that will strengthen Pixar's earnings over the long term, and be able to trade on that information because it's not "insider info." And as such you might have knowledge that not every analyst or investor has. There's a big difference between liking a company and its products, and liking its stock. "Great" companies don't always make great investments.

If you have $1000, and if you would like to invest, I will STOP you from doing that. It's simply one of those Investing 101 kinds of rules. There are thousands of companies in dozens of industries and by buying just one you really increase your risks of failure. So that raises the bigger question...even if you decide Pixar is a good long-term investment, how much of your net investable money should you put into it? I generally shoot for at least 15 if not 25 or more individual stocks, when buying individual stocks, simply to diversify away these company-specific risks. Alternatively, there's the approach of buying an individual stock alongside a portfolio of diversified mutual funds that hold the bulk of your money.

Work at Pixar: Dream for many 3D lovers!

Whenever I work on PIXAR blog I think why can't I join the family of Pixar, a place for bright individuals with fresh outlook. In Pixar, I will be working side by side with some of the most brilliant minds in their fields, interspersing my own ideas with theirs to collectively make the best fields.

Cool working culture sets Pixar apart from different companies.The other thing that is really exciting about Pixar is the fact that we're always pushing the envelope in terms of technology. I think Pixar is one of the few animation companies out there with its own R&D group.  One of the great things that inspired me in Pixar is Lunches that were organized. They have an hour or so for lunch talking to some of the top people at Pixar, including Ed Catmull. 

Pixar seems to be in the midst of their own golden age, making interesting, widely watched and visually stunning films, and that's a really exciting thing to be a part of.The single biggest attraction to working at Pixar was and still is the movies. Pixar is not a gloomy cubicle farm like so many companies  but a bright, happy place full of well adjusted people. Though this company is older than I am, I feel like it has retained a vibrant, youthful spirit."

Pixar Canada opens in Vancouver

Pixar Canada, Pixar's new satellite studio in Vancouver, British Columbia, was officially opened today. Selected members of the press were invited to visit the studio's 7,000-square-foot space inside a historic building located in Vancouver's Gastown district. B.C. premier Gordon Campbell (that like a "governor" for you Americans) came out for the unveiling.

According to Amir Nasrabadi, general manager of the Vancouver studio, Pixar hopes to expand its Canadian facilities to 20,000-25,000 sq. ft., perhaps moving to another location in the city at some point.

 The Canadian studio "will begin training new staff in late May, and start work on its first short film by early August". There are currently twenty people on the payroll; the plan is to hire several dozen employees within the next year and a half.

As previously announced, Pixar Canada will focus exclusively on the production of non-theatrical short films and other projects based on Pixar's "legacy characters", such as Cars Toons and the rumoured Toy Story Toons. Using a "pipeline system", work done in Vancouver will be seen immediately in Emeryville, where the final stages of production on the shorts will take place.