Friday, 23 September 2011

Wray To Go

Ed Wray, one of the founding fathers of Betfair, announced at Betfair's AGM yesterday that he is stepping down as Company Chairman. Scott Ferguson formerly worked for Betfair, and had this to say about his time there:

It was all about working for Ed and Bert, and their dream. A dream that turned into something huge, and naturally, as it became a big corporate entity the fun slowly disappeared. It was no longer building someone's dream with an ethos of being the punter's best mate but turning into a soulless place desperate to float and with its heart set on screwing punters for every penny they can get.
Those comments certainly reflect the opinion of many, as the company has gone from being almost beloved by many to an, albeit necessary, evil empire in just a few years.

After reeling off a list of names of recent Betfair executives heading for the exit - CEO David Yu; chief product and services officer Mathias Entemann; head of mobile Charlie Palmer; director of architecture, research and prototyping Matt Carter; director of UK sports and gaming Lee Cowles; director of European and public affairs Tim Phillips; CEO of LMAX (Betfair’s troubled financial betting exchange spin-off) Robin Osmond; and CEO of Betfair Australia, Andrew Twaits - Peter Amsel amusingly asks
Is it bad form to remind shareholders that one of the company’s key rationales for going public was that doing so would “assist in the incentivization and retention of key management and employees?”
Interesting that all media were barred from the meeting too.

On to more important matters now, and we have five XX Draw selections for this weekend. They are:
And finally, after about nine years, the film version of Michael Lewis's excellent book Moneyball has finally been released to good reviews in the US. Not out in the UK until November 25th, but who waits for official release dates these days? And your significant other will likely be up for watching it with you, since it stars Brad Pitt, who incidentally also owns the film rights to Lewis's book "The Big Short: Inside The Doomsday Machine", which actually makes the financial crisis of 2007 understandable. That's recommended reading too, if I've not mentioned it before - a lesson in holding a position that evidence tells you is value, and opposing a stubborn market.


Mike Woodhouse said...

That would be "The Big Short", I think. An excellent book.

Cassini said...

Corrected - thanks