What Drives the Fool's Best Investor?

David Gardner says a love of business underlies his picks and services for The Motley Fool.

Mar 13, 2014 at 11:30AM

Co-founders Tom and David Gardner look back on The Motley Fool's journey with Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) since first purchasing it in September 1997. The brothers discuss the ups and downs they've seen with the stock, now a 100-bagger for the Fool.

Investing in the businesses he loves, not playing the stock market, is the key to David Gardner's approach to investing and his market-beating success -- a success he shares with The Motley Fool through services such as Rule Breakers, Stock Advisor, and more.

A look at America's business legends
Not every CEO can be as successful as Jeff Bezos has been with Amazon. But during the past two years, Motley fool co-founder and CEO Tom Gardner has made it his personal mission sit down with dozens of the world's brightest investors and business minds on behalf of his Motley Fool ONE members -- we're talking true American legends like Whole Foods co-CEO John Mackey, Costco founder Jim Sinegal, and even Vanguard founder Jack Bogle -- as he scours the globe to find the next great company to provide Amazon-esque returns.

On March 20, this "crown jewel" service will reopen to new members for only the third time ever. And to celebrate, Tom would like to offer you a front-row seat to watch these visionaries share the keen insights and unparalleled business acumen that got them to where they are in life.

Even if you aren't an investor, the business lessons you'll take from these conversations are priceless. So please click here to access our Motley Fool ONE member lobby and our entire collection of these interviews absolutely FREE of charge!

Tom Gardner: You're the best investor at our company. What does it feel like, to you, to have a 100-bagger investment in the portfolio, that you know members are buying and talking about? What is motivating you as an investor when you're looking for the companies that you're finding?

David Gardner: Well, this is the last thing I'll say for now. Basically, Tom, for me the purpose of our company is to help the world invest better and what I think about all the time is the people who are buying with us.

You're taking a risk when you buy companies with very high price-earnings ratios or Amazon.com -- all of a sudden Barron's comes out with "Amazon.bomb" on the cover in the year 2000 or so.

But if you stay focused on the businesses -- us as investors, Tom, your service's incredibly accomplished work in great numbers, and across The Motley Fool. Heck, Inside Value was recognized by Hulbert Financial Digest as one of the top three performers in the last five years, so, The Motley Fool has an incredible efflorescence of market-beating services and advice.

I think what unites us all, more than anything, is that we're business-focused. That's the number one thing that I see running right through The Motley Fool. We are essentially MBAs without MBAs. We love business, and we're doing that. We're just becoming part-owners of businesses; we're not playing with stocks.

Tom: A 100-bagger. Amazon.com. What an incredible achievement by you and the team in Rule BreakersStock AdvisorSupernova, and all the services you're running. I will just close with this point of emphasis -- although there are five or six or seven different great points here in this conversation.

Amazon, a 100-bagger, it took 16 years. That's just a reminder that that's how you get these multi-bagger, awesome returns. They happen over 5 or 10 or 15 or 16 years, and it can transform your portfolio. Dave, thanks for sitting down and talking a little Amazon, and best of luck finding the next 100-bagger. I can't wait to buy right along with you!

David: Thanks a lot, Tom. That was fun.

John Mackey, co-CEO of Whole Foods Market, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. David Gardner owns shares of Amazon.com. Tom Gardner owns shares of Chipotle Mexican Grill and Whole Foods Market. The Motley Fool recommends Chipotle Mexican Grill, Costco Wholesale, and Whole Foods Market. The Motley Fool owns shares of Chipotle Mexican Grill, Costco Wholesale, and Whole Foods Market. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of fool.com.

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to www.fool.com/beginners, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at www.fool.com/podcasts.

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.


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