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Starting and Running an Investment Research Company, Part I:

Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

March 17th, 2016
After five years running an independent investment research firm, Ive decided the time has come to
move on to bigger and better things. In this series, Ill discuss the myriad lessons Ive learned, most of
them the hard way, so that some of you can hopefully learn them in a slightly more gentle manner.
Today, Id like to explain what Im doing, why, and where my journey is taking me.
Past to Present
In 2011, I founded Stone Street Advisors LLC, an independent fundamental investment (mostly equity,
some credit) research firm. Instead of using the traditional sell-side coverage model, we engaged in
project-based research for hedge funds and other investors; outsourced buyside analysis. We offered
on-demand services, as well as access to our own internally-generated and fully-developed investment
ideas. From the start, the goal was independence; unbiased research free from banking or sales &
trading influence. We also wanted to remove any question about whether we were just talking our
book, engaging in pump & dump, or short & distort tactics, so we never held any positions in the
firms we discussed. I thought if we didnt stand to make money from stocks moving on our research,
wed be above reproach. This was mostly true, but thats a discussion for Part II, coming soon.
After careful reflection, Ive decided to wind-down the majority of the business. The company will
survive as a private, research-driven investment advisor, overseeing the assets of my family and its
businesses. Stone Street will essentially become a small single-family office, without the 8+ digit AUM,
unfortunately. The company will occasionally share some of the research we use for internal purposes,
though now, we may hold positions in the companies we discuss.
I would like to thank more people, groups, and organizations than I can name. Among them: Clients,
potential clients who gave me a chance, research platforms and their editors, business school
professors, my family and close friends, IR teams at several companies, interns and junior analysts, and


the surprisingly large group of friends, acquaintances, and others with whom Ive had the pleasure of
interacting with, and whove put up with me over the years.
Last December, at an NYC steakhouse Smith & Wollensky I was informally told about a job that could
be created for me at a start-up investment company. I was caught off-guard, in the best way possible. Id
been doing equity (and some credit) research for the past five years, and was pursuing opportunities to
keep doing it for many more. Here was an opportunity to switch paths, to get back into the internet
industry I had semi-abandoned after starting and operating two websites in college. An opportunity to
put my analytical background to use, to help target, run and grow multiple companies in the real (nonfinancial) economy. An opportunity to take on new challenges. An opportunity to do something
Fast-forward a few months, to the present
Today, I start a new chapter in my life, in my career. Ill be joining m2m5 Holdings as Vice President of
Finance and Strategy. m2m5 invests in select early stage online startups, guiding their growth and
strategy, takes PE-like positions in established online companies, develops and markets select, focused
products in the online and offline space, among other interesting ventures.
To say this is slight a departure from my career thus far in Finance, from investment banking to
operations to research, is probably an understatement.
Coming Soon
Part II, and maybe Part III in this series will address my experience starting and running Stone Street
Advisors over the past five years. Ill discuss how I even got to the point of starting the company, the
idea behind starting it, what I did right, what I did wrong, what Id do differently, and why.
Thank you again to everyone whos been part of the journey these past five years.
Jordan S. Terry
Stone Street Advisors LLC