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Here's to the crazy ones 🌟

Here's to the crazy ones 🌟
By Making smalltalk • Issue #25 • View online

Apple's Think Different campaign. Image may be subject to copyright.
Apple's Think Different campaign. Image may be subject to copyright.
2nd October is one of the three national holidays that India officially has - and this time, it will be the 150th birth anniversary of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.
While only a handful of people today can claim to have met or known Mahatma Gandhi, all of us Indians (and millions in other countries) have been influenced by him.
Many women and men have shaped the world we live in. Gandhi gave voice, spirit, and freedom to what are now at least 3 nations today. Steve Jobs changed how the modern world behaves, engages, and communicates. Mother Teresa personally uplifted thousands, started a movement, and has indirectly inspired millions of lives.
Of course these leaders had supporters, followers, and teams who helped turn their vision into reality - but these individuals became the face of that change/revolution due to their passion, perseverance, and personality.
From my own field of investments and finance, that one person would be Jack Bogle. He has influenced the life of every investor, whether they have heard of him or not.
His belief and determination kickstarted a financial revolution called indexing that’s still taking over the world - but more importantly, he ended up forcing the entire investments industry globally to bring down the costs & be more investor-friendly.
Such was his passion towards reducing costs for investors, he even structured his company to benefit the investors, and not himself.
Vanguard is set up as a mutual fund: the company is owned by the very mutual funds it creates - and in turn, the mutual funds are owned by the share/unit holders, including retail investors like you and me (albeit in the US 😐).
Say you are living in the US, and you invest in the Vanguard 500 Index Fund - you not only get units that track returns of the S&P500, but you also effectively become a shareholder of The Vanguard Group. As a result, the company is motivated to pass on profits in the form of lower costs - and this ownership structure has benefitted every retail investor.
Jack passed away earlier this year in January, but his advocacy for low-cost investing will continue to bring down costs and directly/indirectly benefit every investor for time to come.
With Vanguard’s assets under management now exceeding $5 trillion, it’s crazy to imagine this today - but Jack Bogle actually faced ridicule when he started out with this vision. So much so, the idea was called “un-American” and even labeled as “Jack’s folly”.
His perseverance and belief ultimately fuelled this financial revolution that we’re still witnessing, and which has now started to pick up pace in India as well.
So here’s to the crazy ones. From Mahatma Gandhi & Jack Bogle to Mother Teresa & Steve Jobs - and to all the other crazy ones who have influenced my life & shaped my world, whether I know of it or not.
Have a fun holiday!
-Vikas
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12:49 PM - 1 Oct 2019
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