In 2018, CLSA celebrates its 25th anniversary of the Investors’ Forum. For a quarter of a century, the Forum has shaped global investment mandates and helped to drive the growth of Asia’s corporations and capital markets.
Compelling content, engaging conversations and unrivalled connections have made the CLSA Investors’ Forum one of the most anticipated events on the global investment calendar.
For 25 fun facts about 25 years of Investors’ Forums, please click on the tiles below.
The CLSA Investors’ Forum was born out of a conversation between Jonathan Slone, CLSA CEO, and a colleague in a taxi in New York on 12th August 1993. The perfect fit for CLSA founder Gary Coull’s vision of ‘bringing the world to Asia & Asia to the world’, within 48 hours planning was underway.
In the second year of the Investors’ Forum, we organized more than 300 special meetings for over 400 investors, highlighting the value of IF in making connections.
In May 1996 we released a report titled ‘Hong Kong Post-1997’. 400 days before the handover, optimists were looking forward to closer economic integration with the mainland, whilst doom-sayers thought the territory would be vulnerable to a plunge in public and business confidence.
Beyond the hysteria was written in August 1997 at the start of the Asian financial crisis. CLSA’s analysis of these troubled times in southeast Asian stock & currency markets looked beyond the hysteria to determine the growth, inflation, exchange rate & interest rate outlooks for the Asean deficit countries.
At the CLSA Investors’ Forum in 1998, we brought together government, corporate and institutional investment representation to discuss Thailand’s economic prospects. Thai Prime Minister at the time, Chuan Leekpai, was of one of our keynote speakers.
In 1999 the CLSA Investors’ Forum became a five day event, with 20% more investors, 40% more attendees and 60% more meetings than the previous year. Specialist speakers proved popular so we doubled the number.
In 2000, the first edition of the IF Daily News was launched at the Forum, keeping attendees abreast of key trends and current CLSA research reports, specialist and keynote speakers, & the week long schedule of social events.
Over the years, the CLSA Investors’ Forum became renowned for its Gala party which grew from a dinner for 140 guests in its first year to become the most sought after private party in Hong Kong featuring global performers. In 2001, Irish band the Corrs captivated the crowd.
In 2002, CLSA released the seminal Asia’s Billion Boomers report on the rise of Asia’s middle class. The report outlined the compelling parallels between American boomers and their Asian equivalent, the latter alleged to be rising to the fore.
SARS hit Hong Kong in early 2003, forcing us to move the Investors’ Forum from March to September, where it has since stayed. In lieu of bringing investors to Hong Kong, CLSA organized a hi-tech ‘virtual odyssey’, consisting of three days and nights of webinars, screened by 800 investors globally.
Boomtown: Re-enter the Dragon was a unique CLSA research report published in 2004 covering the economic conditions forecasted to make Hong Kong boom, and the political problems that had the potential to derail it.
Freakonomics author Steven Levitt was a Keynote Speaker in 2005. He explored the hidden side of the modern world, riddles of everyday life and their startling conclusions.
In 2006, Bill Clinton and Alan Greenspan joined the 13th Investors’ Forum via videolinks, whilst former US Vice President Al Gore took to the stage to launch his ground-breaking documentary ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ in Asia
Humanitarian rocker Bob Geldof received the first ever standing ovation for a keynote address. He spoke about his views of poverty, aid, debt relief, father’s rights and more.
“The Investors’ Forum must be close to investor nirvana. Speakers include some of the most challenging thinkers globally, and clients can question & connect with those driving some of the most investible companies in Asia.” Mitzi De Dios, CLSA Philippines
Touching Lives, a book about CLSA’s charitable foundation, the Chairman’s Trust, was launched at the 2009 Investors’ Forum. Subsequently, all Investors’ Forums feature a Chairman’s Trust session for charities to elevate their causes.
Rihanna, on the verge of being an international superstar, performed at the IF Gala in 2010. Her song with Eminem ‘Love the Way You Lie’ hit number 1 in over 20 countries that summer.
Oscar-winning actor, director & screenwriter George Clooney charms the audience in 2011, discussing his humanitarian work in South Sudan. He is later spotted in Mexico sporting the infamous yellow and blue CLSA backpack.
At the 2012 CLSA Investors’ Forum gala party, dancers in LED-lit bodysuits dazzled, and Katy Perry, flying the flag for CLSA in a blue and yellow outfit, performed to an adoring audience. A month after appearing in Hong Kong, she was named Billboard Woman of the Year.
Inspired by the 20th year of the CLSA Investors’ Forum, TransformAsian was released in 2013, documenting the tremendous change in Asia over the past two decades, and the principal structures and themes defining Asia over the next 20 years.
In 2014 we hosted a number of economists and geopolitical specialist speakers, including CY Leung, Chief Executive of Hong Kong at the time; Dr Zhu Jianfang, Chief Economist at Citic Securities; and Daron Acemoglu, MIT Economics Professor.
The 2015 CLSA Investors’ Forum in facts and figures: more than 7,500 lunches served; 347 different snack and lunch menu items; 20,000 CLSA coffee cups; 78, 950 sq. ft. of meeting space used for 4,000 meetings; 34 countries represented; 600 CLSA staff & coordinators.
At CLSA Investors’ Forum 2016, Global Head of Thematic Research Shaun Cochran released Theorality 2016. An indispensable guide to disruption-proofing investment portfolios, the report has become an annual review of investment themes transcending industries and geographies.
Science, technology & innovation were the focus of the 2017 Investors’ Forum. Ellen Jorgensen discussed gene-editing technology; Algorithm master Pedro Domingos dove into machine learning; and Seth Stephens-Davidowitz revealed why data is the digital truth serum.
Over the last 25 years we have produced hundreds of cutting edge thematic reports; we’ve hosted over 1000 keynote and specialist speakers, 12,000 senior company executives and over 27,000 investors at the CLSA Investors’ Forum.
Perhaps best known for content that pushes the envelope, over the years the CLSA Investors’ Forum has featured global leaders, industry experts and international celebrities including:
Where Asia’s most dynamic corporations and the world’s most influential investors meet with global thought leaders.
10-14 September 2018, Hong Kong
The annual CLSA Investors’ Forum in Hong Kong is one of the most anticipated events on the global investment calendar. Over five days in Hong Kong, CLSA brings together, by invitation, the world’s most influential institutional investors, dynamic Asian corporations and global thought leaders.
An unrivalled platform for high-level engagement.
The CLSA Investors’ Forum attracts the leaders of more than 250 public and private corporations from 15 markets across the Asia-Pacific region. A bespoke schedule of private meetings, group meetings and/or presentations is tailored to ensure corporate executives have targeted access to global investors.
More than 1500+ institutional investors from 30+ countries, managing more than US$35trillion in assets attend each year. Representing long, short, public and private money, these investors are seeking to meet innovative, dynamic corporations with the potential to drive value in their portfolios.
Direct access to the sharpest minds, whose insights and ideas shape the future of investing.
No other financial event in Asia offers such an extensive programme of high-level insights and rich opportunities to engage with today’s thought-leaders. Throughout the week, 50+ global leaders in finance, economics, geopolitics, technology, AI, robotics, health and wellbeing present on the issues and trends impacting markets and global portfolios.