Dr Choo Koon Lip’s core business assists companies list on the Australian Securities Exchange.

What’s your story?
I’m born and raised in Singapore. Due to my current work and business (assisting companies in the region to IPO and list in Australia), I’m like a business nomad and always on the plane to/from Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Australia.

What is your involvement with Investment?
My core business is to assist companies list on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX). At the same time, we invest into the IPOs we manage.

How did that come about?
I’m a movie-lover and probably watched too many dramas, I always wanted to be a listed company director, which I managed to become in 2017.

Prior to that, I was trading equities and foreign currencies since 2006 for a couple of years. When I built up my capital base, I started to invest more into pre-IPO in US, Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore markets. Pre-IPO investing is 50/50, so I really want to increase my investing odds and hence I always try to learn from professionals in the capital market, and somehow I continue to pursue in the field till now.

Today, on top of investing in pre-IPO, I take part in and manage the pre-IPO process. And since we are managing the IPOs and then investing into them, we are truly investing with a higher degree of confidence and clarity.

What are some of the key things you have learnt about Investing?
Understanding why we lose or fail when we are investing is much more important than anything else so that we can avoid a similar situation again. Easier said than done, but it has taken me years of experiences to minimize (NOT totally eliminate) loss.

What mistakes do you see less experienced investors making?
One-time success cannot be the benchmark and don’t be swollen head with short-term success. You just can’t believe you can be ‘experienced’ overnight; all good business and investing attributes are cultivated over time.

Less experienced investors could depend mainly on market opinions while real due diligence (which takes time and effort) is still needed when evaluating investment opportunities.

What mistakes do you see Entrepreneurs making?
There are success stories on how entrepreneurs make it big time and everyone loves to hear and emulate their successes. Times may change, we cannot do what the successful entrepreneurs used to do. Strategies and environments evolve, and we need to adapt.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
That’s a tough one. Over the past 15 years, I’ve been a trader, investor, financial trainer, a money manager and an investment psychology writer. I’ve made good money in the market. And I’ve taken my lumps (especially in the early days).

I try to avoid passing along the obvious ones, even though they hold great value for those who haven’t heard them. If given a chance to just choose one, I can only remember “The four most dangerous words in investing are: ‘This time, it’s different.'” from investment legend John Templeton.

Out of the investing and business world, my personal favourite line is from boxing champ Mike Tyson, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” I trust Tyson didn’t mean this as market advice, but this is so true in everything. In the past, I worked with hundreds of individual investors and was surprised how most who were confident they would invest for the long-term and buy the dips abandoned ship as soon as the waves began hitting the deck. Everything was well until they got punched in the mouth. Then all odds were off.

What advice would you give to those seeking funding?
Do it when the time is good. It’s tough to seek funding when you are not doing well, people will feel it from your down times. So do it when the time is good, even though you don’t need it – just raise and get it in.

Who inspires you?
Richard Branson. He’s the man to think big, do it right and deliver true values to the world – truly inspire me, no less.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
I still cannot believe how the ‘investors’ exited the 10x – 50x from the crazy ICO scene last year (2017). It’s a totally different ball game from the usual capital markets we know all the while!

What business book do you recommend the most?
“Fooled by Randomness” by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

The world is changing, for the better or the worse. This book is an investigation of luck, uncertainty, probability, human error, risk, and decision-making in a world we don’t understand. This engaging and entertaining book reshaped how I view the world and change my ideas about how the world works – a true though-provoking masterpiece.

The world is changing, for the better or the worse. This book is an investigation of luck, uncertainty, probability, human error, risk, and decision-making in a world we don’t understand. This engaging and entertaining book reshaped how I view the world and change my ideas about how the world works – a true though-provoking masterpiece.

Shameless plug for your business/organisation:
We are arguably the best IPO managers for the ASX spaces, where we invest our own monies in the IPOs – which literally tells you how confident we are in the project. Or otherwise, we would not risk it.

How can people connect with you?
[email protected]

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This article is part of the World Business Angel Forum media partnership with AsianEntrepreneur.org

If you would like more information about WBAF, please contact Callum Laing WBAF High Commissioner for Singapore. [email protected]