Without any doubt, we can say that 2020 has definitely been a challenging year for just about everyone on the planet.
Mandatory stay-at-home measures gave the population one of the most significant disruptions to daily life in decades, and the resulting impact on national and international economies was just as monumental.
Countless local, in-person businesses have suffered a great deal through multiple quarantine periods, leaving only the largest multinationals to flourish with the help of complex delivery and e-commerce networks that took years and years to build.
Following the initial quarantine efforts here in the United States, the U.S. economy essentially went into shock, and there were many headlines warning of oncoming economic depression.
While the economic situation both here and abroad is evolving, there have still been many challenges for investors and financiers.
To find out more concerning how the financial world has been faring over the past year, TechSling talked to a top-level investor and finance expert about his experiences and his outlook with regards to a post-Covid financial landscape.
Introducing Marco Novelli, an investment specialist
Marco Novelli, a Trader and Investment Banker, brings an incredibly extensive investment pedigree to the table. A specialist in Distressed Credit scenarios, Novelli has more than sixteen years of professional experience in international investment and finance.
Currently a manager with one of the world’s top investment banks for Distressed Credit and RE, Novelli consistently focuses on the human impact of his investments and has been a major proponent of businesses that stand to benefit their communities.
With that in mind, let’s see how Novelli has navigated recent financial turmoil and how he has managed to stay positive and optimistic in difficult times.
A vital mindset
The Covid-19 pandemic was unexpected. Even when the virus was first spreading in China, very few officials believed that it would become a serious, worldwide issue.
We’ll be talking more specifically about Covid’s relation to investing later on, but the pandemic and its consequences have us a great chance to ask Novelli about unexpected circumstances in a more general sense.
How can investors prepare themselves for unexpected circumstances? Is it possible to adapt to rapid changes?
From Novelli’s perspective, the answer to that last question is both yes and no. More than anything, it comes down to mindset.
“I don’t think anybody is 100% ready for unpredictable events, but I believe having the right mindset is key. Your brain will always be wired to capture opportunities rather than seeing the glass half empty.”
As we’re about to see, this positive attitude has been especially important over the course of the past year.
But even under different circumstances, this kind of optimism can make investors more agile and help them maintain the motivation necessary to research many different investment opportunities.
Without that motivation, an investor is more likely to simply sit out for an extended period of time, rather than taking advantage of the opportunities that persist even under difficult conditions.
Same song, different verse
The pandemic has of course directly affected the world of finance. As we mentioned above, markets saw startling drops early in the year, and, understandably, many investors were wary of what was to come next.
Going into our conversation with Novelli, we assumed that he would describe how the onset of the pandemic had encouraged him and other investors to take a more conservative approach to investing.
But when we asked Novelli how the pandemic and the resulting economic fallout have influenced his investment decisions, he gave us a somewhat surprising answer.
Rather than being discouraged from investing heavily during the pandemic, Novelli feels this is the perfect time to support individuals and businesses whose work can offer something of real value to the world at large.
“I am more eager now than before to deploy my savings into fast-growing and early-stage businesses. I am dedicating my private resources into projects whose missions can dramatically change many aspects of human interactions and wellbeing, or business ideas that support visions and dreams which I feel attached to.”
If anything, the pandemic has encouraged Novelli to put more time, effort, and resources into the kinds of investment opportunities that he has always sought out.
This is a topic that we’ll be exploring in greater depth later in the article, but the motivations behind each investment can be as crucial as the investment itself.
Many investors, whether they’re professionals or amateurs, focus solely on how they can directly benefit from their investments.
While Novelli is also concerned with investing successfully, which has been made clear by his highly successful track record, he is also motivated by the positive impact these investments can have. This leads us to our next topic.
Focusing on larger goals
For many years, public perception of investors and those working in finance is that their only goal is to make as much money as possible. It’s fair to say that this perception was heavily influenced by American investment strategies during the 1980s. Think ‘Wolf of Wallstreet.’
While it can be argued that a certain amount of modern-day investors have similar motivations, there is a growing contingency of investors who have much larger goals, goals that we could even call altruistic.
We’ve alluded to this already, but Novelli’s investment strategy places a large emphasis on recovery and cooperation.
“I believe rapid overall recovery from Covid can only be executed by leveraging any ‘gifts’ you have for a bigger cause, rather than focusing on having a nice house or a nice car. If you have a great career where you develop unique skills that can be monetized, use those skills to invest in people and in ideas where a true impact on humanity can be achieved.”
This sentiment has been echoed in a more general sense by many government and organizational leaders.
Whereas cooperation was previously a simple kindness, in the days after the Covid situation has been resolved, cooperation, especially in finance, is going to be an absolute necessity.
Investors will need to take a much closer look at the ways in which their actions can contribute to mutually beneficial goals.
None of this to say that investors can or should lose sight of returns. Investing in companies and individuals that will go on to benefit their communities and the people who live there isn’t charity, it’s just a strategy that ends up being a win-win for everyone involved.
When positive business entities are given the resources to establish themselves and succeed, they can provide products and services that reach people and improve their lives in some way.
The investors behind these businesses can still earn an impressive amount by investing in these ventures. It’s just that these specific businesses have a long-lasting positive impact that can’t be matched by more traditional investment opportunities.
In addition to these ventures having great potential for success, they can also result in a very positive public image for the investors themselves. In recent years, businesses and individuals who contribute to positive change through their work have received a great deal of positive press.
If more and more investors start to keep all this in mind, as Novelli suggests, it could very well be that the public image of investors, on the whole, will start to change for the better.
Passion wins out in the end
Throughout his many professional experiences and his constant search for positive investment opportunities both in the U.S. and abroad, Novelli has noticed a consistent thread that never fails to get his attention.
When looking for new businesses or individuals to support with investment, Novelli is always careful to take note of the amount of passion behind the core idea.
Passion is what fuels great ideas. It’s what inspires people to start a business of their own and it’s what inspires those same people to take on the many challenges that come with it.
Recently, Novelli’s own passion for music led to yet another investment, one that had the potential to boost a friend’s career.
“One of my passions is making music, and I am blessed to rehearse each week with my friend Glauco Tamaso, one of the greatest music producers I have ever met. I am supporting Glauco’s effort to reopen his recording studio in Brooklyn. Being able to see him reopen his studio, Bang Bang Studio, because Covid slashed commercial rent, has been wonderful. It makes me want to invest in other ventures based on great ideas.”
This is just one very small example of the good that can come from a simple idea and a great deal of passion.
Even in a time when the world at large is facing unprecedented challenges, there will always be new opportunities and there will always be people who are passionate enough about their work to share it with others and make their lives a little bit brighter.