What’s interesting about moat is that if a moat needs to be continuously built, it isn’t a moat at all. How do you know if you’re paying up or overpaying for the moat? This time we invert the conundrum of moat to explore the symptoms of false-moat trap.
Over the past few months, I have spent considerable time studying about business, their longevities, moats, what helps them sustain, and what dilutes them over time.
As an investor in stocks, studying what makes a few businesses really great and their moats sustain over a long period of time, and on the other hand, what makes a majority of businesses bad and their moats, if any, fleeting has been an interesting aspect of my work.
So, while I have not yet arrived at any Eureka moment on how and why some moats sustain over a long period of time, and how can one identify in advance when a moat is shrinking, there have been some thoughts that I have formed through such reading.
I had shared some of those thoughts in my last post in the June 2015 Special Report. This post is a continuation of what else I have learned about moats, and especially about the dark side of investing in either emerging moats or ones that have already had a proven past.
I’m sure you may be wondering, “What could be the dark side of moats?”
Well, without trying to lay down any clear theories on the same, what I will be sharing below are just a few thoughts on the risks of investing in moats that you must keep in mind when you are buying such businesses that seem to be in their full glory and not destined to failure in the future.
But then, like s**t happens in real life, it often happens when it comes to investing…and that’s what makes it such an interesting game where you must keep learning…and evolving.
Let’s Start with…Destruction
When changes in the natural environment accelerate, so do the extinction rates of the Earth’s creatures. It happened to the dinosaurs and again to many species during the Ice Age. Many scientists believe we may be entering another such period.