The World According to Frank (Giustra)

by James Kwantes

My friend Tommy Humphreys of CEO.ca has a great “get” today: a video interview with billionaire entrepreneur Frank Giustra, who has shown a Midas touch coupled with an impeccable sense of timing in the worlds of mining and entertainment. Humphreys was an inspiration for this blog and his interview with Giustra – in partnership with Cambridge House International – is well worth watching.

Giustra, the former head of Yorkton Securities, made his fortune in the mining business by building companies such as Wheaton River Minerals, which merged with Goldcorp and spun out Silver Wheaton along the way. He then moved into the movie industry, founding Lionsgate Entertainment and, more recently, investing in Thunderbird Films.

A philanthropist who has partnered with former president Bill Clinton’s charitable foundation and groups such as Vancouver’s Street to Home, Giustra retains a passion for the resource business, hard assets and investing. He also talks about how he got his start, what drives him and his motivation for philanthropy.

Giustra thinks the world is on the cusp of a period of inflation, as debt-burdened governments take the easy road of printing more money – which will drive up the price of gold, a belief Giustra outlined in this 2002 article and more recently in a Vancouver Sun column.

Giustra elaborates on these beliefs in the video interview, saying that the yellow metal is “the single biggest asset in my portfolio” and that he’ll sell his gold when it goes parabolic. ”Gold will probably have a much greater run than other hard assets because it’s also a currency.”

There are also bargains in the down-on-its-luck junior resource industry, in quality companies with great assets, cash in the bank and quality management teams, Giustra says. “Pick right, sit tight and you will make a lot of money.” But patience will be key.

The timing of the interview is nice, as gold flirts with $1,700 US/oz after Fed chairman Ben Bernanke’s speech at Jackson Hole last week suggesting more quantitative easing (money-printing) is on the table.

Here’s an interesting read about Giustra’s recent return to the film business, written by Vancouver Sun business reporter Jenny Lee.

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