Friends often ask me, “How do you manage to travel most of the year, be involved with running several businesses, and get away with spending only 3-4 days per month in an office?”
All fun and no work?
On the outside, my life looks like all fun and no work. Which is misleading. I work a lot, but I have made it my mission to live my life on my own terms:
- I run “Me Inc.”, because if you work for someone else, you’ll only ever make money for someone else and never achieve a real degree of financial independence;
- Through a number of choices that I have made and worked hard for, my career is nowadays primarily managed from my laptop, which gives me strong control over how and where I spend my time;
- Instead of relying on government to provide for me in old age or ill-health, I have taken control of these important parts of life by finding and creating more reliable private solutions.
- Whereas I do some select work for a fee or salary, the majority of my time is spent on building and running my own projects and companies.
All in all, and after veering off into the wrong direction during some stages of my career, I now live a pretty awesome life.
What this website won’t do…
This website is not going to promise you any overnight riches or quick solutions to complex problems such as retirement saving.
I am actually the opposite to many of the websites you find about such topics. Other websites promise you an easy ride, if only you buy that expensive information product from a 23-year-old blogger kid who operates from a cheap surfer hut in Thailand… Good luck with that!
Anyone who wants to make you believe that there is an easy way to building a business or earning a freelancer income is looking to take you for a ride.
The vast majority of new businesses fail (venture capitalists usually work on the assumption that 9 out 10 of will go nowhere), and the famous “overnight success stories” are usually businesses that, upon closer inspect, actually took many years (or decades) to build.
Personally, I’d be wary of anyone who promises an easy path to riches. The sort of people who use such websites should stay well clear of my website, because I regularly poke fun about them.
…but I know how I can help you
I promise you a helping hand in making your sweat, blood and tears turn to success in the long run and create the life you aspire to.
Hopefully, all my free content will also help you in getting started in the first place and develop the right mindset. That journey of a 1,000 miles begins with a single step! Use my writing to learn what is possible if you set your mind to it.
When you see me doing the things that I write about on my blog, please keep in mind that I have spent the better part of the last 25 years creating this situation. However, with the advances in technology and an overall fast-changing world, you can do the same, and you can get there much faster. I do believe anyone can create the live they want within 2 to 3 years. Provided, of course, you have access to the right kind of information and you begin to make an effort.
This blog got its start because writing for it forces me to put my own thoughts into order. I genuinely enjoy sharing content because the feedback I get makes me think about subjects from entirely different angles. My original aim was to inspire a small group of friends and social media contacts, and writing that blog felt like being at an interesting dinner party 24/7.
In previous parts of my career, my work has been featured in the publications like the Financial Times, Vanity Fair, and the Economist (see media section below). I have achieved a lot, but I have also learned many lessons the hard way. Having managed start-ups, turnarounds, charities, investment funds, and special projects such as fundraising for a hostile takeover, there is a broad variety of management related subjects I have something to say about. If my articles help you avoid some of the mistakes I’ve made along the way and make you more successful, then I have already achieved my goal.
On this website, you will learn how, with diligent effort and a long-term plan, you can rid yourself of what has been holding you back and build the life you desire.
What you get is 100% genuinely me
Everything you find on this website has been written by myself, for better or worse. I do recommend you sign up to my email alerts, so that you’ll automatically hear about new articles appearing on here.
Also, please also feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn, a website that I actively use and which I find eminently useful. Or contact me if you feel that I can be of help to you in any way. I do like being in personal contact with contacts old and new.
Totally separate from this website, I have a long history of writing about finding interesting investments in unexpected places. I once even wrote two books about the subject, and you might also find my investment website, Undervalued-Shares.com, of interest.
We’ll be lucky to get 36,000 days on this planet. Yet another day will have passed in the bat of an eyelid, so make every one count! If this website sounds like it’s for you, don’t waste another day not acting on the information I offer.
Consolidated insolvent, toxic company with 9 financial media brands into 1 lead brand. Took the company from having 0 sponsors to 8 sponsors, including Fidelity Investment. Worked directly with the principal of the family office that owns Master Investor.
Macau Residential Property Fund
Worked with a team to conceptualise and launch the first AIM-listed residential property fund aimed at the then emerging opportunity in Macau. Raised a total of $150m in equity in two rounds, and built a $300m portfolio. Subsequently one of five directors who oversaw the company’s management.
Getting Galapagos Islands onto Google Maps
Fundraising for activist case
Worked with an activist investor to locate suitable co-investors for actively reshaping the strategy of a publicly listed company. Successful signing up of a family office’s fund management division had a catalytic effect on the situation. Details on request.
Smart Matrix Ltd.
Smart Matrix is an early-stage life science venture that was spun off from an independent medical research charity, RAFT. Worked with other board members to reshape the strategy, governance, and fundraising plans. Following the team’s success in raising a further $1.5m (1st round) and $3m (2nd round), chaired committee for hiring a new CEO.
Partnership with IWC Watches
Two-year stint as brand ambassador of IWC Watches (watch a project video that was viewed over 4m times!) alongside A-list celebrities such as Adriana Lima, Ronan Keating, and Ewan McGregor. Aimed at creating awareness for an IWC partner organisation. PR work with Vanity Fair, Financial Times, GQ, and many others around the world.
Fundraising proposal for UNESCO World Heritage
I brought together a dozen experts from around the world, from world-class employers such as National Geographic, to develop a new fundraising approach for the under-funded World Heritage Centre in Paris. The concept was not subsequently adopted for a number of reasons, but components of it could be utilised by other nonprofits.
HNWI fundraising plan for Leave.EU
Together with Leave.EU‘s CEO and creative team, I developed a fundraising pitch aimed at high net worth individuals. Leave.EU was the most social media savvy Leave campaign and ended up having nearly a million active supporters by the time the referendum took place.
Limited Edition book with Rook's Books
After publishing my first book, I decided to produce a limited edition of 100 copies. The books were bound in 200 year old reindeer leather that had sunk off the coast of Devon in 1786, and which was salvaged from the wreck in the early 2000s. It was a pleasure working with Gavin Rookledge of Rook’s Books, a real master of his craft.
Dixcart Bay Hotel
Purchase and subsequent restructuring of one of the oldest hotels in the British Channel Islands. The 400 year old Dixcart Bay Hotel was subsequently sold to the Barclay Brothers, two of the largest private property investors in the UK.
Asian vintage safe restoration
Vintage safes from Asia, mostly from the 19th century, were fitted out for a future use as cigar humidor, drinks cabinett, and jewellry box. All of the work was done to the highest possible standard. The safes were a one-off project and sold privately.
CEO of Swiss financial service company
Creating a public fund management company from scratch. The venture successfully launched an equity fund and engaged (unsuccessfully) in a proxy battle to purchase another fund manager 20 times its size. Subsequently wound down due to not reaching sufficient economies of scale.
Selection of articles and TV / videos where my work has appeared
Financial Times – How To Spend It
Probably the most flattering piece I will have ever written about myself. This appeared as a 4-page feature in the How to Spend It magazine in 2014.
(PDF – 2.3MB)
Inside the Wave – IWC Aquatimer 2014 – SIHH Recap
To mark the launch of the new Aquatimer collection at the 2014 SIHH watch show in Geneva, 800 guests and Friends of the Brand experienced a unique, specially made setting that simulated the world both above and below the ocean surface.
Relaunch of Master Investor Show
The Master Investor Show was relaunched under my leadership. This is a 3 minute summary video of the event.
I recently enjoyed my 30th (!) dinner with TableCrowd.com. They bring entrepreneurial people together for curated dinner discussions. One of my favourite things in London! This fun, short interview I did with their blog describes it all in a bit more detail.
El Colono, Ecuador
The local newspaper of the Galapagos Islands reporting in 2009 about the vocational school I helped set up and fun together with two good friends, Vasco von Baselli and Pablo Guerrero. Note how they turned me into an ‘English banker’. I am neither English nor a banker!
(PDF – 162KB)
When I was fired from the Charles Darwin Foundation, a public spat ensued and I published this article on a leading Ecuadorian news blog. It became this well-known website’s third most often read article ever.
(PDF – 65KB)
Explore the Galapagos Islands with Google Maps
In partnership with the Galapagos National Park, The Charles Darwin Foundation, and Catlin Seaview Survey, we traveled to the archipelago to collect 360-degree Street View imagery.
Guest Lecture at Loughborough University
Giving a guest lecture for the Corporate Governance – Start-ups module offered on the MSc Entrepreneurship, Finance and Innovation course at Loughborough University. Touching on the importance of governance in day-to-day operations, how good governance can foster innovation and successful fundraising, and how it all compares to running a business as a “sole trader” without a board being involved.
The German issue of GQ Magazine publishing an 8-page article about my work in the Galapagos Islands and the partnership with IWC Watches.
(PDF – 2.5MB)
Vanity Fair UK
The UK issue of Vanity Fair, summarising some of the projects I have managed in the Galapagos Islands and (once again) mentioning IWC Watches.
(PDF – 1.6MB)
The next generation – BBC Environment
BBC wildlife show ‘Lonesome George and the Battle to Save Galapagos’ investigates the importance of a strong environmental education for the next generation of native islanders to ensure a safe future for the environmentally fragile Galapagos Islands.
Swen Lorenz on Brexit
Why do I support Brexit? Campaign video produced by the team of Leave.EU.
The UK’s no. 1 satire magazine published an investigative report about the hostile take-over attempt at Savoy Asset Management. I was involved on the side of the shareholders that pressed for changes. Savoy subsequently fled into the arms of a White Knight, which resolved the issues in a lucrative way.
(PDF – 888KB)
La Prensa Nicaragua
This Nicaraguan newspaper published a report on defaulted Cuban Debt, an area that I have a long-standing interest in and about which I was interviewed.
(PDF – 409KB)
Rouge Bunny Rouge
Russian beauty blog about the luxury cosmetics brand that I created together with friends and which we launched in the Russian market in 2005. It subsequently grew to over 300 Points-of-Sales worldwide and became part of the LVMH group of companies.
This blog wrote what was the best and most in-depth article about the Master Investor Show.
(PDF – 636KB)
Leading German investment magazine, Der Aktionaer, interviewing me about my travelling and how I find interesting investments along the way. This is 2006 vintage but the approach hasn’t change since then.
(PDF – 110KB)
One of my favourite publications in the world, National Geographic, reporting about my work in conservation, tourism, and World Heritage Site management.
An endorsement that I humbly admit I am fairly proud of. Printed in the world’s favourite pink paper.
Scientific American taking a look at the developments in the Galapagos Islands back in 2014.
The US’ foremost science magazine reporting about some of the issues I encountered when managing a scientific organisation in a hyper-corrupt third world country.
The only internationally known Chinese newspaper featuring some of my work related to the partnership with IWC Watches.
The playing card set shown in this Economist article has by now become a collectors item! I had very much enjoyed creating it in collaboration with a French illustrator.
The Washington Post
This article was on the cover page of the Washington Post. It lead to huge global interest, and also triggered donations and cheques raining down on the organisation that it reported about.
Fairly extensive – but German – interview about an activist case I represented in 2010/11.
Germany’s largest news magazine is also Europe’s largest news magazine (who’d have thought?). They reported about some of my work in the Galapagos Islands.
Neue Zuercher Zeitung
Switzerland’s no. 1 newspaper reporting about my buying a public Swiss company together with a UK-based family office.
Impact investing, business modelling for charities, and new funding mechanisms to help save the world. German publication “Good Impact” did an extensive interview with me.
German newspaper “Die Welt” reporting about conservation in the Galapagos Islands.
German diving magazine, Tauchen, reporting my views on ocean conservation, sharks and responsibly enjoying nature.
(PDF – 906KB)
When I was 16, I sold a computer game to Germany’s then leading “home computer” magazine. The game simulated managing a country as President, with a strong slant towards fiscal responsibility.
(PDF – 4.2MB)
Hong Kong men’s style magazine with an extensive write-up about new luxury watches that were launched by IWC Watches when I was working with them as Brand Ambassador.
(PDF – 714KB)
The iconic magazine of IWC Watches dedicating its cover story to our joint efforts in protecting the Galapagos Islands. The magazine sadly was later discontinued in favour of digital media, I really miss it!
(PDF – 1.7MB)
The credit card company’s magazine for elite customers reporting on some of the travel experiences that are possible in the Galapagos Islands. I had their travel correspondent on the island, she had a great time!
(PDF – 2.3MB)
The magazine for premium members of Diners Club in Japan providing an overview of the work I was involved with in science and conservation.
(PDF – 2.3MB)
This is how you can get in touch
Swen Lorenz, Private Box 2012, Sark, GY10 1PB, Channel Islands (via UK)
I can regularly be found in Guernsey, London, New York, Paris, Munich, Berlin, Zurich. Please enquire for itinerary.
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