Over the past week or so I’ve had an illuminating assignment at A Company Called Malice, Inc. I’ve been working on a marketing thought piece on Distressed Debt investing. Finance is not my field of expertise. I don’t do content. I’m the design/layout make-it-look-pretty guy. I’m not going to pretend that I know anything about Distressed Debt investing. But what I’m reading makes my flesh crawl just a bit.
As I understand it, Distressed Debt is the opportunity to invest in companies that are in the final stages of life. They invest in companies that are faltering because of financial and/or operational difficulties. This is, on the surface, an almost benevolent act. They are giving troubled companies a cash infusion with the hopes of profiting on their recovery. What a great bunch of altar boys.
But it’s the tone of this piece and my conversations with the authors that irks me. The message is that, while it’s a damn shame that small business are failing at record rates and unemployment is above 10%, hey, fraternity brothers, let’s not weep in our beers over these losers because guess what? There’s lots and lots of money to be made on their failure. Let’s not pass up an opportunity to cash in.
The piece practically celebrates the fact that we are not at the end of the current distressed cycle and stresses that there’s going to be plenty more meat and bones for the Golden Boys to pick over and profit from.
It’s a terribly cold and calloused piece, especially when you consider the fact that this is the same bunch that got us into this mess in the first place. But business is business. And while it eats at my guts just a bit to be associated with this industry, I’ve got a mortgage to pay and two children to feed, so I’ll keep my mouth shut and do what I’m told. Yessah! Whatever you say sah! I sho hopes you admires mah work.