The Belgian-born financier spent time at JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs before cofounding hedge fund GLG Partners in 1995
Illustration by Graham Smith
- 01 What are you reading? Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936–1939 by Adam Hochschild.
- 02 What are you wearing? A very dark brown corduroy Huntsman jacket, with a vintage handmade silk lining.
- 03 Favorite city? Los Angeles—the light over the ocean really gets to me. But I love London too. And Beijing.
- 04 How many days a year do you travel? At least 100.
- 05 Favorite airline? British Airways. They’re not the youngest people or the youngest planes, but I’m very fond of them.
- 06 What do you never travel without? A few things I keep in my wallet written by people who are very dear to me.
- 07 Your investment philosophy? Combine things that are interesting philosophically and rewarding economically.
- 08 Investing advice? Never invest in things that you don’t understand or in people you don’t trust.
- 09 Your favorite film? Erin Brockovich. Also Crash and Frida. I was going to produce a movie on Lucian Freud so I went on a run of watching artist movies. I didn’t really appreciate [Frida Kahlo’s] work before.
- 10 Best piece of music? Right now, “Saint Pablo” by Kanye. The lyrics give you a good indication of the era we live in.
- 11 Beer, wine or spirits? Beer, because I am Belgian. But I love wine. I’m also partial to martinis.
- 12 What’s your watch? A Rolex Daytona that became famous because Paul Newman wore it—we made a bespoke Huntsman edition. Also a Patek Philippe Ellipse that one of my sons gave me for my 40th birthday.
- 13 Favorite accessory? Vintage Hermès cuff links that belonged to my dad.
- 14 Favorite restaurant? In London, Casa Cruz in Notting Hill. It’s on a nondescript street, but it’s this beautiful, quite sophisticated setting.
- 15 What do you drive? A Ferrari California. Every year I take it on a road trip with one of my sons, down to the bottom of Italy or Spain.
- 16 Biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome? When my partners and I founded GLG, a large part of the capital fell through. We looked at each other and said, “We’re just going to have to work harder.”
- 17 What do you get excited about? I’m excited by creating good, creating a business, discovering better ways to do things. I’m excited about the future. And about the present, actually.
- 18 Best advice you’ve ever gotten? That before 30 I didn’t need to think about making money—just try many things.
- 19 Something you’re proud of? My three kids. They’re smart, liberal and open-minded.
- 20 How would you like to be remembered? Happy, I suppose. And that I made other people happy as well.