How Michael Lee-Chin is already investing in the future

Michael Lee-Chin, President and Chairman of Portland Holdings Limited., and CEO and Chairman of its investment dealer, Mandeville Private Client Inc., has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) to collaborate in the development of health sciences, clean energy, and environmental responsibility.

He explains the significance of the partnership to WP – and how Mandeville advisors and end clients will benefit.

This video was produced in partnership with Mandeville Private Client Inc.

To view full transcript, please click here

James: [00:00:21] With us on this special episode of WPTV is Michael Lee-Chin. Michael, welcome to WPTV. Thanks for joining us.

Michael: [00:00:28] I'm excited to be here.

James: [00:00:30] Recently you announced some really big news for your company that you'd signed an MOU to collaborate with CNL, Canadian nuclear Laboratories in development to collaborate in the development of health science, clean energy and environmental responsibility. So why is the collaboration with CNL so important for you, and why are CNL such an important organization?

Michael: [00:00:56] Well, this is not only this is a small wheel, small cog in the wheel. It's important to the world because every country has signed up to be net zero within whatever timeframe, 15 years, 20 years, 30 years. But most countries have no idea as to how to get there, because to get to net zero, you have to have some nuclear baseload to provide fuel energy for industries or for aviation, for shipping, etc.. So and very few countries have that expertise. Fortunately for us here in Canada, we have that expertise in spades in a repository called CNL Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, which is unique in the world. Most countries, most developed countries there have been decommissioning their nuclear process, their nuclear plants. Germany, as an example, had 11 plants. They've already decommissioned eight. Only three left after the North after Russia decided to turn their gas off to Germany. There are no hurriedly repurposing and recommissioning those plants. So politics, the world, politics, local politics have played a role in making new nuclear a bad thing. Without nuclear, where all our great grandchildren will have a problem with asphyxiation. Without nuclear. So we have an opportunity with CNL, because, as I said, CNL is a Canadian government repository for all things IP in a nuclear space. They have nearly 600 nuclear scientists in Chalk River and 1600 engineers working on clean energy, medical isotopes and nuclear waste remediation, all essential to solving some of mankind's most unmet needs.

James: [00:03:08] How did you get to know about CNL? Was it through your research or how did the partnership come about?

Michael: [00:03:14] CNL I became familiar with CNL. It would have been about actually a little more than a year ago because CNL. I'm a teacher. I'm the on the board of directors of a Munich, Germany, company by the name of ITM. And ITM is in the business of producing the radioisotope Lutetium 177 and also building out a radiopharmaceutical business. So we supply the world with Lutetium 177, which is used to treat cancer at the cellular level. We were zapping cancerous cells at the cell level and leaving neighboring adjacent neighboring cells, healthy cells alone. So one day I was at a board on a board meeting about a year ago, and the board, the chairman said, you know, we've been trying to get a relationship with CNL because CNL is working on acting on the production of another isotope, which is very complementary to cesium 177. It's called Actinium 225. Actinium emits alpha rays which are like a like. Very potent. So they are complementary to Lutetium. So the chairman said we've been trying to get a relationship with CNL to make sure we can deliver the combination Lutetium and actinium to the world at the pharmaceutical grade level. But we have not been unable to do so for two years. Oh, really? Let me see if I can help. So I called a friend of mine who is a board member of CNL, and within a week we had representatives from ITM at CNL signing an MOU you to do a joint venture to develop pharmaceutical grade ACTINIUM 225. And that gave me the idea that CNL has more than read your medical isotopes. They are the world's leaders in clean energy tech, clean energy tech, SMR, small modular reactors and hydrogen as a fuel. And these are areas that you'll be hearing the world need. To become net zero. So hence the dialogue started. A year ago to send an MOU to take CNL, to help CNL, to advocate throughout the world, and help to make countries enable countries to meet their own net zero mandates.

James: [00:06:08] What does this collaboration mean for your advisors and the clients?

Michael: [00:06:13] It is fantastic because at this point in time, clients, whether you are CPB or Umas, whether you're an institution or a retail client, you don't have access to these types of investments. There's no access. We, with this corporation, with CNL, there would be funds needed to implement and to operationalize projects. So clients will have a wonderful opportunity to come and co-invest with us. In these projects.

James: [00:06:53] Yeah.

Michael: [00:06:55] So we are going to be investing in these projects and clients will now have an opportunity to come and co-invest with us and participate in solving some of mankind's most unmet needs.

James: [00:07:09] That's obviously hugely lofty goals. I mean, obviously no reason why we can't achieve them. I just wondered, what do you think the actual impact of your investment could actually be? I mean, it's a bit of an open ended question, but do you think you can obviously you wouldn't do this if you didn't think you could. But do you think that you can make a real meaningful impact? Do you think you could speed some of this up? Do you think you're on the brink of making some real change here?

Michael: [00:07:34] Well, think about it, James. If you are, most countries have no nuclear progress. I just said nuclear is essential. Nuclear energy is essential to because its net zero in terms of its carbon footprint. No carbon footprint. So so every they have no new. Most countries have no nuclear muscles, but they need nuclear to solve their problem, which they have already signed up to be net zero in whatever timeframe. So they have signed up. They have the commitment to be net zero, but they don't know how to provision to get their CNL. And Portland will enable countries. To realize their mandates. So we will speak. We are speaking to countries and in so doing, we enable them and they'll have to invest and we'll co-invest with them.

James: [00:08:31] Thanks, Michael. How does working with CNL fit with the Mandeville philosophy?

Michael: [00:08:37] Well, CNL is a very excited about this opportunity because Kennel they now see, remember, they're, as I said, nearly 600 PhDs, nuclear scientists and 1600 engineers. They now see an opportunity to take what they have, what is local and native to us here in Canada and help the world to solve its problems. So as a as a human being, what better purpose can you have as a human being? I'm humbled that I have an opportunity to work on this mission Kennel staff. They're all so humbled and motivated and salivating to get going because it's a, it's necessary and we have the tools to do it. I know we have the opportunity to do to realize it with this partnership.

James: [00:09:38] Can I ask you about precision oncology as well? Yes. Now, I know you've talked in the press releases and out there about the longevity issue that's facing the world, the population. How do you think precision oncology will impact that? And how big an investment opportunity is that moving forward?

Michael: [00:09:58] Well, when you think of when you think of, firstly, the demographics of North America. The composition of our demographics is such that the largest percentage of our population, approximately 28%, is would be classified as the baby boomers. Those of us born between 1964 and 19, 1946 and 1964. We're getting older, and I'm probably the median age of a baby boomer. I'm 71. So what was 71 year old people think about? I want to live long and I want to have a good quality of life while I'm alive. Unfortunately, the older you become, the more likely you are to get cancer, unfortunately. So there's a general. We're in the early innings of a health care boom driven by demographics, specifically the baby boomers. Within that health care boom, there is a sub boom, which is oncology. When you think of oncology, two modalities come to mind. The first is chemo, external beam radiation, which is brutal. It fries your body. The second is chemotherapy, which is also brutal. It poisons your entire body.

James: [00:11:16] Yeah.

Michael: [00:11:17] Those two modalities have been around for greater than 80 years. They're ripe for disruption. What's going to disrupt them? P r t peptide receptor, radionuclide therapy, treating cancer at a cellular level, as I mentioned earlier, whereby we can deliver a payload of whether it's beta emitting isotopes or alpha emitting isotopes to those cells and only those cells, and that the cells, because we are zapping all those cancer cells, there are minimal side effects.

James: [00:11:55] Now, As far as I know, Michael, not many other investment firms, if any, have employed a chief medical officer and a chief scientific officer. That's a pretty innovative move. What was behind those appointments and what do they bring to Portland and Mandeville?

Michael: [00:12:12] Well, we have in terms of investment principles as an investor, we have to understand what it is we invest in. So it doesn't make sense us getting into areas that we don't have an understanding of the scientific, the medical, deep understanding of the scientific, the medical, because we're not speculating here. We have to understand it. So we have populated our team with individuals who have domain scientific and medical expertise at the highest level. Not not only that, we also ITM has a staff complement of 500. They're part of our team because, as I said, I'm a director and large shareholder. We already have invested in one company ITM, over €225 million. That's how committed we are. Yeah.

James: [00:13:12] What impact do you think having that expertise on board has on the end client client knowing that this expertise is there backing up the investment decisions.

Michael: [00:13:23] Well James, this is whenever you get into an area that's that is new, there has to be an educational and confidence building process. Clients knowing that we have the domain experience in-house and we also have the domain experience by virtue of the businesses that we invest in. In the case of ITM, we have 500 ITMs, 500 professionals. We can call on any one of them. So we are going through the educational process so that clients can understand and become better investors themselves. So once someone understands, there's more commitment. It's not just trading stocks. We're investing for the long run. And these are areas that you just can't go down the street to your typical securities dealer and get involved.

James: [00:14:25] So obviously, Michael, our listeners and readers are advisors. Do you have a final message to them with regards to clean energy net zero and longevity?

Michael: [00:14:38] Yes, it's all about operating under a framework and a framework which is which is used, whether consciously or unconsciously, by everybody who has created wealth. In other words, everybody who has created wealth did three things. Number one, and we define it as the three P's. Number one, the predicted future. Number two, the plan for that prediction. And number three, they persevered. Now, when I say predict the future, the first thing that comes to mind is, oh, my gosh, there's speculation, Mike. You can't see your own corners. So we the one has to have a mechanism by which you can. Yes. Predict the future with a high degree of confidence that the future will materialize. And that's how we got here in the first place. In 1983, I predicted the future. The future was in 1983, the going back to demographics. Demographics is a wonderful tool, predictive tool, because we all know what babies do at one. Children do a ten, 12, 20, 30 people do at 40, 50, 60. So all you have to do is ask yourself the question. And if you have a large percentage of the population in one age cohort, then it's predictive as to what they will be doing. So in 1983, I was 30. In 80 to 83, I was 32. The question is, what do 32 year old families do? They're consuming, they're buying a home, car, furniture, etc.. So we had the largest percentage of the North American population engage in one activity consumption. So we had a consumption boom in 83. But you don't make money by investing in what is happening now. You make money by investing today in what will happen tomorrow. So back in 83, I thought ten years from now I'd be 43, 42. I was 32. I'm 42. What do 42 year old people think about? Oh my gosh, I've been consuming for the last while setting my home. Now I'm going to retire in 23 years. I don't have enough money saved. So coming, becoming is a saving and investing boom. So what did we do? We said we knowing that saving investing boom is coming. How do we participate now? Which is to make sure we capitalize on what's coming. Well, we bought shares in asset management businesses, so we became the largest shareholders of McKinsey trademark, which is the Invesco ETF Investors Group. See, all of the investment goes, which is no fear. We were the largest. We in Burlington were the largest share of shareholder of all of those companies. So today I'm 71. Remember, I'm the median age group, median age for the baby boomer cohort. So I'm 71. So what do you say to what your people think about, oh, my gosh, I want to live long. I want to live. I have a high quality of life. So as I said, there's a coming health care boom. And within that, an oncology boom, all predictable because of demographics. So hence the reason why, just like how we got on early investing in the asset management business and we became the largest in all of the the important ones, we're doing the same thing today, getting in early, signing relationships with CNL, which which is now even bigger because taking us into an area not only in in in oncology but in. Clean energy, clean tech, which is necessary for the survival of mankind.

James: [00:18:38] Final question, Michael. In summary, crystal ball, what does the future look like in ten, 20 years? With regards to clean energy oncology, aging population. What do you see when you when you look into your crystal ball?

Michael: [00:18:55] You know, it's not perfectly clear and nothing is ever perfectly clear. But I know if we maintain discipline towards our framework, which is relevant, one here is the three P's success is created by predicting the future. The first P, the second P is planning for it, and the third P is persevering with your plan. It's no different from what Wayne Gretzky famously said when he was asked When how come you're so great? He said most hockey players, the focus on the puck is I focus on where the puck is going. In terms of what do I see is blurry. All I know is we have a path that we have. We are confident that if we continue and persevere, remember, predict, plan and persevere. If we persevere with this path, on this path with the partners we have with CNL and us being able to help countries to realize their net zero goals, all I don't I can't define it clearly, but I know great things are going to happen. And if we don't do this, bad things are going to happen.

James: [00:20:16] It's fantastic. Michael, I really appreciate your time. Thanks for joining us on WP Talk. That was a great chat. I appreciate it.

Michael: [00:20:21] My pleasure. Thank you also for having me.