Abhay Deshpande founded Centerstone Investors and serves as the chief investment officer. He has more than 25 years of experience researching and investing in businesses globally.

Prior to establishing Centerstone, Mr. Deshpande was a portfolio manager at First Eagle Investment Management, advisor to the global and overseas strategies that comprised the vast majority of the firm’s approximately $100 billion in assets under management. During his 15-year tenure, his responsibilities included hiring and training analysts along with leading the research team during times of market turbulence. He spearheaded the research efforts during both the 2001 technology and 2008 credit crises, and in both cases his direct efforts helped clients minimize losses, and ultimately thrive, during his career at First Eagle.

Previously, Mr. Deshpande was a research analyst with Harris Associates, advisor to Oakmark International Fund and other international and global products. He also was an analyst for Morningstar responsible for following a variety of International mutual funds. He began his career at a boutique investment advisor in Louisville, KY.

I spoke with Abhay on November 14:

You started Centerstone Funds earlier this year, having previously worked at First Eagle Investment Management with the legendary value investor Jean-Marie Eveillard. What were some of the key lessons you learned from Mr. Eveillard and how has that influenced your investment philosophy?

In addition to being part of a highly successful team, Jean-Marie is just a good man and a great role model. In terms of the approach itself, trying to avoid loss was the key to our success over a long period of time. Not getting caught up in the macro news of the day, whether it’s Brexit or the latest election or what-have-you, and really focusing on the bottom up are key lessons I’ve learned.

It was very different when I had billions of dollars in assets to run at First Eagle. The main difference between what I’m doing now and when I was at First Eagle is that I’m smaller. We can do high yield. We can do multi-cap, small and big companies. It’s very exciting to be able to start all over again, but doing something we know works.

What are the mandates of the two funds you’ve introduced, the Centerstone Investors Fund and the International Fund?

Equity-like returns without risk. We try to accomplish that by doing security-by-security selection and avoiding permanent capital loss from an individual security basis.

The Centerstone Investors Fund is a global multi-asset fund with a long-term orientation and multi-cap mandate. The International Fund is the same approach as the Investors Fund; it’s just the non-U.S. portion of the portfolio.