James Dondero, the President and co-founder of Highland Capital Management, is known for risky investment adventures with in-depth analysis and greater market insights. His investment areas including markets and industries are vast, and he looks for opportunities around the world. It should be noted that he co-founded Highland Capital Management in 1993 with collateralized loan obligations, and currently, it is worth more than $15 billion. As an alternative investment firm, Highland invests from American Airlines to Argentina. Dondero keeps a mindset of “puzzle solving” when he makes investments. The mutual fund from the company, Highland Global Allocation fund showed an increase of 29.6% during the last 12 months. While other funds hold around 400 securities, Highland fund holds less than 200.
Another major success of Dondero is his investments in Argentina. When the Argentina debt debacle started in 2012, Dondero and his team performed an extensive research about the country and found that it has natural resources to come out of the financial crunch. By 2014, it started acquiring the sovereign debt of the country significantly, and at one point of time, it reached 24% of the fund’s assets. After the election in 2015, the country showed a recovery in the economy which also showed an appreciation of the local currency against Dollar. It means that firm purchased for 70 cents on the dollar, and it later moved to 120 cents on the dollar. Dondero also helped the company to benefit from Vistra Energy, which even Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway destined to lose at one time.
In 1993, Dondero and his partner Mark Okada collaborated with an insurance firm to launch Highland Capital Management. They initially focused on providing credit solutions and quickly moved to other areas of alternative space. The company floated its first alternative mutual fund in the year 2000 under the leadership of Dondero.Dondero is also very enthusiastic about philanthropic activities, and he contributes to many charitable organizations that connect to societies better. Reasoning Mind is a charitable initiative by him which designs tech-based mathematics curriculum for various classes from pre-kindergarten to seventh grade. Dondero completed his graduation in Accounting and Finance from the University of Virginia.