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Executive Profile , Darren Caris

BY ANDREW SCHWEIZER

Darren Caris, chairman and chief executive officer of Caris & Co. Inc., an investment bank focused on the health care, energy, technology and consumer sectors, boasts more than 15 years in the industry. Beginning in Del Mar, Caris & Co. now has branches in New York, San Francisco and Boston.


RESUME

Name: Darren Caris.

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Company: Caris & Co. Inc.

Education: UC San Diego.

Birthplace: Santa Monica.

Age: 36.

Current residences: Del Mar and New York.

Family: Wife, Jessica.


BUSINESS PHILOSOPHY

Essential business philosophy: Keep ethics and integrity at the forefront of all of your business dealings and human capital additions.

Best way to keep a competitive edge: Hire the most sophisticated thinkers with the deepest domain expertise.

Guiding principle: Clients and employees should always be treated in the most honest, straightforward manner possible.

Yardsticks of success: A happy, invigorated human capital base, satisfied clients, revenue growth and profitability.

Goals yet to be achieved: A substantial build-out of our investment banking practice; creation of Caris Asset Management; and opening offices in Beijing and London.


JUDGMENT CALLS

Best business decision: Targeting the most sophisticated investors in the world as our client base.

Worst business decision: Not accepting outside capital.

Toughest business decision: Having to terminate good people solely because they weren’t strong enough to operate in our environment.

Biggest missed opportunity: So many of our clients have inquired about an asset management arm based on our research. Hopefully, that won’t be a missed opportunity for long.

Mentor: Bob Sievers, former senior vice president of equity trading at Gruntal & Co.

Word that describes you: Tenacious.


TRUE CONFESSIONS

What you like best about your job: Meeting some of the most brilliant minds in the world.

What you like least about your job: Having to terminate employees.

Pet peeves: Portfolio managers who use our research but don’t compensate us appropriately for it.

Most important lesson learned: Never let ego get in the way of objectivity.

Person most interested in meeting: Stephen Hawking, theoretical physicist.

Three greatest passions: Family, job, surfing, in that order.

First choice for a new career: I’d go back to surfing the World Qualifying Series professional surfing tour.


PREDILECTIONS

Favorite quote: “Sometimes you avoid injury by just going for it.” , Tom Curren, a professional surfer.

Most influential book: “One Up on Wall Street,” by Peter Lynch.

Favorite status symbol: A garage full of surfboards.

Favorite restaurant: Nobu in New York City. It’s where I met my wife.

Favorite place for business meetings: Out in the ocean, surfing.

Favorite vacation spot: My father’s house in Kauai.

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