Ownership and Patronage—Is there a difference?

Robin John
2 min video

Is there a difference between ownership in a company and patronage of a company? Watch Eventide CEO, Robin John explain the responsibility of both roles.

People often ask me, "Robin, do you buy so-and-so product? And if you don't invest there, do you buy their product?"

And to me, there is a difference between ownership and patronage.

Let's say that there is a convenience store in my local community. Well, let's say I walk by orange juice. I walk by gum. They may be selling pornography, tobacco, alcohol, lottery tickets. I walk in, I buy milk, I walk out. I've done business with milk, right? So I'm a patron in the business. By buying the milk, I'm encouraging, in some ways, the convenience store owner to stock more milk on the shelf. By not engaging with the tobacco, in some ways, I'm discouraging the sale of tobacco. So as a patron in the convenience store, I could encourage or discourage the convenience store to sell certain types of products and not sell the other types of products.

But if I'm an investor, if I'm an owner in the business, I share in the profits that come from all the products, right? So I would say that the owner, the investor, has even a greater ethical responsibility than the patron.

This communication is provided for informational purposes only and expresses views of Eventide Asset Management, LLC ("Eventide"), an investment adviser. There is no guarantee that any investment strategy will achieve its objectives, generate profits, or avoid losses. Eventide's values-based approach to investing may not produce desired results and could result in underperformance compared with other investments. Any reference to Eventide’s Business 360 approach is provided for illustrative purposes only and indicates a general framework of guiding principles that inform Eventide’s overall research process. Investing involves risk including the possible loss of principal. Past performance does not guarantee future results.

Before investing or sending money, an investor should carefully review investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses as provided in prospectuses and other information available at www.eventidefunds.com or by calling 1-877-771-EVEN (3836). Eventide Asset Management, LLC serves as investment adviser to the Eventide mutual funds distributed through Northern Lights Distributors, LLC (“NLD”), member FINRA/SIPC. NLD and Eventide are not affiliated entities.


Posted February 21, 2020
Robin John
Robin John

Robin John is co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Eventide.