[Ask Me Anything!] I'm a former professional MMA fighter who competes in ONE Championship, owner of a gym and financial blog Black Belt Millionaire. Ask Me Anything!
I’m Raymond from Black Belt Millionaire. :)
A former professional MMA fighter who competes in ONE Championship, I hail from Penang, where you can find the best Hokkien Mee, Char Koay Teow, Laksa & Nasi Kandar. Currently, I’m a gym owner, the mastermind of financial blog - Black Belt Millionaire, while clocking a 9-5 job.
Who am I as an investor?
I started investing intermittently since 2008 but after getting myself into a huge debt, I finally decided to change my life for the better, which drove me to learn the art of investment. I have never looked back and currently I have investments in stocks, P2P lending, robo-advisors, private equity, businesses & myself. P.S.: I still drive my old 2007 Naza Suria, and I’m proud of it.
I’ve penned articles which cover topics like: what you can invest in with RM1,000, how to invest in gold, whether it is legal to trade Forex in Malaysia, and many others revolving around personal finance, mutual funds and money saving tips.
What you can expect from this AMA session:
- My experience on how I managed to get out of debt
- What are the choices I made to change my life
- My honest view on certain investment platforms
- Bonus: Recommended food in Penang (!)
Don’t hesitate to ask me anything, but here are some examples:
- How did you manage to get out of your credit card & personal loan debt?
- How and why did you repeat the same credit card mistake more than once?
- What lesson have you learned since you’ve gotten out of debt?
- What is the best financial lesson you’ve ever learnt?
- How do you learn about investments?
- What makes up your portfolio?
- What is your best investment?
- What is your view on P2P Investing?
- Why do you call your blog Black Belt Millionaire?
- Is it hard to learn how to invest?
- What is your view on cryptocurrency?
Note from moderator @kaeley-wn:
The host may choose at his/her preference to not answer particular questions.
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Please note that the information is meant purely for informational purposes and should not be relied upon as financial advice. Users may wish to approach a financial adviser before relying on any advice provided by the website to make any decision to buy, sell or hold any investment product.
chekmeng last edited by
Was it very challenging to set up a gym and why? Did you think it was a worthwhile decision while getting out of debt at the same time?
Are you a millionaire? Hehe?
ZephyrLoh last edited by
How do you manage your time as a gym owner, blog owner and investor while clocking 9-5 job?
I believed you still train frequently to maintain your fitness as MMA fighter.
We can always make more money but cannot make more time.
SWong last edited by
Which place serve the best Hokkien noodles?
jackchan last edited by
Hi Raymond! Thanks for the AMA. Have a few questions that I am curious about!
- Currently, what financial goal are you aiming for?
- What are some ways you remain frugal in your own life?
- What are some transferable lessons from your MMA career to your present career?
- What do you currently work as?
- You wrote that you have investments in private equity. How did you get involved and how much do you invest in it?
funding4u last edited by
Hi raymond, thanks for doing this.
I would like to know what is the investment breakdown in your portfolio among the instruments you mentioned - stocks, P2P lending, robo-advisors, private equity, businesses & myself?
chingz last edited by
Hi Raymond, what is your savings and investment tips for the young adults that are starting off in their career?
Also, what is your goal for BBM in the next 3 years?
JT last edited by
Here are a few questions for you
What would you say to give courage to individuals who wish reject temptations and get out of debts?
How does the financial change impacts your other non-financial decision making?
What will be the inspiration/ reason that will continue to fuel you towards financial freedom?
maybewei last edited by
Hey Raymond, how did you get yourself into debt and out of debt? What lesson have you learned since you’ve gotten out of debt?
And this one - Why do you call your blog Black Belt Millionaire?
mastrich last edited by
What’s your take on the FIRE movement? Any plans to retire early and maybe just continue operating your gym since it appears to be where your passion lies?
@chekmeng it was definitely not easy but maintaining it is even tougher. MMA Gym was something new in Malaysia in 2012 & promoting combat sports / fitness it was one of the toughest task. Part of the reason i got myself into debt was borrowing money to setup my gym but it finally paid off after years of hard work.
@jomni not at this moment :). But I do believe that I will able to achieve Financial Freedom somewhere down the road.
maybewei last edited by
What made you want to be an MMA fighter?
@zephyrloh we have 24 hours a day. It really depend how you want to arrange your time. One thing that I rarely do is to spend too much time on TV or other unproductive activity. I spend 5-6 days at gym a week to train right after work & my usual activities after my gym is to update my blog. So its 9-5 (Office), 6-10 (Gym) & 11-12 (Blog / Reading / Online Course)
How did you learn about investing? Books, internet or any other source?
@swong depending on timing. Usually for breakfast, I like this place called Super Hokkien Mee but the uncle is a bit rude. There's another one in Tanjung Bungah Market as well. For lunch, I like the one near Batu Maung. Same Row as UPS office. The famous one that many people like for Supper is Green House Hokkien Mee. Do let me know if you are in Penang. I can bring you for some good hokkien mee :)
- My Financial Goal is retire by 40 or retire with RM5 Million while maintaining my gym & my blog.
- I still drive my old 2007 Naza Suria although Im tempted to change it. I do try to control my budget on coffee & food as well. As for shopping, I will only buy if I stumble upon a good deal.
- My MMA career thought me to never give up in life. Training & diet can be though but no matter how tough it is, I still have to finish what I started.
- I work in Sales Department under a International Courier Company. I've been in Supply Chain industry since I started to work.
- I like to watch Shark Tank. It's one of my weekend go to series. I did tried my hands on Microventures which I have invested USD100 for Unlimited Tomorrow & recently Fitpeak. I try not to risk too much as it's something Im not really familiar at.
@funding4u thanks for your question.Currently I have 50% of my portfolio in my gym business, 30% stocks & the rest of it is in P2P, Robo Advisors & my blogs :). I do have RM200-RM300 allocation per month that I spend on books too.
@chingz I made many mistakes in my personal finance when I started my career. First I think they should start to save between 10%-30% of their salary & invest in themselves first before they decide to invest in other platform. Investing in themselves can be in books or courses (online or offline).
@jt good question.
- How do you reject temptations? I personally have this struggle but I do try to tell myself not to spend too much on things I dont need. Getting out of debt is a decision they have do if they are looking to live a comfortable life.
- It makes me think twice before I make any decision. It's like shopping temptations :)
- My retirement goal & travelling the world
Debt : Credit Card, Personal Loan, House Loan
Out of Debt : Credit Card : I got into credit card debt twice. First time when I started to work I spend too much money on shopping & buying unwanted stuff. Eating food that I cant afford. Have those mindset where I spend first & pay later. Second time where I bought a iPhone 4s & a cruise trip. LOL. I had to pay it off by negotiating with the bank to pay certain amount within certain timeline.
Personal Loan : I paid it off with my gym income :)
Housing Loan : I sold my house & profited from it.
Good Question. There's 2 reason why I called my blog Black Belt Millionaire. 1. Im a fan of wrestling so I enjoyed to have a character / persona. 2. Its part of my goal in life to be Black Belt in BJJ & a Millionaire. Like the chapter in 7th habit books, begin with the end in mind. I want to be a Black Belt in BJJ & Millionaire in future
@mastrich FIRE movement is part of my ultimate goal. In fact, I am working towards it. Hopefully I am able to achieve it within the timeline I set. I dont involve directly with my gym anymore since I have my partner to run the front job & I have few great trainers to help on the classes. What I enjoy doing at gym is to train IF Im not injured. Do you have any FIRE movement plan?
@maybewei I love martial arts. It's something that runs in my family blood I think. My brother is also a fighter where he used to compete in Muay Thai. For me, I like the competitiveness & adrenaline each time I train or compete. You should take up a martial art class as well. You may like it
@abhishek-bhardwaj mainly by reading books. I do learn from the internet & other blogs as well. Its a lonely hobby to be at since not many people in my circle are into investment.
funding4u last edited by
Thank you for the answer :)
Another question for you is that what is your opinion on the future of P2P investing in SE Asia?
@raymondtan Could you share which books and online resources? I'm sure many people on the forum would be willing to read and learn more!
@funding4u it's something new to me. I started investing in P2P platform in Jan this year but based on my studies on P2P platform in SEA, I think there are many opportunities to grow. I personally do not invest alot in it since I believe it should be part of my portfolio but not my main investment portfolio. I still prefer stocks.
@abhishek-bhardwaj I do share those resources on my blog. The books that I've shared in my blogs are the one that I have personally read. You can refer the link below for Investment / Personal Finance Books & also other recommended Financial Bloggers. You can checkout my recommended Podcast too :)
Personal Finance Book : https://theblackbeltmillionaire.com/personal-finance-books/
Investment Book : https://theblackbeltmillionaire.com/investment-books/
Investment Podcast : https://theblackbeltmillionaire.com/investment-podcast/
Recommended Financial Bloggers : https://theblackbeltmillionaire.com/best-investment-personal-finance-blogs-in-malaysia/
@raymondtan Thank you!
@abhishek-bhardwaj thank you buddy :)
@chingz sorry for missing out your 2nd question. My plan for BBM is to grow my viewers for the next 3 years so I can share more on Personal Finance.
chingz last edited by
@raymondtan Thanks for your reply, Raymond! :)
ZephyrLoh last edited by
@raymondtan, thanks for the input👍
Hey everyone, this marks the end of our AMA session with @raymondtan. Big props to Raymond for the really interesting & revealing AMA! :)
Thank you all who submitted your questions and of course @raymondtan for being such a sporting (and definitely sporty) host. Do feel free to ask him any questions, which he may respond to during his free moments.
Cheers, and stay tuned for the next session!
@kaeley-wn thanks for having me :)
2387581 last edited by
Missed out on the earlier part. Here are my questions if you would.
Describe a typical day. How much time do you spend on work, managing gym, managing blog, managing your portfolio, learning about investment (if you still do) etc, physical training, family (are you married) etc.
With the advent of internet and social media, there are more and more self-proclaimed investment gurus are conducting classes in investment, capitalising on the higher demand for investment knowledge. But we all know there is no guarantee in investment, with or without the knowledge, even Warren Buffet or George Soros loses sometimes. Whether or not you make money from the market, these people who conduct classes profit first. What do you think of this phenomenon? Do you think it is healthy for Malaysian in general?
@2387581 Usually my work is 9-5. I'll be at gym between 6-10 for workout & conducting some class. I'll be spending some time before my sleeping time for my blog. I'll be writing most of my post during weekend.
I think those people that are interested to attend those investment seminar have to do their own study on the trainers before they attend. Usually those seminars will offer 4 hour of investment introduction for free. I have personally attended Kathlyn Toh & Adam Khoo 4 hours introduction but personally I prefer Adam Khoo's method over Kathlyn. Both are sharing different thoughts on investment but Kathlyn is more technical which is totally different from how I invest.
chekmeng last edited by
@raymondtan that's really nice to hear. Congrats on realising your dreams!
@chekmeng thanks buddy. still long way to go. taking each baby steps at a time