Ron Baron

Ron Baron

Last Update: 11-16-2015

Number of Stocks: 343
Number of New Stocks: 18

Total Value: $22,147 Mil
Q/Q Turnover: 3%

Countries: USA
Details: Top Buys | Top Sales | Top Holdings  Embed:

Ron Baron Watch

  • Ron Baron's New Buys During the 3rd Quarter

    Ron Baron (Trades, Portfolio) founded Baron Capital in 1982 to make his unique investment style available to institutional and individual investors. The fund looks beyond short-term volatility and market unpredictability and focuses on a company’s opportunities over the next five years.

    During the third quarter 18 stocks got new positions in Baron's portfolio; below are his new buys with impacts of greater than 0.02% on his portfolio.


  • Ron Baron Cuts Brookdale, Buys Royal Caribbean in 3rd Quarter

    Ron Baron (Trades, Portfolio) founded Baron Capital in 1982 to make his unique investment style available to institutional and individual investors. He manages a portfolio composed of 343 stocks with total value of $22,147 million, and the following are the most heavily weighted trades during the third quarter.

    Baron reduced his stake in Brookdale Senior Living Inc. (BKD) by 62.80% and with an impact of 0.73% on the portfolio. The stake comprises 0.33% of his total assets.


  • Baron Real Estate Fund 3rd Quarter Commentary

    Dear Baron Real Estate Fund shareholder:

    The generally unimpeded six-year broad-based appreciation in the stock market, most real estate securities, and the Baron Real Estate Fund (the “Fund”) hit a speed bump in the third quarter. The onslaught of negative news items contributed to disappointing performance for most stocks. Concerns included uncertainty over China’s economic growth prospects and its effect on emerging markets, the surprise devaluation of the yuan, persistently weak oil and commodity prices, uncertainty over the timing of the first Federal Reserve rate hike, and stretched valuations for certain segments of the market.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Concho Resources Inc.

    Concho Resources, Inc. (NYSE:CXO) has been a standout performer amidst a steep decline in the energy sector. We reduced the size of the position to make room for our investment in Charles Schwab.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P.

    We initiated a small position in Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P. (NYSE:BIP) last quarter on the expectation of seeing an inflection point in the company’s growth rate. A few months later, we have concluded that our thesis was incorrect and we exited the investment with a small loss.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Charles Schwab Corp.

    We have purchased an initial position in the shares of The Charles Schwab Corp. (NYSE:SCHW) In business for over 40 years, Schwab has become a trusted platform to independent registered investment advisors (RIAs) and individual investors alike. We believe Schwab is a structural share gainer in assets under management as advisors continue to migrate away from bulge bracket brokerage firms and wirehouses and find Schwab’s integrated custody, trading, portfolio management, and other investment advisory services uniquely suitable. We think profit margins have further room to improve as the company has been investing aggressively for growth and should start to realize the benefits of leverage and scale over the next few years.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on FireEye Inc.

    FireEye, Inc. (NASDAQ:FEYE) is the next generation network security company that pioneered Advanced Persistent Threat Protection. The company has grown its sales by more than 10x over the last four years. While FireEye reported strong second quarter results with a significant beat on profitability metrics, the stock gave up most of its earlier gains on the news that the company’s CFO was unexpectedly leaving. We believe that FireEye has the best post-breach incident response service, which minimizes remediation time and damage and is the reason it is frequently the first call for companies that have been victimized. This service consistently gets FireEye into the door and gives them an opportunity to introduce and sell their other security products, potentially allowing them to build a real cybersecurity platform of the future.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on SunEdison Inc.

    Shares of SunEdison, Inc. (NYSE:SUNE), the world’s largest renewable energy developer, declined in the wake of its acquisition of U.S. residential solar developer Vivint Solar, with plans to drop down its solar portfolio to its yieldco TerraForm Power, Inc. Investors questioned aspects of the deal, including its $2.2 billion cost. We believe in the secular renewable energy story and that SunEdison’s large development pipeline will benefit it and its yieldcos. We think the market dislocation is technical and temporary and that SunEdison will likely resume growth in the future.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Facebook Inc.

    It’s been a while since we mentioned the shares of Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ:FB), the world’s largest social network, which rose 5% in the third quarter. It was a year ago that we argued that the word “mobile” was no longer describing a device, but rather a behavior. Facebook’s early focus on driving and improving consumer engagement on mobile platforms is starting to bear fruit. The company is the obvious beneficiary of a structural shift of advertising dollars from “analog” to digital, and with one billion active monthly mobile users, Facebook has positioned itself as one of the largest beneficiaries of the mobile way of life by presenting global advertisers with what we believe is the most compelling advertising platform. We believe the company is in the middle stages of scaling and building out its monetization structures and stands to benefit from expected improvements in the price of advertising on its platform. We think Facebook is continually expanding the size of its addressable market by acquiring and investing in newer synergistic offerings such as Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus VR.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Starbucks Corp.

    Shares of Starbucks Corp. (NASDAQ:SBUX), the leading global specialty coffee platform (that’s right!), rose 6% in the third quarter after delivering another quarter of industry-leading sales and earnings growth. Same store sales growth at company-owned cafes accelerated to 7% during the quarter, driven by growth in emerging markets and key merchandising and marketing initiatives. With the core in-store beverage business as strong as ever, we believe Starbucks is just scratching the surface of its opportunities in food, mobile payment and loyalty programs, Asia-Pacific expansion and wholesale channel development. Starbucks continues to be one of our stalwart investments.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Google Inc.

    We think a phenomenon some investors refer to as “pattern recognition” is responsible for the strong performance of the shares of Google, Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG)(up 17%) in the third quarter. The company announced a change in the corporate structure and the creation of a “holdco,” appropriately named Alphabet, which would hold Google’s core search engine business and separate out its newer, less mature endeavors such as Google Fiber, Artificial Intelligence, Calico (Google’s foray into longevity), and others. Google veteran Sundar Pichai will become the CEO of Google, Inc., a subsidiary of Alphabet, allowing Google’s co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin to spend more time on Alphabet’s other businesses. We continue to believe that Google is one of the most innovative companies on Earth, with a powerful business model that benefits from the network effect, and the greatest collection of human talent in any one place in the world. Data is becoming increasingly more important and they own more data than any other company we know. We think the value of that data and its monetization opportunities will become more apparent over time.

    From Baron Funds' Fifth Avenue Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Ryanair Holdings Plc

    Shares of Ryanair Holdings plc (NASDAQ:RYAAY) rose in the third quarter after reporting stronger-than-expected full-year guidance. Ryanair is a European budget airline. While we think low oil prices will buoy all airlines in the short term, we expect Ryanair to attract passengers with the lowest fares in the industry, leading to profitability in any oil price environment. We believe that Ryanair’s cost advantage is sustainable, and that it will continue to gain significant market share in the European short haul passenger market. (Aaron Wasserman)

    From Baron Funds' International Growth Fund 3rd quarter 2015 commentary.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

    Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE:BABA) is the largest e-commerce company in China and the world. Shares have been declining based on the company lowering its projections for growth as its consumers continue to transition to mobile purchasing, which has inherently lower conversion. The mobile transition combined with slower overall growth in China and an IPO lock-up overhang created greater uncertainty for the road ahead. Accordingly, we sold out of the position in the quarter. We will continue to monitor developments at the company in an effort to gain further conviction on the company’s growth prospects, should we decide to own this business again in the future.

    From the Baron Opportunity Fund third quarter 2015 letter.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc.

    Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ALXN) is the premier orphan disease company, whose lead product Soliris is a lifesaving medicine for both Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria (PNH) and Atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS). The company has expanded its efforts in orphan diseases (particularly ones with high unmet needs) with the acquisition of Strensiq for HPP (Hypophosphatasia) and Kanuma for LAL-D (Lysosomal Acid Lipase Deficiency), both of which are approved or in the final stages of approval for launch worldwide. The company recently announced the delay of Strensiq approval by the FDA for manufacturing related issues. With greater uncertainty surrounding the approval of Strensiq, and overall sentiment on the biotech industry souring, we reduced our exposure to the industry and sold our position in Alexion.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Aspen Technology

    Aspen Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:AZPN) is the leading process tools provider for the engineering and construction, chemicals and energy markets. Its software improves competitiveness and profitability by increasing throughput and productivity, reducing operating costs and enhancing capital efficiency. We believe the company has substantial room to grow through new products, further customer penetration, a new product upgrade cycle and continued market share gains. The return on investment that the company’s customers realize from efficiency gains provides us with further confidence to invest with Aspen. We initiated a position in Aspen Technology in the quarter.

    From the Baron Opportunity Fund third quarter 2015 letter.


  • Baron Funds Comments on MarketAxess Holdings Inc.

    MarketAxess Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:MKTX) operates the leading electronic platform for trading corporate bonds and other fixed-income securities. The company has dominant share with over 90% of electronic trading in the U.S. corporate bond market, which is in the early innings of a transition away from broker assisted voice-based trading to electronic. Electronic trading platforms provide a lower-cost and more efficient way to connect buyers and sellers. Just as the equities and futures markets shifted from trading floors/pits to electronic trading in the ‘80s and ‘90s, we would expect the same transition to happen in fixed-income in the coming years. With only 15% market share of the U.S. high-grade market and 6% of the U.S. high-yield market, the company is still in the early innings of penetrating its addressable market. Market share for Eurobonds is in the mid-high single digits, having doubled from a year ago. The regulatory environment for financial institutions has also reduced the appetite of large banks to take positions in bonds or trade as actively as they once did, providing tailwinds to an already attractive growth opportunity. With only 7% penetration into the $47 billion dollar global fixed-income market, we remain optimistic about the road ahead. MarketAxess is a new holding in the portfolio.From Baron Opportunity Fund's third quarter 2015 letter.


  • Baron Funds Comments on MasterCard Inc.

    MasterCard, Inc. (NYSE:MA) is the world’s second-largest payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, banks and governments, enabling them to use electronic forms of payment instead of cash and checks. There are over two billion MasterCard- and Maestro-branded cards outstanding with acceptance at 36 million locations in more than 210 countries and territories. Broad merchant acceptance and consumer adoption of MasterCard-branded cards create strong network effects. 85% of all payment transactions are made with cash or checks today, while only 15% are made with electronic forms of payment, providing substantial room for further growth. We added to our position in MasterCard in the quarter.

    From Baron Opportunity Fund's third quarter 2015 letter.


  • Baron Funds Comments on ServiceNow Inc.

    During the quarter, the Fund initiated a position in ServiceNow, Inc. (NYSE:NOW), a Software as a Service (SaaS) company that allows customers to manage and automate IT operations. The company has leveraged its superior architecture and product flexibility to rapidly increase its market share within IT Service Management, and it already counts 25% of the Global 2000 as customers. We believe that ServiceNow’s newly introduced products, its outstanding brand recognition and its customers’ need to enhance productivity should allow the company to successfully increase its share within the larger IT Operation Management market. The company’s average contract value within its existing customers grew by 40% last year alone. We believe the company already serves an addressable market of $15 billion annually, which is more than 15 times larger than its current size. We believe that opportunity will continue to expand as ServiceNow introduces new products to service adjacent markets. ServiceNow’s growth is supported by a secular trend of IT spend shifting from legacy on premise solutions towards SaaS offerings as IT environments are becoming increasingly complex. The company has high levels of recurring revenues and generates high customer retention rates of approximately 97%.

    From Baron Opportunity Fund's third quarter 2015 letter.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Shutterstock Inc.

    Shutterstock, Inc. (NYSE:SSTK) is the leading online provider of royalty-free stock photography to consumers and enterprises. Shares of Shutterstock were down in the quarter based on concerns around Adobe’s launch of their own competitive offering, Adobe Stock. Adobe increased its competitive positioning against Shutterstock by offering lower prices in certain segments and by integrating image buying into their proprietary software workflow. We believe that the increasing level of competition from Adobe, combined with the departure of Shutterstock’s CFO, created too much uncertainty for us with respect to the company going forward. We exited the position in the quarter.

    From Baron Opportunity Fund's third quarter 2015 letter.


  • Baron Funds Comments on Equinix Inc.

    We have been invested in Equinix, Inc. (NASDAQ:EQIX) for over a decade and it is truly remarkable to see how the company has created a globally differentiated and hard-to-replicate platform to serve their customers’ needs. Year to date, shares are up 23% as the company has completed its REIT transformation, reduced its cost of capital and taken advantage of those lower capital costs to try and buy a large European competitor. We believe that, if the acquisition goes through, the company should be able to generate greater value to shareholders. We continue to like the growth prospects for Equinix’s business and think that management has a clear and workable plan to keep growing at a higher pace than its peers, while improving business efficiencies and showing margin leverage.

    From Baron Opportunity Fund's third quarter 2015 letter.


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