Zeke Ashton

Zeke Ashton

Last Update: 2014-08-14

Number of Stocks: 30
Number of New Stocks: 9

Total Value: $71 Mil
Q/Q Turnover: 34%

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

Zeke Ashton Watch

  • Zeke Ashton on How Michael Burry's Advice Helped Him Become a Better Investor



  • Centaur Capital's Fourth Quarter Portfolio Reports Heavy Selling and Top Five Positions

    Zeke Ashton of Centaur Capital Partners keeps a fairly concentrated portfolio valued at $86 million. The guru had a heavier quarter in selling as he sold out of ten of his previous holdings. The guru added eight new stocks to his holdings, bringing his portfolio to 29 stocks. The following five companies represent Ashton’s top five holdings.


    Tetra Tech (TTEK)

      


  • Centaur Capital Partners' Third Quarter Top Holdings

    Zeke Ashton of Centaur Capital Partners keeps a fairly concentrated portfolio valued at $116 million. The guru sold out of four of his previous holdings and had a heavy quarter of buying as 13 of his 33 stocks were new buys. The following five companies represent Ashton’s top five holdings.

    First American Financial Corp (FAF)
      


  • ‘Net Seller’ Zeke Ashton Update, Centaur’s High-Impact Sells

    Like the mythological centaur, a brilliant investor is also, at times, both man and horse, both tame and wild. Using reason and passion, a dual-natured creature combines intellect and intuition to accomplish far better results than either man or horse could by itself, especially when investing in out-of-favor stocks. Centaur Capital Partners is an apt name choice for Zeke Ashton’s hedge fund, which he founded in 2002. Ashton manages Centaur as well as the Tilson Dividend Fund.

    The updated portfolio of Ashton’s Centaur Capital Partners has 30 stocks, six of them new, a total value at $90 million, with a quarter-over-quarter turnover of 23%. The portfolio is currently weighted with three top sectors: financial services at 16%, consumer cyclical at 13% and real estate at 5.4%.  


  • Zeke Ashton's Top Second Quarter Portfolio Increases

    Over the duration of the second quarter, Zeke Ashton made seven increases to his positions in his portfolio. Ashton reported his largest increases in the following five companies. As of the second quarter Ashton holds on to 30 stocks valued at $90 million.

      


  • Zeke Ashton (Tilson Dividend Fund) Semi-Annual Letter To Investors (June 2013)

    We have a rather simplistic investment philosophy: we like to buy assets when the prices of those assets reflect a sizable discount to what we believe them to be worth. We like to sell those assets back to the market when the market is willing to give us what we believe is a full, fair price. The catch is often that in order to buy discounted assets, there usually needs to be some fear and uncertainty reflected in securities prices. As the old saying goes, you can have cheap prices or you can have good news, but you usually can’t have both. When it appears that all is well in the world and the market is driving asset prices higher, we tend to be net sellers. That has been especially true for us over the past year, in large part because there has not been a significant market sell‐off during that time that has lasted for more than a few days to allow us to make significant new investments. Our strategy greatly benefits from the occasional market break in order to re‐stock our portfolio with new investments that meet our Fund’s risk‐averse, income generating mandate. In a way, we need the occasional market volatility that accompanies fear and uncertainty in order to achieve our strategy’s full potential.

    It is somewhat unusual for mutual funds to let un‐invested cash build up in their portfolios, because it is an invitation to under‐perform the markets if the market appreciates in the near term. We suspect that very few mutual funds would be willing to let more than 30% of the assets sit fallow, particularly given the historically low rates on money market funds, but in our view the willingness to do so can be a competitive advantage in the right circumstances. The reason for this is that markets tend to run in cycles driven by fear and hope; when the market is going up, it feels like it will never come back down. The reverse is also true. Our view is that the best way to exploit the occasional bouts of market fear is to have an inventory of ideas that one is ready to buy at the right price, and the cash available to carry out that buying. One without the other is useless. The willingness to radically flex our invested balance up and down with market conditions (buying heavily into fear and uncertainty, selling appropriately into happy, fully‐valued market conditions) based on the availability of cheap individual securities or the absence of the same is likely to increase the chances of a good experience over time, and theoretically should reduce risk. The unfortunate reality is that following such a course can lead to uncomfortably long periods of under‐performance which can test the patience of both the Fund’s manager and its investors. It is for this reason that we are satisfied with the Fund’s recent returns that essentially matched the market’s strong performance. We are willing to endure a performance drag in the short term in order to achieve our longer‐term objectives, but it’s nice when we don’t have to.  


  • Zeke Ashton Presentation - May 6, 2013 Value Investing Congress



  • Zeke Ashton on the High-Quality Piece of Advice He Received from Michael Burry

    An interview with value investor Zeke Ashton discussing concentration when managing a portfolio.

    Ashton calls Burry a "homerun investor" in that Burry can handle a huge amount of volatility while he waits for an investment to play out.  


  • Zeke Ashton Discusses Managing a Portfolio and Position Size

    Rare video of value Guru Zeke Ashton of Centaur Capital Partners discusses value investing, portfolio management and how to think about position sizing.

    Here is the video:  


  • Rare interview with Value Investor Zeke Ashton

    Zeke Ashton is the founder of Dallas, Texas based Centaur Capital Partners. The firm specializes in value-oriented investing strategies with an emphasis on achieving excellent risk-adjusted returns. The Centaur Value Fund, a long / short, long-biased private investment partnership launched in August 2002, has been compounding at 16% per annum. Centaur Capital is also the sub-advisor to a retail mutual fund, the Tilson Dividend Fund (TILDX), launched in 2005 in partnership with Whitney Tilson and Glenn Tongue of T2 Partners. Morningstar has assigned five stars to the fund, which also ranks as #1 over 3 and 5 years in Morningstar's "Mid Cap Blend" category. In this interview, Zeke talks about: * Centaur Capital's investment strategy: The importance of finding a distinct niche * Outperforming with "neglected, hated and feared" stocks

    Here is the video:  


  • Highest Quality Stocks from Zeke Ashton

    Ashton is the managing partner of Centaur Capital Partners and manages the investments for the Centaur Value Fund. He also manages the Tilson Dividend Fund (TILDX). Ashton has held several positions before Centaur. He served as investment analyst for The Motley Fool (TMF), as senior analyst and project manager in the Zurich, Switzerland office of Infinity Systems and in Wall Street Systems, a New York-based treasury and risk management software company. At TMF he developed and carried out investing seminars, subscription investing newsletters and stock research reports. He wrote online investing articles as well. At Infinity Systems he provided financial system consulting to Swiss regional and private banks and when he worked for Wall Street Systems he was in charge of rendering consulting services to various clients in German, Italy and the UK.

    Ashton has an investment strategy which is based on value principles. He goes for stocks that are available at compelling prices and basis his decision on the business’ true value, cash flow generation, management quality, and the competitive advantages of the underlying businesses. In 2010, the Tilson Dividend Fund returned 20.64% versus the S&P 500’s 15.1%. In 2009, the fund returned 43.98% versus the S&P 500’s 26.5%.  


  • Zeke Ashton thinks you should buy DO: His main Thesis

    Zeke Ashton manages Centaur Capital Partners and is also in charge of the investments for Centaur Value Fund. Before becoming managing partner he served as general partner and portfolio manager for Centaur Investments LP, a predecessor to the Fund and a private investment partnership.

    Before entering the sphere of Centaur Capital, Mr. Ashton worked as investment analyst and writer for The Motley Fool. This company specializes in investments and personal finance.  


  • The Portfolio of Mr. Zeke Ashton Analyzed - Buffett Ratio Guru Portfolio Analysis

    The following is an analysis of the most current portfolio of Mr. Zeke Ashton. The analysis will use a system that I designed that is based on the ratio that Mr. Warren Buffet released to the public in 1986, which he coined “Owner Earnings.” For those new to this type of analysis, I would recommend reading an introduction to my system by clicking here. My goal is ultimately to analyze the portfolios of each Guru highlighted here on Guru Focus, and then to subsequently re-analyze them every quarter when possible as changes are made. My purpose in writing these articles is to show the power of Mr. Buffett’s ratio in analyzing stocks, ETF’s, Mutual Funds and individual portfolios. If one can fill their portfolios with companies that score high using my system and avoid those which fail, one should be able to increase the probability of becoming a successful investor in my opinion. Profile of Mr. Ashton:

    Mr. Ashton is the managing partner of Centaur Capital Partners and manages the investments for the Centaur Value Fund. He is also manager of the Tilson Dividend Fund (TILDX), which is ranked 5 stars by Morningstar. Previously Mr. Ashton was employed as an investment analyst for The Motley Fool (TMF). While at TMF, Mr. Ashton developed and produced investing seminars, subscription investing newsletters, and stock research reports in addition to writing online investing articles. Mr. Ashton also wrote investment columns with an emphasis on value investing for TMF on a free-lance basis. Prior to his work at TMF, Mr. Ashton was employed as a senior analyst and project manager in the Zurich, Switzerland office of Infinity Systems, where he provided financial system consulting to Swiss regional and private banks. From 1995 to 1999, Mr. Ashton was employed as a senior analyst and project manager for Wall Street Systems, a New York-based treasury and risk management software company. In this role Mr. Ashton provided consulting services to various clients in Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom. Mr. Ashton graduated from Austin College in Sherman, Texas in 1995 with degrees in Economics and German.   


  • Hedge Fund Centaur Capital Reports Second Quarter Portfolio

    Zeke Ashton is the managing partner of Centaur Capital Partners. He also manages investments for the Centaur Value Fund and the Tilson Divident Fund. In 2010, the Tilson Dividend Fund returned 20.64% versus the S&P 500’s 15.1%. In 2009, the fund returned 43.98% versus the S&P 500’s 26.5%. He invests according to a philosophy based on value principles. He chooses stocks based on the business’ true value, cash flow generation, management quality, and the competitive advantages of the underlying businesses when such stocks are available at compelling prices.

    The founder of Centaur Capital Partners, Zeke Ashton is a Texas-based value investor who has capably realized annualized returns of 16% since the inception of his hedge fund in 2002. He started Centaur with less than $1 million as capital which he has converted into over $110 million in matter of a decade. He outperformed the market during the financial turmoil of 2008 and was among the few hedge fund managers to beat the market by a wide margin in 2009.  


  • Zeke Ashton: The Unknown Value Guru

    I was inspired by a recent article about Francis Chou, described as the “great unknown Guru,” to write one about another relatively unknown Guru, Zeke Ashton.

    The founder of Centaur Capital Partners, Zeke Ashton is a Texas-based value investor who has capably realized annualized returns of 16% since the inception of his hedge fund in 2002. He started Centaur with less than $1 million as capital which he has converted into over $110 million in matter of a decade. He outperformed the market during the financial turmoil of 2008 and was among the few hedge fund managers to beat the market by a wide margin in 2009.  


  • Zeke Ashton Centaur Fund's June 2011 Report

    Dear Partners,

    The Centaur Value Fund produced a return of -1.6% net to partners in June. The S&P500 returned -1.7% and the NASDAQ returned -2.2% for the month. Our usual performance table is shown below:  


  • Portfolio Concentration: Big Bets Vs. Small Bets

    In my weekend reading, I came across a 2007 presentation titled, “How Concentrated Should You Be?” by Zeke Ashton of Centaur Capital Partners.

    In it, he discusses the concept of portfolio concentration, but with a twist. He believes super-concentrated portfolios require a blend of manager and capital attributes that only a few investors have. Therefore, some small positions are worth having as long as they add a unique element that contributes something to the payoff profile of the portfolio as a whole. He discusses how combining large concentrations of his best ideas with a number of smaller positions improves both returns and reliability of returns.  


  • Zeke Ashton Q1 Top Five Picks: CSTR, WDC, DELL, TTT, CLMS

    Zeke Ashton is the managing partner of Centaur Capital Partners. He also manages investments for the Centaur Value Fund and the Tilson Divident Fund. In 2010, the Tilson Dividend Fund returned 20.64% versus the S&P 500’s 15.1%. In 2009, the fund returned 43.98% versus the S&P 500’s 26.5%. He invests according to a philosophy based on value principles. He chooses stocks based on the business’ true value, cash flow generation, management quality, and the competitive advantages of the underlying businesses when such stocks are available at compelling prices. His top five largest holdings for the quarter ended March 31, 2011, are: Coinstar Inc. (CSTR), Western Digital Corp. (WDC), Dell Inc. (DELL), Terra Nova Royalty Corp. (TTT) and Calamos Asset Management Inc. (CLMS).

    Coinstar Inc. (CSTR)  


  • Hedge Fund Centaur Capital Buys CSTR, WDC, DELL, AHL, DO, CSCO, Sells NOC, VOD, BH, LH, EMC

    Hedge fund manager Zeke Ashton of Centaur Capital Partners just reported his first quarter portfolio. As of 03/31/2011, he owns 33 stocks with a total value of $103 million. These are the details of the buys and sells.

    Zeke Ashton is the managing partner of Centaur Capital Partners and manages the investments for the Centaur Value Fund. He is also manager of Tilson Dividend Fund. Centaur Capital Partners follows an investment philosophy based upon value principles, and selects stock investments based upon true business value as reflected by asset value, cash flow generation, management quality, and the competitive advantages of the underlying businesses when such stocks are available at compelling prices.  


  • Guru Zeke Ashton: Q&A Answers

    Thanks for the questions and the interest in Centaur Capital Partners. Please note that opinions expressed were valid as of the date of the interview, but our investing positions and opinions are subject to change.

    This is the response from Zeke Ashton to users' questions.  


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