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Sydnee Gatewood
Sydnee Gatewood
Articles (3160) 

Andreas Halvorsen Invests in Biotech Company Moderna

Investor takes stake in newly public company

Guru Andreas Halvorsen (Trades, Portfolio), leader of Viking Global Investors, disclosed a 5.2% stake in Moderna Inc. (NASDAQ:MRNA) on Dec. 11.

A former student of Tiger Management’s Julian Robertson (Trades, Portfolio), the investor’s Connecticut-based firm picks stocks based on its understanding of the business’ fundamentals, management team and cyclical and secular industry trends.

According to GuruFocus real-time picks, Halvorsen invested in 17.09 million shares of the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based biotechnology company for an average price of $18.01 per share. The stake was given 1.68% space in the equity portfolio.

The company, which develops messenger RNA therapeutics and vaccines, went public on Dec. 7. It has a $4.44 billion market cap; its shares were trading around $14.02 on Thursday, up approximately 3.8%. Business Insider reported the company’s debut was the largest initial public offering in biotech history, raising over $600 million.

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Boosted by a comfortable level of interest coverage, GuruFocus rated Moderna’s financial strength 5 out of 10. The company’s profitability and growth did not fare as well, scoring a 2 out of 10 rating as a result of poor earnings quality as well as negative margins and returns.

Portfolio

Halvorsen’s $18.06 billion portfolio, which is composed of 64 stocks, is largely invested in the consumer cyclical and health care sectors.

Other biotech companies he owns as of the third quarter are Blueprint Medicines Corp. (NASDAQ:BPMC), Biomarin Pharmaceutical Inc. (NASDAQ:BMRN), AnaptysBio Inc. (NASDAQ:ANAB), Jazz Pharmaceuticals PLC (NASDAQ:JAZZ), Editas Medicine Inc. (NASDAQ:EDIT), Eidos Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:EIDX), aTyr Pharma Inc. (NASDAQ:LIFE), Deciphera Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:DCPH) and Abeona Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:ABEO). He also recently invested in Axovant Sciences Ltd. (AXON).

Disclosure: No positions.

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About the author:

Sydnee Gatewood
I am the editorial director at GuruFocus. I have a BA in journalism and a MA in mass communications from Texas Tech University. I have lived in Texas most of my life, but also have roots in New Mexico and Colorado. Follow me on Twitter! @gurusydneerg

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