Viking Global Investors Portfolio: Investment Process and Key Stocks [In-Depth Analysis]

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Viking Global Investors Portfolio

Before he founded his hedge fund Viking Global, Ole Andreas Halvorsen he worked in Tiger Management Corp under Julian Robertson, where he became a part of a famous group called Tiger Cubs. Even before that, he was a team leader of a Norwegian SEAL team. This biography can be a great foundation for Halvorsen’s later highly successful career. In his Viking Global Investors portfolio are 77 holdings with a value of $28.7 billion.

The fund is mostly invested in Visa Class A stock (V), Meta Platforms Class A stock (META), and United Parcel Services Class B holding (UPS). Recent additions to the portfolio are AMD (NASDAQ: AMD), and Deere & Co (NYSE: DE) stocks.

Viking Global prefers a global macro approach combined with a long/short private equity strategy. They often choose to invest in early and late-stage venture companies. In August 2023 the company after a decade reopened their flagship long/short equity hedge fund for new capital.

Besides their headquarters in Greenwich, they also operate in New York, Hong Kong, and London. After a decline in 2022, the fund earned $6 billion on its $30 billion AUM in 2023, showing great future potential.

Key Takeaway

  • Ole Andreas Halvorsen, founder of Viking Global Investors, is a Tiger Cub. He earned his trade under Julian Robertson the founder of Tiger Management.
  • Viking Global Investors have an AUM of $28.7 billion divided among 77 holdings.
  • Halvorsen likes to keep both long and short positions and gather returns from both specters of trade.
  • He keeps a very diversified portfolio with a slight preference for the technology sector.
  • Unlike some hedge fund managers who are often at the center of media attention, Halvorsen likes to keep a low profile.
  • In 2023 Halvorsen after 10 years opened his fund to new investors.

Key Holdings

Visa Class A stock (NYSE:V) with 5.43% of the portfolio

Visa due to its dominant market position, and great innovation potential has seen a steady stock price increase in recent years. Viking Global has always kept Visa as one of the leading investments and as a big holding. For more than a decade Visa played an important part in Viking Global’s success, and the fund currently holds 5.69 million shares. The value of the holding is $1.56 billion which makes Viking Global one of the largest stakeholders in Visa. Since late October Visa stock price rose from $230 to $280. In Q4 2023 they sold 1.3 million shares at $246.

Meta Platforms Class A (NYSE:META) with 5.41% of the portfolio

With a stake of 2.99 million shares Ole Andreas Halvorsen is among the top 10 Meta shareholders. His stake is now valued at $1.56 billion, with Meta seeing a price hike in recent months. In 2023 Viking increased their position in Meta for about 600 thousand stocks with buying at $170 and $300. Currently, Meta stocks are valued at $520.

United Parcel Services Class B holding (NYSE:UPS) with 4.20% of the portfolio

UPS is a 2023 addition to the Viking portfolio. Halvorsen right away went in and bought a solid stake in the company that rose to 8.2 million shares. Now, he is the largest stakeholder in this shipping and logistics giant. The value of this holding is $1.21 billion, but in late 2023 its stock price lost a lot of value. When Viking started buying in Q2 the price was at $177 while today it is at $147. For now, this holding brought a loss of 13%.

Progressive Corp (NYSE:PGR) with 4.18% of the portfolio

Like with several other big holdings Viking did a similar thing with Progressive Corp. They went in to buy a big stake and secure a large stake. They have been trading their shares since 2016, and now they own 5.86 million shares, securing their prime shareholder position. The holding is now valued at $1.2 billion. The Viking in 8 years invested a total of $851 million, securing a gain of 41%.

McKesson Corporation (NYSE:MCK) with 4.12% of the portfolio

Viking on several occasions entered and exited the McKesson holding, within 2022 buying an almost 3 million share stake. The majority of the stake is bought for prices between $320 and $345 while they sold most of it in 2023 at a $384 rate. In 2023 they bought an additional 1.7 Million stocks at $420 and $450 while the price rose to the current $530. Their investment in this holding is at $827 million while its worth increased to $1.18 million. This proved to be a good investment so far, making a short-term gain of 43%.

Workday Inc. Class A (NASDAQ:WDAY) with 3.81% of the portfolio

Workday Inc. is a long-term investment spanning a trade process longer than 10 years. During that period Viking invested a total of $868 million, while its current holding of 4.11 million shares is worth $1.1 billion. Workday prices went through a lot of oscillations during the last 4 years making the timing of trades difficult. This resulted in a modest gain of 26%.

APi Group Corporation (NYSE:APG) with 3.72% of the portfolio

In 2020 Viking bought a massive 33.3 million APi shares at $11.35. They kept slowly increasing their position to 34.4 million shares by 2022. In January 2024 they sold the entire stake at $32.88 earning almost three times the base investment price. In February they again invested in APi buying 27 million shares at $35. Since then the price has risen to $40 generating a short-term gain of 80%. Their $593 million investment in two months turned into $1.07 billion.

Danaher Corporation (NYSE:DHR) with 3.43% of the portfolio

Viking did invest a couple of times in Danaher, and every time with high success. In 2020 they bought 900 thousand shares at $161 and in the next quarter sold them at $200. In 2023 they bought 4.26 million shares at $238, while the current stock price is $245. The gain for now is just 3%, but the price seems to be on the rise.

Amazon Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) with 3.18% of the portfolio

Amazon proved to be one of the best Viking acquisitions, and not just because of the current hype. They have been owning a solid stake in Amazon for almost 10 years. In 2015 they bought 45 million shares at a mere $20. Their current stake is 4.93 million shares valued at $915 million. In Q1 2023 they did a bad timing sell, trimming the holding for 4.85 million shares at a mere $96, while the price from then continued to rise to the current $185. But, in 9 years of trading, Amazon holding brought a gain of 236% so far.

Fortive Corp. (NYSE:FTV) with 3.05% of the portfolio

In 2019 when Viking started trading Fortive their stock price was at $60. In 2024 Fortive saw a rise in value to $83 pulling this investment up. Besides that, the stock price fluctuated between $45 and $65 in the past years. Viking owns the biggest stake in the company with 105 million shares. They are valued at $876 million, while the company invested $684 million. For now, this holding brought a modest return of 28%.

Sector Allocation

Viking Global is keeping its portfolio highly diversified. They have 77 holdings that are laid out across all industries, so the fund has a minimal concentration risk. They prefer investing in tech giants, but besides that, they have a well-balanced portfolio. Their current sector allocation is:

  1. Technology with 24.6% of the portfolio valued at $7.08 billion
  2. Industrials with 21.3% of the portfolio valued at $6.11 billion
  3. Finance with 15.6% of the portfolio valued at $4.48 billion
  4. Healthcare with 14.9% of the portfolio valued at $4.28 billion
  5. Consumer Discretionary with 6.5% of the portfolio valued at $1.86 billion
  6. Consumer Staples with 4.3% of the portfolio valued at $1.24 billion
  7. Utilities with 4.3% of the portfolio valued at $1.23 billion
  8. Materials with 2.7% of the portfolio valued at $777 million
  9. Real Estate with 1.5% of the portfolio valued at $420 million
  10. Telecommunication with 0.39% of the portfolio valued at $243 million
  11. Other with 3.4% of the portfolio valued at $978 million.

Viking Global Investors Investment Philosophy & Strategies

As a Tiger Cub Andreas Halvorsen from the beginning has this approach to be a stock picker. He believes that emphasis on analysis and proper valuation will over time create a well-diversified portfolio.

He likes to hold both short and long positions, and with a deviation in value, they will offer a significant and profitable spread.

One of the cornerstones of his investment approach is his high-conviction stock picks. Once he determines that a specific stock is worth his time and money, he goes big. He invests into a large stake, and then slowly trims his position as he watches the price rise.

Before he makes a move he conducts deep research to identify potential returns and compare them with risks. Halvorsen wants to keep risk in check while managing to generate solid returns.

Viking Global Investors has a strong team of analysts and portfolio managers which Halvorsen pushes to learn the industries. Knowing the company, the sector, and the competitive landscape is half of the job when doing an analysis. Acquiring this knowledge also helps in the long term when identifying companies that can prove to be good investments.

Viking Global Investors Performance Analysis

Historical Performance

Between 2013 and 2023 Viking Global Investors managed to generate a gain of nearly 77%. The worst year was 2021 when the fund reported a loss of -4.5% while the S&P 500 index easily outperformed it by making 27% gains. The fund managed to turn things around and between Q2 2022 and Q2 2023, he created a surplus of 21.12%.

Notable Success

  • Overall success in venture capital business

Despite many companies basing their operations on venture capital are struggling, Viking Global is regularly delivering strong returns. Vikings both hybrid and private funds are generating constant positive returns and security for investors.

Notable Failure

  • Clovis Oncology Holding

In 2015 Viking bought about 850 thousand stocks at $86 per share. Just a couple of months later they exited the holding by selling for just $64 per share. They managed to exit the investment on time because the company later filed for bankruptcy while unsecured noteholders were owed more than $400 million.

  • Endo International (OTCMKTS: ENDPQ) holding

This American-Irish pharmaceutical company was a major target of Viking Investors in 2015. The fund bought 4.5 million shares at $60, while two quarters later they sold out their stake at $20. In 2022 the company filed for bankruptcy.

  • Loss of $400 on Facebook stocks in just one day

In 2018 Facebook announced earnings that missed Wall Street Expectations causing their shares to collapse. In a very short time frame, the value dropped by about 20%.

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The post above is drafted by the collaboration of the Hedge Fund Alpha Team.