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Activist Investor Clifton Robbins Believes In Investors Bancorp Inc. (ISBC)’s Growth Strategy

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In a freshly-amended 13D filed with the SEC, Clifton S. Robbins Blue Harbour Group’ has disclosed a 8.2% ownership stake in Investors Bancorp Inc. (NASDAQ:ISBC). The aggregate amount of shares beneficially owned is currently 28.38 million shares, up from the 27.47 million-share stake disclosed in the fund’s most recent 13F filing.

Clifton Robbins - Blue Harbour

Blue Harbour Group is an activist hedge fund founded by Clifton S. Robbins in 2004. The investment firm takes on a “private equity approach” to investing and employs a collaborative approach to Active Ownership. Blue Harbour is primarily seeking for high-quality businesses that are fundamentally undervalued and trading at a discount. Cliff Robbins, who serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Blue Harbour Group, had worked as a Managing Partner of General Atlantic Partners and a General Partner of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. prior to launching his own firm in 2004. He is backed up a highly-experienced team of senior professions that is actively engaged in identifying investment ideas and assisting the management of different companies in unlocking shareholder value. According to its most recent 13F, Blue Harbour Group manages a public equity portfolio worth $3.31 billion as of March 31, while the fund’s top ten holdings account for 76.84% of its entire portfolio. Among its latest moves, Blue Harbour Group has recently increased its holding in Rackspace Hosting Inc. (NYSE:RAX) and upped its stake in AGCO Corporation (NYSE:AGCO) to 5.3% in June. 

Clifton S. Robbins
Clifton S. Robbins
Blue Harbour Group

Following activist funds like Blue Harbour Group is important because it is a very specific and focused strategy in which the investor doesn’t have to wait for catalysts to realize gains in the holding. A fund like Blue Harbour can simply create its own catalysts by pushing for them through negotiations with the company’s management and directors. In recent years, the average returns of activist hedge funds have been much higher than the returns their passive peers. Furthermore, we believe that retail investors have an advantage over activist hedge fund investors because they don’t have to pay 2% of their assets and 20% of their gains every year to compensate hedge fund managers. We have found through extensive research that the top small-cap picks of hedge funds are also capable of generating high returns and built a system around this premise. In the 35 months since our small-cap strategy was launched it has returned over 123% and beaten the S&P 500 ETF (SPY) by more than 66 percentage points (read more details).

Investors Bancorp Inc. (NASDAQ:ISBC) operates as the holding company for Investors Bank, which in turn provides a wide range of banking products and services for businesses and individuals in the United States. The bank provides deposit products such as savings, checking, and money market accounts, along with certificates of deposits through approximately 131 offices in New Jersey and New York. The stock of Investors Bancorp has gained slightly over 8% since the beginning of the current year and it is not likely to stop rising as the company stays focused on its growth through acquisitions. In the meantime, Anton Schutz’s Mendon Capital Advisors is one of the hedge funds within our database that is bullish on Investors Bancorp Inc. (NASDAQ:ISBC), holding a stake of 500,000 shares as of June 30. Moreover, at the end of March, 32 investors within our database held around $834.83 million worth of Investors Bancorp’s stock, which represented more than 19% of the company and indicates an overall bullish sentiment on the company.

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