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Billionaire Steven Cohen Initiates Position in Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (MPO); Boosts Stake in Zynga Inc (ZNGA)

In two new filings with the SEC, Steven Cohen and his hedge fund SAC Capital Advisors revealed adding Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (NYSE:MPO) to their equity portfolio and boosting their passive stake in Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA) to over 5.0% of the class A stock. In Midstates, Mr. Cohen currently owns a total of 3.55 million shares, which make the passive stake equal to 5.0% of the common stock. The value of the holding amounts to over $17.93 million at the closing price of Midstates on Thursday.


The share price of Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (NYSE:MPO) tumbled since February, losing, overall, more than 23% since the beginning of the year, and, with the closing price of $5.05, the shares are slightly above the 52-week low. The independent oil exploration and production company reported a net income of $5.0 million, or $0.08 per share for the fourth quarter of 2013, versus a net loss of around $800,000, or $0.01 per share posted for the same period of last year. Moreover, the company expects production of 36,500 Barrels of oil equivalent per day during the current year, raising the guidance from the previous amount of 33,500 Boe. In addition, in a recent statement, Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (NYSE:MPO) announced that its President and CEO, John A. Crum has resigned from his positions, “in order to allow the company to pursue new leadership and strategic direction.”

Robert Henry Lynch‘s Aristeia Capital also owns a major position in Midstates Petroleum Company Inc (NYSE:MPO), which amasses almost 3.99 million shares, up by 50% over the quarter.

In Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA), Mr. Cohen currently owns roughly 38.69 million shares, with SAC holding 36.95 million shares of the aggregate amount, more than double in comparison to 15.76 million shares disclosed in the most recent 13F filing.

Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA)’s shares have declined in the past couple of days, losing around 12% since the beginning of the week. The decline comes amid the IPO of Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA)’s competitor in the entertainment industry, King Digital Entertainment PLC (NYSE:KING), which started trading on Wednesday and also has lost almost 12% since then. King Digital Entertainment is famous for several of its games, one of which is Candy Crush Saga.

Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA)’s financials also don’t look good, the company posting losses and missing the consensus estimates over the past several quarters. However, for the current year, the company is expected to turn to profit and post EPS of $0.02 for 2014. Moreover, the stock has forward P/E of 89.xx.

Following the recent increase, Mr. Cohen is now one of the largest shareholders of Zynga Inc (NASDAQ:ZNGA). John Lykouretzos‘ Hoplite Capital Management is also bullish on the company and added it to its equity portfolio during the fourth quarter of 2013, revealing ownership of almost 20.91 million shares. On the other hand, Robert Pitts‘ Steadfast Capital Management has reduced its position by over 30% to around 19.16 million shares.

Disclosure: none

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