NetEase Inc (ADR) (NTES), Motorola Solutions Inc (MSI), Weatherford International PLC (WFT): William B. Gray Loves Tech Stocks –and Some Others

William B. Gray’s Orbis Holdings Ltd. is amongst the investment management firms required to declare their long equity positions every quarter. A few weeks ago, the fund publicly disclosed its holdings as of June 30, 2014. Its portfolio, worth more than $12.1 billion, is quite diversified, but has a slight focus on information technology (30.5%) and consumer discretionary (20%) stocks. After starting eight new positions, increasing its stakes in another 32, and closing 18 of its preexisting holdings, the fund’s largest stakes are in NetEase, Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:NTES), Motorola Solutions Inc (NYSE:MSI) and Weatherford International PLC (NYSE:WFT). In this article we will take a closer look into these companies in order to find out if they are worthy of further research –and consideration as potential investments.

Motorola Solutions logo


NetEase, Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:NTES) is an $11.4 billion market cap internet technology company saw Orbis boost its exposure by 7% over the quarter. The fund now owns 16.98 million shares of the company, worth more than $1.33 billion. This stake accounts for more than 10% of the fund’s equity portfolio’s total value, and makes it the largest hedge fund shareholder of record -amongst those we track. Second in line is Jim Simons’ Renaissance Technologies, which last disclosed ownership of 2.88 million shares of NetEase, Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:NTES), following a 3% decrease in its position.

A few days ago, NetEase, Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:NTES) announced a quarterly dividend: stockholders of record on August 29 will be paid a dividend of $0.37 per share on September 5. On an annualized basis, this implies a 1.65% dividend yield.

Over the second quarter, Motorola Solutions Inc (NYSE:MSI) escalated one spot in Mr. Gray’s list. This $14.8 billion market cap communication infrastructure, devices, software and services provider saw Orbis augment its participation by 13% between April 1 and June 30. The fund now owns 11.98 million shares, worth more than $797 million, which make it the second largest hedge fund shareholder of record, only trailing Jeffrey Ubben’s ValueAct Capital, which last disclosed ownership of 28.9 million shares, worth almost $2 billion.

Recently, Motorola Solutions Inc (NYSE:MSI) announced that, despite strong results, management plans to overhaul its cost-cutting initiatives, which are expected to include layoffs and the sale of –more- land at its Schaumburg campus. In a conference, CEO Greg Brown said that the company aims to saving $300 million by late 2015, up from the $200 million previously expected. In addition, the company sold $1.4 billion in bonds, to help refinance debt and fund pension contributions.

Despite a 9% reduction in Orbis’ stake, Weatherford International PLC (NYSE:WFT) also ascended in the fund’s equity portfolio, as American International Group Inc (NYSE:AIG) fell from the second to the fifth place, after the fund sold more than 4.3 million shares of the company. The fund now owns 34.38 million shares of Weatherford International, worth more than $790 million, which make it, once again, the largest hedge fund shareholder among those that we track, trailed by Steve Cohen’s Point72 Asset Management. Point72 last declared ownership of 6.25 million shares of Weatherford International PLC (NYSE:WFT).

This $18.3 billion market cap provider of equipment and services for the oil and natural gas exploration and production industry has also felt analysts’ bullishness as well, lately. In early-August, Zacks reiterated its outperform rating, Global Hunter Securities upgraded the stock from a neutral to a buy in late-April, and UBS did the same, in late-February.

Disclosure: Javier Hasse holds no position in any stocks or funds mentioned.

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