#3 Sothebys (NYSE:BID)
– Shares Owned by Third Point (as of December 31): 6.65 Million
– Value of Holding (as of December 31): $171.3 Million
Third Point has had an activist stake in the $1.6 billion auction house operator since the first quarter of 2013 and holds three seats on the company’s board. According to a recent Form 4 filing, Third Point further inched up its stake in Sothebys by acquiring 10,000 shares for $21.93 per share on February 29. Although up by 2.6% so far this year, Sothebys (NYSE:BID)’s stock is trading down by almost 37% over the last 12 months. CEO Tad Smith joined the company last year and has been focused on making a turnaround, but a weak art market and economic slowdown in Asia have made the going tough for him. The company posted a fourth quarter loss of $11.2 million while sales were down by 33% in 2015. Richard McGuire‘s Marcato Capital Management trimmed its stake in Sothebys (NYSE:BID) by 6% during the fourth trimester to 6.22 million shares.
#2 Liberty Global plc – Class C Ordinary Shares (NASDAQ:LBTYK)
– Shares Owned by Third Point (as of December 31): 5 Million
– Value of Holding (as of December 31): $203.85 Million
The leading international cable company recently announced its merger with Vodafone, with whom it plans to engage in the Netherlands with a more well-rounded portfolio of products. Moreover, Liberty’s fourth quarter revenue of $4.6 billion beat analyst estimates by $90 million as the company managed to add 344,000 revenue generating units during this period, the highest for any quarter last year. Mr. Loeb added the company to his fund’s portfolio in the second quarter of 2012 and the stock is down by about 9.5% since the stock was split in March of 2014. Eagle Capital Management, which is led by Boykin Curry, holds about 32.79 million shares of Liberty Global plc – Class C Ordinary Shares (NASDAQ:LBTYK) after hiking its stake by 9% in the October-to-December period.
#1 Constellation Brands, Inc. (NYSE:STZ)
– Shares Owned by Trian Partners (as of December 31): 1.6 Million
– Value of Holding (as of December 31): $227.90 Million
Loeb initiated a position in Constellation Brands, Inc. (NYSE:STZ) during the second quarter of 2012 and trimmed his stake in the company by 8% during the fourth quarter. After a sharp fall in early February, shares of the $31 billion international alcohol company have recovered and trade up by 7.2% on a year-to-date basis. The company is facing supply chain issues as it issued another recall of Corona over fears that a small percentage of shipped bottles may contain glass particles. According to analysts, the company needs to reduce its dependency on Anheuser-Busch InBev, the brewery behind the manufacturing of the recalled beers, and ramp up production at its brewery in Nava. Stephen Mandel‘s Lone Pine Capital upped its stake in Constellation Brands, Inc. (NYSE:STZ) by 15% to 5.35 million shares during the fourth quarter.