Dear Valued Visitor,

We have noticed that you are using an ad blocker software.

Although advertisements on the web pages may degrade your experience, our business certainly depends on them and we can only keep providing you high-quality research based articles as long as we can display ads on our pages.

To view this article, you can disable your ad blocker and refresh this page or simply login.

We only allow registered users to use ad blockers. You can sign up for free by clicking here or you can login if you are already a member.

Here’s Why Baron Asset Fund Bought GDS Holdings (GDS) Stock

Baron Asset Fund recently published its first-quarter commentary – a copy of which can be downloaded here. During the first quarter of 2020, the Baron Asset Fund returned -16.63% (institutional shares). In comparison, the benchmark S&P 500 Index was down 19.60%, while the Russell Midcap Growth Index was down 20.04%.

In the said letter, Baron Asset Fund highlighted a few stocks and GDS Holdings Ltd (NASDAQ:GDS) is one of them. GDS Holdings develops and operates data centers in China. Year-to-date, GDS stock gained 19.7% and on May 5th it had a closing price of $58.60. Its market cap is of $9.38 billion. Here is what Baron Asset Fund said:

“In the most recent quarter, we acquired shares of GDS Holdings Limited, the leading data center developer and operator in China serving the premier Chinese cloud service, e-commerce, social media/gaming, and internet players. Although we have not invested in many foreign-based companies, we believe that GDS represents a compelling opportunity. Its business shares many similarities with Equinix, Inc., a U.S.- based data center operator that has been a profitable long-term investment for the Fund. In addition, our real estate research team has met extensively with GDS management over the course of the last few years and has built increased confidence in the team’s growth aspirations and its ability to successfully execute them.

We believe that the Chinese data center industry remains in the earlier stages of its growth curve, and we believe it will experience one of the fastest multi-year growth rates globally as the Chinese government continues to support the rapid rollout of 5G connectivity. GDS’s current and future data centers support the critical IT infrastructure that empowers cloud adoption and enables numerous consumer and business applications. In addition to experiencing robust organic growth, GDS has accelerated its growth runway through select M&A. These acquisitions have allowed the company to obtain additional capacity in supply constrained markets at attractive prices. In addition, GDS has supplemented its dense urban strategy with a “campus strategy,” whereby it secures additional supplies of land and power on the outskirts of cities with minimal capital committed.

To provide some perspective on GDS’s growth rate, it signs more “bookings” in a single quarter than many global data center companies sign over the course of a year. Lastly, after two well received capital raises in 2019, GDS remains well funded with ample cash on its balance sheet to support multiple years of accelerated growth. GDS also has several deep-pocketed backers, including the Singaporean government’s investment fund, that have remained supportive of GDS’s growth plans and have participated in several of GDS’s capital raises. We believe there are many similarities to our other data center investments–GDS is earlier on its growth curve but growing at a much faster clip. We see a path for GDS to nearly triple its cash flow over the next few years, and we see a path to double our investment over that timeframe.”

In Q3 2019, the number of bullish hedge fund positions on GDS stock increased by about 7% from the previous quarter (see the chart here).

Disclosure: None. This article is originally published at Insider Monkey.

DOWNLOAD FREE REPORT: Warren Buffett's Best Stock Picks

Let Warren Buffett, George Soros, Steve Cohen, and Daniel Loeb WORK FOR YOU.

If you want to beat the low cost index funds by 19 percentage points per year, look no further than our monthly newsletter.In this free report you can find an in-depth analysis of the performance of Warren Buffett's entire historical stock picks. We uncovered Warren Buffett's Best Stock Picks and a way to for Buffett to improve his returns by more than 4 percentage points per year.

Bonus Biotech Stock Pick: You can also find a detailed bonus biotech stock pick that we expect to return more than 50% within 12 months.
Subscribe me to Insider Monkey's Free Daily Newsletter
This is a FREE report from Insider Monkey. Credit Card is NOT required.