Steven Owsley‘s Madison Street Partners is one of the funds that has recently disclosed its equity portfolio for the end of 2014, being one of the first institutional investors to file its 13F with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The last filing showed a drastic reduction in the equity portfolio value as it slid to only $64.83 million, from over $160.45 million in the previous quarter. The decline comes as the fund sold out 21 previously held positions and reduced holdings in 21 stocks, while it raised stakes in eight holdings and added 22 positions to its equity portfolio. Moreover, Madison Street Partners’ 13F portfolio is mildly diversfied, while the largest portion is represented by Consumer Discretionary stocks, which represent over 40% of the total portfolio, followed by Information Technology, Finance and Healthcare stocks. However, in this article we will focus on the top three largest holdings in terms of value that the fund held at the end of last year. These are represented by Liberty Global plc – Class C Ordinary Shares (NASDAQ:LBTYK), Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B), and Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA). All three stocks have had a positive double-digit growth throughout the third quarter, while the fund has significantly increased its exposure to them.
Liberty Global plc – Class C Ordinary Shares (NASDAQ:LBTYK)’s stock appreciated by around 9% over the last year. During the fourth quarter of 2014, Madison Street Partners raised its stake by 136% to almost 309,000 shares, valued at approximately $14.93 million. Meanwhile, the stock climbed by 18% in the October-December period. Overall, the fund has been a long-term investor of Liberty Global plc – Class C Ordinary Shares (NASDAQ:LBTYK)’s, holding shares since the fourth quarter of 2010, while the stock grew by 180% during that period. Liberty Global is a company that is engaged in providing video, broadband internet, fixed-line telephony and mobile services. Last year, the company has acquired Ziggo, a dutch provider of entertainment and information, and All3Media, a distributor of content and TV-programming. The company has also increased its buyback program last year to $4.5 billion from $3.5 billion that it to be completed by the end of this year. As of the end of September 2014, Boykin Curry‘s Eagle Capital Management and Warren Buffett‘s Berkshire Hathaway have been among the top shareholders of Liberty Global plc – Class C Ordinary Shares (NASDAQ:LBTYK)’s disclosing 33.16 million shares and 10.40 million shares respectively.
Madison Street Partners has also been bullish on Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B) during the fourth quarter, adding some 23,300 shares to its stake which contains 39,700 shares, with a total value of $5.96 million. Madison Street Partners has been holding shares of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B)’s class B common stock since the first quarter of 2011, and the investment has paid off since the stock appreciated by 77% over this period. Berkshire, led by the great investment Warren Buffett does not need a lot of description. The last quarter of 2014, has been particularly active for the holding company as it has acquired Van Tuyl Group, a privately-owned auto dealership group, battery maker Duracell that was acquired from Procter & Gamble Co (NYSE:PG) and completed its investment in Restaurant Brands International Inc (NYSE:QSR), the company that was formed after Burger King acquired Canada-based Tim Hortons. One of the largest shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B) is Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust, managed by Michael Larson, which held 83.63 million class B shares at the end of September.