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Al Gore’s investment firm buys 7.4 million Shopify shares

In today’s headlines, Al Gore’s sustainability investment firm buys Microsoft, Amazon and Shopify shares, Porsche is on track for IPO by the end of this year, and quant hedge funds increased their stake in Berkshire Hathaway. In other stories, EQT is in talks to buy THQ Appalachia and cybersecurity funds could be a long-term play.

Al Gore boosts Shopify stake

Al Gore’s sustainability investment firm Generation Investment Management tends to target companies with strong ESG credentials. As a result, eyebrows were raised when the firm’s latest 13F filing showed that it had bought 3.7 million shares of Microsoft [MSFT] in the second quarter. The firm also boosted its stake in Shopify [SHOP] to 7.5 million shares, and its Amazon [AMZN] position jumped to 11.48 million shares.

Porsche on track for IPO

 The Porsche sports car brand is set to go public by the end of the year, Volkswagen [VOW3.DE] management told reporters on a conference call Tuesday. It could be Germany’s largest ever IPO and the largest in Europe since 1999, depending on its valuation, as investors value the company at between €60bn and €85bn. The IPO would help Volkswagen unlock funds to invest further in new technologies and the transition to electric vehicles.

Quants bet on Berkshire

Quant hedge funds piled into Berkshire Hathaway [BRK-B] in the second quarter. Renaissance Technologies increased its stake the most, adding 1.791 million shares and taking its total position to 1.7185 million at the end of June. Adam Gould, director of quant research at Fundstrat Global Advisors, told the Financial Times that quants look at value and momentum and “Berkshire has looked favourable on both those metrics for some time”.

EQT to buy THQ for $4bn

The largest gas producer in the US, EQT [EQT], is in talks to buy THQ Appalachia for $4bn, Reuters reported on Tuesday, citing sources close to the matter. An acquisition would expand EQT’s operations in West Virginia. While the EQT share price has pumped 119% year-to-date through 2 September, the stock was down slightly in premarket trading on Tuesday, suggesting a lukewarm reaction to the news from investors.

Buy cybersecurity amid weaker spending power

While inflation may reduce business spending power, one area companies are unlikely to stop investing in is keeping their operations secure. “[T]he long-term secular growth story of more capital being deployed into cybersecurity is not going to stop,” according to John Petrides, portfolio manager at Tocqueville Asset Management. Petrides told CNBC that investors ought to add ETFMG Prime Cyber Security [HACK] to their watchlist. The ETF is down 25.5% year-to-date as of 2 September.

Bilibili diversifies revenue

China’s livestreaming crackdown may have impacted Bilibili’s [BILI] second quarter revenue. The YouTube of China launched a premium pay-per-view channel towards the end of June to diversify its income stream and mitigate any impact livestreaming regulations may have on the company in the future. Despite rising briefly following reports that a US-China on ADR audit access was close, the Bilibili share price has since pulled back. The company reports Q2 earnings on Thursday 8 September.

Darktrace’s FY22 takeover talking point

Rumours that private equity Thoma Bravo will make a play for Darktrace [DARK.L] have been a big talking point ahead of the cybersecurity firm releasing its FY22 report on Thursday morning. While customer and annualised recurring revenue growth remain robust, and should continue to do so in fiscal 2023, the company is yet to report a full-year net profit. AJ Bell analyst Danni Hewson believes a takeover bid of 570p could interest shareholders.

 

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