Quindell PLC (LON:QPP) (OTCMKTS:QUPPF) has embraced previously untouched levels of lows this year with an 80% decline in share price. While the story is not quite as exciting anymore, there is a new piece of information, thanks to FT‘s hedge fund reporter, Miles Johnson. It appears Tiger Global was quietly shorting Quindell. Using a shell company under the name of Roble SL, Tiger Global was short as much as 4.6% of Quindell’s shares at one point.
Tiger Global short 4.26% of Quindell
Currently Roble SL, aka Tiger Global, is short 4.26% of Quindell PLC (LON:QPP) (OTCMKTS:QUPPF), which amounts to just $12.8 million. At the end of last month, the same bet meant a $40 million short stake, so you can easily figure out the profits Tiger Global has collected on this position.
Even more interesting – Tiger Global was short Quindell well before Gotham’s short attack surfaced in late April, a fact the FT did not mention. According to filings made with UK’s FCA, Roble SL was short Qunidell since the end of February. Despite the over 80% decline in share price sicne the report, Quindell is well above the the price target Gotham gave in its initial report and has room to fall.
It appears this Tiger cub is particularly adept at shorting companies discreetly, under a multitude of names including, Fest NV, Blau GmbH and Fresco SRL, all of which have baffled people who routinely follow short disclosures.
Tiger Global shorting Monitise through Blau GmbH
Tiger Global has managed to short other European companies using shell identities while grabbing big chunks of profits. Blinkx Plc (LON:BLNX) (OTCMKTS:BLNKF) came under attack from shortsellers earlier this year after a Harvard professor criticized the company’s business model. Blinkx has since suffered a decline of nearly 90%, making Tiger Global even richer. Blau GmbH/Tiger Global was short Blinkx, Home Retail Group Plc (LON:HOME) (OTCMKTS:HMRTY), Thomas Cook Group plc (LON:TCG), TUI Travel PLC (LON:TT) (OTCMKTS:TTVLF) in U.K. Currently Tiger Global is shorting Monitise Plc (LON:MONI) (OTCMKTS:MONIF) through Blau GmbH, and shares are down over 56% year to date.
With its bet against Monitise, Tiger Global is pitted against Lee Cooperman who has firmly stuck to the long side of the mobile banking company. Cooperman was willing to boost his stake to over 16.5% just as Visa Inc (NYSE:V) was assessing options to divest of its 5% holding in Monitise.
The practice of hiding identity is not too prevalent among other Tiger cubs who routinely disclose synchronized positions. Coatue Management is shorting Monitise and Quindell, as we have reported previously. Lone Pine Capital has over half a billion dollar short portfolio in Europe according to regulatory filings.
Other funds which are short Quindell, include Ennismore Fund Management and TT International.
We remember very well how Tiger cubs converged to short Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) (BIT:NOK1V) (HEL:NOK1V) and then gradually exited the trade with considerable losses. The party at that time was complete with Coatue, Lone Pine, Maverick Capital, Viking Global, Discovery Capital and Blue Ridge, with only Tiger Global missing among the big ones. It turned out TG was not missing after all, it was actually shorting Nokia throughout that time under the name of Fest NV.
Tiger Global shorting Dixons Carphone through Fest
Tiger Global is currently using Fest to short Dixons Carphone PLC (LON:DC) in the U.K.
Tiger Global used Fresco SRL to short Hibu plc until the end of 2012. Hibu delisted from LSE in July 2013, as creditors took over control of the company. The hedge fund was also short HMV Group plc (LON:HMV), a video and e-games retailer that filed for bankruptcy in early 2013.
Tiger Global declined to comment on this development. So the lesson it appears is that whenever we see a weird looking name in short disclosures, we can almost assume it is Tiger Global.
Carolyn Sargent, a spokeswoman for Tiger Global at Rubenstein Associates, declined to comment on the matter.