Philippe Laffont is the founder and portfolio manager of Coatue Management, a global investment management firm with ca. $9 billion under management and offices in New York and Menlo Park, focused on the global technology, media, telecommunications and consumer industries. Coatue was chosen as the “Sector Fund of the Year” in 2007 and ”Specialist Fund of the Year” in 2011 by Absolute Return Magazine.
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Philippe Laffont spoke at the IRA Sohn Investment Conference, also see Coatue Management Flagship Fund Cut Back To $5 Billion. Below are notes from his presentation.
Highlights from Philippe Laffont’s presentation
1:17 Laffont has had a tough year which makes this presentation ever the more so interesting let us see what he has to say….
1:20 Laffont is a fan of John Malone he likes Liberty Global long (NASDAQ:LBTYA) which he sees as a GARP stock. Laffont believes that the speed of cable internet has increased steadily, however, fiber and DSL have made little progress in comparison. He believes that we need a broadband pipe of greater than 1 gig into the house and Liberty is well positioned to benefit from these trends. Laffont notes the growing need for wifi in homes. He believes that Netflix is driving new demand for faster/better internet service. Additionally, Netflix’s rapid growth will help LBTYA LBTYK in European markets. Laffont notes that consumers have not had the need to upgrade broadband yet, but that will change very quickly with the rise of Netflix.
1:27: Laffont notes that LBTYA is already taking market share in the mobile areas in Europe (note: I think Laffont is French but not sure). In terms of these trends, Liberty Global might be best positioned to profit investors as the company is returning cash and has strong metrics like ROE. In terms of Malone specifically, Laffont states that John Malone buys back as much stock as possible because Malone cares about the stock price of the company. In terms of metrics, Liberty has revenue growth of 5%, 8% ebitda growth, 15% for FCF. Wow he says that by the year 2018, the company is on track to buy back 75% of shares. He says that he loves the stock for the next 5 years, and calls it ‘an awesome business.’
1:33: LBTYA could be an acquisition target, Laffont believes that AT&T, Vodafone, or Comcast could purchase the company. The stock could easily go to $100 and possible acquisitions just make the stock more attractive. Now Laffont says (I believe) that thinks a Liberty Media, Vodafone merger “will happen, it’s just a matter of time”
1:35 As a brief sidenote, Laffont also mentioned that he recommended shorting shares of WWE