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The 10 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without

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·10 min read
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In this article, we present the list of the 10 stocks that Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners can’t live without. You can skip our comprehensive analysis of Toronado Partners' history, investment philosophy, and hedge fund performance, and go directly to The 5 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without.

Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:UBER), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and Salesforce.com, inc. (NYSE:CRM) are among the 30 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds: 2021 Q3 Rankings, yet you won’t find these or any other wildly popular stock in the portfolio of Toronado Partners, which looks outside the box for its investment ideas.

Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners is a San Francisco-based hedge fund that was founded in 2013 by Mr. Perkins, who previously served as a General Partner at Crosslink Capital and as an analyst for Proteus Capital. Toronado invests primarily in smaller companies within fast-growing segments of the tech sector on the long side of its portfolio while shorting companies that it deems to have unsustainable growth trajectories.

Mr. Perkins’ success at Crosslink Capital, where he consistently delivered profitable investment ideas on both the long and short sides of his portfolio, has carried over to Toronado Partners. Through April 2020, the Toronado Fund, which was founded in June 2013, has delivered an outstanding compound annual return of 15.52%. 2018 and 2019 were both banner years for the fund, as it returned 26% and 29.57% respectively. Toronado Partners has $754 million in assets under management as of March 30, 2021. Toronado’s 13F portfolio contained just 10 long positions as of September 30, with the fund initiating one new position during the third quarter and selling off one former holding, Stamps.com Inc. (NASDAQ:STMP). Close to 80% of the value of the fund’s $284 million 13F portfolios was invested in tech stocks.

In this article, we’ll take a look at the only ten stocks that matter to Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners, one or more of which just might be the next Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:UBER), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), or Salesforce.com, inc. (NYSE:CRM).

The 10 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without
The 10 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without

Source: pexels Our Methodology

We follow hedge funds like Toronado Partners because Insider Monkey’s research has uncovered that their consensus stock picks can deliver outstanding returns. Scroll down below for the opportunity to sign up for a free report and stock pick from Insider Monkey. Now then, let’s check out The 10 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without. Note that all hedge fund data is based on the exclusive group of 800+ funds tracked by Insider Monkey as part of our market-beating investment strategy.

The 10 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without

10. LendingTree, Inc (NASDAQ:TREE)

Toronado Partners' Stake Value: $846,000

Percentage of Toronado Partners' 13F Portfolio: 0.29% Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 24

LendingTree, Inc (NASDAQ:TREE) kicks off the list, though it’s barely hanging on to its position in Toronado Partners’ 13F portfolio and could in fact be on the way out entirely after the fund unloaded 95% of its holding during Q3. That left it with just 6,047 TREE shares valued at $846,000. While Toronado Partners may be on the way out as a LendingTree, Inc (NASDAQ:TREE) investor, Bernzott Capital Advisors appears to be sticking it out.

In the fund’s Q3 2021 investor letter, it noted that the company’s growth initiatives have weighed on earnings but added that its consumer loan and credit card lead generation segments have likely bottomed out and should be poised for future growth. One of the 5 Reddit Stocks that Flopped in 2021, LendingTree, Inc (NASDAQ:TREE) shares cratered by 54% last year and are down by over 70% from their peak in July 2019. However, there are some positive signs in the company’s recent results, including an additional 1.1 million users added to its platform in Q3, lifting the total to 20 million, while its Home segment’s mortgage revenue per lead grew by 78% year-over-year.

Bernzott Capital Advisors, an investment management firm, published its “US Small Cap Value Fund” third quarter 2021 investor letter and mentioned LendingTree, Inc (NASDAQ:TREE). Here's what the fund said:

"LendingTree (TREE): The company’s continued investment in growth initiatives such as health and insurance have weighed on earnings momentum. As a result, the stock has been weak, and valuation has compressed below five-year averages. The important consumer loan and credit card lead generation businesses appear to have bottomed following a negative COVID-19 impact and look poised for growth which we expect will help drive a recovery in the stock price.”

9. Twilio Inc. (NYSE:TWLO)

Toronado Partners' Stake Value: $16,130,000

Percentage of Toronado Partners' 13F Portfolio: 5.67% Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 96

Toronado Partners also sold off some Twilio Inc. (NYSE:TWLO) shares during Q3, 6,000 in total, but maintains a sizable stake of 50,557 shares worth $16.13 million as of September 30. Twilio is one of the more popular stocks in Toronado’s 13F portfolio, as hedge fund ownership of TWLO has jumped by over 70% over the previous six quarters.

Nonetheless, Twilio Inc. (NYSE:TWLO) shares have also been battered of late, losing 54% of their value in the past year. The communications platform-as-a-service company, whose technology powers the apps of popular platforms like DoorDash, Uber, and Zendesk (another Toronado Partners pick, see below), grew revenue by 65% to $2 billion during the first nine months of 2021. However, its operating expenses ballooned by 73% during that same period, which contributed to a loss of $659 million. Twilio Inc. (NYSE:TWLO) will have to show that it can rein in expenses to get back in investors’ good graces and make them excited again about its strong revenue growth.

8. Zendesk Inc. (NYSE:ZEN)

Toronado Partners' Stake Value: $24,354,000

Percentage of Toronado Partners' 13F Portfolio: 8.56% Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 53

The aforementioned Zendesk Inc (NYSE:ZEN) is up next, and represents yet another of Toronado Partners’ stock picks that has struggled mightily over the past year, losing 37% of its value. Toronado owns 209,247 ZEN shares worth $24.35 million at the end of Q3.

A large chunk of those losses came after the third quarter had ended when Zendesk Inc (NYSE:ZEN) announced the acquisition of Survey Monkey parent company Momentive for $4.1 billion on October 28. Zendesk believes that by better understanding how its customers think and feel, which Momentive can help accomplish, the customer support software provider can then better serve them and in turn reap the rewards from that enhanced service.

The market however scratched its head at the deal, which overshadowed what was otherwise a strong Q3 for Zendesk Inc (NYSE:ZEN), which announced the acquisition on the same day as its third-quarter results. Zendesk’s revenue grew by 32% year-over-year in Q3, the company’s fourth straight quarter with accelerating revenue growth, though it remains unprofitable in terms of net income.

Carillon Tower Advisers, an investment management firm, published its “Carillon Eagle Mid Cap Growth Fund” third quarter 2021 investor letter and mentioned Zendesk Inc. (NYSE:ZEN). Here's what the fund said:

"Zendesk provides customer support software solutions. After successfully navigating the early stages of the pandemic in 2020, the firm has seen its stock cool off on the threat of increased competition from low-cost alternatives. We do not believe that the competitive dynamics have been altered. In fact, the company’s annual revenue growth rate has accelerated in 2021 from the second half of 2020. The shares also currently trade at a deep discount to other cloud-based software vendors.”

7. Grid Dynamics Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:GDYN)

Toronado Partners' Stake Value: $25,456,000

Percentage of Toronado Partners' 13F Portfolio: 8.94% Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 18

Grid Dynamics Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:GDYN) was the lone addition to Toronado Partners’ 13F portfolio in Q3, as the fund initiated a position of 871,201 GDYN shares worth $25.46 million as of the end of September. Grid Dynamic’s shares have gained over 200% over the last 22 months and further gains may be in store.

In its Q3 2021 investor letter, Baron Funds’ Baron FinTech Fund noted that Grid Dynamics Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:GDYN) is benefiting from the digital transformation taking place across all industries, which is fueling massive demand for its outsourced software development services. The fund added that it continued to own GDYN shares in the belief that the company has “unique capabilities and a long runway for growth.”

Grid Dynamics Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:GDYN)’s Q3 revenue soared by 120% year-over-year, hitting $57.9 million, while its $0.11 in adjusted EPS topped estimates.

Baron Funds, an asset management firm, published its “Baron FinTech Fund” third quarter 2021 investor letter and mentioned Grid Dynamics Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:GDYN). Here's what the fund said:

"Grid Dynamics Holdings Inc. provides outsourced software development to business customers. Shares increased after the company reported strong quarterly results with 72% organic revenue growth and raised annual guidance. Grid is benefiting from robust demand as clients across industries invest in digital transformation. The company issued new shares in late June, which temporarily depressed the share price but provided dry powder for M&A. We continue to own the stock because we believe the company has unique capabilities and a long runway for growth.”

6. GDS Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:GDS)

Toronado Partners' Stake Value: $28,629,000

Percentage of Toronado Partners' 13F Portfolio: 10.06% Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 24

Closing out the first five stocks that Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners can’t live without is GDS Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:GDS), which the fund has owned since the final quarter of 2018. As of September 30, 2021, it owned 505,725 GDS shares with a market value of $28.63 million at that time. Hedge funds have been fleeing GDS Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:GDS) in 2021, as the China Crackdown is Crushing These 10 Stocks, with GDS being among them. Hedge fund ownership of the data center operator fell by just over 50% between the third quarter of 2020 and Q3 of 2021.

The Chinese government crackdown on dual-listed companies prompted Baron Funds’ Baron Asset Fund to unload its GDS position in Q3 given the uncertainty around future actions by the Chinese government.

The fund spoke glowingly about the company in its Q1 2020 investor letter, calling GDS Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:GDS) a compelling opportunity and comparing it to another long-term data center holding of the firm, Equinix Inc (NASDAQ:EQIX).

To check out the top five stock picks of Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners, which the fund believes could have the potential to be the next big thing in their industry like Uber Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:UBER), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), or Salesforce.com, inc. (NYSE:CRM), click the link below.

Baron Funds, an asset management firm, published its “Baron Asset Fund” third quarter 2021 investor letter and mentioned GDS Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:GDS). Here's what the fund said:

"GDS Holdings Limited is a leading data center operator focused on Tier 1 Chinese cities. Its shares fell in concert with a widespread sell-off in Chinese technology-related companies. This occurred in response to tightening regulations against businesses that may not be perceived as aligned with the Chinese government’s goals. Given the uncertainty about future governmental actions, we exited our position.”

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Disclosure: None. The 10 Stocks That Stephen Perkins’ Toronado Partners Can’t Live Without is originally published at Insider Monkey.