The manager of hedge fund Glenview Capital has made big bets on Obamacare, targeting companies he believes stand to benefit from the legislation. He has built positions in major hospital chains such as Tenet Healthcare (THC) - Get Report and HCA Holdings (HCA) - Get Report and made notable investments in insurers Anthem (ANTM) - Get Report and Humana (HUM) - Get Report.
"There were a lot of irrational fears about Obamacare," he said in a 2013 interview with Barron's.
Robbins' health care thesis has helped drive major returns. His flagship hedge fund returned 14.4% net in 2014, and the Glenview Opportunity Fund returned 25%. He delivered stellar numbers in 2012 and 2013 as well.
Larry Robbins' stock picking prowess in the health care sector is undeniable, but health care stocks aren't the only holdings in his portfolio. Here are big five investments he's making in other areas.
Robbins began building a stake in agricultural products provider Monsanto (MON) in the second half of 2013. Nearly two years later, he is still a fan. A regulatory filing corresponding to the first quarter of 2015 shows the company is his top holding as of March 31, and his stake is valued at over $1 billion.
Robbins has discussed his take on Monsanto on several occasions. In a 2014 letter to Glenview Capital investors, he said that "no company can or will catch Monsanto's lead in agricultural products." He recommended the stock at the Harbor Investor Conference in February and revealed that Glenview and Monsanto have engaged in "productive" discussions to take on more debt.
In May, Robbins talked up the stock yet again with Bloomberg and acknowledged Glenview is still waiting for the trade to play out entirely. "When the rest of the market realizes the same value that we see in Monsanto, that's hard for us to understand. The good news is that while you wait, the business is growing value under you, and, to the extent that Monsanto is busy repurchasing shares, they'll be repurchasing them at an ever more attractive price," he said.
Larry Robbins is likely also paying close attention to Monsanto's bid for its Swiss rival, Syngenta (SYT) , which has rejected its $45 billion takeover offer. Monsanto has organized meetings with Syngenta shareholders in hopes of advancing talks.
Larry Robbins' No. 2 holding as of the end of the first quarter, Flextronics (FLEX) - Get Report provides a wide range of electronics manufacturing services, including design, fabrication, assembly and testing. Glenview's position is worth more than $950 million.
Flextronics has been on the Glenview Capital books for years and continues to pay off. In his first quarter letter to investors, Robbins named Flextronics as one of the top five winners of the period, also giving mention to Thermo Fisher Scientific (TMO) - Get Report, Endo International (ENDO) , Anthem and Humana.
In early June, Flextronics announced plans to offer $500 million in senior unsecured notes. It will use the proceeds for what it describes as "general corporate purposes." The funds will likely also go towards its pending acquisition of Mirror Controls International.
Glenview Capital has had a stake in PVH (PVH) - Get Report since 2013 and has been increasing it gradually ever since. As of the end of the first quarter, the hedge fund has invested more than $500 million in the company.
PVH is an apparel company behind several big-name brands, including Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, IZOD, Van Heusen and Speedo. The company reported first-quarter earnings on June 1 and beat analysts' expectations with its numbers, earning $1.50 per share on revenue of $1.88 billion as opposed to the anticipated $1.38 per share on $1.87 billion. Analysts are liking what they see at PVH as well, and Piper Jaffray has set a $130 price target on the stock.
Larry Robbins hasn't had very much to say about PVH publicly, but it is one of a handful of retail-sector companies he appears to like. He also has positions in Dollar General (DG) - Get Report, Gap (GPS) - Get Report and Fossil Group (FSL) .
Time Warner Cable
Larry Robbins' stake in Time Warner Cable (TWC) dates back to 2011. As of the end of the first quarter he owns nearly 3.3 million of the company's shares, and his position is valued at just under $490 million.
Time Warner Cable has been engaged in a bit of an M&A tug of war in recent months. In 2014, Comcast (CMCSA) - Get Report announced plans to acquire the cable giant. It eventually canceled the transaction in April. Charter Communications (CHTR) - Get Reporthas since stepped in with a deal valued at $78.7 billion.
Robbins has refrained from discussing the deal in public, but it is worth noting that this isn't the only M&A bet he's made. He began amassing a sizable stake in Actavis (ACT) - Get Report in late 2014, just months before it completed the acquisition of Botox maker Allergan.
Hertz Global Holdings
Carl Icahn has largely eclipsed other Hertz Global Holdings (HTZ) - Get Report investors by taking an activist stake in the car rental company. But Larry Robbins has been investing in Hertz for a while now and as of the end of the first quarter has a more than $480 million stake.
Robbins discussed the stock in a letter to investors written in 2014, attributing his investment decision to consolidation in the car rental industry and factors possessed by the company itself. "We note that the economy and consumer spending appear solid in our analytical and prop research work, which forms the backdrop for additional medium-term firmness in pricing. With load balancing (Hertz weekday, Dollar Thrifty heavy weekend) and the ability to cascade product (newer fleet on the high value business traveler, older fleet for discount consumer) all feed into Hertz's ability to price more firmly per asset," he wrote, according to ValueWalk.
Larry Robbins also has a position in Hertz competitor Avis Budget Group (CAR) - Get Report. In late 2014, he boosted his stake to more than 5% of the company. In the first quarter of 2015, he bought even more.
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This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.