John Burbank's Passport Capital Boosts VIVUS Stake ~ market folly

Friday, November 2, 2012

John Burbank's Passport Capital Boosts VIVUS Stake

John Burbank's hedge fund Passport Capital has filed a 13G with the SEC regarding shares of VIVUS  (VVUS).  Per the filing, Passport has disclosed a 8.5% ownership stake in VVUS with 8,552,929 shares.

This marks a 5% increase in the amount of shares owned since the end of the second quarter.  The disclosure was filed due to portfolio activity on October 23rd.

Burbank's Thesis

We've heard rumblings that Burbank pitched VVUS at the Excellence in Investing conference in San Francisco the week prior and he believes it is a takeout candidate for big pharma.  He's pointed to the company's obesity drug which he thinks will be very important.   VVUS is said to represent around a 5% position for his fund.

Per Google Finance, VIVUS is "a biopharmaceutical company. The Company is engaged in the development and commercialization of therapeutic drugs for underserved markets, including obesity and related morbidities, such as sleep apnea and diabetes, and men's sexual health."

In the past, we've also pointed out how Passport likes Saudi equities.

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