|January 28, 2015
George Soros Just Upped His Stake In This Company By 243%
By Dave Forest
I have a confession to make -- I love great hotels.
There's simply nothing like a great living space -- complete with room service or an amazing view -- to make you feel like a million bucks while on vacation or business.
But there's more to love than just the amenities they offer. The right hotels can also turn out to be market-beating investments.
That's why I wasn't surprised to come across a company that manages some of the world's top luxury hotel brands, when researching for my new report, "The Top 10 Stocks For 2015."
And after learning more about this impressive company, there was no question I had to add it to my list.
Now, I'll admit, this is probably not a company you're familiar with. However, I'm sure you'd recognize many of the luxury hotel brands it oversees.
The company owns and operates more than 1,200 hotels and resorts -- including Westin, Sheraton, W and St. Regis (to name a few) -- in nearly 100 countries around the world.
From the United States to Fiji... Hong Kong to Dubai... the company's luxury suites have housed presidents, prime ministers and crown-princes alike. And with such worldwide appeal, it's no wonder the company is able to sell its high-end goods and services at such premium prices.
In 2012, the company's Villa La Cupola Suite -- located at the Westin Excelsior hotel in Rome -- was going for $30,000 a night, ranking it as the eighth most expensive hotel room in the world.
I don't care what business you're in, those types of prices won't do anything to hurt a company's bottom line.
That is just one of the reasons I feel confident this firm will have a big year in 2015. And apparently, I'm not the only one thinking that.
Recently, legendary investing guru George Soros upped his stake in this company by more than 240%. He now owns more than 660,000 shares. To put that into perspective, that's more shares than he owns of market giants like Google, Facebook, Wal-Mart or Coca-Cola.
And it's easy to see why Soros is loading up on the stock...
The company currently boasts profit margins of 13.5% -- nearly twice as high as the industry average. And those margins have increased more than 224% since 2009.
Additionally, the company has been growing its dividend at a rapid pace for the past few years.
Since 2011, the firm's dividend has more than tripled.
That makes for some hefty shareholder payouts. In 2014 alone, this firm shelled out more than $1.6 billion to investors in the form of dividends and stock buybacks. And recently, it authorized yet another $688 million to repurchase even more shares.
That's not bad for a company with a market cap of just $14 billion.
The company I'm talking about is Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT).
My excitement for Starwood extends beyond just its lush amenities and strong financials. The firm recently announced a partnership with Apple to launch a new keyless service for guests.
Starting in 2015, the deal allows Starwood to offer a "Smart Check-In" application that turns guests' mobile phones into room keys, allowing them to skip the age-old check-in process altogether and go directly to their room.
While this may seem like a small innovation, it's just the beginning of what Starwood has in store.
In its most recent letter to shareholders, the company announced it already has plans to use mobile-technology to improve its revenue management systems and establish more convenient reservation and loyalty systems.
And while guests will get the benefits of these new innovations immediately, shareholders will be the ones reaping the biggest rewards.
Starwood's share price has already been on a tear lately, more than doubling the S&P 500 over the past five years.
But that performance could be just the beginning of something bigger.
With its new innovations, strong profit margins and history of generating strong shareholder value, I think Starwood Hotels will be one of the market's strongest performers in 2015.
But as I mentioned earlier, my list is called "The Top 10 Stocks For 2015." My research team and I also found nine other companies that could deliver outsized returns in the coming year.
Without question, this could be the strongest collection of stocks to beat that market that we've ever put together.
The list includes an often-overlooked company generating five times more revenue than its closest competitor... a world-leading petroleum firm whose collection of "Irreplaceable Assets" stretches 51,000 miles... and a relatively-unknown company that has crushed earnings for four quarters and raised its dividend 400% in just seven years.
To get more information on each of these companies -- including the name and ticker symbol of one shareholder-friendly firm that's sitting on $52 billion in cash right now -- simply check out my new report, "The Top 10 Stocks For 2015." You can access the report here.
Chief Investment Strategist
Top 10 Stocks