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By Aubrey Tabuga

Oak Ridge Investments, LLC is a Chicago-based investment advisor. The investment company has over $2.76 billion under its management as of the end of September 2012. Its investment strategies cover large cap, mid-cap, small/mid-cap, all cap, and dividend growth. In the third quarter, the company initiated position in 12 stocks and sold 8 out. In this article, I briefly discuss the biggest buys of Oak Ridge in the latest quarter. These are Akorn (NASDAQ:AKRX), Catamaran Corporation (NASDAQ:CTRX), Beacon Roofing Supply (NASDAQ:BECN), Cardtronics (NASDAQ:CATM), and SolarWinds (NYSE:SWI).

Stock

Shares Held

Market Value

% of Portfolio

% Change

Akorn Inc.

4,316,481

$57,063,880

2.07%

New

Catamaran Corporation

364,309

$35,691,353

1.29%

New

Beacon Roofing Supply Inc.

1,148,248

$32,702,676

1.18%

New

Cardtronics Inc.

949,161

$28,247,032

1.02%

New

SolarWinds, Inc.

493,969

$27,533,833

1.00%

New

Akorn

Akorn, Inc. is a healthcare company based in Lake Forest, Illinois. It is a manufacturer and marketer of ophthalmic pharmaceuticals, injectables, and specialty therapeutics. Recently, it has met expectations of its third quarter revenues and even surpassed the projections on earning per share. The company has just announced approval of its ANDA for the generic of Abbott Laboratories' Prometrium capsule, which is used for treating endometrial hyperplasia and secondary amenorrhea.

In the latest quarter, the asset manager bought a remarkable 4.326 million shares of Akorn amounting to $57 million. This represents 2.07% of the firm's total portfolio. The stock is Oak Ridge's top 8. Akorn has not appeared in the 13F Filing of Oak Ridge in at least 8 quarters that preceded the latest. The company is a powerful generator of earnings. Its long-term growth prospect is really impressive as the EPS is expected to grow at a rate of 24.67% annually in the next 5 years. The current profit margin is 16.50%. The stock is up by 13.76% compared to a year before.

Catamaran Corporation

Catamaran Corp. is a provider of healthcare information technology solutions and pharmacy benefit management (PBM) services. The company, formerly known as SXC Health Solutions Corp., is based in Lisle, Illinois. The company has beaten expectations in the third quarter in terms of its EPS, but slightly missed on revenues. It is noted that the latest quarter has been a huge one for the company after it completed the merger with Catalyst Health Solutions, a full-service PBM.

The asset manager initiated a position in Catamaran Corp. in the third quarter with a purchase of 364,309 shares amounting to about $35.7 million based on data from whalewisdom.com. This is equivalent to 1.29% of the total portfolio of Oak Ridge. This is Catamaran's first appearance in the 13F filing of the asset manager within at least 9 quarters. Like Akorn, Catamaran is poised to generate huge growth in the years to come. The long-term annual growth estimate is a massive 25.79%. The stock's year-to-date performance has jumped by 68.20%.

Beacon Roofing Supply

Beacon Roofing Supply, Inc. is a company based in Peabody, Massachusetts that engages in the distribution of roofing materials. The company has recently completed its acquisition of McClure-Johnston Company, also a distributor of residential and commercial roofing products and related accessories. McClure-Johnston has 14 locations in four states.

In the third quarter, Oak Ridge bought 1.148 million shares of Beacon Roofing. This is also the first time that the company appeared in the 13F filing of the fund management firm. The purchase is equivalent to $32.7 million and forms 1.18% of the total portfolio of Oak Ridge. Beacon is expected to generate large earnings growth in the next five years with its long-term annual growth estimate of 17.50%. Also, the company has a healthy P/E ratio of 18.69. The stock is moving strongly upwards with its current year-to-date performance gaining 54.28%.

Cardtronics

Cardtronics, Inc. is a Houston-based provider of automated consumer financial services. It has about 52,900 automated teller machines (ATMs) and multi-function financial services kiosks located across the US and its territories, United Kingdom, Mexico, and Canada.

Early this month, the company received an upgrade from Compass Point. The company has acquired ATM Network in August this year. ATM Network is a Minnesota-based operator of around 6,200 primarily merchant-owned ATMs. In the most recent quarter, the company exhibited a strong revenue growth of 21%.

Oak Ridge purchased 949,161 shares of Cardtronics in the third quarter. This is 1.02% of its total holdings. The stock has been suffering lately; its current year-to-date performance is -9.39%. The long-term annual growth estimate, however, is still high at 14.00%. This year the EPS leaped by 64.28%. Its P/E ratio though is a bit high at 27.24.

SolarWinds

SolarWinds, Inc. is a leading developer and marketer of enterprise IT infrastructure management software. The Austin-based company has recently announced the upcoming release of its purpose-built network monitoring solution, SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor (NPM) which is designed to bring easy-to-use and powerful functionality to address the complexity and scale of today's networks. The company's third quarter earnings and revenues have exceeded consensus estimates.

Oak Ridge bought 493,969 shares of SolarWinds in the latest quarter. This is tantamount to 1% of the asset manager's portfolio as of the end of September. Like the rest, the company has not appeared in the 13F filing of Oak Ridge in the last 8 quarters that preceded the current one. The company is a profit engine with net margin of 30.01%. It is noted that its sales grew by 39.0% per year in the last 5 years. The EPS of SolarWinds is projected to grow by 20% annually in the next 5 years. The stock's performance had leaped by a massive 84.94% from a year ago.

Source: 5 Big Buys By Oak Ridge Investments