Baillie Gifford Just Bought Ginkgo Bioworks (DNA) Stock. Here’s Why.

Ginkgo Bioworks (NYSE:DNA) is in the red today, despite a recent transaction with $182 billion investment firm Baillie Gifford. Based on an amended 13G filing received yesterday, the firm purchased an additional 48.87 million shares of DNA stock. The purchase increased its current position by 41%.

a visualization of DNA in a vial
Source: Connect world /

This transaction occurred on March 31. After the purchase, Baillie owns a total of 167.75 million shares, making it the largest shareholder in Ginkgo Bioworks. Now, the investment firm is classified as an insider since it owns 15.53% of all shares outstanding.

Considering this purchase, it can be inferred that Baillie is committed to Ginkgo for the long run. This is only bolstered by the fact the firm has an average holding period of 10.97 quarters for each position in its portfolio. The March purchase isn’t the only time Baillie bought DNA stock this year, either. Back in January, it purchased 9.4 million shares.

Baillie Gifford Buys DNA Stock

So, why did Baillie make this purchase? Institutional investors are not required to disclose their reasons for a purchase. However, the firm may be buying DNA stock to take advantage of a decline in price. Shares of DNA are down nearly 60% year-to-date (YTD). As a result, it appears Baillie is maintaining high conviction in Ginkgo, even with the severe price decline.

In recent news, Ginkgo announced that it has agreed to extend its collaboration with Twist Bioscience (NASDAQ:TWST). The four-year agreement will allow the biotech company to purchase more products from Twist. Furthermore, Ginkgo has the “option to access significantly more synthesis capacity to meet Ginkgo’s anticipated growth.” CEO Jason Kelly lauded the synergy between the two companies:

“Over the past four years, we ordered approximately one billion base pairs of synthetic DNA from Twist, allowing us to test hundreds of thousands of proteins across dozens of programs for our customers, resulting in many completed programs spanning vaccine manufacturing, food, flavor, fragrance and even cannabigerol.”

Who Else Is Betting Big on DNA Stock?

Tracking institutional ownership allows retail investors to take a glimpse inside the minds of some of the world’s savviest investment teams. During the fourth quarter, 161 funds reported owning DNA stock, an increase of 35 funds from the prior quarter. Additionally, 76 funds reported initiating a new position while 39 funds completely liquidated their position.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the top shareholders of Ginkgo:

  1. Baillie Gifford: 167.75 million shares.
  2. General Atlantic: 111.57 million shares.
  3. Austin Che, cofounder: 82.92 million shares.
  4. Senator Investment Group: 76.59 million shares.
  5. Tom Knight Jr., cofounder: 75.08 million shares.

It should be noted that cofounder Reshma Shetty and Cascade Investment own 166.04 million shares and 151.86 million shares, respectively. However, the two parties have not yet submitted a Q4 position update. In addition, CEO Jason Kelly owns 82.58 million shares as of Q3.

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On the date of publication, Eddie Pan did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the Publishing Guidelines.

Eddie Pan specializes in institutional investments and insider activity. He writes for InvestorPlace’s Today’s Market team, which centers on the latest news involving popular stocks.

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