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Three rapid growth stocks to watch right now

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
With hundreds of stocks to choose from, picking the next Amazon or Google can be a daunting task. Here, Charles Plowden, manager of Edinburgh-based Monks Investment Trust, reveals the companies he's excited about.

Monks Investment Trust is a global fund and part of the manager’s process is to identify rapid growth opportunities. These are companies expected to return between 15% and 25% earnings growth per year.

Examples of rapid growth stocks include Google parent company Alphabet, and Alibaba, which is often described as the “Amazon of China”.

The trust has also held Amazon since 2006. Its success has boosted the original investment by 40x.

Manager Charles Plowden says he doesn’t necessarily buy these stocks cheaply, but instead he’s buying them to grow above expectations. He looks to buy into the management ability.

Here are three rapid growth stocks he’s excited about at the moment:


This is a US online and mobile food ordering company. It is the US equivalent of takeaway food giant Just Eat in the UK and allows diners to order directly from more than 45,000 takeaway restaurants. It has expanded into the UK and Plowden says the firm is “on the cusp of killing competition” in part due to the natural network effects in the business model.

Just last week GrubHub reported record third quarter results – order growth accelerated 26% year-on-year to 30 September 2016 and it posted quarterly revenues of $123.5m, a 44% increase from Q3 2015.

The largest Chinese online travel agent, it already has 80% of the market share, according to Plowden. With the rise of the Chinese middle classes, Plowden says the firm is well placed to benefit from the growth. It offers a one-stop hub for hotel bookings, package tours and corporate travel management.


This is the of the US, offering price comparisons for mortgages, loans and credit cards.

Plowden says as lenders increasingly recognise the commodity nature of their product (to satisfy consumer wants and needs) and accept that consumers will try to find them through digital channels, this will lead to growth of the company.

“We think the role played by an aggregator, such as LendingTree, will be of increasing importance to both lenders and borrowers,” Plowden adds.

The Monks Investment Trust has returned 37.9% in the year to 30 September 2016, compared to the FTSE World Index of 31.2%.

In three years, it has returned 39.5%, compared with the FTSE World Index of 48.1%.

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