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Volatility is no stranger to shareholders of Beyond Meat (NASDAQ:BYND), as in the past 52-weeks alone the stock has a trading range of $88.51 to $221.00. Beyond was one of the hottest IPOs back in May of 2019, but it has been a rocky road ever since, as the United States continues to grapple with the idea of eating less red meat. Beyond Meat was established in Los Angeles in 2009, and by 2013, it had been named PETA’s company of the year. The success of Beyond Meat has been rapid, and it operates as the first mover in an industry that is completely changing the way food and nutrition is perceived. Learn More
Shares have traded mostly flat ahead of Beyond Meat’s quarterly earnings call schedule for May 6th. Its previous earnings call fell flat and the company cited COVID-19 related issues with supply chains and restaurant closures as reasons for falling short. It will be interesting if the reopening of industry in the United States due to a nationwide vaccination effort, will have investors feeling bullish following the earnings call.

The Bullish Case: Beyond Meat is readying some new products that should cause some excitement in the meat alternative market this year. Its new Beyond Burger 3.0 is the latest iteration of the popular beef patty alternative, and comes with six grams less fat, one gram less of saturated fat, 50 calories fewer, and yet the same amount of protein with a juicier texture. The price of the patties should be coming down as well as Beyond Meat stated they should be able to sell for about $2.50 per patty compared to the $4.00 of the original one when it first launched. Price has always been an issue for consumers with Beyond Meat, as the general nutrition levels of the artificial meat substitutes are not necessarily healthier than eating beef itself.

Beyond Meat is also set to launch a chicken burger alternative this summer, which may be its answer to the ongoing chicken sandwich war going on between Popeye’s, Chick Fil-A, and McDonalds (NYSE:MCD). With products selling in nearly 100 countries around the world and even a new direct to consumer eCommerce platform to eliminate the need to go to grocery stores, Beyond Meat is poised to be a food industry leader for years to come.

The Bearish Case:For the stock, the impending IPO of chief rival Impossible Foods looms over the heads of Beyond Meat shareholders. Impossible Foods is actually available at more high profile restaurant chains than Beyond Meat, despite being a younger company by two years. On top of this, key brands like Taco Bell and McDonalds are trying out their own meat alternative products. The fast food industry is notorious for putting cost over nutrition, so if a cheaper alternative is available, Beyond Meat may find themselves down a very lucrative customer.
Final Verdict on Beyond Meat: This earnings call should be an interesting one to tune into, as Beyond Meat’s guidance as global restaurant industries begin to open up could be a bullish trigger for investors. It trades at twenty times sales and has a very clean balance sheet for a relatively new company. Still, it’s lagged the benchmark S&P 500 index over the past 52-weeks and is trending downwards as it heads into earnings at below both of its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. Investors who want to start or add to their position may want to wait until after May 6th, as earnings calls often bring unknown volatility.
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