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Analyst: Dr. Pepper And Cott Ready To Bubble Higher, Coke And Pepsi Potential Fizzles

Analyst: Dr. Pepper And Cott Ready To Bubble Higher, Coke And Pepsi Potential Fizzles
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BMO Capital Markets is favoring growth stories over blue-chip value as BMO analyst Amit Sharma re-rated several companies in the beverage sector.

DPS: Upgraded to Outperform, raised price target to $105

Sharma believes Dr. Pepper Snapple Group Inc. (NYSE: DPS) is undervalued and has an attractive growth outlook relative to its competition.

“We are upgrading DPS to Outperform as exaggerated, likely misplaced, concerns about the trajectory and sustainability of Bai Brands’ sales growth has created an attractive entry point, in our view,” Sharma said.

COT: Upgraded to Outperform, raised price target to $17

Improved visibility in the HOD water and coffee business provides Sharma with greater confidence that Cott Corp (NYSE: COT) could “reduce exposure to the structurally challenged private label CSD/juice categories in North America.” He also highlighted that Cott’s double-digit free cash flow generation is also attractive to their valuation.

KO/PEP: Downgraded KO and PEP to Market Perform 

With very high valuation multiples, and with both PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE: PEP) and The Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) trading near historical highs, Sharma doesn't see much more upside.

Regarding Coca-Cola, he said, "The portfolio transformation outlined by the new CEO James Quincey, which aims to reduce KO’s reliance on CSDs and reorient the portfolio to better align with evolving consumer preferences, is highly desirable; however, it’s unlikely to drive material upside to current sales/EPS estimates for 2017/18, which signal largely flat EPS eight straight years."

Additionally, Sharma said the current M&A scenarios are very attractive for Coca-Cola or Pepsi.

MNST: Reiterated Outperform rating, raised price target to $58

Citing international sales and an increase in margins, Sharma envisions Monster Beverage Rg (NASDAQ: MNST) to continue to excel across earnings metrics.

PRMW: Reiterated Market Perform rating

Despite having a large market share in the bottled-water industry, there isn't much room for a valuation expansion for Primo Water Corporation (NASDAQ: PRMW).

Overall, Sharma is taking a very contrarian approach as he advises investors to stay away from trading the two largest names in the beverage industry.

Latest Ratings for DPS

Jun 2018Stifel NicolausDowngradesBuyHold
Mar 2018RBC CapitalUpgradesSector PerformOutperform
Mar 2018Stifel NicolausMaintainsBuyBuy

View More Analyst Ratings for DPS
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Amit SharmaAnalyst Color Upgrades Downgrades Price Target Reiteration Analyst Ratings Trading Ideas Best of Benzinga


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