FTSE 100 (INDEXFTSE: UKX) stocks are unlikely to make huge gains quickly but can be fantastic growth investments over time. I’ve held these two stocks for years and won’t be selling any time soon.
Imperial Brands (LSE: IMB) is sowing the seeds for a terrific period of growth. The company is beginning to focus on exciting growth markets such as Australia, Japan, Saudi Arabia and Russia. This will hopefully boost stagnant tobacco volume and also company profits for the next few years.
I believe the most exciting area for Imperial Brands is the USA. Last year Imperial bought several tobacco brands from Reynolds American for a cool $7.1 bn. These newly acquired brands are Winston, Maverick, Kool, Salem and US and international e-cigarette blu. This acquisition boosted market share in the US from 4% to just under 10% and in May CEO Alison Cooper said that these brands were making “excellent progress” in the first half of 2016.
This should be extremely encouraging for shareholders and should ensure Imperial remains one of the go-to income stocks in London. The company is also constantly rumoured to be a takeover target for larger peers in the tobacco sector. This has yet to materialise but has pushed the shares up to just off all-time highs.
Royal Dutch Shell (LSE: RDSB) is another classic income play in the London market. However, I believe that like Imperial Brands it has very promising growth qualities too. After the huge acquisition of BG Group last year, management has recognised Shell has a bloated balance sheet and portfolio. This has led CEO Ben van Beurden to announce large-scale asset divestments, which will hopefully raise $35bn by 2020. Along with divestments, the company is aiming to drive down costs and only invest in top quality assets.
This will hopefully transform Shell into a more streamlined and focused company that can extract more value from its portfolio of higher quality assets. Shell already yields 6.5% making it one of the top income plays in London. The dividend is highly likely to be increased by 2020 if the company hits divestment and free cash flow targets. City brokers also agree that Royal Dutch Shell shares have considerable upside. HSBC analysts have a 2,250p target for the stock and Barclays has an even higher target.
If the management team manages to turn Shell into a lean and highly profitable company then I expect shares to be closer to the £30 mark by 2020. The dividend is solid and the shares offer great growth potential through upside from new BG assets and large-scale divestment plan.
These two companies are both good income plays but also have great growth potential. This is rare in FTSE 100 companies and it’s why I believe both companies will outperform the wider market over the next few years.
Jack Dingwall has owns shares in Royal Dutch Shell and Imperial Brands. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Royal Dutch Shell B. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.