The plummeting pound makes these stocks even more attractive

While the significantly devalued pound may not be a positive for those Britons who enjoy Marmite in the morning, there are a few management teams out there cheering as sterling hits lows not seen in decades.

One of the companies that could benefit the most is luxury retailer Burberry (LSE: BRBY). Aside from the obvious positives come earnings season when foreign currencies are translated into relatively weaker pounds, Burberry also stands to benefit from increased tourism to the UK. This is important as around half of Burberry’s European sales are to foreign tourists.

Of course, you shouldn’t buy a company simply because of currency fluctuations, so what does Burberry’s underlying business look like moving forward?

There’s no getting around the fact that the short-term outlook is muddled at best. Luxury consumption in China is falling quickly due to anti-corruption schemes and slowing economic growth, all of which is sending comparable sales in key Asian markets down in double-digits and keeping overall global revenue flat.

However, for long-term investors I see significant positives in owning Burberry shares. First off, the company’s brand name is among the best known in the world. This protects Burberry from many of the cyclical problems lower end retailers face. We’re told trench coats are cool this year but Burberry knows how to sell them even when they’re not the hottest fashion item. That means higher margins and relatively stable sales year in and year out. 

Second, the company is in a strong financial position and had £660m in net cash at the end of March. Most importantly, Burberry is adapting quickly to major changes in the fashion industry. It’s moving faster than luxury peers in embracing digital sales and engagement with consumers and is a pioneer in slashing the amount of time it takes new designs to move from the catwalk to retail stores, a critical change given today’s consumers demand for instant gratification.

A forward-looking management team, incredible pricing power, global reach and long-term potential in increasingly wealthy Asia makes Burberry even more attractive to me given the slumping pound.

Now for something completely different

With only 2% of revenue coming from the UK, agribusiness giant Tate & Lyle (LSE: TATE) is essentially British in name only at this point. That’s great news for the company when earnings season rolls around, especially when combined with an underlying business that’s notching up very impressive results.

The key to Tate & Lyle’s success has been shifting focus from lower-margin bulk ingredients sales to higher-margin speciality products such as Splenda. Relying more on these value-added goods sent adjusted constant currency profits up 1% year-on-year in 2015.

This may not seem like a large increase, but it was very good news considering the company is in the middle of a long-term strategic turnaround that involves costly restructuring and requires large investments in new business lines that are still in the development phase.

Further positives were an improvement in the company’s balance sheet as net debt fell from £555m to £434m last year, representing a very healthy 1.2 times EBITDA. Rising margins, falling debt and a very good 3.5% yielding dividend make Tate & Lyle an attractive option to me even without the positive effects of a weaker pound.

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Ian Pierce has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Burberry. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.