Given the prevailing market uncertainty and the Fool’s philosophy of buying quality companies for the long term, it’s always a good idea to keep a watchlist of shares that could prove compelling buys if indexes were to resume their recent downward trajectory. Here’s just two top quality growth stocks I’d consider snapping up if prices continue to dip.
Serving up profits
Meat supplier Cranswick (LSE: CWK) may not be as alluring as your typical tech stock but it’s been a top investor performer for many years now, climbing over 200% in price since 2013 (excluding dividends). There are plenty of reasons to think that this kind of performance can continue.
Firstly, trading continues to be excellent. In its most recent update for the three months to the end of 2017, the £1.6bn-cap revealed that both total and like-for-like revenues were ahead of those achieved in the same period a year ago. Thanks to a bumper Christmas, performance over Q3 also came in “slightly ahead” of management expectations.
Secondly, the company is hiking capital expenditure in an effort to increase market share. In addition to consolidating production from its two existing facilities, Cranswick’s new Continental Product facility will increase capacity by roughly 70% once construction has finished during the first half of the 2018/19 financial year (beginning 1st April). Elsewhere, a new primary poultry facility — due for completion in 2019 — will double existing capacity.
Assuming all goes to plan, current investment should help drive profits higher over the coming years, particularly overseas. With total export sales over Q3 “well ahead” of those over the same quarter in 2016, markets such as China and its burgeoning middle class could prove hugely valuable to the company in the long term.
Trading at 21 times forecast earnings, stock in Cranswick isn’t cheap to acquire. Nevertheless, the valuation still looks reasonable given the potential growth on offer, the fairly defensive characteristics of the industry in which it operates, and the consistently solid returns on capital employed achieved by management in recent years.
On the money
Last week’s AGM statement was full of encouraging news for those already investing. In the four months to the end of January, UK revenue grew by 23% once all marketing costs had been subtracted. According to the company, strong bookings growth for summer holidays (particularly to destinations in the Eastern Mediterranean) “more than” offset any weakness seen over late winter departures as a result of the collapse of Monarch Airlines.
In other news, the business’s ‘ebeach’ brand has been performing well in Sweden and Norway, motivating its launch in Denmark later this year. CEO Simon Cooper’s hint that the company would “continue to evaluate opportunities to enhance its market share position” also suggests that the recent acquisition of the Sunshine.co.uk brand might not be its last.
Having climbed over 150% in value since listing on the market in September 2015, stock in On the Beach now trades on a forecast price to earnings (P/E) ratio of 24 for the current financial year. That’s not especially cheap, but a PEG ratio of 1 suggests that further share price increases aren’t out of the question.
Another top growth stock
If you're looking for the best growth opportunities on the market right now, don't leave before downloading a special report from the Fool's Head of UK Investing.
Mark Rogers thinks this top British brand is worth serious consideration thanks to its plans to rapidly grow its presence in international markets.
To find out more, just click here. Mark's report is completely FREE to read and comes with absolutely no obligation.
Paul Summers has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.