Whole Foods opened a new store in one of the most affluent neighborhoods in New York City. But is its growth strategy sustainable?
Good news for Brooklyn's discerning hipsters: Whole Foods opened its first store in the affluent, brownstone-laden Park Slope neighborhood.
The gourmet supermarket will be able to sell organic foods to locals like Maggie Gyllenhaal, Steve Buscemi, and everyone's favorite radical vegetarian, writer Jonathan Safran Foer. Conveniently located on the eastern banks of one of the nation's most contaminated waterways, the Gowanus Canal, Whole Foods' newest store will now stock shelves with vanilla flax milk in the same zip code as incoming New York mayor Bill de Blasio, Sen. Chuck Schumer, and former Rep. Anthony Weiner.
For Whole Foods co-CEO John Mackey, this may be the start of something much bigger. Speaking to CNBC's Jim Cramer on "Squawk on The Street" Tuesday, Mackey said:
"The market continues to grow and I think we're thinking internally that we could do maybe 1,200 stores in the United States right now just because the world is continuing to change."
Whole Food's stock performance has itself shown tremendous growth. And, it may still be a buy, says one strategist.
"The chart is in an outstanding technical position," notes Talking Numbers contributor Richard Ross, Global Technical Strategist at Auerbach Grayson. "Since the bottom in 2008, this stock is up over 1,700%."
Ross says the technicals are poitnign to a $65 price target. As of Tuesday, Whole Foods has been trading around $57.47.
CNBC contributor Andrew Busch, editor and publisher of The Busch Update, says the company's targeting of less-affluent markets down the road will be a good strategy for them.
"They're trying to reflect change consumer demand and taste," says Busch. However, recent same-store sales have disappointed Wall Street and that could hinder growth.
"If they're missing on those same-store sales, then that's a problem," says Busch
To see Ross' take on the charts and Busch's fundamental analysis of Whole Foods, watch the video above.
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