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Bull of the Day: Green Mountain Coffee (GMCR)

Tracey Ryniec

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. (GMCR) is back to being the darling of Wall Street after the NASDAQ announced it would be joining the NASDAQ-100 on Aug 22. Shares of this Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) hit new 52-week highs on the news.

This comes on the heels of its fifth earnings beat in a row where the company also raised full year fiscal 2013 guidance.

Green Mountain Coffee is a specialty coffee maker which also sells the Keurig Single Cup brewing system. The K-cups are all the rage in the home coffee and specialty drink categories.

Another Big Beat in the Third Quarter

On Aug 7, Green Mountain Coffee reported its fiscal third quarter results which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate for the fifth quarter in a row.

Revenue rose 11%, with revenue in the United States jumping 14% year over year. Canada was soft, however, which some attributed to competition from other coffee options.

Gross margin grew 720 basis points to 42.1% from 34.9% in the year before.

While the company lowered full year sales guidance to the range of 13%-14% from its prior guidance of 14%-17%, it raised full year EPS guidance to $3.19-$3.24 from its previous guidance of $3.05-$3.15.

Investors chose to focus on the EPS guidance versus the lowering of the sales forecast.

Analysts are Bullish on F2013 and F2014

Green Mountain didn't provide guidance for fiscal 2014 even though there's only one more quarter in the fiscal year.

But the company is hosting its first ever Green Mountain Investor Day on Sep 10 in Boston. It's possible that more information about Fiscal 2014 will be forthcoming at that event.

Even as they wait to hear about fiscal 2014, the analysts are still very bullish about the remainder of fiscal 2013 and next year.

8 out of 9 estimates have been raised for fiscal 2013 since the earnings report. The 2013 Zacks Consensus Estimate has jumped to $3.25 from $3.16 in that time which is a penny above the company's current guidance.

That would be 35.3% earnings growth.

6 out of 9 estimates have also jumped for fiscal 2014 even though there wasn't guidance yet. The Zacks Consensus jumped to $3.73 from $3.56. This is another 14.8% earnings growth.

Buying the Growth Story

Shares of Green Mountain Coffee hit a new 52-week high ahead of its Aug 22 inclusion into the NASDAQ-100.

It now trades at 24.5x forward estimates which is more expensive than the S&P 500 which averages 15.5x. But this is under its 10-year median of 26.5x.

But for investors, valuations are on the back burner. It's all about the growth and Green Mountain has plenty of that.

Coffee and specialty drinks are a hot market segment. Green Mountain Coffee is one way to get in on that story.

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Tracey Ryniec is the Value Stock Strategist for Zacks.com. She is also the Editor of the Turnaround Trader and Value Investor services. You can follow her on twitter at @TraceyRyniec.

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