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Middleby Buys Packaging Progressions, Fortifies Portfolio

Zacks Equity Research

The Middleby Corporation MIDD has announced that it acquired Souderton, PA-based Packaging Progressions, Inc. The financial terms of the transactions have been kept under wraps.

It is worth noting here that Middleby’s shares gained 3.02% yesterday, ending the trading session at $142.16.

Packaging Progressions specializes in manufacturing and providing automated packaging solutions. It primarily serves customers in the bakery and protein market segments. This company generates total annual revenues of $30 million.

The Packaging Progressions buyout is believed to be a strategic fit for Middleby. It will complement Middleby's product offering related to processing technologies, with the addition of two leading products — ProLeaver and ProStax.

Middleby’s Inorganic Initiatives & Zacks Rank

We believe that the above-mentioned transaction is consistent with Middleby’s policy of acquiring businesses for attracting more customers, and gaining access to various regions and product lines.

In June 2019, the company acquired Santa Ana, CA-based Ss Brewtech. The acquired assets will create solid growth opportunities for Middleby, backed by the increasing fondness for on-site brewing mainly in restaurants and bars. Ss Brewtech will work independently as Middleby’s business unit.

Middleby acquired Cooking Solutions Group of Standex International Corporation SXI and Newton, MA-based Powerhouse Dynamics, Inc. in April 2019.

Notably, buyouts drove Middleby’s sales by 16.1% in 2018 and by 17.2% in the first quarter of 2019. These acquired assets are likely to boost the company’s top-line performance in the quarters ahead.

Middleby, with a market capitalization of nearly $7.7 billion, currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). We believe that headwinds — including high costs and operating expenses, unfavorable movements in foreign currencies, and increased debts — remain concerning for the company.

In the past 60 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for Middleby’s earnings has remained unchanged at $6.92 for 2019 and $7.77 for 2020. Estimates suggest growth of 13.3% for 2019 and 12% for 2020 from the year-ago reported figure.

The Middleby Corporation Price and Consensus


The Middleby Corporation Price and Consensus
The Middleby Corporation Price and Consensus

The Middleby Corporation price-consensus-chart | The Middleby Corporation Quote

Shares of Middleby have gained 5.3% compared with the industry’s 0.5% growth in the past three months.

Stocks to Consider

Two better-ranked stocks in the same industry are Chart Industries, Inc. GTLS and DXP Enterprises, Inc. DXPE. Both the stocks currently carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

In the past 60 days, earnings estimates for Chart Industries and DXP Enterprises have improved for the current year. Further, average earnings surprise for the last four quarters was positive 16.56% for Chart Industries and 48.47% for DXP Enterprises.

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