Another Analyst Cools on SodaStream


SodaStream is getting too fizzy for another Wall Street pro.

The good news is that JPMorgan analyst John Faucher is boosting his price target on the shares from $56 to $70.

The bad news is that Faucher's earlier target was issued when shares of the company behind the popular carbonated beverage maker were trading much lower than they are right now. With the stock now in the mid-$60s, that $70 target isn't very bullish. In fact, Faucher's downgrading the stock -- from overweight to neutral -- on fears that SodaStream may be due for a breather.

He's not alone.

Deutsche Bank downgraded the shares after SodaStream rallied following this month's Analyst Day presentation.

Fearing that SodaStream has overrun its fundamentals is a natural reaction. The stock has more than doubled over the past year. Growth has been stellar, but not that stellar.

However, even after the rally, SodaStream closed yesterday just shy of 20 times next year's earnings. Coca-Cola -- growing at a sliver of SodaStream's pace -- is fetching 18 times next year's projected profitability.

It may not be fair to compare SodaStream to Coca-Cola given the beverage giant's killer brand and wide assortment of beverage products, but that girth also limits its upside. We still don't know how big SodaStream will get -- and that's where the premium comes in.

It's not jingoistic to approach SodaStream's stateside growth as important. The Israeli-based company may have a presence in nearly four dozen different countries, but the U.S. is the biggest consumer of carbonated beverages. Awareness is growing domestically, but market penetration stands at a mere 1.1%. Compare that to Sweden, where more than a quarter of the homes have a SodaStream system.

SodaStream's stock isn't likely to double 12 months from now. The explosive sales growth has slowed, though you won't find too many people knocking its latest quarter's 34% top-line spurt. In the end, SodaStream has enough ammo to beat the market, and that's why analysts coming down with cold feet may be leaving the budding pop star too soon.

Go for a refill
SodaStream's carbonation technology sounds simple, but this razor-and-blade company offers an intriguing opportunity for growth that could very well disrupt the soda industry. The Motley Fool's premium report on SodaStream explains the opportunities as well as the risks in the company. The report comes with a year's worth of updates, so just click here to get started.

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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz owns shares of SodaStream. The Motley Fool recommends Coca-Cola. It recommends and owns shares of SodaStream. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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