Beyond Meat stock soars again, demand for meatless burger grows

Shares of Beyond Meat soared on Thursday after the company’s first quarterly report showed it had topped analysts’ expectations. The report was the company’s first since its IPO, with growth forecasts expecting 2019 revenue to double.

CEO Ethan Brown noted during a conference call with analysts that the firm was conservative about the estimates and that it viewed the surge in the value of its stock “as a floor.”

Beyond Meat shares jumped more than 23% as demand for the company’s plant-based meat products increased beyond existing customers into new territory.

The company’s net loss for the first quarter was $6.6 million, roughly 95 cents per share. A year earlier, Beyond Meat recorded a first-quarter net loss of $5.7 million.

But net sales went up, rising by 215% to $40.2 million. The sales topped analysts’ expectations of $38.9 million, with executives attributing the growth in revenue to a surge in Beyond Burger sales.

There has also been a huge demand for substitutes from a growing market of both existing and new customers.

Sales from the grocery store brought in $19.6 million in the quarter, while sales to restaurants accounted for $20.6 million of the company’s revenue.

A total of $3.1 million was spent on discounts in the last quarter, almost 50% up from the $1.6 million in discounts over the same quarter last year.

Wall Street anticipated Beyond’s 2019 revenue to be about $205 million, but the company has announced it expects its full-year revenue to be more than $210 million.

Beyond Meat stocks surged on its trading debut and rose more than 160%. Subsequent gains mean that the stock is now nearly 300% up on its IPO price. With these gains, Beyond’s market value has hit $5.8 billion.

Investors are upbeat about the company’s prospects as massive public demand for meat alternatives grows in a category Beyond Meat wants to dominate.

However, more competition is entering the market as Swiss giant Nestle looks to venture into the meat-less burger space via its recently acquired Sweet Earth brand. Another competitor will be Tyson Foods, an early investor in Beyond Meat.