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Can Manhattan Associates Maintain Its Momentum?

By Dan Caplinger – Jul 15, 2016 at 11:26AM

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The supply-chain specialist has seen its stock climb in recent months, but will its earnings report confirm investors' hopes?

Image source: Manhattan Associates.

Companies that have to deal with supply-chain management look to specialist Manhattan Associates (MANH -0.46%) for tools they can use to keep everything running efficiently. The general strength in the U.S. economy has been a boon to Manhattan Associates, and coming into its second-quarter financial report on Tuesday, investors expect the company's consistent growth in sales and earnings to continue. Ongoing successes in building new partnerships look promising, but shareholders will still want clearer signs that Manhattan Associates is taking advantage of all of its opportunities. Let's take a closer look at what investors are expecting to see at Manhattan Associates this quarter.

Stats on Manhattan Associates

Expected EPS Growth


Expected Revenue Growth


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Expected 5-Year Annualized Growth Rate


Data source: Yahoo! Finance.

Can Manhattan Associates earnings keep investors happy?

Investors have become more enthusiastic about Manhattan Associates earnings in recent months, boosting their second-quarter projections by $0.01 per share and increasing their full-year 2016 and 2017 estimates by $0.05 per share. The stock has also climbed, rising 11% since mid-April.

A big part of Manhattan Associates' recent success came after the company released its first-quarter financial report in April. The company set a new record for revenue, which rose 12%, and Manhattan Associates boosted its bottom line by 18% to top the expectations of investors following the stock. The company's services segment was the strongest, but solid gains in software licensing revenue also helped push the top line upward. An increase in Manhattan Associates' guidance for the full 2016 year showed incremental progress in its efforts to grow steadily.

Since then, Manhattan Associates has largely focused on improving its platforms to appeal more to customers. In mid-May, the company announced several enhancements to some of its key offerings, including the Store Inventory and Fulfillment product and the Omni-Channel Customer Service Solution. The first product gives store workers real-time views of inventory levels and allows order processing and fulfillment to take place across various channels from a single mobile device. Manhattan believes that its new capability will let retailers fulfill high-volume orders more quickly, and workers will have a better idea of what goods they have available to address high-priority needs of their customers. At the same time, Manhattan also pointed to enhancements for call-center workers to handle customers from companies across the globe, handling orders in different foreign currencies and dealing with different local brand names.

Partnerships with major companies have also helped Manhattan Associates move forward. In June, the company announced the release of its Accelerator Framework tool for reducing the amount of time needed to design and implement its Warehouse Management System and Transportation Management System with enterprise resource planning tools. Manhattan worked with Deloitte Consulting to come out with the product, and the collaboration opens opportunities for cross-selling and other growth potential. As a Deloitte representative noted, "We have developed solutions that deliver value to our clients -- whether that's improving service levels or streamlining business processes -- and we're always focused on driving measurable benefits." As long as Manhattan can play a role in working with outside partners like Deloitte, it could lead to more business down the road.

Should shareholders worry about Manhattan Associates?

One concern that some investors have about Manhattan Associates has to do with recent geopolitical and macroeconomic impacts. The Brexit vote in the U.K. could have an impact on the relationship between Britain and the European Union, and stark differences in economic conditions in different parts of the world create supply chain challenges that would be difficult for Manhattan to address. At the same time, if the episode creates more difficulty for companies to handle their own supply chains, they might turn to Manhattan for help, creating a new chance to grow the business.

In the Manhattan Associates earnings report, investors mostly want assurance that growth rates will stay in line with their impressive past results. Having bounced back from some difficulty a couple of quarters ago, Manhattan Associates has investors wanting the company to preserve the status quo or even see accelerating growth going forward. If they do, they'll likely get rewarded with further share-price gains.

Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Manhattan Associates. 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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Manhattan Associates
$126.46 (-0.46%) $0.58

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