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Freshpet Stock Falls Following Earnings Report

By Jon Quast - Feb 23, 2021 at 3:47PM

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Growth slowed slightly in the fourth quarter, but management has boosted the company's goals for 2025.

What happened 

Shares of Freshpet (FRPT 0.88%) were falling on Tuesday after the high-end pet food purveyor reported its full-year 2020 results. The company also announced plans for a $300 million secondary stock offering, which likely added to the downward pressure on the share price. As of 3:33 p.m. EST, Freshpet stock was down 4.7%.

So what

Freshpet's revenue growth accelerated for the fourth consecutive year in 2020. Net sales in 2020 were up almost 30%, which is about what Wall Street expected. However, net sales in the fourth quarter were only up 28.5% year over year, reflecting a slight slowing of growth. It appears investors weren't too keen to see even that much of a slowdown.

A visibly frustrated man places his hands on his face with a down stock chart in the background.

Image source: Getty Images.

Word of the new stock offering didn't help matters. The company intends to raise $300 million by selling common stock. The upside here for shareholders is that the sale will give the company the cash it needs to further grow its business.

Now what

Wall Street often gets hung up on little things. On one hand, this growth stock has more than doubled from its March lows, so a little pullback is probably healthy. However, when one looks at the bigger picture, this latest quarterly report included some very encouraging information about Freshpet's long-term opportunity.

Just last year, management set the ambitious goal of having the company's products in 8 million homes by the end of 2025. With 2020 behind it, management now believes that goal was too conservative -- its new target is 11 million homes. That's an incredible increase to its already bullish outlook, and something shareholders should celebrate even as the stock falls Tuesday.

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Stocks Mentioned

Freshpet, Inc. Stock Quote
Freshpet, Inc.
$54.80 (0.88%) $0.48

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