Based on the aggregated intelligence of 165,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, Latin fertilizer giant Chemical & Mining Co. of Chile (NYSE: SQM) has earned a coveted five-star ranking.

With that in mind, let's take a closer look at SQM's business and see what CAPS investors are saying about the stock right now.

SQM facts

Headquarters (Founded)

Santiago, Chile (1968)

Market Cap

$11.3 billion


Fertilizers and agricultural chemicals

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$1.5 billion


CEO Patricio Contesse (since 1990)

CFO Ricardo Ramos (since 1994)

Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years)



$397 million / $1.1 billion

Dividend Yield



Agrium (NYSE: AGU)

Mosaic (NYSE: MOS)

Sources: Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's, and Motley Fool CAPS.

On CAPS, 98% of the 1,186 members who have rated SQM believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include danincarolina and All-Star DarthMaul09, who is ranked in the top in the top 1% of our community.

Early this year, danincarolina succinctly summed up SQM for us Fools: "This is a play on lithium and Chile's developing economy is a plus."

As the world's largest lithium producer, SQM has been one of our community's favorite ways to play the growing demand of electric batteries. Of course, with behemoth BHP Billiton's (NYSE: BHP) hostile attempts to acquire PotashCorp (NYSE: POT), SQM is starting to draw attention for its much bigger fertilizer side. Along with fellow fertilizer stocks Agrium and Mosaic, SQM has surged recently as BHP's bid naturally boosted opinions about the sector's value, as a whole.

And if the Potash deal ends up falling through, CAPS All-Star DarthMaul09 believes SQM, in particular, is a smart takeover alternative:

If [BHP] can't acquire [Potash] for the price that it wants, would they consider making a bid on SQM? Chile is a stable country, similar to Canada and besides fertilizer, SQM is also a major Lithium producer. If BHP offered to buy SQM for $60/share with some token BHP stock in the deal that might be an easier sale than a hostile take over of [Potash], which may be worth north of $250/share if BHP is willing to pay $130/share.

What do you think about SQM, or any other stock for that matter? If you want to retire rich, you need to put together the best portfolio you can. Owning exceptional stocks is a surefire way to secure your financial future, and on Motley Fool CAPS, thousands of investors are working every day to find them. CAPS is 100% free, so get started!

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.