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History of BYND

Important events

Mar 022021

$1bn raised in bond offering

There's clearly investor appetite out there for plant-based patties, as Beyond Meat successfully upsizes its $750,000 convertible senior notes offering to $1 billion on the back of strong demand. The firm originally announced the debt deal on March 1, with plans to offer $750,000 in convertible senior notes. Some of the funds raised are likely to be used to fund privately negotiated capped call transactions, which are often used to artificially increase the conversion price of a convertible security. On March 2, the deal was upsized to $1 billion with initial purchasers offered the chance to buy a further $150 million within 13 days of issuance (March 5). The convertible notes are expected to mature on March 15, 2027, although noteholders can convert the notes from and after December 15, 2026, and Beyond Meat can settle the conversion either in cash or in a combination of cash and shares. The notes are also redeemable for cash at Beyond Meat’s option, any time after March 20, 2024, but only if the last reported sale price per share of Beyond Meat’s common stock exceeds 130% of the conversion price. The market didn't much like the idea of such high leverage, with the stock dropping 5% to close at $139.66 on March 2. However, Wall Street remained cautiously optimistic, and DA Davidson analyst Brian Holland raised his price target from $133 to $145 on the news.
Feb 252021

Fast food and FY results

Wow, big day. Beyond Meat announces Q4 results, which slightly miss expectations, but bounces back with news of two major new partnerships with McDonald's and Yum! February wasn't the greatest month for Beyond Meat, with shares sliding from a high of $221 on January 26 (where they had soared following news of the firm's latest deal with Pepsi) to a low of $138.95 during trading hours on February 23, a loss of over a third (37%). Q4 results were adequate, but didn't do a whole lot to boost confidence. Net revenues for 2020 climbed 3.5% to $101.9 million, but the firm booked a net loss of $25.1 million for the quarter (compared to $925,000 the previous year). Even excluding expenses related to Covid-19, adjusted net loss was $21.4 million, or $0.34 per share, missing Wall Street expectations of $0.13. Annual results were slightly more promising. Fully year net revenues were $406.8 million, an increase of 36.6% year-over-year. Annual net loss was $52.8 million, or $0.85 per common share – compared to $12.4 million in 2019. CEO Ethan Brown said he was proud of the results, given the pandemic pressures and weakened demand for foodservice, and noted that the focus for 2021 would be strategic investments for future growth: including the build out of production facilities in China and Europe, bolstering research and development capabilities, amplifying the firm's marketing voice, and upgrading IT infrastructure. On the same day, the firm announced two major new three-year partnerships with McDonald's (MCD) and Yum! (YUM) (whose brands include KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell.) The firm (which first partnered with McDonald's back in 2019 to develop a plant-based burger in Canada) will provide McDonald's with the patty in the McPlant, a new plant-based burger being tested in select McDonald’s markets globally, as well as exploring the co-development of other plant-based menu items as part of McDonald’s broader McPlant platform. With Yum! Beyond Meat will offer "signature plant-based menu items" across its brands. KFC was the first national U.S. quick-service restaurant to introduce plant-based chicken when it tested Beyond Fried Chicken at an Atlanta-area restaurant in 2019. The market wasn't too keen on Q4 results despite the positive partnership news, and shares lost 5.46% on results day, February 25, to close at $143.75.
Jan 262021

Big boost on the back of Pepsi Partnership

In an unexpected twist, Beyond Meat teams up with fizzy drink giant PepsiCo to develop a new range of plant-based snacks and drinks through a joint venture called the PLANeT Partnership. Shares jump almost 18% by close. Financial terms weren't disclosed, but the range is expected to launch later this year. It was a surprise move that no one was really expecting, but it offered a boost to Beyond Meat that the company maybe kinda needed, after missing out on the McDonalds contract last year. The publicity of joining up with such a big name brand didn't hurt either, and PepsiCo were pretty darn enthusiastic about the whole thing. “Plant-based proteins represent an exciting growth opportunity for us, a new frontier in our efforts to build a more sustainable food system and be a positive force for people and the planet, while meeting consumer demand for an expanded portfolio of more nutritious products,” said Ram Krishnan, PepsiCo Global Chief Commercial Officer. “Beyond Meat is a cutting-edge innovator in this rapidly growing category, and we look forward to combining their unparalleled expertise with our world-class capabilities in brand-building, consumer insights and distribution to deliver exciting new options.” The share price jumped from $158.73 at the close of January 25 to hit a high of $221 on January 26, before sliding slightly to close at $186.83.
Jan 052021


Investor Rich Duprey suggests that Beyond Meat could be a “millionaire-maker” stock, citing positive growth prospects and a surprisingly strong 2020 performance that saw the share price increase by over 65% on the year, despite coronavirus challenges. Duprey pointed out that despite recent setbacks and poor third quarter results, Beyond Meat could be in for a boost if yet another meat shortage hits the US, leading to a new round of panic buying. JBS, the world's largest meat supplier, recently sent home about 8% of its U.S. workforce over rising COVID-19 cases, which could spell bad times ahead for the meat industry – and good times for meat alternatives. Plans to expand further and bring production in-house to lower costs are all positives, while new markets China and Brazil offer strong potential. Overall however, the outlook is cautious. “Beyond Meat as an early mover in the space still has a lot of growth left in it, and it has arguably tapped into consumer demand for plant-based meat alternatives better than the competition. Yet there also seems to be a finite market for its product -- and only a certain subset of consumers are likely to be regular repeat customers,” noted Duprey. “Its stock is also quite pricey, it needs to show that it can have sustained growth outside of a global pandemic, and can rise above the competition.”
Dec 162020

A Christmas No 1?

Let’s end the year on a high note, thinks Beyond Meat. Let’s bring a little festive cheer to the world. Let's launch a Christmas single with three-time NBA champion and Grammy Award-nominated music producer Javale McGee and his vegan NBA buddies Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan. Calling themselves ‘The Beyond Boys’, the guys did a rousing version of ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’ but, you’ve guessed it, replacing all those useless gold rings and dancing girls with different delicious Beyond Meat recipes. Whatever floats your boat. Beyond Meat has been closely linked with the NBA since its inception, with professional athletes including Shaquille O’Neal, Derick Morgan, McGee, Paul, Jordan, and more all joining the firm as investors and participating in numerous brand campaigns. What it is to have friends in high places. Sadly, it didn’t make it onto the charts.
Introducing 12 Days of Christmas by The Beyond Boys
Dec 032020

Buying in bulk

Beyond Meatballs launch in Costco warehouses across the US, meaning customers can now buy their favorite plant-based balls in bulk. Customers can pay $9.99 for 24 meatballs (compared to a usual RRP of $6.99 for 12) at select Costco locations in New York, New Jersey and California. That some serious savings. The launch follows Beyond Meat’s first foray into Costco in 2019 via its Beyond Burger. The stock stayed steady at around $140.
Nov 132020

Poor results shake confidence

Shares initially rise ahead of Q3 results day on November 9, but the markets are shaken when revenues badly missed earnings expectations. The stock loses 4% in a day, dropping to $150.50 off the previous close, and slipping as low as $141 during trading. By the end of the week (November 13) it’s down 17% to $124.74. Sales grew just 2.7% annually to $94.4m as the full brunt of Covid finally hit – its slowest sales growth ever since going public, and it posted a net loss of $19.3m. Things weren’t helped by McDonald’s (MCD), which announced on November 9 that it was launching a meat-free McPlant line, using its own in-house formulation rather than working with a third-party supplier. Beyond Meat did launch a new Beyond Italian sausage pizza at Pizza Hut on November 11, with a Twitter video fronted by actor Kevin Hart. And on November 16, it unveiled two new versions of its Beyond Burger, expected to launch nationwide in early 2021, featuring an “enhanced meaty flavor” but with 35% less saturated fat. So you can be greedy AND healthy at the same time. Win win.
Doesn’t back down from a dare
Oct 302020

Downgrades drive dip

Beyond Meat loses all its gains for October after a dire fortnight that includes an analyst downgrade and fears over increased competition. The stock ends the month down 27% on its high of $194.94 to finish at $142.43. Analysts are starting to become unwelcome dinner guests. Wall Street firm Bernstein downgraded the stock on October 13 from “market perform” to “underperform”, warning that its recent rally had “stretched” its valuation. There was also new competition from Tyson Foods (TSN), which launched its first Unchicken sandwich in the US. And at the end of the month top rival Impossible Foods expanded its retail competition into Canada, putting it head-to-head with Beyond Meat, which had long relied on the country as a key market and testing ground.
Oct 092020

Edging higher on McDonald’s rumors

The stock hits a high for 2020, buoyed by a couple of weeks of good market news that places it 14.2% higher than the start of the month at $194.94. October started with a meaty rumor that McDonald’s (MCD) was partnering with Beyond Meat to launch a vegan burger in the UK. A mystery Instagram user called Vegan Food UK shared an image showing a ‘new vegan burger’ featuring a Beyond Meat patty. The post said: “This image is from a survey that someone had from McDonald's in the UK. Nothing is official until McDonald's says so 🙂. We aren’t sure of a launch date yet but we know they have had this in the pipeline for a while.” Intriguing. The strong month was topped off a day later after the US District Court for the Central District of California rejected a shareholder class action against Beyond Meat which claimed it had failed to disclose the extent of litigation against it from Don Lee Farms. The judge ruled there was no evidence of misleading information.
October started with a meaty rumor that McDonald’s was partnering with Beyond Meat to launch a vegan burger in the UK. Photo: Jurij Kenda / Unsplash
Sep 092020

New Chinese factories bump price

The Asian expansion continues as Beyond Meat confirms plans for two new production facilities in China, pushing its stock up 15.5% from an opening price of $123.81 on September 8 to $143.04 once the markets fully digested the news on September 10. Beyond Meat signed an agreement with the Jiaxing Economic & Technological Development Zone on September 8 to design and develop manufacturing facilities close to Shanghai, making it the first multinational company focused solely on plant-based meat production to bring its own major production facility into China. By September 29 Beyond Meat had also secured a major deal to expand its partnership with the world’s oldest retailer, Walmart (WMT), sending its stock up 9.4% on the previous day’s close to $165.66. The partnership saw the Beyond Burger offered in about 800 locations through more than 2,400 Walmart stores. This delighted investors, who were already salivating over the popular frozen Beyond Breakfast Sausage Patties, which had doubled distribution at the end of September with expansion into Kroger (KR), Super Target (TGT), Walmart (WMT), Publix and Harris Teeter stores Investors also got excited by the impending launch of Beyond Meatballs in October at Whole Foods Market, Stop & Shop (AD), Sprouts, Harris Teeter, Kroger and Albertsons (ACI). This took Beyond Meat’s supermarket presence to 26,000 outlets across the US. The meatballs had previously only been offered in Subway’s Beyond Meatball sub. There was added good news from SPINS data for the four weeks ending 9 August 2020 that showed Beyond Meat was the number one selling brand in refrigerated plant-based meat. Now Beyond Meat was booming in both supermarkets and restaurants.
Aug 252020

Lightlife Foods issues attack

Beyond Meat and arch rival Impossible Foods find a common enemy after Lightlife Foods publicly urges them both to stop using “processed ingredients” that are “unnecessary and confusing” for consumers. The division of Canadian meat-industry giant Maple Leaf Foods (MFI) issued an open letter to Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods that said: “Enough with the hyper-processed ingredients, GMOs, unnecessary additives and fillers, and fake blood.” Beyond Meats said in response: “If they were clear on our ingredients, they would see that our products are made with simple, plant-based ingredients. With no GMOs. No synthetically produced ingredients. Our products are designed to deliver the same taste and texture as animal-based meat but are better for you and the planet. We believe it’s the future of food.” The Beyond Meat share price spent the rest of the month stumbling around $125, with even the launch of its own direct-to-consumer e-commerce site doing little to satisfy the markets.
Aug 052020

Second quarter slump

Disappointing second quarter results reveal the impact of the pandemic on Beyond Meat and send the brand’s stock down 6.7% to $132.69 in opening trading. Markets were notably concerned at how much it had cost Beyond Meat to navigate the outbreak. Food service sales slumped by over 60% during the quarter, and the firm spent $5.9m on repackaging its products to be sold at grocery stores instead. Net sales rose 69% annually to $113.3m but Beyond Meat posted a total net loss of $10.2m, even wider than the $9.4m loss in the first quarter.
Jul 132020

Citi downgrade, Brazil bump

Citi (C) analyst Wendy Nicholson turns bearish on Beyond Meat and the stock falls from a monthly high of $144.98 on July 8, dropping 13.1% to $135.03 by July 13. "To simulate the texture and taste of traditional meat products, the products have a similar nutritional profile to the real thing, which means that though it may be better for the environment, it is not much healthier,” she said. She gave it an even lower price target of $123. Party pooper. The stock suffered three consecutive days of drastic declines. It gets a little jump on July 15, however, when it enters the meat-loving Brazilian market to bring its particular range of planty goodness to the masses.
The stock jumps a little when Beyond Meat enters the Brazilian market. Photo: Sergio Souza / Unsplash
Jun 292020

Impossible Foods edges ahead

Beyond Meat falls 7.5% on its previous close to $131.55 as investors struggle to stomach a series of surprising developments. The stock drops as low as $125 during trading on June 29. You spend all evening dining together and then your partner climbs out the restroom window. Starbucks (SBUX), which already offered Beyond Meat products on its Canadian and Chinese menus, instead decided to partner with rival Impossible Foods to launch a new meat-free Breakfast Sandwich as part of its new summer menu at its 15,000 U.S. stores. That must have come as a bit of a blow to Beyond Meat. Impossible Foods won another coup when Burger King (QSR) unveiled the Impossible Sausage, while McDonald’s (MCD) said it was ending its Canadian trial with Beyond Meat with no plans to continue. The stock dropped almost 10% during the day and continued to decline all week, hitting a lot of $125 on June 29. The next day brought better news though. Beyond Meat entered Chinese stores through Alibaba (BABA) supermarket chain Freshippo, its first foray into the Chinese retail sector. The prospect of hitting the world’s largest meat market pushes the stock up 5.7% to 141.64 on its previous close, climbing to a high of $151.53 during trading on July 1. The meat-free market in China is expected to be worth almost $12bn by 2023. It’s a toothsome prospect.
Jun 032020

China debut

The Beyond Burger makes its debut in mainland China, sending the stock up 4.6% to $134.23 as it partners with KFC (YUM), Pizza Hut (YUM) and Taco Bell (YUM). KFC offered the Beyond Burger at five of its locations in Beijing, Chengdu, Hangzhou, and Shanghai. Taco Bell launched its own classic taco made out of the Beyond Burger patty in Shanghai, while Pizza Hut unveiled its own burger menu. The firm also boosted its environmental credentials on June 11 by opening its first manufacturing facility in Europe, which reduced its carbon footprint and boasted a “lighter environmental impact.” Beyond Meat partnered with Dutch company Zandbergen on a co-manufacturing facility in Zoeterwoude, the Netherlands, to produce the Beyond Burger and Beyond Sausage. The stock hit $155.24 during trading and closed at $143.51 on June 11.
The Beyond Burger makes its debut in mainland China. Photo: Li Yang / Unsplash
May 082020

First quarter results reassure

Markets feast on Beyond Meat’s first quarter results, sending its stock up 34.8% since the end of April to $133.51. It’s a nice way for the company to mark its IPO birthday – up 434% on its listing price. A $10,000 investment at the IPO stage would now be worth a whopping $43,400. That could get you 2,900 packs of Beyond Burgers from Costco (COST), priced at $14.99. You’d need a big freezer though so probably best to buy that first. Beyond Meat published its first quarter results on May 5 and was still reaping the benefits days later. Net revenues were up 141% annually in the first quarter to $97.1m and gross profit was $37.7m. The market was pleased with the results despite the company suspending its 2020 outlook due to Covid.
Apr 172020

Meat shortages boost share price

Fears of a US meat shortage amid plant closures during the pandemic help boost the Beyond Meat stock to $76.91. You can’t slaughter a cow or pig over Zoom – well, you could, but your meeting (meating?) attendees probably wouldn’t like it much. Either way, large producers such as Smithfield Foods and Tyson (America’s biggest meat company) were forced to close their processing plants during lockdown, and John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods, warned that “the food supply chain is breaking.” Bad news for farmers, good news for vegans. Shoppers turned to meat alternatives in their droves, with sales of plant-based meats shooting up by a staggering 279.8% annually in the week up to March 14. That’s a lot of Beyond Burgers. There was a further boost for the stock on April 20 when the news hit that Starbucks (SBUX) would debut its Beyond Meat products in China as part of a new sustainability campaign. The stock rose 2.8% on April 20 from the previous close to $79.12 and hit $108.78 by April 24, back over the all-important $100 floor.
Apr 022020

New lows

Global coronavirus cases surpass the 1m mark. Uncertainty pushes Beyond Meat’s stock down to $57.95, close to its record low of $54.02 in March when the pandemic started. Overall, Beyond Meat’s stock stood 75% below its peak of $234.90 in July 2019.
Mar 182020

Lockdown hits

Covid-19 hits, and the pandemic puts much of the US and Europe into lockdown. Markets tumble across the world, and Beyond Meat sinks below its IPO closing price in May 2019 to just to $54.02. Even a juicy Beyond Burger can’t fill that hole. It’s simple math really. Beyond Meat relies heavily on selling its products to restaurants (its $133m Restaurant & Food Service division contributed 48% of sales in 2019). If you close restaurants, people don’t eat burgers. That’s almost half its sales wiped out. Uh oh. Overall, food service sales were set to fall by $183bn during 2020, their worst year in decades. There was a bright spot on the horizon though, as the Senate agreed a stimulus package in the US to boost the economy on March 26, and stock rose back up to $71.10. But it fell back to $66.12 a day later, and analysts weren’t optimistic – Goldman Sachs (GS) downgraded its rating from neutral to a sell, citing the impact of the global shutdown, and cut its target price from $129 to just $39. Bank of America (BAC) also downgraded Beyond Meat’s rating to underperform from neutral and cut its target price from $126 to just $50.
Feb 262020

Starbucks joins the party

Deals don’t come much bigger than the world’s largest coffee chain. Starbucks (SBUX) says it will sell a Beyond Meat breakfast sandwich at its 1,200 Canadian stores in March, giving the stock a daily 2.3% boost to $112.51. The excitement wore off a day later on February 27 when Beyond Meat’s Q4 results showed yet another a loss, despite revenues increasing 212% to $98.5m. The slump ate into investor expectations and the stock dived 15% by the close of February 28 to $89.65. “Turnover is vanity and profit is sanity,” so they say. Investors weren’t best pleased when Beyond Meat revealed a net loss of $0.5m for the fourth quarter of 2019 and a $12.4m loss for the year. The loss was attributed to higher operating expenses, but analysts remained unsure about the stock price. Oppenheimer analyst Rupesh Parikh said: “Pricey valuation, increasing competition, and the potential for new selling pressures following the expiration of the lock-up suggest more muted upside potential from here.”
Starbucks said it would start selling Beyond Meat breakfast sandwiches in Canadian stores. Photo: Starbucks / Twitter
Feb 022020

'Fake meat laxative' ad airs during Super Bowl LIV

Talk about a train-wreck. The meat lobby gets mad and fights back at plant-based popularity with a prime-time ad claiming that synthetic meat products contain ingredients found in laxatives. Gross. The move pushes Beyond Meat stock down 4% to $104 from the previous close, presumably because people don’t like the idea of pooping their own pants. Launched by the Advocacy group The Center for Consumer Freedom in the Washington, DC area during the Super Bowl, the advert warned that plant-based meats contained a chemical laxative called methylcellulose. It marked a week of bad news for Beyond Meat, after former partner Don Lee Farms won a decisive victory in its ongoing litigation against the firm when a judge ruled in favor of the “probable validity” of its claims for fraud, negligence, and breach of contract. In yet another blow, JP Morgan (JPM) downgraded the stock from overweight to neutral citing valuation concerns on January 27. “This is largely a valuation call,” Goldman said. “Our downgrade is unrelated to yesterday’s stories about a legal conflict with a former partner.” Shares fell by almost 4% by the close of January 28 to settle at $120.12. And it was only going to get worse. On January 29 It fell further to $114.88 on January 29 after Canadian chain Tim Hortons (QSR) pulled Beyond Meat products at most of its stores, giving no reasons.
Jan 142020

Back into triple figures

Beyond Meat’s stock hits a three-month high, cracking the $100 barrier to close at $117.05 on January 14 as rival Impossible Foods drops out of the race to supply plant-based burgers for McDonald’s (MCD). Investors licked their lips at the prospect that Beyond Meat could seal a partnership with McDonald’s in the US off the back of their successful trial together in Canada. There was also a boost from another of Beyond Meat’s partnerships, this time Dunkin Donuts, which unveiled a new national TV advertising campaign featuring none other than rapper Snoop Dogg to promote the chain's new Beyond Sausage Sandwich. He was such fan of the plant-based meat that he even had a sandwich named after him. The Beyond D-O-Double-G was put on the menus for one week only. It featured a Beyond Breakfast sausage patty with egg and cheese, served on a sliced glazed donut. Yep, a donut. Ain’t no one gonna drop that like it’s hot. Beyond Meat Chairman Seth Goldman on January 14 also revealed big plans to hit the Chinese mainland market Speaking at the at the U.S. National Retail Federation’s Big Show 2020, he confirmed that "We haven't announced anything, but we are expected to do something this year.” China was becoming a key market, with its domestic plant-based meat industry growing 14.2% annually in 2018 to $910m, according to a Good Food Institute survey. Notably, over 90% of Chinese participants did not identify as vegan, yet 86.7% of them had tried plant-based meat products – the holy grail, a market in which non-vegans purchase vegan foods. The Beyond Meat stock rose to hit $135 during trading on January 14 on the back of the China news.
Dec 192019

Canadian expansion

Beyond Meat builds on its success of its Beyond Burger in Canada by bringing Beyond Beef to the nation. Canada was already Beyond Meat’s second largest market outside the US, with its products distributed across 4,000 stores. The Beyond Burger was the number one selling plant-based burger on the fresh meat counter of at least one major grocery chain, and with the country’s Good Food Guide directly urging people to “choose protein foods that come from plants more often,” it represented an appealing market. It was also where McDonald's (MCD) was trialling Beyond Meat burgers, with analysis by UBS finding that the chain was selling up to 100 Plant. Lettuce. Tomato (PLT) burgers a day throughout December. The data suggested that if rolled out in the US, McDonald’s could see up to 250m sales a day in plant burgers, adding up to $325m in sales annually for Beyond Meat as the supplier. These expansions did little for the stock though, which surpassed $80 for the first time since the beginning of the month during trading on December 19, but settled at $77.36 to close.
Photo: Silvestri Matteo / Unsplash
Dec 052019

Costco deal

Fancy something tasty alongside your giant jar of pickles and that multipack of cookies? Beyond Burgers hit the shelves of US retail giant Costco (COST). The high-profile partnership helped the stock climb to $76.03 during trading before closing at $73.6. It opened the next day at $76.22. And the deal was supersized. For the first time shoppers could get a pack containing eight burger patties, rather than the traditional pack of two offered in other supermarkets. Because why not, if you are already pushing a massive trolley around Costco.
Nov 112019

Missing a whopper of a deal

More competition enters the kitchen as Unilever (UNA)’s small and unassuming 2019 acquisition The Vegetarian Butcher announces a surprise partnership with Burger King to launch a plant-based burger called the Rebel Whopper in the UK, beating out obvious choices such as Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. The stock starts the week down 4% to $76.79. Beyond Meat had already lost out to Impossible Foods in the US when it trialled the Impossible Whopper with Burger King (QSR). Investors weren’t happy at this dent in the prospects of international expansion, and it came on the heels of an already poor performance. The stock had been falling since late October after the 150-day lock-up period restricting pre-IPO investors from selling shares came to an end, prompting fears of an insider sell-off to cash in gains. Founder Ethan Brown was adamant that he would keep hold of all his shares but that didn’t stop investor concerns pushing the stock down. The share price lost 22.22% in a single day on October 29, the day the lock-in period ended. . Some analysts later regained their appetite for the stock though, noting that its recent declines now made it a buying opportunity. Talk about food envy. Wall Street firm Berenberg gave a price target of $100 and Bernstein also upgraded the stock to an “outperform” from a “market perform,” on the grounds that the trials with McDonald’s (MCD) in Canada would significantly boost sales.
Oct 232019

Stunt with BrewDog pushes down stock

Beyond Meat is battered in the first weeks of October as competition and some poor publicity sends its stock below $100 for the first time since listing in May. Beyond Meat got some flak at the start of the month for its partnership with Scottish brewer BrewDog, which released a hybrid half meat/half plant-based burger that was ridiculed by punters. “So a burger that vegans can’t eat and no meat eater is going to want to eat,” scoffed one critic on Twitter. “This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever,” said another customer. The idea, in fact, was to encourage meat eaters to reduce their consumption and “do their bit for the planet,” rather than create a new vegan offering, but it didn’t go down well. In the meantime, rival Nestle (NESN) was developing cool new plant-based cheese and bacon products to accompany its meat-free Awesome Burger, meaning more competition from a major player. Beyond Meat’s shares were also hit when Wall Street firm Bernstein slashed its price target by almost 25% to just $130 on October 18.
This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever
Sep 252019

A crowded (non)-meat market

Competition heats up a few degrees after rival brands boost their offerings, pushing the stock to a three-month low of $138. Analysts had warned for months that Beyond Meat could so easily be replicated that it was hard to justify its valuation. Investors winced at the prospect of competition on the supermarket shelves after food giant Nestle (NESN) launched its own plant-based Awesome Burger through subsidiary Sweet Earth Foods. Beyond Meat’s rival Impossible Foods also announced its burger would be available in select East Coast stores, just a week after its California grocery store launch saw the Impossible Burger outselling ground beef from cows to become the top-selling item for the Gelson’s supermarket chain. The success of these alternatives is obviously good news for the plant-based foods market, but presented a very real threat to Beyond Meat’s flagship product, the Beyond Burger. Beyond Meat’s stock fell as low as $133 during trading on September 25 as the markets considered whether it could maintain its dominance. Luckily, the price recovered a day later, driven by news that McDonald’s (MCD), would conduct a 12-week test in Canada of a new plant-based burger called the P.L.T. (which cleverly stands for Plant. Lettuce. Tomato. Get it?) using the Beyond Burger. McDonald’s (MCD) is the holy grail of distribution lines and Beyond Meat’s shares soared 11.5% in a day to $155. It also got Beyond Meat back in the game with its nemesis Impossible Foods, which already had a partnership with McDonald’s main rival, Burger King (QSR). Beyond Meat founder Ethan Brown was happy about it, anyway – he described working with McDonald’s as a “central and defining goal.”
There's news that McDonald’s would conduct a 12-week test in Canada of a new plant-based burger called the P.L.T. Photo: PRNewsfoto/McDonald's Corporation
Sep 062019

Sell rating sends stock tumbling

Beyond Meat’s share price tumbles 12.4% over three days after receiving a rare sell rating. Brian Holland, a senior research analyst at DA Davidson, warned that the company was being mis-valued as a tech company rather than a “meat” manufacturer, and suggested the stock had a more realistic price target of $130. His report, only the second-ever underweight rating for the firm, prompted three successive days of stock market dips. Holland also questioned the size of the market that Beyond Meat could realistically capture, and challenged an investor presentation from the firm on September 5, where it estimated it could achieve around 13% of the meat market at a value of around $35bn. “Our cautious approach to the total addressable market – specifically, fewer likely frequent purchasers of plant based meat as compared to milk given roughly half the number of non meat eaters versus lactose intolerant – informs long term forecasts we believe are lower than the consensus view,” said Holland. Ouch. Not everyone agrees though, and sentiment is still strong around the plant-based revolution. Barclays (BARC) analysts, for example, estimated that the alternative meat market could explode by 1,000% over the next decade to reach $140bn. That’s a hell of a lot of burgers.
Aug 262019

Finger lickin’ but not chicken

August isn’t great for Beyond Meat, with the stock falling by around 15% over the month. But in a positive end to a poor showing, KFC (YUM) and Beyond Meat hail a “Kentucky Fried Miracle” when the colonel trials a plant-based fried chicken alternative at a single location in Arizona. It was a sell-out success and pushed the stock up 3.2% from $155 on August 26 to $160 by the time the markets digested the outcome of the trial two days later. Hungry customers queued round the block and the dish, if that’s a fair way to describe a takeaway product, sold out within five hours.
Aug 052019

Share offering sinks stock

It’s a bad couple of weeks for Beyond Meat. Second quarter results are a mixed bag, with revenues up almost 300% but net losses also mounting; while the announcement on July 29 of a secondary stock offering pushes shares sharply downwards. The equity fundraising was completed on August 5, just months after it went public. Given that the IPO raised $240m in the best-perfoming US launch since 2000, eyebrows were unsurprisingly raised that it needed to dip its fingers in the pot again so soon. The firm raised $38.5m in a sale of 3.7m common shares, of which the majority were sold by existing shareholders, and 250,000 shares issued by Beyond Meat itself. Given that the price was up at $160 (compared to $25 at IPO) it still cashed in a pretty penny. However, the shares sold at a discount of 18.6% to the closing share price the previous day, and the stock dropped even further over the next few days to close at $161.24 on August 6, down from $177.60 at the start of the week. In better news, on August 7 Beyond Meat revealed a Beyond Meatball Marinara across 685 Subway chains across the US and Canada from September. Everyone knows the best Subway sandwich is a Meatball Marinara right? Right. We’re on board, but looks like investors weren’t entirely sure, as the stock barely moved.
(Stock) sharing proves unpopular, pushing Beyond Meat's price down. Photo: Beyond Meat
Jul 232019

Who doesn't like a nice sausage?

More good news arrived on July 23 when Dunkin’ Donuts announced it would add Beyond Meat’s sausage breakfast sandwich to the menu of its Manhattan outlets, helping the stock break the $200 barrier again. Beyond Meat’s breakfast sandwich was launched exclusively at Dunkin’ Donuts’ 163 stores in Manhattan as part of a trial before a national rollout. Dunkin’ Donuts (which was taken private in December 2020 when acquired by Inspire Brands) became the first US restaurant brand to add the company’s products to its menu, which excited investors. Twitter comments on both Beyond Meat and Dunkin’ Donuts were filled with happy, and full, customers.
Hey BeyondMeat wake up!
Jun 262019

Beyond Beef bumps price

Beyond Meat’s stock rallies to $162 as it whets the public’s appetite with a new product called Beyond Beef, designed to deliver the same juicy goodness as ground beef (or “mince”, if you’re in the UK). Beyond Beef was rolled out across the US market and was made to look, cook and taste like traditional ground beef, but harming no cows in the process. Guilt-free tacos galore. Hungry attendees at the Wall Street Journal’s Future of Everything conference were offered free samples of Beyond Beef on top of nachos with melted cheese and were described by Cnet as “worth the wait.” Mmm, tasty.
A new product launches called Beyond Beef. Photo: Beyond Beef / Beyond Meat
Jun 062019

Revenues heat up

The stock hits a new high of $168.10 in the days after Beyond Meat’s first quarter results. Beyond Meat reported a 215% annual increase in net revenues to $40.2m for the first quarter of 2019 and expects to break-even over the year. Investors also overlooked regulatory disclosures that showed former supplier Don Lee Farms had been given permission to pursue a lawsuit against Beyond Meat for breach of contract. Also in June, arch-nemesis Impossible Foods expanded its landmark partnership with Burger King (QSR), in a move that should in theory have knocked Beyond Meat. The privately-owned, California-based plant-based foods firm was founded in 2011 by Stanford biochemistry professor Patrick O. Brown, and launched its Impossible Burger in 2016 with investment from both Google Ventures and Bill Gates, among others. US burger chain Whitecastle started selling the burger in April 2018, and Burger King started testing it in April 2019. On June 10 it debuted the Impossible Whopper in restaurants across San Francisco, before rolling it out to 7,000 US locations in August. It should have knocked Beyond Meat, but it didn’t. In fact, as investors got more and more excited about the interest and opportunities in plant-based products, Beyond Meat got a nice little bounce.
May 162019

Maple syrup with that?

Beyond Meat’s stock closes at a new high of $92 per share after Canada’s largest coffee chain, Tim Hortons (QSR), adds three of its vegan breakfast sandwiches to its menu. The move picked up on the trend that more people were going vegan and that meat-free alternatives were growing. Tim Hortons president Alex Macedo said: “Canadians are looking to incorporate plant-based options into their diets and we’re thrilled to partner with Beyond Meat." Interest in 'veganism' increased seven-fold in the five years between 2014 and 2019, according to Google trends searches, while dollar sales of plant-based foods grew 11% between 2017 and 2019, according to the Good Food Institute. By contrast, total US retail food dollar sales grew just 4% over the same period. So the takeaway here? It’s good to give customers what they want, and that isn’t always meat.
Tim Hortons adds three Beyond Meat vegan breakfast sandwiches to its menu. Photo: Hermes Rivera / Unsplash
May 022019

A meat-free unicorn

Beyond Meat gallops to record growth as the first publicly-traded vegan brand on Nasdaq, bursting onto the scene as the best-performing US IPO since 2000 with a price of $25 a share. Meat-free lifestyles have become increasingly popular, and plant-based food maker Beyond Meat has been a big part of that journey. The firm has gained a lot of friends in high places since it was first founded by Ethan Brown in 2009. A former clean energy executive, Brown went vegan for the health benefits but missed fast food (who doesn’t love a dirty burger?) and so Beyond Meat, the trendy alternative for meat-free munchies, was born. Its high profile IPO was backed by rapper Snoop Dogg and basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal – who, although they aren’t actually vegans, have vocally highlighted the health benefits of eating less meat. Microsoft (MSFT) founder Bill Gates has also invested in the stock, praising its environmental benefits compared with the planetary pressures of meat production. The LA-based firm takes plant proteins and mixes them with minerals, healthy fats and flavourings to make food that tastes like, but definitely isn’t chicken, pork and beef, and with no added hormones, antibiotics, or cholesterol. Its first and main market was the US, but it also entered Canadian supermarkets during April 2019 with its Beyond Burger product. It’s not the first company to do it (anyone remember Linda McCartney sausages) and it won’t be the last, but it was the first vegan brand to go public on Nasdaq, and we think that’s pretty cool. Turns out, so did the market – the firm debuted with a delicious market value of $1.46bn after raising $240m. The stock also recorded the highest level of growth for a listed company since 2008, rising 163% from its initial public offering price of $25 a share to $65.75 by the end of trading. Beyond Meat got its first buy rating from Wall Street analyst Bernstein just days after listing on May 7. Bernstein suggested that the alternative meat industry could be worth a mouthwatering $40.5bn by 2028. This pushed the Beyond Meat stock up to $79.60 – more than tripling its IPO value in the first week of trading.
A meat-free star is born. Photo: Beyond Meat
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