Monday, December 1, 2008

HSBC puts 'overweight' on Colgate Palmolive

(My Original Blog Post: -*
Colgate Palmolive
RATING: Overweight
CMP: RS 385

HSBC has initiated an ‘overweight’ rating on Colgate-Palmolive with a potential return of 25.8%. The oral care category in India has a penetration rate of 78% and a per-capita usage of toothpaste, which is half that of China.

Increased usage and penetration, along with a shift from toothpowder to toothpaste, are likely to drive volume growth of 8-9 % for the next several years.

Colgate is the undisputed market leader in all the sub-categories of oral care and has a diversified product portfolio covering all price points and an excellent distribution network. Colgate is poised for steady growth.

It has increased gross margins by changing its raw material mix, reducing complexity, and increasing in-sourcing with minimal price increases, protecting volume growth. HSBC values Colgate on a price-earnings (P/E) and a direct cash flow (DCF) basis.

The P/E valuation, at 18x FY10E earnings per share (EPS), comes to Rs 424. The target price of Rs 470 is an average of the two. Colgate is currently trading at a 12-month forward P/E of 17.1x, the lowest forward P/E in three-and-a-half years.


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