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Take a pass on Freshii stock right now, Laurentian says


FreshiiHealth food and fast-casual restaurant franchise Freshii Inc. (Freshii Inc. Stock Quote, Chart, News: TSX:FRII) released its fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2017, financial results on Thursday, with revenue arriving in-line with expectations, says Elizabeth Johnston, analyst with Laurentian Bank Securities, who gives a “Hold” rating to the stock.

Key numbers for Freshii’s Q4/17 had already been released in late January, with same store sales for the Toronto-based company up by 6.4 per cent in Q4 and 5.5 per cent for fiscal 2017. Freshii opened 25 net new stores in Q4, along with six closures and nine e-store openings (the company has 370 locations in the Americas and Europe).

Those numbers are in line with Johnston’s forecast, as were revenue of $5 million and adjusted EBITDA of $2.1 million for Q4 and adjusted EBITDA for fiscal 2017 of $7.2 million.

FRII began trading on the TSX in February of 2017, with the stock having lost half of its value over the past year. But management says things are looking up.

“We have learned a lot about operating in the public markets and have made progress towards driving our mission and building the start of an omni-channel brand,” says Matthew Corrin, Freshii Chairman and CEO in a press release today. “Our team’s focus on improving as each quarter has progressed is noticeable, and we are determined to carry that positive momentum into 2018.”

Johnston judges the investment impact of the Q4. “We rate Freshii a ‘Hold’ with a $7.00 target price, which is based on 14x our 2018 EBITDA estimate,” says the analyst.

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About The Author /

Jayson is a writer, researcher and educator with a PhD in political philosophy from the University of Ottawa. His interests range from bioethics and innovations in the health sciences to governance, social justice and the history of ideas.
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