The Sky’s the Limit With This GPS Leader

09/06/2007 12:00 am EST

Focus: STOCKS

Dan Sullivan

Editor, The Chartist

Dan Sullivan, editor of the Chartist, says the stock of navigation leader Garmin International should continue to soar. 

Garmin International (NASDAQ: GRMN) designs, manufactures, and markets a diverse suite of navigational and communications equipment for the aviation and consumer markets.

Products include handheld navigation devices, avionics systems, automotive navigation systems with street map and address information, GPS-enabled and stand-alone sonar depth finders for recreational boating and fishing, and GPS-enabled cellular phones.

Since Garmin’s GPS handheld units were first used in the Gulf War, the company has built a reputation for innovation, quality products, and superior customer service. Its GPS products employs a proprietary integrated circuit and receiver designed to collect, calculate, and display location, direction, and speed, as well as other information depending on the specific use of the customer.

The company is divided into two segments: consumer, which accounted for 87% of sales in 2006 and aviation, which accounted for 13% of sales. Products are sold in more than 100 countries, with its consumer products being sold through retail chains, consumer electronic stores, sporting goods, [and] marine retailers and catalogs.

Second-quarter results easily surpassed analysts’ estimates. Earnings rocketed 75% to 98 cents a share versus 56 cents a year ago, well ahead of the consensus forecast of 74 cents a share. Sales leapt 72% to $742 million. The bulk of the growth came from a doubling in sales from the GPS automotive/mobile segment. Revenue in the marine segment increased 59%.

Sales were driven primarily by the portable navigation device market. The robust quarter caused the company to raise the profit outlook for the full year above previous estimates. The company forecasted earnings to exceed $3.15 per share and revenue to top $2.8 billion, above estimates of $2.92 per share, or revenue of $2.6 billion.

Year to date, the stock has surged higher by 83%. Most of that came in a stretch between May 17 and August 8th when it jumped 92%. Since then it came under some selling pressure, falling to a low of 86.41 on August 16, but has rallied back up to challenge its old high.

We think there’s a good chance [the stock will] break above this one and resume its upward momentum. It closed Wednesday at almost $106.

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