Today Beyond Meat had the first earnings call since they went public last month.
The company blew growth expectations out of the water and reported net revenue of $40.2 million in Q1 of 2019, which is an increase in 215 percent since the same period in 2018. It reported a first-quarter net loss of $6.6 million, or .95 per share.
Beyond’s CFO Mark Nelson gave guidance that the company will have a net revenue of over $210 million by the end of 2019. That’s slightly higher than Wall Street’s estimate of $205 million. In response to these positive numbers, Beyond’s shares rose 16 percent after the reporting was released.
The plant-based meat company’s sales are no doubt helped by its well-publicized IPO, as well as its expanding retail and restaurant footprint. Interestingly, the revenue from the two sources is almost split 50-50: grocery store sales accounted for $19.6 million of Beyond’s revenue, while restaurant sales made up $20.6 million.
On the earnings call Beyond Meat CEO Ethan Brown stated that the company would use its new capital to “invest in current and additional manufacturing facilities, to expand its research and development and its sales and marketing capabilities, and for working capital and general corporate purposes.”
Perhaps most notable was Brown’s emphasis on international expansion. He mentioned the high market potential in South Africa and Chile, as well as Europe and Asia. This could help it differentiate from plant-based competitor Impossible Foods, which is only available in the U.S., Singapore, Hong Kong, and Macau.
Despite their impressive stats, Beyond still has lots more room to grow. On the call Brown stated that Beyond Meat has only 2 percent market penetration in the U.S. He hopes to increase that both here and abroad, all while driving down the cost of their products.
That’s ambitious to be sure. Several investors (very reasonably) asked questions about production capacity. If a big fast-food chain, like McDonald’s, opts to add Beyond Meat to their menus, would they be able to quickly amp up production to fulfill those orders? What about overseas? Brown seems confident that their new production partners and manufacturing methods can handle growing demand, but clearly Beyond’s production issues of last year (and Impossible’s current struggles) aren’t far from investors’ minds.
Things may be looking rosy for Beyond right now, but the company still has plenty of competition who wants to take a bite out of their customer base. Impossible Foods recently raised $300 million and is planning to head into retail later this year. Nestlé’s meatless Awesome burger is hitting shelves in the U.S. this fall. The Swiss company currently sells a different plant-based burger, called the Incredible burger, at McDonald’s in Germany. Tyson Foods, who recently parted ways with Beyond Meat, is also releasing their own new line of plant-based protein products this summer.