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Middleby Buys Firex to Boost Kitchen Equipment Portfolio

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The Middleby Corporation (MIDD - Free Report) recently reinforced its inorganic growth trajectory by acquiring Italian kitchen equipment company — Firex Srl — for an undisclosed amount.

Firex manufactures state-of-the-art steam-cooking equipment for the global commercial foodservice industry. The company not only produces innovative products but also owns automated features that will help in reducing labor and increasing standardization, as well as capacity of cooking procedures. Annually, Firex generates nearly $20 million revenues.

Middleby believes the Firex buyout will solidify its existing sous vide and steam-cooking product offerings. These products, which help prepare healthy food, have been gaining popularity in the market, of late. The company believes this acquisition will strengthen its customer relationships and infrastructure across all end-markets.

Over the last month, Middleby’s shares have rallied 3.6%, as against the 2.1% loss incurred by the industry.


This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock is currently following an acquisition-based growth strategy.

In this context, the company’s QualServ (August 2017) and Globe acquisitions (October 2017) are worth mentioning. Both deals are expected to bolster revenues of its Commercial Foodservice Equipment Group in the near term. Also, the Burford (May 2017) and CVP Systems (June 2017) buyouts are projected to improve near-term revenues of the company’s Food Processing Equipment segment. Additionally, the recently-concluded Hinds-Bock Corporation buyout (February 2018) will strengthen the company’s existing processing and bakery systems in the near future.

The latest Firex buyout will also likely help drive the company’s top-line performance over the long term.

Key Picks

Some better-ranked stocks in the same space are listed below:

Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. (KWHIY - Free Report) sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). The company’s earnings per share (EPS) are projected to be up 21.6% in the next three to five years. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Dover Corporation (DOV - Free Report) holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The company’s EPS is estimated to rise 13% over the next three to five years.

EnPro Industries (NPO - Free Report) is another Zacks #2 Ranked company. Its EPS is predicted to grow 22.3% during the same time frame.

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