The Hain Celestial Group (NASDAQ: HAIN) and Lancaster Colony Corporation (NASDAQ:LANC) are both mid-cap consumer staples companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, valuation, dividends, institutional ownership, profitabiliy, earnings and risk.

Risk & Volatility

The Hain Celestial Group has a beta of 1.25, meaning that its share price is 25% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Lancaster Colony Corporation has a beta of 1.02, meaning that its share price is 2% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares The Hain Celestial Group and Lancaster Colony Corporation’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
The Hain Celestial Group $2.87 billion 1.51 $265.06 million N/A N/A
Lancaster Colony Corporation $1.20 billion 2.86 $221.45 million $4.29 29.12

The Hain Celestial Group has higher revenue and earnings than Lancaster Colony Corporation.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for The Hain Celestial Group and Lancaster Colony Corporation, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
The Hain Celestial Group 1 11 7 0 2.32
Lancaster Colony Corporation 0 2 4 0 2.67

The Hain Celestial Group currently has a consensus target price of $41.86, indicating a potential upside of 0.28%. Lancaster Colony Corporation has a consensus target price of $148.00, indicating a potential upside of 18.47%. Given Lancaster Colony Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Lancaster Colony Corporation is more favorable than The Hain Celestial Group.

Profitability

This table compares The Hain Celestial Group and Lancaster Colony Corporation’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
The Hain Celestial Group -0.75% -1.09% -0.61%
Lancaster Colony Corporation 9.82% 23.80% 19.01%

Dividends

Lancaster Colony Corporation pays an annual dividend of $2.20 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.8%. The Hain Celestial Group does not pay a dividend. Lancaster Colony Corporation pays out 51.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Lancaster Colony Corporation has increased its dividend for 54 consecutive years.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

86.7% of The Hain Celestial Group shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 50.6% of Lancaster Colony Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. 3.1% of The Hain Celestial Group shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 32.1% of Lancaster Colony Corporation shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Lancaster Colony Corporation beats The Hain Celestial Group on 9 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

About The Hain Celestial Group

The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. is an organic and natural products company. The Company and its subsidiaries manufacture, market, distribute and sell organic and natural products under brand names which are sold as better-for-you products. The Company’s segments include United States, United Kingdom, Hain Pure Protein and Rest of World. Its Rest of World segment includes Canada and Europe. The Company’s brand names include Almond Dream, Arrowhead Mills, Bearitos, BluePrint, Celestial Seasonings, Cully & Sully, Danival, DeBoles, Earth’s Best, Ella’s Kitchen, Empire, Europe’s Best, Farmhouse Fare, Frank Cooper’s, FreeBird, Gale’s, Garden of Eatin’, GG UniqueFiber, Hain Pure Foods, Hartley’s, Health Valley, Imagine, Johnson’s Juice Co., Joya, Kosher Valley, Lima, The Greek Gods, Tilda, Walnut Acres, WestSoy, Yves Veggie Cuisine and Yorkshire Provender. Its personal care products are marketed under the Alba Botanica, Avalon Organics, Earth’s Best, JASON, Live Clean and Queen Helene brands.

About Lancaster Colony Corporation

Lancaster Colony Corporation is a manufacturer and marketer of specialty food products for the retail and foodservice channels. The Company’s food products include Salad dressings and sauces, Vegetable dips and fruit dips, Frozen garlic breads, Frozen Parkerhouse style yeast rolls and dinner rolls, Premium dry egg noodles, Frozen specialty noodles, Croutons and salad toppings, Flatbread wraps and pizza crusts, and Caviar. Its brands include Marzetti, Marzetti Simply Dressed, Cardini’s, Girard’s, Katherine’s Kitchen, New York BRAND Bakery, Mamma Bella’s, Sister Schubert’s, Mary B’s, Inn Maid, Amish Kitchen, Reames, Aunt Vi’s, Flatout and Romanoff. It manufactures and sells other products pursuant to brand license agreements, including Olive Garden dressing, Jack Daniel’s mustards and Hungry Girl flatbreads. A portion of its sales are dressing packets, frozen specialty noodles, pasta and flatbreads sold to industrial customers for use as ingredients or components in their products.

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