Costa Group’s shares have hit new records on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX), rising 7.1 per cent to reach A$4.69 on 11 April.
The leading Australian agribusiness has seen shares increase 35.5 per cent this year to-date, and increased 62.9 per cent in the past year, putting its market value at A$1.4bn.
The jump in share prices came after investment bank Goldman Sachs upgraded its 12-month price target for Costa to A$5.1 per share, up 27 per cent, as a result of Costa’s investment in avocado production with its acquisition of Avocado Ridge and forecast growth in demand for the fruit in Australia.
“The avocado market has experienced robust growth over the past decade. We expect steady volume and value growth driven by increased consumption and potential expansion into the export markets over the medium term,” Goldman Sachs reported, according to Barron’s.
“Consistent with [Costa’s] stated strategy, the company could make further avocado farm acquisitions to help achieve its goal of being the largest player in the market, in our view. For blackberries, we have added significant capacity to our long-term forecasts.
“[Costa] has stated that the new varietals from Driscoll’s could see the Australian blackberry market rival raspberries in size. We forecast [Costa] to have around 170ha planted by 2021 vs around 200ha of raspberry capacity.”