Matthews International Corporation (NASDAQ: MATW) and Unilever PLC (NYSE:UL) are both mid-cap consumer staples companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their valuation, risk, dividends, institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, profitability and earnings.

Dividends

Matthews International Corporation pays an annual dividend of $0.68 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.1%. Unilever PLC pays an annual dividend of $1.64 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.9%. Matthews International Corporation pays out 28.5% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Matthews International Corporation has increased its dividend for 5 consecutive years.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

79.1% of Matthews International Corporation shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 8.4% of Unilever PLC shares are held by institutional investors. 3.9% of Matthews International Corporation shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 1.0% of Unilever PLC shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares Matthews International Corporation and Unilever PLC’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Matthews International Corporation 5.17% 16.23% 5.40%
Unilever PLC N/A N/A N/A

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of current ratings and recommmendations for Matthews International Corporation and Unilever PLC, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Matthews International Corporation 0 0 3 0 3.00
Unilever PLC 3 3 5 0 2.18

Matthews International Corporation presently has a consensus target price of $83.50, suggesting a potential upside of 32.43%. Unilever PLC has a consensus target price of $26.00, suggesting a potential downside of 54.18%. Given Matthews International Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, equities research analysts plainly believe Matthews International Corporation is more favorable than Unilever PLC.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Matthews International Corporation and Unilever PLC’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Matthews International Corporation $1.50 billion 1.35 $190.96 million $2.39 26.38
Unilever PLC $63.96 billion 2.50 $11.43 billion N/A N/A

Unilever PLC has higher revenue and earnings than Matthews International Corporation.

Volatility and Risk

Matthews International Corporation has a beta of 1.11, suggesting that its stock price is 11% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Unilever PLC has a beta of 0.88, suggesting that its stock price is 12% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Matthews International Corporation beats Unilever PLC on 9 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Matthews International Corporation

Matthews International Corporation is a provider of brand solutions, memorialization products and industrial technologies. The Company operates through three segments: SGK Brand Solutions, Memorialization and Industrial Technologies. The SGK Brand Solutions segment provides brand development, deployment and delivery (consisting of brand management, printing plates and cylinders, pre-media services and imaging services for consumer packaged goods and retail customers, merchandising display systems, and marketing and design services). The Memorialization segment manufactures and markets a line of memorialization products used primarily in cemeteries, funeral homes and crematories. The Industrial Technologies segment designs, manufactures and distributes a range of marking, coding and industrial automation solutions, order fulfillment systems and related consumables.

About Unilever PLC

Unilever PLC is a fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) company. The Company’s segments include Personal Care, which primarily includes sales of skin care and hair care products, deodorants and oral care products; Foods, which primarily includes sales of soups, bouillons, sauces, snacks, mayonnaise, salad dressings, margarines and spreads; Home Care, which primarily includes sales of home care products, such as powders, liquids and capsules, soap bars and a range of cleaning products, and Refreshment, which primarily includes sales of ice cream and tea-based beverages. The Company’s geographical segments include Asia/AMET/RUB, The Americas and Europe. Its brands include Axe, Dirt is Good (Omo), Dove, Family Goodness (Rama), Heartbrand (Wall’s), Hellmann’s, Knorr, Lipton, Lux, Magnum, Rexona, Sunsilk and Surf. The Company operates in more than 100 countries, selling its products in more than 190 countries. The Company operates approximately 310 factories in over 70 countries.

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