Meritor’s TransPower Buyout to Fuel Commercial EV Growth – Zacks.com

Meritor, Inc. (MTOR Free Report) recently announced the acquisition of all the outstanding common shares of Transportation Power, Inc. (“TransPower”), enabling the company to further position itself as a leading supplier of electrification technologies for commercial vehicles.

While Meritor has successfully executed its three-year M2019 program, the addition of TransPower’s product portfolio is in sync with the company’s M2022 priorities that focus on new business opportunities, margin expansion, and cost-containment initiatives. It also sets out the value of Meritor’s Blue Horizon brand, which represents the company’s emerging advanced technology platform centered on electrification. Per the M2022 goals, the firm is expected to attain 75% free cash-flow conversion and remain committed to return money to its shareholders.

Meritor had first announced investments in TransPower in December 2017, in order to accelerate the introduction of its flexible electric axle platform for various drivetrain configurations, including full electric, hybrid, single or tandem axles. It also announced a further strategic investment in TransPower last April in a bid to advance the development of transformative electrification technologies for the electrification of commercial vehicle industry.

Meanwhile, in 2019, the company announced 22 electrification programs with global OEMs that are expected to put nearly 130 fully-electric medium and heavy-duty commercial trucks on road through 2020. The company is likely to gain from higher margins tied to OEM adoption of advanced products, such as eAxle, air disc brakes and precision gearing.

In addition, Meritor’s buyout of AxleTech has boosted its growth. This buyout led to the introduction of a complementary product portfolio, providing the company with a full line of independent suspensions, material handling axles, new braking solutions and drivetrain components. It also diversified Meritor’s exposure in adjacent end markets served, which will support its target of realizing more than $15 million in annual cost synergies by fiscal 2020.

Shares of Meritor have outperformed the industry it belongs to over the past year. During this time frame, it has gained 25.4%, as against the industry’s rise of 10.2%.

In fiscal 2020, Meritor expects sales in the $3.7-$3.8 billion range. Net income from continuing operations is anticipated in the band of $145-$155 million. Adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations are projected at $2.75-$2.85.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Currently, Meritor carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the Auto-Tires-Trucks sector include Blue Bird Corporation (BLBD Free Report) , Tesla, Inc. (TSLA Free Report) and SPX Corporation (SPXC Free Report) , each carrying a Zacks Rank of 2 (Buy), at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 (Strong Buy) Rank stocks here.

Blue Bird has an estimated earnings growth rate of 25.47% for 2020. The company’s shares have appreciated 7.6% in a year’s time.

Tesla has a projected earnings growth rate of 6,380% for the ongoing year. Its shares have gained 68.9% over the past year.

SPX has an expected earnings growth rate of 8.09% for the current year. The stock has surged 74.4% in the past year.

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