Raven Industries, Inc.
(RAVN) recently entered into an agreement to buy Ranchview, Inc., a privately-held Canadian corporation. The company did not disclose the terms of the deal but said that this acquisition will contribute to next years’ earnings

Ranchview develops products that use cellular networks instead of the traditional radio systems that are typically used to deliver RTK (Real Time Kinematic) corrections to GPS enabled equipment. RTK corrections improve the accuracy of GPS equipment. 

This acquisition is in-line with Raven’s plans of increasing its market share in precision agriculture. The company sees increased acceptance of precision agricultural equipment as an essential tool for maximizing yields. Agricultural market fundamentals remain strong and we believe the Applied Technology division will continue to be a primary growth driver for Raven in the long-term. 

Raven is aggressively pursuing opportunities to expand its position in niche markets and take market share from its weaker competitors. The company’s strategy in this difficult economy is to develop new products and increase its market share. At the same time, the company said that it will price its products at a value based premium and will not resort to price cutting to gain market share.
We believe Raven is in a good position to invest in growth opportunities. The company has a solid balance sheet with no long-term debt and cash and cash equivalents of $43 million (as on July 31, 2009). Also, Raven generated operating cash flow of $34.3 million during the first half of fiscal 2010, up 49.9% from the prior year period.
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