Dec. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc., the maker of the Keurig single-serve coffee brewer, lost share in the coffee market last month as new single-serve companies entered the field.
The share of coffee dollar sales held by Green Mountain’s single-serve products for the four weeks ended Nov. 27 declined to 8.4 percent, down 0.4 percentage points from the previous four-week period, according to a Bloomberg Industries analysis of data from researcher SymphonyIRI Group. The company’s share rose 3.4 percentage points from the year-earlier period.
In September, Green Mountain will lose the main patents on K-Cups, allowing competitors to make their own versions. Rivals already have emerged, including one-cup pods made by Rogers Family Co. that are compatible with Green Mountain’s Keurig machines. The company is also battling criticism from hedge fund manager David Einhorn that its market-share gains have peaked.
Green Mountain has sought to boost sales and discourage competition by partnering with brands such as Caribou Coffee Co. and Folgers. Earlier this year, the company signed deals with Seattle-based Starbucks Corp. and Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc.
Greg McKinley, an analyst at Dougherty & Co., downgraded Green Mountain today, citing data from researcher NPD Group Inc. that showed a widening spread between the growth of Green Mountain’s brewer shipments and U.S. consumer purchases of coffee machines.
McKinley, who is based in Minneapolis, downgraded the shares to “neutral” after having a “buy” rating on the stock since July 2010.
Green Mountain fell 12 percent to $49.95 at the close in New York. The Waterbury, Vermont-based company’s shares have gained 52 percent this year.
--Editor: Kevin Orland
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