3 reasons to add Bapcor Ltd shares to your portfolio today

Bapcor Ltd (ASX:BAP) is Australia’s largest listed auto parts company with a market capitalisation of $1.4 billion. It operates the Burson parts chain and also owns a number of different of other businesses, giving it vertical integration in car maintenance.

Bapcor has been a good investment for investors, growing in share price by 112% in two years. Here are three reasons why I think Bapcor can continue its good run:

Not aligned to economic cycles

Bapcor sells parts, not whole cars. That means it’s likely to get more business during a recession as people try to make their cars last longer rather than buying a new car. However, the business can also do well in boom phases too, as people look to upgrade parts of their car.

This makes it a good business to hold in good times and bad, which is why during FY16 it was able to achieve same store sales growth of 4.6% for Burson Trade.

Able to grow through a variety of channels

Not only does it have its Burson Auto Parts brand but it also has the Autobarn, Midas, ABS, Precision automotive equipment and several other brands. It can generate growth by opening stores itself, or through franchises through its multitude of brands.

In its latest report Bapcor revealed that since 30 June 2016 Burson Trade has opened five stores and the retail segment has opened six stores including three company owned Autobarns and one franchise Autobarn store. In total, management are expecting around 40 new stores in FY17.

Automated electric cars will still need replacement parts

The coming automation of cars will make a huge wave in the automotive industry. However, these cars will still need parts to be replaced. How the cars drive will be different, how the cars are powered will be different, but otherwise they will still be cars with parts that can break.

Economies of scale will still dictate that the biggest suppliers can get the cheapest prices for those parts and therefore can pass some of those savings onto the customer.

The car dealership businesses Automotive Holdings Group Ltd (ASX: AHG) and AP Eagers Ltd (ASX: APE) will also keep selling cars, automated or not.

Time to buy?

Bapcor’s FY16’s results were very pleasing for shareholders. It grew revenue by 82.7%, net profit after tax by 88.9% and the dividend by 27.7%.

Although this impressive result was helped a lot by acquisitions, there’s a good chance that the next couple of years could also produce strong results.

Bapcor is one of the best quality businesses on the ASX. It’s currently trading with a price/earnings ratio of 28 and a grossed up dividend yield of 3.07%. I think it could soon be a good time to buy Bapcor for long term investors after the Fed’s expected interest rate rise in December.

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Motley Fool contributor Tristan Harrison has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Bapcor. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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