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Why these 3 shares are flying at 52-week highs

With reporting season virtually over, things often quieten down on the S&P/ASX 200 while investors digest the results and plan their next moves.

But these three shares are surging to new highs this week, and here’s why.

Freedom Foods Group Ltd (ASX: FNP)

Diversified food company Freedom Foods Group Ltd shares hit a 52-week high on September 4, closing off trading at $7.00 before dropping back slightly today to $6.96 at the time of writing.

The $1.7 billion company posted its FY18 results on August 31, reporting impressive profit growth, with operating net profit of $19.4 million up 96.9% on FY17.

Annual net sales came in at $353 million, a rise of 34.5%, with EBITDA up 49.5% to $39.2 million and a final dividend of 2.75c per share no doubt pleasing shareholders.

Freedom completed its new beverage processing facility over FY18 and is expanding its capabilities in other regional locations to prepare for growth.

Freedom’s dairy segment was its best performer for FY18, with sales growing by almost 50% and increasing demand out of China and South East Asia should keep this momentum going for some time yet.

Sales growth has been predicted for FY19 and if the growth profiles of A2 Milk Company Ltd (ASX: A2M) and Bellamy’s Australia Ltd (ASX: BAL) are anything to go by Freedom could have a bright future ahead as demand for its products continues.

Nearmap Ltd (ASX: NEA)

Geospatial map technology company Nearmap Ltd shares have been hovering in 52-week high territory since late August, when the stock reached an all-time high of $1.86.

Nearmap is at $1.76 at the time of writing and as an emerging player, has recently caught the eye of Morgan Stanley for its annualised contract value (ACV) acceleration with sales productivity on the up as the company continues to make solid gains.

Nearmap’s share price shot up 4% on the day of its FY18 results report last month as the company revealed it was closing off the year debt-free, with $17 million in cash and continued growth in its onshore and offshore markets with increasing leverage out of its US division.

Investors will be on watch as Nearmap continues to up its subscriber numbers.

Speciality Fashion Group Ltd (ASX: SFH)

This small cap retailer’s shares have been on a definite incline lately, surging to a 52-week high to close off September 4 at $1.32 and sitting at $1.31 at the time of writing.

Specialty Fashion Group Ltd shares rose 12% off the back of its FY18 results release in late August with investors obviously pleased with its divestment of five retail brands to Noni B Limited (ASX: NBL) as of July.

Speciality Fashion’s retained business, City Chic, booked revenue growth of 5.4% to $131.9 million for FY18 with an increase in sales up from 29% in FY17 to 36% in FY18.

City Chic’s underlying EBITDA was up 79% to $19.9 million and Specialty Fashion has plans to continue to grow the brand with a focus on its US online channel.

A stock to watch as its new arrangements come into play over FY19.

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Motley Fool contributor Carin Pickworth has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Nearmap Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of A2 Milk. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Freedom Foods Group Limited. 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 Scott Phillips.

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