April 28, 2023
The last Saturday of April is set aside as World Veterinary Day and for retail shareholders, there are many ways of investing in companies that support the animals you love.
The World Veterinary Association created World Veterinary Day in 2000 as an annual celebration of the veterinary profession. This year’s theme is “Promoting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness in the Veterinary Profession.”
The day is held to raise awareness about the importance of veterinarians and their contributions to animal health, welfare and public health. It is celebrated around the world through various activities such as seminars, workshops, public lectures and social media campaigns and is an opportunity to recognize and appreciate the hard work and dedication of veterinarians who ensure the health and well-being of both animals and humans.
It’s important to celebrate veterinarians, especially since the pet industry continues to boom. According to the American Pet Products Association, total pet industry expenditures were $136.8 billion in 2022, a significant jump from $108.9 billion in 2020.
And for the individual investor, there are many ways to invest in the pets you love.
One of the most popular of the pet-oriented stocks to consider is Chewy (Tii:CHWY). Chewy is a digital retailer that sells pet food and pet-related products. The company represents more than 2,000 brands and has warehouses with more than 9 million square feet.
Freshpet (Tii:FRPT) went public in 2014. The company sells fresh, refrigerated pet food rather than the dry kibble most pet owners are familiar with. The company stocks its refrigerated food, which it promotes as natural and healthful for your pets, in a growing number of pet stores and supermarkets across the country. The company is planning to expand its North American customer base to 11 million households by 2025.
Petco (Tii:WOOF) is a big-box retailer that went public in 2021 and has about 1,500 locations around the country. The stories carry food, treats and toys, as well as services such as insurance, veterinary care and training and grooming. The company is strategically adding veterinary clinics to stores and as of 2021 had about 125 internal clinics.
The dog-focused company, Bark (Tii:BARK), is probably better known by the name of its best-known product, Barkbox. Barkbox is a monthly subscription service that ships premium toys and treats for dogs. The company went public through a SPAC in a merger completed in June 2021. Bark also offers other subscriptions including: Bark Eats, a monthly meal plan; Bark Bright, a health subscription that starts with a dental kit; and Super Chewer, durable dog toys for larger dogs.
Some investing options for retail shareholders in the pet sector are more concerned with keeping your pet healthy rather than just keeping them well-fed and entertained.
Trupanion (Tii:TRUP) offers pet insurance while Zoetis (Tii:ZTS) is the world’s largest producer of medicine and vaccinations for pets and livestock. Zoetis was a subsidiary of Pfizer, but the drug maker spun off its interest in the company, which is now completely independent. Idexx Laboratories (Tii:IDXX) produces diagnostic and software tests and products for the veterinary industry.
With the average U.S. pet owner spending more than $1,300 a year on their pets' expenses, the industry is strong, led by the veterinarians we celebrate on World Veterinary Day.
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