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Russia's White Gold

Russia has more than oil to offer the West. Apparently, some of the country’s food and beverage companies have caught the eye of their American counterparts.

Pepsico and its bottling group recently paid $1.4 billion for a stake in JSC Lebedyansky, Russia’s largest juice maker. Now, there’s speculation Coca-Cola has its eye on Wimm Bill Dann Foods to keep up with the proverbial Joneses. There was even a mention in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal that Swiss food giant Nestle might want WBD.

Cramer recommended viewers buy Wimm Bill Dann before Wall Street catches on, and not just for the takeover talk. Pepsi might spin off Lebedyansky’s dairy and baby food businesses, giving WBD, which deals in both of those and juice, a chance to buy them. Less competition means fewer places for big institutional money to find a home. That extra cash could flow right into WBD, Cramer said.

The fundamentals are solid, too. Wimm Bill Dann is the largest food and beverage firm in Russia, and there’s still room to grow. In fact, WBD’s long-term growth rate is 35% – and the stock is trading at only 18.5 times forward earnings. Also, management has raised guidance, bumping expected sales up to $4.5 billion from $4 billion, 88% higher than 2007’s number.

Got WBD? If not, you might want to buy some before you miss your chance.

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