“Million Dollar Machines: Cell Towers and Border Patrol”

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, December 16, 2007

Another one that’s partially from the archives: Navellier has been sending out a teaser mentioning seven “Million Dollar Machines” that he thinks are great investments right now. This whole “Million Dollar Machine” concept was one he trotted out over the Summer, too and apparently it was pretty successful (why else would we be seeing it again?).

But anyway, this group of seven stocks is a mix of some old and some new. These two from the list were ones that I wrote about in July, and I’m copying some of the information below straight from that writeup. The other ones I’m going to have to spend a few minutes on, sort out the new from the old and see what he’s offering us today.

Navellier’s concept was that these companies would help you put a million bucks in your portfolio. The example he gives to back this up is Hansen Natural, one of the top performing stocks of the past decade — if you had invested $100,000 when Navellier’s system recommended it, apparently, you’d have a million dollars today.

Of course, unless you’ve already got a million dollars, investing $100,000 in a single highly speculative growth stock is pretty crazy. And if you had spread the $100,000 among ten or twenty of his picks, which is even less diversification than he typically recommends in his newsletters, you’d have much, much less. Still a lot, probably, since his newsletters have generally been good performers, but certainly nowhere near a million dollars.

But anyway, we’ll take his premise that you are “One Stock Away from Financial Freedom” … and one of these seven could be that stock.

These are supposed to be fast growing, undiscovered companies, and the tease is for the Emerging Growth service by Navellier, which has so far helped us find a real mix of stinkers and winners in the short term.

Million Dollar Machine #4: “Border Patrol”

“Some of the biggest investment winners you will ever experience will break out because the Department of Defense says so.”

OK, so we’re dealing with some kind of defense company here. The sparse clues are that the firm makes infrared cameras and night vision equipment for the military and border patrol …

… and that this company is “much smaller [and] nimbler” than previous Navellier pick Precision Castparts, another defense (and aerospace) pick. (He also name drops Ceradyne to establish his defense cred).

Earnings should double, the stock price has climbed 45% this year to date, and, final clue, the company is located in Oregon.

So, did that last clue get you? That’s right, this company is …

FLIR systems (FLIR)

It’s a $3 billion company, so not tiny but certainly a lot smaller than Precision. It’s definitely in the night vision/thermal imaging business. This one is up 20% or so since Navellier teased it in the Summer, but it’s also about 20% off it’s highs from this fall. I’ve heard this one bandied about before, but don’t know much else about their financials. The company is headed for earnings this year of around $.90 a share, so at a share price just under $30 (it split quite recently) we’re clearly counting on some resounding growth to continue here.

I don’t know how they stack up against their competitors, but would be happy to hear what other folks think about this one.

Million Dollar Machine #5: “Tower of Power”

No, this isn’t our favorite soul band (which is, by the way, still going strong 30 years later) — this is something to do with cell phone towers and antennas for WiFi, WiMax, 3G, all that jazz.

So … the clues again are sparse:

“Better cell phone towers and antennas”

Up 80% since October.

Has “snapped up a top competitor”

And the companies has raised guidance and then beat the numbers, including an 8% pop for the stock after the last earnings report.

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Might actually need the Thinkolator 4000 for this one, so let’s crank it up a little here … ah, I thought as much, I expect that this company is …

CommScope (CTV)

They did recently agree to buy up a big competitor (Andrew) in the telecom equipment space — which is really what they’re in, they do cables and other stuff like that in