NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The free promotion that SoupMan (SOUP) enjoyed during the Super Bowl is certain to help the food services start-up to expand beyond New York, but it also presents a compelling investment provided you're prepared for some volatility.
SOUP data by YCharts
SoupMan is traded over the counter. If nothing else, being traded over-the-counter signals the possibility of volatility. It has a market capitalization of just $15.2 million and was trading Thursday at 40 cents a share. Due to a limited float of 27.3 million shares, the stock will be volatile. Since I'm taking a long-term view, current level of trading activities matters a little.
The first thing I find impressive about this company is that it has positioned itself as "one of New York's iconic brands", the quality that made the NFL choose the company to serve its soup at the event.
Indeed, the NFL could have invited any other soup. At least, McDonald's (MCD - Get Report) is a well-known brand that also makes soups. And considering that big names, like McDonald's, are well represented in all part of the US, it's safe to say that SoupMan is iconic.
With the Super Bowl being the biggest event on television, the publicity SoupMan got through this event is almost priceless. For clarity sake, a 30-second commercial at this year's Super Bowl cost $4 million. For me, SoupMan got the best promotion possible by serving spectators its soups. I don't think it had to spend up to $4 million to do that. That sort of promotion is worth more than just displaying a jingle for 30-second for people who're already addicted to McDonald's or any other big name to see.
Long story short, the Super Bowl has helped increase the popularity of the Original SoupMan brand. And judging from the moves it's made, it appears the company is looking to leverage this 'free nationwide publicity' to expand its business.
First, it recently opened its Famous Delicatessen & Restaurant at Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City. The company also plans to open the next SoupMan Delicatessen & Restaurant at Mohegan Sun in Pocono Downs, Pennsylvania later this year. In addition, it plans to open 25 franchised units in casinos across the US over the next five years, a move that execs projects to be worth $2 million in sales annually.
SoupMan has also been getting its soups into established grocery stores like Wal-Mart, Wegmans and Whole Foods (WFM). According to the company, its soups are already available in over 4000 supermarkets across the US. Moreover, with food truck business gaining traction in the US, SoupMan plans to have 50 Soup Mobiles on the road in 2014, a service that the company claims to be first national brand to offer.