Barclays: 'LinkedIn Continues To Execute Extremely Well With A Strong Pipeline Of Innovation Ahead'
LinkedIn Corp (NYSE: LNKD) was up more than 13 percent on Friday after the company reported better-than-expected earnings and revenue on Thursday. In a report published Friday morning, Barclays analyst Paul Vogel reiterated an Equal-Weight rating, raised his price target from $200 to $260 and boosted his EPS estimate for fiscal 2015 from $2.74 to $3.22.
Guidance for the first quarter of 2015 was slightly disappointing and, many believe, conservative. “We believe the magnitude of the beat and the above consensus full-year guidance will more than make up for the downside to Q1 expectations. LinkedIn continues to execute extremely well with a strong pipeline of innovation ahead,” Vogel said.
Barclays report highlighted the performance of Marketing Solutions (one of the main growth drivers in the quarter), despite the company’s focus on the ramp in sales navigator: “The strength in marketing solutions seems to be sustainable and that growth, coupled with the 2015 focus on sales navigator should keep numbers moving higher for LNKD."
Vogel also liked the fact that “price increases don’t appear to be impacting fundamentals: While both talent solutions and premium subscribers were relatively in-line with our forecasts, underlying trends remain strong. The price increase on the Talent side appears to be rolling in well with little-to-no impact on churn or retention. On the premium side, management is happy with the rollout of sales navigator, now 30% of premium revenue and a slight upside to their expectations.”
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