Market Overview

KeyBanc Finds Multiple Reasons To Turn Bullish On Akamai Technologies

KeyBanc Finds Multiple Reasons To Turn Bullish On Akamai Technologies
Related AKAM
Guggenheim, DA Davidson Bullish On Akamai After Q4 Report
Earnings Scheduled For February 12, 2019
Akamai: Good Company But Not At This Price (Seeking Alpha)

KeyBanc downgraded Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: AKAM) from a bullish stance in 2016, but the research firm sees multiple reasons for investors to become constructive on the stock again.

The Analyst

KeyBanc Capital Markets' Brandon Nispel upgraded Akamai Technologies from Sector Weight to Overweight with a new $73 price target.

The Thesis

Akamai, a content delivery network and cloud service provider that handles around 15 to 30 percent of the entire internet, continues to face long-term competitive challenges but multiple near-term readouts makes the stock look attractive at 8.4 times 2019 adjusted EBITDA estimates, Nispel said in a note.

First, global visitors per minute growth accelerated from 19.8 percent in December 2017 to 37.1 percent last December while global visitors per minute rose 28.5 percent in the fourth quarter.

Due to an acceleration in traffic growth in the fourth quarter, the company's content delivery network and Other units could see 3.5 to 4 percent year-over-year growth, the analyst said. This creates the scenario where Akamai could report revenue of $715 million which is above management's own guidance.

The Street's 2019 consensus estimate is reasonable and management could issue revenue guidance of $2.85 billion to $2.92 billion which is consistent with current estimates. The company continues to guide towards a 30 percent non-GAAP operating margin by 2020 which implies the potential for margin expansion in 2019 compared to current estimates.

Akamai's balance sheet shows a lack of leverage and a strong net cash position, which Nispel said are "important qualities" in the volatile market. Given expectations for 6.9 percent revenue growth in 2019, the stock looks attractive as it trades at a discount to its historical average of 9.5 times adjusted EBITDA.

Price Action

Akamai Technologies traded higher Wednesday morning to $63.08 per share.

Related Links:

DA Davidson Upgrades Akamai: 'Revenue From New Products Has Tripled In Just The Last Year'

Akamai's Q3 Beat Prompts SunTrust To Turn Bullish

Latest Ratings for AKAM

Feb 2019Morgan StanleyMaintainsOverweightOverweight
Feb 2019KeyBancMaintainsOverweightOverweight
Feb 2019Credit SuisseMaintainsNeutralNeutral

View More Analyst Ratings for AKAM
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: cloud Content Delivery Internet KeyBanc Capital MarketsAnalyst Color Upgrades Analyst Ratings Best of Benzinga


Related Articles (AKAM)

View Comments and Join the Discussion!

Latest Ratings

CBBMorgan StanleyUpgrades10.0
GDCredit SuisseDowngrades184.0
GEOJP MorganDowngrades26.0
TRUERBC CapitalDowngrades0.0
View the Latest Analytics Ratings
Don't Miss Out!
Join Our Newsletter
Subscribe to:
Market in 5 Minutes
Everything you need to know about the market - quick & easy.
Daily Analyst Rating
A summary of each day’s top rating changes from sell-side analysts on the street.
Fintech Focus
Your weekly roundup of hot topics in the exciting world of fintech.
Thank You
for registering for Benzinga’s newsletters and alerts.
• The Daily Analysts Ratings email will be received daily between 7am and 10am.
• The Market in 5 Minutes email will be received daily between 7am and 8am.
• The Fintech Focus email will be received every Friday between 2pm and 5pm.

Sears Gets Temporary Reprieve: Lampert Has Hours To Raise $120 Million

Survey: Stellar, Cardano, Bitcoin Will Be 2019's Top-Performing Cryptos