The fundamentals of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) remain best in class, according to Ross Sandler, analyst at Deutsche Bank Market Research.
Sandler noted that the search engine giant demonstrates a strong performance since October. According to him, the research firm continues to view the risk/reward for company as attractive. However, he does not think the first quarter results of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) will provide a meaningful catalyst.
According to Sandler, based on channel checks, the company will experience another solid quarter for both domestic and international core growth. He said, the typical 1Q would show ~2 percent Q/Q growth next ex-fx for net revenue; however, the research firm speculated that Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s core net revenue growth will be slightly below consensus by -1.3 percent Q/Q.
Sandler explained that the decline is due to several factors including little fx benefit, gross revenue reduction from tool bar policy changes (~$200 million estimated but minimal impact), and the seasonal revenue drop of Nexus hardware.
He estimated that the search engine giant would post $10.33 earnings per share. He thinks that the EPS line would be impacted by additional charges from Motorola Mobility (a potential $1.00 EPS hit) and R+D tax credit (a $0.50 boost) over the usual hedging costs in interest, income, and taxes.
Sandler identified some of the emerging catalysts for the company this year including Enhanced Campaigns, which could drive mobile adoption to smaller advertisers, and 10x projects particularly the Google Glass, which is expected to provide long-term revenue opportunity for the company. The analysts also viewed Google’s move over regulatory hurdle, and the improvement of CPCs, and operating performance of Motorola Mobility with less-bad financial results as catalyst.
In his note to investors, Sandler wrote, “We have reduced our 2013 and 2014 net revenue, EBITDA and non-GAAP estimates by 1%. We value Google shares on a blended average of 15x PE, 12x EV/EBITDA and 15% target FCF yield. These target multiples are comparable to those we use for other companies with same growth profiles. Applying these multiples to the average of our 2013 and 2014 estimates yield $935 PT. Downside risk include lower monetization on mobile device and regulatory overhang.”
Sandler added, “At 19x 2013E EPS vs. the peers at 22x, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) remains one of our top names in large cap internet.”
Deutsche Bank Market Research recommended a buy rating for the shares of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG).