Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) has rapidly become one of the most talked-about and divisive stocks on Wall Street. Analysts and investors appear to be either extremely bullish or extremely bearish, with no middle ground. Seeking Alpha contributor ONeil Trader is on the bullish side, seeing nothing but positives for Plug Power.
Plug Power’s earnings less than exciting
The author notes that Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG)’s latest quarterly earnings report wasn’t much to write home about. The fuel cell system provider’s results were about what analysts were expecting. However, revenue guidance for the full year was higher than expected. ONeil finds that “encouraging,” although he continues to note that Plug Power is still a speculative stock. The writer sees a greater likelihood of upside than downside in Plug Power.
Plug Power sees strong growth in bookings
ONeil notes that Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG)’s booking growth was solid, as management confirmed their $80 million worth of bookings so far this year. Executives said they expect the company to have achieved two-thirds of this year’s bookings by the end of the current quarter. In addition, Plug Power is aiming for some major announcement by the end of the third quarter.
Because of these factors, the writer believes there’s significant upside to bookings this year. The Seeking Alpha contributor also notes that Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) has increased its revenue guidance from $70 million to $75 million. That’s quite a bit ahead of consensus estimates at $65 million for the full year. However, since the announcement, analysts have been bumping their estimates up toward management’s guidance.
In addition, the writer notes that Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) is in the process of hiring more salespeople. Management has also raised their 2015 target for revenue up to $135 million from their previous estimate of $100 million.
ONeil believes Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) will hit breakeven in EBITDA in the fourth quarter of this year and post EBITDA losses of $.5 million to $3 million. He also points out that Plug Power’s acquisition of ReliOn will increase EBITDA losses by approximately $1 million this year. However, next year it will probably benefit gross margins, starting next year and moving forward.
Analysts could revise Plug power estimates upward
He notes a number of things that could give a boost to revenue estimates for Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) this year and next. First, he notes that the fuel cell system provider expects to expand in both Asia and Europe. Also the joint venture with Hyundai Hysco should be in place by the end of July, and top line growth should be impacted positively next year.
Another reason he suspects analysts will begin revising their estimates higher is because of how satisfied Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG)’s customers are. The company only has approximately 20 customers at this point, with 12 to 15 of them being repeat customers. Two Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) are expected to come online in the third quarter. He thinks other customers might want to move their orders forward, which would provide upside to the company’s bookings this year.
ONeil sees at least a 50% chance of upside for Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) this year, saying it might trade at a multiple as high as 30 times estimated 2017 earnings. This would put a price target of $6.60 per share on the company. He sees the likelihood of downside of being between 18% and 30% and says the floor on Plug Power stock could be around $30 to $3.50 a share.