Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) stock has been highly volatile this year. At the beginning of 2014, it traded at $1.55 but rose to $11 on March 10 before falling to $3.64 on May 8. Shares of the fuel cell company saw an unusually high options trading volume on Tuesday. Investors bought 30,735 call options on Plug Power. That’s an increase of 190% over the average daily volume of 10,641 call options.
FBR sets ‘Outperform’ rating on Plug Power
Plug Power shares skyrocketed on Tuesday after positive comments from FBR Capital Markets analysts. The stock soared 16.03% to close Tuesday at $4.85, and gained another 1.03% in after-hours trading. FBR Capital analyst Aditya Satghare initiated coverage of the stock with an Outperform rating. Satghare set the price target of $8, representing 91% upside from the share price on Monday close.
FBR Capital said that there are several positive catalysts that paint a bright picture of the Latham, New York-based company. Plug Power is receiving large orders from big U.S. companies like FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX) and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT). The company is also expanding its business in Europe and Asia.
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Plug Power revenues could surpass $200 million by 2017
Satghare estimates that Plug Power could supply components for more than 10% of the U.S. forklift market by 2017. And annual revenues are likely to surpass $200 million by then. That’s a very optimistic forecast considering the company reported only $25.7 million in revenues last year. The research firm urged investors to consider things beyond what management has done in the past. Plug Power can transform into a fully integrated business model.
FBR Capital believes that Plug Power’s existing customer base would further employ fuel cell-powered forklift solutions. That’s because material handlers find renewable energy-efficient and cost-effective. The company is determined to reduce its costs to improve efficiency. Plug Power reported bookings of $80 million in the first quarter, more than double the bookings in entire 2013. The expansion in Europe and Asia represent immense growth opportunities. European fuel cell market is estimated to be worth $18 billion by 2015.
Plug Power shares gained 2.47% to $4.97 in pre-market trading Wednesday.