Wall Street Lines Up Behind Slack for Upside Ahead

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Slack Technologies Inc. (NYSE: WORK) conducted its initial public offering as a direct offering rather than as a syndicate-led traditional IPO. While its post-IPO trading activity has been less volatile than some other hot IPOs, its initial $26 per share reference price kept being raised before finally coming public at $38.50 on June 20, 2019.

With a direct offering and without a traditional group of syndicate managers, Slack did not have the traditional SEC-imposed analyst quiet-period that is so common with traditional IPOs. That hasn’t prevented analysts from initiating coverage, and several firms have recently announced their ratings.

Three positive ratings were seen on Monday, July 15, 2019, and other analyst made calls in previous trading days.

Barclays started Slack was as Overweight with a $45 price target. The firm did admit that Slack has a demanding valuation at 24 times expected 2020 revenues, but with a normalized growth expectation it looks more reasonable with growth out to 2022.

William Blair started the enterprise software player as Outperform. The firm has noted that Slack may severely disrupt or even displace email due to collaborative software it offers.

Canaccord Genuity started Slack with a Buy rating and a $40 target price. The firm sees Slack as positioned to become a new software layer.

Other analyst calls were made on prior days:

  • On July 12, Stephens started coverage with an Overweight rating and $43 price target.
  • On July 9, Oppenheimer started Slack with a Perform rating.
  • On June 26, Robert W. Baird started it an Outperform rating and a $44 price target.
  • Atlantic Securities initiated coverage right before the IPO with an Overweight rating and a $37 target.

Slack shares had closed at $33.73 last Friday, its lowest post-IPO close, but the stock was last seen trading up 2% at $34.40 on Monday, in a post-IPO range of $33.37 to $42.00.

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