aws-merrill

Merrill Lynch analyst Justin Post is all the more upbeat on Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) after attending the Amazon Web Services (AWS) re:Invent conference in Las Vegas, with a flourishing 32,000 people in attendance this year, compared to 19,000 last year. AWS CEO Andy Jassy gave the keynote address, and from the analyst’s perspective, the value of AWS services was in full exhibition, further strengthening the online auction and e-commerce leader’s platform.

Therefore, the analyst reiterates a Buy rating on AMZN with a price target of $960, which represents a just under 30% increase from where the shares last closed.

A shining focal point of the conference highlighted a tool-set expansion available to developers, with a rise from last year’s 722 features to this year’s release of 1,000 new features. AWS in addition to making various feature announcements also shared several customer testimonials that paint a picture of cloud deployment surpassing expectation.

Post notes, “AWS has the largest number of start-up, enterprise and public sector customers, as well as the broadest ecosystem of system integrators and ISVs. […] System integrators suggested that the cloud will not be a one horse race as customers will diversify, but AWS continues to execute and maintain a strong leadership position.”

Overall, “Our conversations with system integrators suggest Microsoft has a strong and relevant platform (and will win its fair share of customers), and that several are building services around Google’s Cloud, but that Amazon has a strong lead in cloud computing, offering more services, features, and functionality than competitors. One provider suggested that Google remains two to three years behind AWS, while another suggested that Google’s technology backbone is comparable, but AWS services layer is far superior. We still think Amazon is in the pole position for cloud leadership and maintain our Buy rating,” Post concludes.

As usual, we like to include the analyst’s track record when reporting on new analyst notes to give a perspective on the effect it has on stock performance. According to TipRanks, top five-star analyst Justin Post is ranked #55 out of 4,239 analysts. Post upholds a 67% success rate and garners 14.6% in his yearly returns. When recommending AMZN, Post gains 24.8% in average profits on the stock.

TipRanks analytics indicate AMZN as a Strong Buy. Based on 35 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 33 rate a Buy on AMZN, while 2 maintain a Hold. The 12-month average price target stands at $946.39, marking a 27% upside from where the stock is currently trading.