Nutanix (NTNX) investors had a tough week. NTNX shares tumbled nearly 10% after a media article indicated that Google Cloud services could soon be reaching into private data centers via custom computing devices that combine server, storage, and networking functions. However, a separate media article essentially rebutted the first article with quotes from Google such as ” We can confirm that we are not building customized appliances for external sale.”
Oppenheimer’s top analyst Ittai Kidron had a chance to meet with Nutanix’s management during investor meetings this week, and shares a few insights: “We come away confident in the company’s opportunity, strategy, execution, and competitive position, and highlight these takeaways: (1) Google is not likely to compete with Nutanix; (2) its solution stack is broad, increasingly integrated, and critical to evolving LT beyond HCI; (3) the competitive landscape is narrowing with only Dell/VMware as a capable competitor; (4) opex investment is likely to remain high, but balanced against sales productivity and FCF. Nutanix still has a lot to prove and the execution bar is high; that said, its progress is impressive, its vision compelling, and the opportunity ahead is sizable. We see the recent weakness as an opportunity to build longer term positions.”
“It’s too early to tell if Nutanix can build its value-added service layer, yet we believe it’s right in evolving the company’s LT value proposition beyond HCI (and currently has HCI “cover” to do so). While elevated investment levels could frustrate investors, productivity remains in check and cash management disciplined. We view Nutanix’s shares as attractive considering growth matrices,” the analyst concluded.
As such, Kidron reiterates an Outperform rating on Nutanix shares, with a price target of $70, which represents a potential upside of 50% from where the stock is currently trading.
According to TipRanks, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Ittai Kidron has a yearly average return of 25.8% and a 65.5% success rate. Kidron has a 67.2% average return when recommending NTNX, and is ranked #44 out of 4879 analysts.
Net net, the bullish tide continues to be strong for this hyperconverged appliance maker, with TipRanks analytics indicating NTNX as a Strong Buy. Based on 12 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 11 rate a Buy on Nutanix stock while 1 maintains a Hold. The 12-month average price target stands at $67.91, marking a 44% upside from where the stock is currently trading. (See NTNX’s price targets and analyst ratings on TipRanks)