Technology giant Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) has continued to prove sales for the iPhone 6/+ are still coming in hot, particularly in China. Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White affirmed this with his recent three day trip to China in which he reported that Apple stores were “jam-packed” with 1 to 2 hour long lines despite increased competition from local smartphone brands.
In the first quarter of 2015, Apple raked in $16.4 billion in revenue throughout China, marking a 70% increase year-over-year. Apple CEO Tim Cook has said that he is a “big believer in China” as it has become the second largest iPhone market in the world, having “generated record revenue in both [Apple’s] physical and online stores,” as noted by Apple CFO Luca Maestri.
During Brian White’s visit to China, he observed, “At one of the Hong Kong stores, the line began outside the Apple store and wound around the inside with an estimated wait time of 1.5 hours to 2 hours, while the other Apple store in Hong Kong had an estimated wait time of over an hour… We believe the fact that consumers are still waiting in line for the iPhone 6/6 Plus in Hong Kong this month speaks to the strength of this cycle relative to iPhone upgrades in the past.” Apple currently operates 21 stores throughout China with plans to expand to 40 stores by mid-2016.
Tim Cook said of China in Apple’s Q1 results, “Our online store has expanded to over 350 cities now, and in fact our online revenues in China last quarter were more than the sum of the previous five years… And so it’s an incredible market. I think people love Apple products and we are going to do our best to serve the market.”
On April 7th, Brian White reiterated a Buy rating on Apple with a price target of $180, according to SmarterAnalyst.
Brian White has rated Apple 106 times since October 2010, earning a 78% success rate recommending the stock and a +29.8% average return per recommendation. Overall, he has a 69% success rate recommending stocks and a +18.2% average return per recommendation.
Stifel Nicolaus analyst Aaron Rakers agrees with Brian White in that iPhone sales in China are still going strong. On April 6th, Rakers reiterated a Buy rating on Apple with a $150 price target, noting the “continued share ramp for Apple in China.”
Rakers has rated Apple 22 times since August 2012, earning a 76% success rate recommending the company and a +21.7% average return per recommendation. Overall, he has a 61% success rate recommending stocks and a +23.9% average return per recommendation.
On average, the top analyst consensus for Apple on TipRanks is Moderate Buy.