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CTSH

Cognizant

$53.25

1.39 (2.68%)

11:38
11/28/16
11/28
11:38
11/28/16
11:38

Cognizant climbs after Elliott sends letter outlining value-enhancement plan

Shares of Cognizant Technnology Solutions (CTSH) rose over 8% in morning trading after Elliott Management sent a letter to the company outlining a three-part value-enhancement plan. LETTER TO COGNIZANT'S BOARD: Elliott Management, which manages funds that collectively beneficially own more than 4% of the common stock and equivalents of Cognizant, said it sent a letter to Cognizant's board outlining a three-part plan to enhance value. Elliott also asked for a meeting with Cognizant's board to share further thoughts. Cognizant could achieve a value of $80-$90+ per share by the end of 2017 by implementing the plan, according to the letter, representing upside of 50%-69% in just over a year. ELLIOTT RECOMMENDS SPECIFIC ACTIONS: In the letter to the company's board, Elliott said Cognizant has maintained its margin target over the past two decades despite growing significantly in size. The "lack" of operating leverage "masks inefficiency while impairing the company's flexibility to make sound investments," Elliot said. Elliott is also calling on Cognizant to implement a $2.5B share repurchase to be completed over the first half of fiscal 2017 as well as "immediately" institute a long-term capital return program, including dividends and ongoing share repurchases. The hedge fund is also seeking a board shakeup, saying it would "welcome" directors with "new experiences, skills and perspectives." Elliott also said that the value-enhancement plan provides "ample firepower" for continued acquisitions. WHAT'S NOTABLE: In August, Cognizant, citing macroeconomic headwinds, cut the high end of its fiscal 2016 revenue forecast to $13.47B-$13.53B from $13.47B-$13.6B. A month later, Cognizant said it was conducting an internal investigation into whether certain payments relating to facilities in India were made improperly and in possible violation of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The company also announced the resignation of its president, Gordon Coburn, and appointed Rajeev Mehta as the new president. Following the news of the probe, Citi downgraded the stock to Neutral from Buy, with analyst Ashwin Shirvaikar saying that while he believes the company is making "appropriate" investments for long-term success despite near-term challenges and acknowledges the attractive valuation, he said the stock is likely "uninvestable" to investors due to near-term factors like the investigation. PRICE ACTION: Cognizant is up 8.3% to $57.67 in late morning trading.

  • 28

    Nov

CTSH Cognizant
$53.25

1.39 (2.68%)

10/31/16
KEYB
10/31/16
NO CHANGE
KEYB
Cognizant should report upbeat earnings, says KeyBanc
KeyBanc says that Cognizant can increase investor confidence by "clarifying the impact from potential FCPA violations and President Gordon Coburn's abrupt departure." The firm thinks that the company's negative comments and lowered guidance are priced into the stock at current levels. It believes that the set-up for the company heading into its Q3 results is positive. The firm reiterates a $67 price target and an Overweight rating on the shares.
11/22/16
BOFA
11/22/16
DOWNGRADE
BOFA
Underperform
Cognizant downgraded two notches to Underperform at BofA/Merrill
BofA/Merrill analyst David Ridley-Lane downgraded Cognizant two notches to Underperform from Buy and lowered its price target to $48 from $66. The analyst sees risks from potential immigration reform under a Trump administration and a slower growth profile. Further, Ridley-Lane said revenue growth at Cognizant's largest customers has stalled and views a reacceleration of growth in 2017 as unlikely.
11/23/16
WBLR
11/23/16
DOWNGRADE
WBLR
Market Perform
Cognizant downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at William Blair
William Blair analyst Anil Doradla downgraded Cognizant Technology Solutions to Market Perform.
11/23/16
WBLR
11/23/16
DOWNGRADE
WBLR
Market Perform
Cognizant downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at William Blair
William Blair analyst Anil Doradla downgraded Cognizant Technology Solutions to Market Perform from Outperform. After visiting India, the analyst is concerned that Cognizant will be affected by structural changes within the services industry. The newest headwind to the industry is related to the potential policy changes under President-elect Trump, Doradla tells investors in a research note. Further, the analyst is disappointed by the company's lack of capital returns to shareholders. He also expects Cognizant's growth will continue decelerating from 2016 through 2018. In pre-market trading, the shares are down 53c to $52.65.

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