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Fly News Breaks for February 11, 2020
Feb 11, 2020 | 07:31 EDT
JPMorgan analyst David Karnovsky downgraded WWE to Neutral from Overweight with a price target of $47, down from $80. The company's management change, new 2020 outlook, and potential network deals have reset the story for shares, which are down nearly 30% in two weeks, Karnovsky tells investors in a research note. He believes near-term upside in the shares will largely depend on WWE's success in negotiating "transformative" deals. The decision to pursue this path, which not surprising, is an about-face in strategy for WWE which for years emphasized having a direct relationship with its super fans, says Karnovsky. He believes the shift reflects two realities: that at $10 per month, WWE Network came up far short of its initial 3M-4M subscriber goal, and that a more crowded market for over-the-top services means more competition for subscribers. While the analyst thinks WWE's risk/reward skew is still positive, given a lack of clarity, he thinks a Neutral rating "makes sense for the time being."
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