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NCR Up to Strong Buy: Should it Be in Your Portfolio?

On Apr 12, Zacks Investment Research upgraded NCR Corporation NCR to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). With a strong year-to-date return of 23.4% and positive estimate revisions over the last 60 days, NCR is an attractive investment opportunity.

Why the Upgrade?

NCR’s growing exposure in the ATM and self-service kiosk spaces is encouraging, given the tremendous growth prospects in the respective markets. Continuous product launches, growing popularity of its self-service offerings and synergies from acquisitions are the catalysts.

The company has been the global leader in self-service ATMs for several years in terms of market share. Per the latest report by global research company RBR Research, the global installed base of ATMs is expected to increase at a CAGR of 44.0% from 2012-2018, taking the worldwide ATM count to 3.7 million by 2018. These growth projections indicate that financial institutions will expand their ATM base in the times ahead. This creates a huge opportunity for companies like NCR.

To add to the positives, the company has supplemented its business growth through acquisitions. On Jan 10, 2014, NCR completed the acquisition of Digital Insight for $1.65 billion. Prior to that, on Feb 6, 2013, NCR had completed the acquisition of Retalix. So far, the Retalix acquisition has bolstered its top line. We believe further acquisitions will add to NCR’s growth.

Over the past 60 days, all the estimates (4) for fiscal 2016 were revised upward, taking the Zacks Consensus Estimate up by 15 cents to $2.91. NCR also delivered positive earnings surprises in the last four quarters with an average beat of 9.4%.

Although, NCR’s revenues in the last reported quarter (fourth quarter 2015) lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate, its earnings per share surpassed the same. The company’s non-GAAP earnings (excluding acquisition-related costs, amortization of intangibles and other one-time items) of 92 cents beat the consensus estimate of 87 cents and increased 4.5% year over year.

Going forward, continuous deal wins should drive growth. Moreover, NCR strengthened its position in the POS market through the integration of Radiant Systems.

However, softness in the ATM business in mature markets, competition from Diebold Incorporated DBD and HP Inc. HPQ, and a high debt burden remain concerns.

Besides NCR, investors may consider Lexmark International Inc. LXK, another Zacks Rank #1 stock in the technology sector.

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Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
 
HP INC (HPQ): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
NCR CORP-NEW (NCR): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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LEXMARK INTL (LXK): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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