One Wall Street firm is getting a lot more bullish on Netflix’s ability to dominate the video streaming market.
GBH Insights increased its price target for Netflix shares to $500 from $400, representing 28 percent upside to Monday’s close. It is the highest target of the 36 analysts who cover Netflix, according to FactSet. The firm also reiterated its “highly attractive” rating.
“Our bullish thesis on Netflix is based on our belief that the company’s competitive moat, franchise appeal, ability to increase international streaming customers through 2020, and original content build out will translate into robust profitability and growth,” head of technology research Daniel Ives said in a note to clients Tuesday. Ives previously worked for FBR for 16 years.
Netflix shares rose 1.9 percent to $397.24 in early trading Tuesday as the rest of the market fell on trade war fears. Its stock is up 103 percent this year through Monday, which is the second-best performance in the S&P 500.
Citing his firm’s survey of users, Ives said the average Netflix customer watches its service more than 10 hours per week versus five hours per week for Amazon and Hulu. He also said nearly 90 percent of Netflix’s subscribers said they are willing to pay more for the service.
“We believe Netflix remains in a unique position of iron-like strength to grow its content and distribution tentacles over the next 12 to 18 months and thus further build out its massive content and streaming footprint,” he said.
In a similar move, Piper Jaffray raised its price target to $420 from $367 and reiterated its overweight rating for Netflix shares Tuesday, predicting strong international subscriber growth for the company.