July 31st, 2023 | 09:50 CEST
BASF, Cantourage Group, Palantir - Now the analysts speak out
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"[...] We are a producer and distributor of medicinal products and thus cover a crucial step in the value chain, especially within the cannabis industry. [...]" Philip Schetter, CEO, Cantourage Group SE
Palantir - AI gives wings
For a long time, data analytics software provider Palantir was not considered a friend of the analyst community due to its high valuation. But the explosive development of artificial intelligence, in which the US-Americans are likely to play a key role, is fundamentally changing the views of financial experts. The best example is the initial study of the US analyst firm Wedbush, which started the coverage with a price target of USD 25 and the verdict "outperform".
Thus, according to their study, the analysts assume that Palantir, with its data pool built over decades, is in a position to take advantage of the growing opportunities offered by the major language models to expand its platform and enhance it. Palantir could thus leverage its expertise to drive the development of AI solutions based on high-quality data, thereby laying the groundwork for transitioning to a pure-play AI company. "Palantir has built an impregnable AI fortress and is positioned to play a critical role in the upcoming revolution of the next decade," the analysts wrote in their assessment last week.
The financial experts also believe the stock could continue to be re-rated and should trade significantly above its software peer group over time. On the one hand, Palantir will continue to expand and, on the other, benefit from revolutionary AI.
After a price performance of almost 150% to now USD 17.81 since the beginning of May, the next resistance at USD 19.45 should become decisive. Should the Nasdaq title cross this hurdle, a further move to the area around USD 27 would be possible. If the mark is not broken in the first attempt, there is a threat of a setback to the level of around USD 15.
Cantourage Group - Different from the peer group
When comparing the numbers of the German cannabis pioneer with companies like Canopy Growth or Tilray, which are still struggling with substantial losses in their balance sheets after years, Cantourage Group's performance can be considered nothing short of spectacular. With a growth surge of 90% in the first half of the year and a positive EBITDA, the North American peer group is as far away as the moon from achieving such results. The Berlin-based company, which went public in the fourth quarter, has a market capitalization of around EUR 137 million. In comparison, Canopy Growth has a market capitalization of EUR 253.58 million, and Tilray is even higher at EUR 1.03 billion.
Cantourage Group, one of the leading European companies for the production and distribution of cannabis-based medicinal products, achieved revenues of approximately EUR 11.1 million in the first half of the year, an increase of around 90%. In addition, the Company achieved positive EBITDA for the second quarter in a row. At the half-year point, this amounted to EUR 0.2 million. The Company's management expects further strong, profitable growth in the high double-digit percentage range for the full year. According to a recent study by NuWays AG, analysts anticipate revenues of EUR 30.7 million for the current year. These revenues are expected to almost double the following year to around EUR 56.1 million. In addition, earnings per share are expected to continue to develop positively from EUR 0.01 per share to EUR 0.15 in 2024.
An additional boost could come from the government's planned legal elimination of the classification of medical cannabis as a narcotic, which should make access to medical cannabis much easier. Currently, every customer still pays entirely out of their own pocket when purchasing medical preparations, with the exception of palliative patients or people with chronic conditions. Should health insurance companies step in in the future, the market is likely to explode.
With its "Fast Track Access" platform, the Cantourage Group is pursuing a profitable business model compared to its competitors. By bringing in additional partners worldwide, there is also enormous growth potential. Due to the low free float, long-term investors should limit their purchases.
BASF - Bottom reached
The analysts' conference that followed the figures brightened the mood among BASF shareholders considerably. The reason was the fact that the management of the chemical company assumed no further weakening of demand and that the bottom had been reached. In addition, they were sticking to the IPO or the sale of the subsidiary Wintershall Dea. Moreover, the weak figures for the first half of the year were no longer a surprise in the sense that the Ludwigshafen-based company had already published its key data in mid-July and, like many companies in the chemicals sector, had lowered its forecasts for the year as a whole.
For the current year, management has since calculated a decline in sales to EUR 73 to 76 billion, compared with EUR 87.3 billion in the previous year. Previously, the forecast was significantly higher at EUR 84 to 87 billion. In terms of operating profit, BASF now expects only EUR 4.0 billion to EUR 4.4 billion instead of EUR 4.8 billion to EUR 5.4 billion. In the previous year, the DAX-listed group had still achieved an operating result of just under EUR 6.9 billion.
Following the publication of the figures, several analyst firms spoke out. The British investment bank Barclays left its rating for BASF at EUR 61 with an "equal-weight " vote. JP Morgan, on the other hand, has set its rating at "overweight". The US target price remains at EUR 58.
Despite weak figures, BASF was able to reassure analysts with a positive outlook. According to financial experts, Palantir is one of the primary beneficiaries of the AI revolution. Revolutionary compared to the peer group are also the half-year figures of the cannabis company Cantourage Group.
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