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Twilio (NYSE: TWLO)is closing out its rookie year as a publicly traded company in strong fashion. Shares of the cloud-based communications specialist rose 9.6% last week, fueled higher by an analyst's initiating coverage of Twilio stock with a bullish rating and an expanded relationship with Amazon's (NASDAQ: AMZN) AWS platform. Twilio stock has now more than doubled -- up 115%, to be exact -- since going public at $15 in late June.
Drexel Lambert analyst Brian White kicked off his coverage of Twilio with a "buy" rating and a $45 price target. He feels that Twilio will provide the strongest top-line growth within his firm's coverage universe for 2016. Twilio is a disruptive next-gen speedster that's gaining a foothold in many of the leading apps as the provider of choice when it comes to real-time communications solutions. Uber, Airbnb, and WhatsApp are just some of the popular companies leaning on Twilio.
Amazon, naturally, is also making Twilio a big part of AWS. The two tech companies first teamed up this summer when Twilio's software was tapped to power text messaging delivery within AWS. A source is now tellingBenzingathat the partnership is expanding to cover voice notifications, too.
Twilio's deepening its ties with Amazon isn't a surprise. Amazon became an investor in Twilio last year, and earlier this month Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson was a keynote presenter at an Amazon developer conference. Neither side officially confirmed the expansion of the partnership into voice messaging, but Twilio and Amazon working closer together just makes sense.
A wild first six months
Twilio seems to be doing things right. Revenue is decelerating but still growing at a heady pace. It has also posted narrower-than-expected losses in its first two quarters as a public company.
The stock has had other things on its mind. Shares of Twilio soared out of the gate, more than quadrupling by the time it peaked north of $70 in September. It has gone on to give most of those gains back.
Growth is slowing. Revenue climbed 62% in its latest quarter, but its guidance for the current period calls for year-over-year growth of just 41% to 45% on the top line. However, with its account base continuing to swell -- soaring 45% over the past year to 34,457 -- and Twilio expanding its deals with more that just Amazon, revenue should remain growing at a healthy clip in the near term.
Twilio was a blazing hot debutante this summer before cooling off after peaking early in the fall. Winter is treating it well so far, and if it is expanding its presence with apps that are already growing in popularity, its top-line guidance for the fourth quarter will prove to be conservative.
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