Shares of 3D printing company Stratasys, Inc. (NASDAQ: SSYS) jumped as much as 11.9% in trading Friday after getting an upgrade from analysts at Susquehanna Financial Group. At 3:45 p.m. EDT, shares were still up 10.9% for the day.
The Susquehanna upgrade was from a neutral rating to a positive rating and came with a price target increase from $22 to $31 per share. They predicted improved system revenue growth, higher recurring revenue, and even a potential takeover.
Speculation on a takeover comes from big players like GE and HP moving into 3D printing; one of them could get an established player if it bought Stratasys.
Susquehanna's prediction of a turnaround in system sales will be easy enough to test at the next earnings release. Users may be interested in adopting new products like the Makerbot platform for professionals and educators, but the idea that users would adopt small 3D printers has been proven wrong time and time again over the last five years. I think Stratasys has improved its strategy in the last few years, but I'd like to see some real traction on revenue growth before speculating on new products or a buyout that may never happen.
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