Banc of America initiates coverage of Ultimate Electronics (ULTE) with buy.
Analyst Shelly Hale says the company has proven it can successfully compete against larger national competitors. Although she looks for modest growth in 2001, she believes EPS growth of 20%-plus should resume in 2002. Hale thinks there's ample room for growth as the company continues to expand its small store base 25%-30% annually, and as consumers migrate to digital. She sees $1.73 fiscal 2003 (Jan.) EPS on 25% revenue growth. She says recent transactions indicate a minimum valuation of $29 per share. Shares are trading at a discount to peers; Hale has a $36 target. She believes the company is as compelling a growth story as Tweeter Home Entertainment.