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Lehman Brothers Favors Best Buy

Lehman Brothers favors Best Buy (BBY) in the consumer-electronics space.

Analyst Alan Rifkin says while he expects Gateway to be highly promotional to clear the estimated 50 million to 60 million in inventory (mostly PCs) following its closure of 188 company-operated retail stores next week, he believes Best Buy is poised to be the primary beneficiary in the long term as it takes share.

Long term, Rifkin conservatively estimates that Best Buy could ultimately capture about 35% to 40% of desktop and laptop share from Gateway's store closings. Additionally, with 125 layoffs from store closings, he believes Best Buy can enhance its service talent pool.

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