Markets & Finance

Lehman Upgrades West Corp. to 'Overweight'


Lehman Brothers upgraded West Corp. (WSTC) to overweight from equal-weight.

Analyst Adam Waldo says the upgrade follows West Corp.'s May 9 closing of the acquisition of U.S. outsourced teleconference and videoconference leader InterCall. He raised the $1.13 2003 earnings per share estimate to $1.25, and upped the $1.35 2004 estimate to $1.75.

Waldo thinks this deal could be 15 cents to 20 cents earnings per share accretive in 2003, and 50 cents to 55 cents earnings per share accretive in 2004, vs. his prior published standalone estimates. He also raised his $30 target to $35, or 20 times his new 2004 earnings per share forecast.

Trading at 18 times the new 2003 earnings per share, and with a 2004 free cash flow yield of more than 7%, Waldo thinks this provider of customer relationship management solutions is attractively valued.


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