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09 Jun 2021 | 08:09

Credit Suisse highlights 'underappreciated growth drivers' at Smith & Nephew

(Sharecast News) - Credit Suisse upgraded shares of artificial hip and knee maker Smith & Nephew on Wednesday to 'outperform' from 'neutral', lifting the price target to 1,805p from 1,560p as it pointed to "underappreciated growth drivers". The bank argued that S&N is an underappreciated elective surgery recovery play in the near term and that investors underestimate the combined power of recently-acquired growth drivers with corresponding return leverage mid-term.

It upped its FY21-23 sales/adjusted earnings per share estimates by an average 2%/6%, leaving it 3%/5% above Bloomberg consensus.

"As the drivers become clearer gaining the confidence of investors, we expect Smith & Nephew stock to reverse its material underperformance over the past 12 months," Credit Suisse said.

The bank noted that since late 2017, Smith & Nephew has bought several bolt-on technologies, committing close to $1.6bn, and with associated negative M&A effects on trading margin of around 150 basis points for FY21.

"We deep-dived into the potential for the new technologies," it said. "We believe the Wound Biologics/Sports Medicine/Extremities/ENT franchises can add circa 80/15/40/40bps to group underlying growth mid-term.

"This would turn Smith & Nephew from low-to-mid single digit into mid-to-high single digit underlying growth mode and generate relevant operating leverage, providing upside to trading margin."

At 0940 BST, the shares were up 3.9% at 1,530p.
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