Penn National Stock Initiated Buy With Wall Street High Target

Penn National could become the market leader in online sports betting, Rosenblatt says, initiating the stock at buy.
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Shares of Penn National Gaming  (PENN) - Get Report were higher on Thursday after the gambling company was initiated buy at Rosenblatt with a Wall Street high price target of $80 a share. 

The investment firm is bullish on Penn's acquisition of a 36% interest in popular sports news platform Barstool Sports and on the Wyomissing, Pa., company's burgeoning sports betting business .

"If PENN can leverage Barstool’s brand with a best-in-class and differentiated app, ... there is potential for PENN to be the market leader," analyst Bernie McTernan said.

Penn National shares at last check jumped 9.2% to $63.51. 

Penn National "has the potential to gain significant share in online betting, driven by their partnership with Barstool providing a differentiated customer acquisition strategy," McTernan said.

Penn National on Sept. 15 is set to launch the Barstool Sports online betting app into a market that already features two rivals, FanDuel and DraftKings  (DKNG) - Get Report

"While we continue to expect DKNG and FanDuel to be leaders in the online betting space given their first-mover advantages ... Penn could already have their ear, an envious position."

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Sports betting in the U.S. is about to ratchet up as the National Football League season kicks off Thursday. 

Americans wagered $13 billion legally in 2019, the first full calendar year since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down federal sports gambling restrictions, with the NFL leading the way, according to a study from Kambi.

The NFL's return and the timing of Barstool Sports betting's debut could be catalysts for Penn's stock, according to Rosenblatt.