Upwork Rises as Earnings Prompt Target-Price Increases

Upwork shares jumped. Analysts raised their price targets after the online staffing platform reported stronger-than-expected earnings.
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Upwork  (UPWK) - Get Report shares leaped on Thursday as several analysts raised their price targets after the online staffing platform reported stronger-than-expected earnings.

Shares of the Santa Clara, Calif., company recently traded at $27.60, up 36%. The stock has well more than doubled year to date, compared with a 9% increase for the S&P 500 index during the same period.

Stifel upgraded the company to buy from hold and sent its share-price target to $31 from $17.

“Accelerated adoption of Upwork’s marketplace services should support 20%-plus revenue growth” over the next year, Stifel analysts wrote in a commentary cited by Bloomberg.

Margins also are expanding, they noted. Upwork “is experiencing reinvigorated growth,” which appears “sustainable,” the analysts said.

JMP Securities raised its share-price target to $28 from $20, keeping its rating at market outperform. 

“Upwork is benefiting from the acceleration of distributed, flexible, and remote work brought on by the pandemic,” and that trend should continue, JMP analysts said, according to Bloomberg.

MKM Partners lifted its price target to $28 from $20, affirming its buy rating. “UPWK shares continue to have significant upside” even after the recent jump, MKM analysts said, according to Bloomberg. They like its current moderate valuation and improvements in sales and product execution.

BTIG boosted its price target to $27 from $19, maintaining a buy rating. 

The company’s 2021 revenue target of 20% growth “is more impressive than it looks because it would be comping against 21% to 21.5% growth” this year, BTIG analysts said, according to Bloomberg. 

They said they now have an “improved view of UPWK’s long-term growth rate.”