Why Plug Power (PLUG) Shares Are Gaining Today

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Plug Power (PLUG) was gaining 1.9% to $7.62 Thursday after acquiring ReliOn for $4 billion in stock.

ReliOn develops hydrogen fuel cell stack technology and fuel cell systems, and produces backup fuel cells. The company has deployed more than 5,000 fuel cell stacks to customer sites. ReliOn counts AT&T (T), Sprint (S), and Verizon (VZ) as customers.

Plug Power plans to integrate ReliOn's technology into its GenDrive fuel cell systems sometime this year.

"One of our objectives in 2014 is to expand our fuel cell stack technology holdings to enhance our customer offerings," Plug Power president and CEO Andy Marsh said in a press release. "The addition of this technology from ReliOn is a giant step in that direction and gives us a very high-performance and high-reliability stack. We're looking forward to growing this business with the talented new additions to the Plug Power team."

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TheStreet Ratings team rates PLUG POWER INC as a Sell with a ratings score of D-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate PLUG POWER INC (PLUG) a SELL. This is driven by some concerns, which we believe should have a greater impact than any strengths, and could make it more difficult for investors to achieve positive results compared to most of the stocks we cover. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its deteriorating net income and weak operating cash flow."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Electrical Equipment industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 240.8% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$8.47 million to -$28.88 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$8.94 million or 93.52% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • PLUG POWER INC's earnings per share declined by 27.3% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, PLUG POWER INC continued to lose money by earning -$0.79 versus -$0.94 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings (-$0.09 versus -$0.79).
  • Compared to its closing price of one year ago, PLUG's share price has jumped by 2894.35%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. Regarding the future course of this stock, we feel that the risks involved in investing in PLUG do not compensate for any future upside potential, despite the fact that it has seen nice gains over the past 12 months.
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 5.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 35.6%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: PLUG Ratings Report

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

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