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William Blair Updates Shareholders On Top SaaS Names Ahead Of Earnings Season

Wayne Duggan

With Q1 earnings just around the corner, William Blair analyst Justin Furby just updated clients on the firm’s take on three major names in the software-as-a-service (SaaS) space. According to Furby, Workday Inc (NYSE: WDAY) and The Ultimate Software Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: ULTI) are both buys ahead of earnings, while the firm is more cautious on SAP SE (ADR) (NYSE: SAP).

Furby says Q1 tends to be seasonally weak for Ultimate Software, but William Blair expects the stock’s positive momentum to continue.

“Our fieldwork points to a healthy demand backdrop with bullish pipelines, and our sense is that first-quarter bookings were roughly in line with management’s expectations,” Furby explains.

Related Link: Microsoft Turning Azure Cloud Service Skeptics Into Believers

In addition, William Blair is bullish on Workday after speaking with four HR systems integration specialists who say U.S. and European demand were both high in Q1.

“A few partners pointed to stabilization after the U.S. election as helping drive activity levels and pipeline... and one discussed that the security concerns about cloud increasingly are moving to the wayside,” Furby says.

Despite a partner indicating strong Q1 HR activity levels for SAP, William Blair remains on the sidelines for now.

“This is just one partner (albeit a big one) for SAP, and it is certainly not enough to form a broader view of SAP’s first quarter nor to change our overall view on the company,” Furby notes.

William Blair maintains Outperform ratings on Workday and United Software and a Market Perform rating on SAP.

Latest Ratings for WDAY

Date Firm Action From To
Mar 2017 Bank of America Initiates Coverage On Buy
Mar 2017 Bernstein Downgrades Outperform Market Perform
Feb 2017 Citigroup Downgrades Neutral Sell

View More Analyst Ratings for WDAY
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