Plug Power’s Lowered Guidance Lacking Detail, Analyst Says

While Plug Power  (PLUG) – Get Plug Power Inc. Report shares firmed Friday after the hydrogen technology company’s earnings guidance beat expectations, at least one analyst wanted something else: details.

“Details were not provided,” Vaibhav Vaishnav of Coker Palmer Institutional wrote in a commentary. He sees tough sledding for Plug Power’s stock in the near term, with a price target of $13. He rates Plug Power a sector underperform.

The stock recently traded at $32.08, up 0.8%.

Among the details Vaishnav sees as missing: Specifics on the company’s $3 billion revenue estimate as well as investments needed to achieve its stated targets.

“The company spoke only about $1 billion in revenue from material handling and $700 million from hydrogen fuel,” Vaishnav said. “We assume the current four segments together total $1 billion, and $700 million is from third-party sales. PLUG also mentioned three gigawatt installed electrolyzers by 2025,” the analyst wrote.

What’s more, Plug Power is targeting 500 Temperature Programmed Desorption (TPD) plants and 1,000 TPD plants by 2025/’28 respectively. 

“Each 20 TPD plant costs $100 million, implying $2 billion/$4 billion capex beyond the initial 100 TPD targeted by the end of 2022,” Viashnav wrote. “PLUG intends to build a GW factory in Korea and a 2 GW factory in Australia. The HYVIA production facility could cost $200 million.

Also lacking additional detail, according to Viashnav: the company’s estimates on how much it can make on hydrogen sales.

“The average purchase price for hydrogen from third parties, the amount of hydrogen lost in storage/transfer and the selling price to internal customers,” Vaishnav said.

“The company estimates it can generate 30% gross margins at $6/kilogram, which makes sense to us. But we look for clarity on translation from the $6/kg selling price to an effective price realized of $4/Kg in 2019/’20/1H ‘21.”

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