JPMorgan sees outsized growth for Weight Watchers as it adds influencers like Oprah

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Investors ordered up Weight Watchers shares on Tuesday after analysts at JPMorgan made a bullish call on the purveyor of weight-loss advice, saying they see a clear path to $2bn in revenues as the company adds influencers like Oprah Winfrey and DJ Khaled.

Shares in the company jumped 8 per cent to a record high $93.74 after analysts began coverage with an “overweight” rating and gave it a price target of $105 — a 21 per cent premium to Monday’s closing price.

A revamp of the company’s point-based programme tailored to each member’s weight loss goals, improvements to its mobile app and the recruitment of social media influencers has positioned the company for “outsized growth” and given Weight Watchers a clear path to its goal of achieving $2bn in revenues by 2020 — from $1.3bn in 2017 — analyst Christina Brathwaite said. She also expects the company to achieve full-year earnings of $4.60 by 2020.

The partnership with media mogul Oprah Winfrey in particular is “a key asset for the company given her marketing clout in the US”. Ms Brathwaite added that Ms Winfrey’s wide network of corporate leaders in the US “may make it easier for WTW to develop incremental strategic partners going forward”.

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