Shares of Zynga Inc.
are up 2.5% in Tuesday morning trading after Wells Fargo analyst Brian Fitzgerald upgraded the stock to overweight from equal weight. ” We think shares of Zynga present a favorable risk/reward in light of a new, more detailed strategic vision of organic growth, which CEO Gibeau recently articulated,” he wrote in a note to clients. Fitzgerald is upbeat about Zynga’s vertically integrated advertising network, its broader portfolio of franchises that will enable the company to allocate advertising spending toward areas with the greatest returns on investment, and an expansion of the business beyond the mobile platform. “We think ZNGA’s investment in supporting new launches (i.e. ‘Harry Potter, Puzzles & Spells’) is underappreciated by the market, and data on app usage have inflected back upwards in Nov and Dec after a lull in July through September,” he wrote. Zynga’s stock has declined 9.7% since Nov. 4, when Zynga last reported quarterly earnings. The S&P 500
has added 5.9% in that time.