Lionsgate Stock Continues to Soar Amid 'Hunger Games' Buzz

10:20 AM PST 03/20/2012 by Etan Vlessing
Lionsgate

David Joyce of Miller Tabak + Co. raised his share price target to $17 as the teen blockbuster gets set to open theatrically this weekend.

TORONTO – Stock in Lionsgate Entertainment remains on an upward trajectory ahead of the indie studio’s The Hunger Games opening this weekend.

Shares in Vancouver-based Lionsgate were trading late Tuesday afternoon on the New York Stock Exchange at $15.16, up 6.4 percent on the day and just shy of the all-time high of $15.22 posted earlier in the session.

David Joyce, an entertainment analyst at Miller Tabak + Co., on Tuesday issued the latest bullish brokerage report on Lionsgate, raising his price target to $17 “due to continued positive sentiment toward the upcoming The Hunger Games theatrical release.”

Joyce predicted Hunger Games will generate an opening weekend box office of between $100 million and $110 million before going on to gross around $300 million domestically.

Stock in Lionsgate also has risen sharply in 2012 thanks to the company's leveraged buyout of Summit Entertainment.

And stock values are way up from the $5 to $7 range set between 2008 and 2011 when corporate raider Carl Icahn fought an ultimately unsuccessful bid to wrest control of the studio from CEO Jon Feltheimer and his senior management.

As late as this past fall, a string of box office duds like Conan the Barbarian, Warrior and Abduction continued to drag down Lionsgate's share price.

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