Jefferies raises Cogent shares target highlighting ‘drug potential’

Apr 1, 2024 6:29 pm | News

On Monday, Cogent (NASDAQ:COGT) shares received a positive update from Jefferies as the firm resumed coverage of the biotechnology company’s stock. The analyst at Jefferies set a new price target of $20.00, an increase from the previous target of $18.00, and maintained a Buy rating.

The endorsement comes with a focus on Cogent’s drug, bezuclastinib, which is currently in pivotal stages of development. According to Jefferies, bezuclastinib stands out due to its selective and potent inhibition of KIT, a type of enzyme that can be involved in tumor growth.

The drug is being developed for treatment in non-advanced systemic mastocytosis (SM), a condition where mast cells accumulate in body tissues. It is noted for differentiating from other approved KIT inhibitors based on its efficacy in treating SM and for avoiding central nervous system (CNS)-related safety issues across all SM cases.

Jefferies also highlighted the trial design for bezuclastinib in second-line gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST), where it is used in combination with standard of care (SoC) treatments. The combination is designed to broaden the spectrum of patients who can be treated and to improve efficacy compared to monotherapy with other KIT inhibitors.

The firm anticipates significant stock upside potential for Cogent, with three pivotal studies expected to have readouts in 2025. The analyst’s statement emphasized the potential for bezuclastinib to bring substantial benefits to patients and to Cogent’s market position, leading to the decision to assume a Buy rating and set a $20 price target for the company’s stock.

InvestingPro Insights

Jefferies has shown confidence in Cogent’s prospects with a raised price target and a Buy rating, aligning with recent positive performance indicators. According to real-time data from InvestingPro, Cogent’s stock has experienced a significant return over the last week, with a 16.26% price total return. This short-term uptick contrasts with a more challenging six-month performance, where the stock saw a 31.08% decline. Despite this volatility, Cogent holds a market cap of $642.52 million, reflecting investor interest in the company’s potential.

InvestingPro Tips suggest a mixed financial health for the company. On the one hand, Cogent holds more cash than debt, providing some financial stability. On the other, the company is not profitable over the last twelve months, with a negative P/E ratio of -3.34, and analysts do not anticipate the company will be profitable this year. Additionally, Cogent does not pay a dividend, which may be a consideration for income-focused investors.

For readers interested in a deeper dive into Cogent’s financials and more investment tips, InvestingPro offers a comprehensive analysis. There are 9 additional InvestingPro Tips available, which could provide further insights into Cogent’s performance and outlook. To access these insights, consider using the coupon code PRONEWS24 to get an additional 10% off a yearly or biyearly Pro and Pro+ subscription.

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