updated 05:50 pm EDT, Wed April 4, 2007
Best Buy, solid Mac demand
News that Best Buy would expand its pilot program to carry Macs in 200 of its retail stores across the U.S. backs recent checks on Mac demand by research firm UBS. "Our checks suggest that Mac sales held up well in fiscal 2Q and could be poised for acceleration into the launch of Leopard this Spring (also Adobe's launch of its Creative Suite 3 should help)," wrote UBS analyst Ben Reitzes. "We note that Apple also launched a new Mac Pro today that features eight processor cores via two Intel Xeon quad-core 'Clovertown' microprocessors." Reitzes estimates year-over-year Mac unit growth of 34 percent, down 7 percent quarter-over-quarter to 1.5 million units in the second quarter of 2007. UBS maintained its 'buy 2' rating on Apple shares with a price target of $124.
Unit growth will likely show growth of 27 percent to 6.7 million units in fiscal year 2007, while unit growth in fiscal year 2008 is estimated at 25 percent to 8.4 million units.
"We are also optimistic about additional new Mac products and Apple's potential to expand relationships with Best Buy & Circuit City even further," the analyst added.