Newly public Entellus Medical picks up analyst coverage

Entellus Medical was the latest Minnesota company to complete an initial public offering when it went public Jan. 28. The Plymouth-based maker of a medical device to treat chronic sinusitis raised $78 million after its offering priced at $17 per share. Last week, analysts from three firms picked up coverage on Entellus, each with "buy" recommendations.

Piper Jaffray analyst Thomas Gunderson initiated coverage with an "overweight" rating and a 12-month price target of $25 per share. William Plovanic of Canaccord Genuity Corp. started his coverage with a "buy" rating and a 12-month price target of $26 per share. The stock is currently trading around $22 per share.

Benjamin Andrew from William Blair & Co. started coverage with an "outperform" rating but no price target.

The primary product for Entellus is Xpress, a balloon sinus dilation (BSD) device that offers a less invasive medical procedure that ear, nose and throat doctors can use in an operating room or in-office setting.

Plovanic based his buy recommendation on the belief that there is $1 billion market opportunity for BSD treatments. Plovanic feels Entellus can grab a share of that market when he gave them the buy rating. "Our analysis is based on the belief that Entellus will be successful in driving BSD adoption in the office setting, and to a lesser extent, maintain or increase market share in the OR setting," wrote Plovanic. "We believe it is only a matter of time before in-office BSD becomes standard of care for the appropriate patient population."

Patrick Kennedy

Divergent views on Famous Dave's

Barbecue restaurant chain Famous Dave's of America picked up analyst coverage from Alex Fuhrman of Craig-Hallum Capital when he started coverage with a "buy" recommendation Wednesday. The new coverage gave Dave's stock a small bump as it closed up 3.5 percent on Wednesday to $30.84.

The Minnetonka-based restaurant company is now covered by three Minneapolis-based analysts: Fuhrman, George McKinley of Dougherty & Co. and Mark Smith of Feltl & Co.

Based on their buy-sell recommendations and 12-month price targets, their views seem widely divergent. Smith is most pessimistic with a "sell" rating and a 12-month price target of $19 per share; he downgraded Dave's from a "hold" on Feb. 20. Fuhrman and McKinley each have a "buy" rating, but according to Bloomberg, McKinley's 12-month price target is $30 per share, while Fuhrman started his coverage with a $50 per share target.

Patrick Kennedy