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Why MobileIron, Inc. Stock Plunged Today

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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of MobileIron (NASDAQ: MOBL  ) dropped by more than 13% during the July 15 trading session, although the loss was partially reversed over the course of the day.

So what: The shares dipped below their $9 IPO price in just over a month after trading began. The stock had gotten a boost following the initiation of coverage by a number of sell-side shops, with target share-price targets between $13 and $15. The stock currently trades at $8.79 per share.

The move today does not appear to be based on any fundamental news. However, given that today was a weak day for tech, and given that MobileIron is a small-cap tech company that trades at a nosebleed valuation, it was a ripe name for a selloff.

Now what: Shares of MobileIron don't exactly look like a bargain at nearly six times sales. Further, even at the high end of sell-side expectations the company looks on track to lose $1.36 per share this year and $0.79 per share next year. To top it all off, sell-side consensus currently pegs fiscal year 2015 full-year growth at a whopping 38%, with even the most pessimistic of the bunch calling for 36.3% growth, so there's a lot of optimism baked into these shares. While optimistic doesn't necessarily mean unrealistic, the company has a lot to prove before the stock begins to look like anything resembling a bargain.

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  • Report this Comment On July 16, 2014, at 11:37 AM, cthomas1017 wrote:

    I think this one is a dog. Watch out. You wrote "the most pessimistic of the bunch calling for 36.3% growth". Q1 YoY growth was under 10%. Not only does that mean that Q2 has to be substantially different, but that MOBL has to make up lost ground to hit that annual growth number. Perhaps the consensus has an inside track on the pipeline (rather than just management's forecasted sales), but frankly, I just don't see it. In about two weeks, we'll have our answer, but even if Q2 growth splits the difference between Q1 results and annual growth, that puts us at roughly half of what consensus is expecting. And there's nothing to indicate that MOBL's cash burn is anything but higher than previously in the IPO euphoria.

    To me, the risk on this animal is way too high. Lots of people with high hopes are likely to get their hand bit.

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Ashraf Eassa

Ashraf Eassa is a technology specialist with The Motley Fool. He writes mostly about technology stocks, but is especially interested in anything related to chips -- the semiconductor kind, that is. Follow him on Twitter:

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