Shares of Tesla (TSLA 1.37%) popped on Monday, rising nearly 4% as of 1:05 p.m. EDT. The gain followed an analyst's move to give the stock a significant price target increase. Canaccord Genuity analyst Jed Dorsheimer now thinks the electric-car maker's shares could rise to $1,071 within the next 12 months.
After the growth stock hit an all-time high of just over $900 earlier this year, it slid sharply during part of February and the beginning of March. Has the pullback created a buying opportunity?
The path to $1,071
Dorsheimer more than doubled his price target for Tesla, increasing it from $419 to $1,071. In addition, the analyst changed his rating on the stock from hold to buy.
While Tesla makes most of its revenue from electric cars, the analyst's upgrade for the stock today has a lot to do with his bullish view for the company's solar and energy storage business. He believes Tesla's energy generation and storage business could rake in $8 billion of revenue annually by 2025 thanks to an "Apple-esque ecosystem of energy products" and "harmonized electrification." Dorsheimer thinks that as Tesla resolves the battery cell supply shortage it said it was facing in its most recent quarterly update, the company is well positioned to grow the business through sales of its energy storage products. He also believes Tesla is several years ahead of the competition in energy storage, giving it an edge.
Momentum in energy
Though Tesla's electric-car business gets more attention than its energy storage business since that's where the bulk of the company's sales come from, energy storage deployments actually grew faster in 2020 than electric-car sales. Total energy storage deployments, measured in gigawatt hours (GWh), increased 83% year over year to 3 GWh in 2020.
"This growth was driven mainly by the popularity of Megapack, our utility scale storage product," Tesla told investors in its fourth-quarter update. "Powerwall demand continues to increase as the residential business continues to grow."
Impressively, this growth came even as production was limited. "Our energy storage business continues to be supply constrained as backlog remains strong," Tesla said. But its efforts to increase cell production will help the company ramp up supply "in the next few months." Because of this, the automaker anticipates its energy storage business will grow at approximately the same rate in 2021 as it did in 2020.
Tesla's solar business is growing slower, with megawatts of solar deployments increasing 18% in 2020 from the prior year. But this segment saw accelerated growth in the fourth quarter, when deployments grew 59% year over year.
While investors should be sure to do their own due diligence on Tesla stock, Dorsheimer does highlight an often-underappreciated aspect of the business that could become a significant contributor to Tesla's bottom line.