Dave & Buster’s Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ:PLAY) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. The brokerage currently has a $55.00 price target on the restaurant operator’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price indicates a potential upside of 12.52% from the stock’s previous close.

According to Zacks, “Dave & Buster's shares have outpaced the industry over the past year. The company’s unique business model with increased dependence on gaming sets it apart and we expect the company’s entertainment business to carry the growth story forward. Consistent efforts to build sales and improve margins through various initiatives have also been key growth drivers. In this regard, continual opening of stores, menu innovation, launch of games, and the Fun American New Gourmet and beverage options are expected to continue boosting its top and bottom lines. In fact, the second quarter of fiscal 2017 marked the 12th successive earnings beat for the company. However, rising labor costs and a non-franchised business model might hurt profits, while a soft consumer spending environment in the U.S. restaurant space could impact comps.”

PLAY has been the subject of a number of other reports. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “buy” rating and set a $80.00 price objective on shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment in a research note on Friday, July 14th. Piper Jaffray Companies reissued an “overweight” rating and set a $69.00 price objective (down from $74.00) on shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment in a research note on Friday, September 1st. BidaskClub cut shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 19th. Wells Fargo & Company reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $71.00 price objective (down from $78.00) on shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment in a research note on Wednesday, September 6th. Finally, Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 target price (down previously from $75.00) on shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment in a research report on Wednesday, September 6th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. Dave & Buster’s Entertainment presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $73.00.

Shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment (NASDAQ PLAY) traded down 1.23% on Tuesday, hitting $48.28. The stock had a trading volume of 944,546 shares. The stock has a market cap of $1.98 billion, a PE ratio of 18.79 and a beta of 0.60. Dave & Buster’s Entertainment has a one year low of $39.15 and a one year high of $73.48. The company’s 50 day moving average is $53.88 and its 200 day moving average is $61.86.

Dave & Buster’s Entertainment (NASDAQ:PLAY) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, September 5th. The restaurant operator reported $0.59 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.55 by $0.04. Dave & Buster’s Entertainment had a net margin of 10.27% and a return on equity of 24.58%. The business had revenue of $280.80 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $281.69 million. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.50 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 14.9% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts predict that Dave & Buster’s Entertainment will post $2.70 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Dave & Buster’s Entertainment announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback program on Friday, September 8th that permits the company to buyback $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the restaurant operator to reacquire up to 4.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

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In related news, COO Margo Lynn Manning sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, July 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $66.46, for a total transaction of $664,600.00. Following the sale, the chief operating officer now owns 15,447 shares in the company, valued at $1,026,607.62. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, SVP J Michael Plunkett sold 3,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, October 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.20, for a total transaction of $153,600.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 68,000 shares of company stock worth $3,565,675. 3.84% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC boosted its holdings in shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment by 335.9% in the 1st quarter. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC now owns 1,905 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $116,000 after purchasing an additional 1,468 shares during the last quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank boosted its holdings in shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment by 147.6% in the 2nd quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 2,157 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $143,000 after purchasing an additional 1,286 shares during the last quarter. Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd boosted its holdings in shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment by 14,258.8% in the 1st quarter. Point72 Asia Hong Kong Ltd now owns 2,441 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $149,000 after purchasing an additional 2,424 shares during the last quarter. Hillsdale Investment Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment in the 2nd quarter valued at $153,000. Finally, US Bancorp DE boosted its holdings in shares of Dave & Buster’s Entertainment by 29.6% in the 1st quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 3,059 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $187,000 after purchasing an additional 699 shares during the last quarter.

About Dave & Buster’s Entertainment

Dave & Buster’s Entertainment, Inc owns and operates entertainment and dining venues for adults and families in North America. Its venues offer a menu of ‘Fun American New Gourmet’ entrées and appetizers, as well as a selection of non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages; and an assortment of entertainment attractions centered on playing games and watching live sports, and other televised events.

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