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Goldman downgrades Warby Parker, cites ‘fading confidence’ in revenue outlook


Shares of Warby Parker have plummeted nearly 63% this year, and Goldman Sachs only sees more risks in the near term to the beaten-up glasses retailer. “We have fading confidence in the outlook for revenue outperformance and timeline to underlying GAAP profitability following several earnings releases where the revenue growth and profitability outlook have disappointed versus our expectations, driving a more balanced risk/reward with less upside potential to valuation,” analyst Brooke Roach said in a note to clients. Roach downgraded the stock to neutral from buy and slashed the bank’s price target to $18 from $34 a share. She also noted the bank’s initial call on the stock was “wrong.” The new target implies upside of just 3% from Tuesday’s closing price. Warby could benefit and capture market share in the long-term as it grows its brick and mortar stores, but a troublesome macro-environment, among other things, creates a “longer-dated path to profit growth,” Roach said. “We no longer have conviction in valuation expansion opportunity given our below-guide revenue and EBITDA forecasts. With execution risk elevated in a dynamic environment with rising rates, we believe valuation will remain range-bound,” she wrote. — CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed reporting.

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