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solzberg in Gainers & Losers,

Cognizant' stock to continue to rise

I remain upbeat about the shares of Cognizant Technology Solutions (CTSH), a leading provider of information technology, consulting, and business process outsourcing services. Recently, the company announced that it had entered into an agreement to acquire Adaptra, a Sydney-based consulting, business transformation and IT services provider. Adaptra works with 5 of the top 10 insurers in Australia and New Zealand, helping them define their target business and operating models and providing platform advisory and implementation services. The deal is expected to further strengthen Cognizant's deep insurance, business transformation and platform capabilities to help clients succeed in a technology- and data-intensive world.

To note, M&A deals have been a key growth catalyst for Cognizant. In November, the company announced the acquisition of privately-held Mirabeau BV, a digital marketing and customer experience agency specializing in industries such as travel and hospitality, financial services, retail, and B2B sectors, to expand its digital business capabilities in the Netherlands and across Europe. Earlier, Cognizant bought Frontica Business Solutions, a Norway-based IT solutions provider, which should strengthen its oil and gas industry expertise.

Cognizant’s financials for the third quarter of 2016 were solid, with both top and bottom line surpassing consensus estimates. Revenues increased 8.4% y-o-y to $3.45 bn driven by ongoing client demand for the company’s services across industries and geographies. Adjusted operating income rose 8% to $667.2 mn, and adjusted earnings per share jumped 13.2% to 86 cents. For full year 2016, Cognizant expects adjusted EPS in the range of $3.38-3.41 on revenues of $13.47-13.53 bn.

I believe that Cognizant will continue to benefit from strong demand for high quality, lower cost technology services. Based on its global delivery model and expanding capacity in low-cost areas, the company remains well-positioned in the outsourcing market. Companies worldwide continue to shift spending toward investments that drive innovation and growth in the digital era, and Cognizant’s strong portfolio of services and expertise will allow it to demonstrate solid financials going forward, in my opinion.

I expect Cognizant’s stock to continue to rise, with medium-term target at $65.

$CTSH, Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation / D