Uranium Energy: Canaccord Lifts Rating To Speculative Buy

Last Monday, Uranium Energy Corp (NYSE: UEC) announced that they would be acquiring UEX Corporation (TSX: UEX) to create “the largest diversified North American focused uranium company.” Uranium Energy will be buying UEX via an all-share transaction, where UEX shareholders will receive 0.0831 shares of Uranium Energy Corp for each share owned.

This implied a per-share consideration of C$0.43 per UEX share and roughly a 50% premium based on the closing price of UEX at the time of signing, which equates to roughly a 14% dilution for existing Uranium Energy shareholders.

Uranium Energy says that this will be an accretive acquisition, as it will double their pro-forma uranium mining claims and will have “the largest uranium portfolio focused exclusively in the Americas, located in proven and stable jurisdictions, and combining diversified U.S. production and Canadian development assets.”

UEX has 29 uranium projects which include locations on both the east and west sides of the Athabasca Basin. They also note that 5 out of the 29 projects are in the advanced resource stage, and are “already in strong joint-venture partnerships with established uranium miners.”

Uranium Energy Corp currently has 5 analysts covering the stock with an average 12-month price target of US$6.40, or an upside of almost 90%. Out of the 5 analysts, 2 have strong buy ratings and the other 3 analysts have buy ratings. The street high price target sits at US$7.20 or an upside of about 115%.

In Canaccord’s note on the merger, they reiterate their price target of US$5.50 and upgrade their rating from hold to speculative buy on Uranium Energy Corp, saying that they believe this deal to be a positive for the company but have some potential negative takeaways they shared.

Canaccord believes that most investors will be able to look forward, beyond the 13.7% dilution, to see that there is “good long-term value” that could come out of this deal, especially if the uranium market fundamentals continue to improve.

On the positives, Canaccord believes that with the deal more than doubling their uranium resources in politically stable countries and having pro-forma ownership of roughly 316mlbs of U3O8, it will be positioned properly for a potential switch by utilities to North American assets.

They also note that on an EV/lb basis, Uranium currently trades at US$6.25 a pound whereas UEX trades only at $0.81, suggesting that on this alone, the deal should be accretive to Uranium Energy.

On some of the potential negative things that could arise, Canaccord believes the biggest thing is the upfront dilution to existing Uranium Energy shareholders.

While they also believe that the management of Uranium Energy has “accumulated a very large portfolio over the last 12 months” which could lead to some issues stemming from such a large rollup. They believe that management might have multiple competing priorities they will need to address, but Canaccord tells shareholders that Uranium Energy should and will be “keenly focused on locking in long-term contracts to advance its near-term US assets into production.”

Information for this briefing was found via Sedar and Refinitiv. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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