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The 2016 All-Europe Research Team: Switzerland, No. 3: Christoph Gretler & team

Christoph Gretler’s five-person Credit Suisse crew captures third place, the position it has held since 2014.

Christoph Gretler & team
Credit Suisse
First-place appearances: 0

Total appearances: 9

Team debut: 1999

Christoph Gretler’s five-person Credit Suisse crew captures third place, the position it has held since 2014. Stationed in Zurich and covering 39 Swiss companies, the researchers “combine broad coverage with local knowledge,” observes one appreciative fund manager, who particularly values the group’s access to firmwide assets — such as its HOLT proprietary investment platform and strong quantitative modeling. For the year ahead, the squad identifies Autoneum as an outperformer. A Winterthur-based developer of acoustics and thermal materials technologies, the company’s products are used to make cars quieter, lighter and more comfortable. Gretler, 47, and his associates believe that the investment community is overreacting to two factors unsettling that end market: worries over Germany-based Volkswagen’s pollution emissions test scandal in the U.S. and the depressed market conditions in China’s automotives sector. Moreover, they are impressed with Autoneum management’s confidence that it will meet its 2020 financial objectives of 5 percent annual growth in net sales and margin improvement of roughly 170 basis points over the 2015 metric. Credit Suisse’s analysts assign the stock a price target of Sf200; it closed in mid-January at Sf196.20. They also have a favorable outlook on Luxembourg’s Cosmo Pharmaceuticals, whose shares trade in Switzerland. Initiating coverage in mid-December with an outperform rating on the stock and a price objective of Sf250, they anticipate healthy revenue from two late-stage drugs in the pipeline: Methylene Blue MMX for the detection of polyps and SIC 8000 for use in their removal. “We project combined risk-adjusted peak sales of €675 million” ($729 million), he says, once the therapies have been approved and marketed. In addition, Cosmo is planning to commercialize on its own “proven drug delivery technology,” which the company has been licensing in the U.S., Gretler notes. “It has already been successfully applied to marketed products with in-market sales of $800 million.”

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