Shopify reclaims top spot on list of Canada's most valuable public companies as share price soars

Shopify sign
Shopify has once again surpassed RBC to become Canada's most valuable publicly traded company. File photo

Shopify’s stock price hit an all-time high on Friday, a day after an analyst gave the firm its first-ever four-figure price target and the federal government said the company’s workers played a key role in developing a new contact tracing app for COVID-19. 

Shares in the Ottawa-based firm (TSX:SHOP) ended the week at $1,204.74 on the Toronto Stock Exchange, well up from Thursday’s close of $1,174.98 and nearly 25 per cent higher than their price of $975.75 less than two weeks ago. 

With a market capitalization of $141 billion, Shopify has now surged past RBC to reclaim top spot on the list of the country’s most valuable public companies ​– a position it also briefly held last month.

The stock price is nearly $15 more than Shopify’s previous high-water mark of $1,187.98 set back on May 25. That was the apex of a remarkable two-month stretch that saw the tech darling’s stock more than double in value as merchants began turning to its platform in droves to supply growing demand for e-commerce merchandise during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

After dipping slightly, Shopify’s stock got a boost once again Thursday, thanks partly to a favourable report from analysts at RBC Capital Markets.

RBC raised its price target for Shopify’s stock from $825 to $1,000 a share ​– new territory for the Ottawa firm. 

According to various media reports, RBC analyst Mark Mahaney reiterated his outperform rating for the company and said he expects Shopify to hit $25 billion in annual revenues by 2028, up from projected sales of slightly more than $2 billion this year, due to a surge in demand for online shopping.

It’s just the latest in a string of good news for Shopify, which inked a deal with Walmart earlier this week allowing its merchants across the United States to sell their wares on the big-box department store giant’s website. The company has also introduced a number of new products this spring and said last month it was planning to unveil a new line of financial services products to help make banking easier for merchants. 

Also Thursday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters that volunteers from Shopify were part of a team that developed a new app that will alert people if they come into contact with someone who tests positive for the novel coronavirus.

The app, which is voluntary and free to download, will provide unique, temporary codes to people who test positive for COVID-19 and anonymously input the results. Using Bluetooth technology provided by Apple and Google, other users who download the app will be notified if they come near a person with COVID-19 and are at risk of being infected.

The Canadian Digital Service and the Ontario Digital Service led the development of the new app, called COVID Alert, which will be rolled out first in Ontario and then throughout the rest of the country in the coming weeks. The feds say no personal information will be collected in the app, which is slated to undergo a security review from BlackBerry before being released.