Bata India Limited (NSE:BATAINDIA) Is Employing Capital Very Effectively

Today we’ll evaluate Bata India Limited (NSE:BATAINDIA) to determine whether it could have potential as an investment idea. In particular, we’ll consider its Return On Capital Employed (ROCE), as that can give us insight into how profitably the company is able to employ capital in its business.

First, we’ll go over how we calculate ROCE. Next, we’ll compare it to others in its industry. Finally, we’ll look at how its current liabilities affect its ROCE.

What is Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)?

ROCE measures the amount of pre-tax profits a company can generate from the capital employed in its business. In general, businesses with a higher ROCE are usually better quality. In brief, it is a useful tool, but it is not without drawbacks. Renowned investment researcher Michael Mauboussin has suggested that a high ROCE can indicate that ‘one dollar invested in the company generates value of more than one dollar’.

How Do You Calculate Return On Capital Employed?

The formula for calculating the return on capital employed is:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets – Current Liabilities)

Or for Bata India:

0.18 = ₹5.1b ÷ (₹36b – ₹7.8b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2019.)

Therefore, Bata India has an ROCE of 18%.

View our latest analysis for Bata India

Is Bata India’s ROCE Good?

ROCE can be useful when making comparisons, such as between similar companies. In our analysis, Bata India’s ROCE is meaningfully higher than the 11% average in the Luxury industry. We would consider this a positive, as it suggests it is using capital more effectively than other similar companies. Regardless of where Bata India sits next to its industry, its ROCE in absolute terms appears satisfactory, and this company could be worth a closer look.

You can click on the image below to see (in greater detail) how Bata India’s past growth compares to other companies.

NSEI:BATAINDIA Past Revenue and Net Income, January 30th 2020
NSEI:BATAINDIA Past Revenue and Net Income, January 30th 2020

Remember that this metric is backwards looking – it shows what has happened in the past, and does not accurately predict the future. ROCE can be deceptive for cyclical businesses, as returns can look incredible in boom times, and terribly low in downturns. ROCE is, after all, simply a snap shot of a single year. Since the future is so important for investors, you should check out our free report on analyst forecasts for Bata India.

Bata India’s Current Liabilities And Their Impact On Its ROCE

Liabilities, such as supplier bills and bank overdrafts, are referred to as current liabilities if they need to be paid within 12 months. The ROCE equation subtracts current liabilities from capital employed, so a company with a lot of current liabilities appears to have less capital employed, and a higher ROCE than otherwise. To check the impact of this, we calculate if a company has high current liabilities relative to its total assets.

Bata India has current liabilities of ₹7.8b and total assets of ₹36b. As a result, its current liabilities are equal to approximately 22% of its total assets. Current liabilities are minimal, limiting the impact on ROCE.

What We Can Learn From Bata India’s ROCE

This is good to see, and with a sound ROCE, Bata India could be worth a closer look. Bata India shapes up well under this analysis, but it is far from the only business delivering excellent numbers . You might also want to check this free collection of companies delivering excellent earnings growth.

I will like Bata India better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.