Should Creepy Jar S.A.’s (WSE:CRJ) Weak Investment Returns Worry You?

Today we are going to look at Creepy Jar S.A. (WSE:CRJ) to see whether it might be an attractive investment prospect. Specifically, we’ll consider its Return On Capital Employed (ROCE), since that will give us an insight into how efficiently the business can generate profits from the capital it requires.

Firstly, we’ll go over how we calculate ROCE. Second, we’ll look at its ROCE compared to similar companies. Last but not least, we’ll look at what impact its current liabilities have on its ROCE.

What is Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)?

ROCE measures the ‘return’ (pre-tax profit) a company generates from capital employed in its business. All else being equal, a better business will have a higher ROCE. Ultimately, it is a useful but imperfect metric. 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’.

So, How Do We Calculate ROCE?

Analysts use this formula to calculate return on capital employed:

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

Or for Creepy Jar:

0.12 = zł890k ÷ (zł7.7m – zł283k) (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2019.)

So, Creepy Jar has an ROCE of 12%.

Check out our latest analysis for Creepy Jar

Does Creepy Jar Have A Good ROCE?

When making comparisons between similar businesses, investors may find ROCE useful. In this analysis, Creepy Jar’s ROCE appears meaningfully below the 17% average reported by the Entertainment industry. This could be seen as a negative, as it suggests some competitors may be employing their capital more efficiently. Separate from Creepy Jar’s performance relative to its industry, its ROCE in absolute terms looks satisfactory, and it may be worth researching in more depth.

The image below shows how Creepy Jar’s ROCE compares to its industry, and you can click it to see more detail on its past growth.

WSE:CRJ Past Revenue and Net Income April 8th 2020
WSE:CRJ Past Revenue and Net Income April 8th 2020

It is important to remember that ROCE shows past performance, and is not necessarily predictive. ROCE can be misleading for companies in cyclical industries, with returns looking impressive during the boom times, but very weak during the busts. ROCE is only a point-in-time measure. How cyclical is Creepy Jar? You can see for yourself by looking at this free graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.

How Creepy Jar’s Current Liabilities Impact Its ROCE

Short term (or current) liabilities, are things like supplier invoices, overdrafts, or tax bills that need to be paid within 12 months. Due to the way the ROCE equation works, having large bills due in the near term can make it look as though a company has less capital employed, and thus a higher ROCE than usual. To check the impact of this, we calculate if a company has high current liabilities relative to its total assets.

Creepy Jar has total assets of zł7.7m and current liabilities of zł283k. As a result, its current liabilities are equal to approximately 3.7% of its total assets. Low current liabilities have only a minimal impact on Creepy Jar’s ROCE, making its decent returns more credible.

The Bottom Line On Creepy Jar’s ROCE

If Creepy Jar can continue reinvesting in its business, it could be an attractive prospect. There might be better investments than Creepy Jar out there, but you will have to work hard to find them . These promising businesses with rapidly growing earnings might be right up your alley.

For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

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.