Why Sify Technologies Limited’s (NASDAQ:SIFY) Return On Capital Employed Is Impressive

Today we’ll evaluate Sify Technologies Limited (NASDAQ:SIFY) to determine whether it could have potential as an investment idea. 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. Finally, we’ll look at how its current liabilities affect its ROCE.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?

ROCE is a metric for evaluating how much pre-tax income (in percentage terms) a company earns on the capital invested in its business. Generally speaking a higher ROCE is better. In brief, it is a useful tool, but it is not without drawbacks. Author Edwin Whiting says to be careful when comparing the ROCE of different businesses, since ‘No two businesses are exactly alike.

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 Sify Technologies:

0.12 = ₹2.0b ÷ (₹32b – ₹15b) (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2019.)

So, Sify Technologies has an ROCE of 12%.

See our latest analysis for Sify Technologies

Is Sify Technologies’s ROCE Good?

One way to assess ROCE is to compare similar companies. In our analysis, Sify Technologies’s ROCE is meaningfully higher than the 5.3% average in the Telecom industry. We would consider this a positive, as it suggests it is using capital more effectively than other similar companies. Separate from Sify Technologies’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 Sify Technologies’s ROCE compares to its industry, and you can click it to see more detail on its past growth.

NasdaqCM:SIFY Past Revenue and Net Income, February 5th 2020
NasdaqCM:SIFY Past Revenue and Net Income, February 5th 2020

When considering this metric, keep in mind that it is backwards looking, and not necessarily predictive. Companies in cyclical industries can be difficult to understand using ROCE, as returns typically look high during boom times, and low during busts. ROCE is, after all, simply a snap shot of a single year. Future performance is what matters, and you can see analyst predictions in our free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

How Sify Technologies’s Current Liabilities Impact 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. 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.

Sify Technologies has total assets of ₹32b and current liabilities of ₹15b. Therefore its current liabilities are equivalent to approximately 47% of its total assets. Sify Technologies has a middling amount of current liabilities, increasing its ROCE somewhat.

The Bottom Line On Sify Technologies’s ROCE

With a decent ROCE, the company could be interesting, but remember that the level of current liabilities make the ROCE look better. Sify Technologies 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.

If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).

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.