An Intrinsic Calculation For IDP Education Limited (ASX:IEL) Suggests It's 26% Undervalued

By
Simply Wall St
Published
April 27, 2022
ASX:IEL
Source: Shutterstock

In this article we are going to estimate the intrinsic value of IDP Education Limited (ASX:IEL) by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to today's value. Our analysis will employ the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model. Before you think you won't be able to understand it, just read on! It's actually much less complex than you'd imagine.

Companies can be valued in a lot of ways, so we would point out that a DCF is not perfect for every situation. If you want to learn more about discounted cash flow, the rationale behind this calculation can be read in detail in the Simply Wall St analysis model.

Check out our latest analysis for IDP Education

Step by step through the calculation

We're using the 2-stage growth model, which simply means we take in account two stages of company's growth. In the initial period the company may have a higher growth rate and the second stage is usually assumed to have a stable growth rate. To begin with, we have to get estimates of the next ten years of cash flows. Where possible we use analyst estimates, but when these aren't available we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the last estimate or reported value. We assume companies with shrinking free cash flow will slow their rate of shrinkage, and that companies with growing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow, over this period. We do this to reflect that growth tends to slow more in the early years than it does in later years.

A DCF is all about the idea that a dollar in the future is less valuable than a dollar today, so we need to discount the sum of these future cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate:

10-year free cash flow (FCF) estimate

2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 2030 2031
Levered FCF (A$, Millions) AU$102.5m AU$181.4m AU$226.0m AU$260.1m AU$315.9m AU$357.0m AU$391.4m AU$419.9m AU$443.6m AU$463.5m
Growth Rate Estimate Source Analyst x4 Analyst x4 Analyst x3 Analyst x1 Analyst x1 Est @ 13% Est @ 9.64% Est @ 7.29% Est @ 5.64% Est @ 4.49%
Present Value (A$, Millions) Discounted @ 5.4% AU$97.2 AU$163 AU$193 AU$211 AU$243 AU$260 AU$270 AU$275 AU$276 AU$273

("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = AU$2.3b

We now need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all the future cash flows after this ten year period. For a number of reasons a very conservative growth rate is used that cannot exceed that of a country's GDP growth. In this case we have used the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield (1.8%) to estimate future growth. In the same way as with the 10-year 'growth' period, we discount future cash flows to today's value, using a cost of equity of 5.4%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2031 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = AU$464m× (1 + 1.8%) ÷ (5.4%– 1.8%) = AU$13b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= AU$13b÷ ( 1 + 5.4%)10= AU$7.7b

The total value, or equity value, is then the sum of the present value of the future cash flows, which in this case is AU$9.9b. To get the intrinsic value per share, we divide this by the total number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of AU$26.4, the company appears a touch undervalued at a 26% discount to where the stock price trades currently. Valuations are imprecise instruments though, rather like a telescope - move a few degrees and end up in a different galaxy. Do keep this in mind.

dcf
ASX:IEL Discounted Cash Flow April 27th 2022

The assumptions

Now the most important inputs to a discounted cash flow are the discount rate, and of course, the actual cash flows. You don't have to agree with these inputs, I recommend redoing the calculations yourself and playing with them. The DCF also does not consider the possible cyclicality of an industry, or a company's future capital requirements, so it does not give a full picture of a company's potential performance. Given that we are looking at IDP Education as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighted average cost of capital, WACC) which accounts for debt. In this calculation we've used 5.4%, which is based on a levered beta of 0.855. Beta is a measure of a stock's volatility, compared to the market as a whole. We get our beta from the industry average beta of globally comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable business.

Next Steps:

Although the valuation of a company is important, it is only one of many factors that you need to assess for a company. It's not possible to obtain a foolproof valuation with a DCF model. Preferably you'd apply different cases and assumptions and see how they would impact the company's valuation. If a company grows at a different rate, or if its cost of equity or risk free rate changes sharply, the output can look very different. Can we work out why the company is trading at a discount to intrinsic value? For IDP Education, we've compiled three pertinent elements you should explore:

  1. Financial Health: Does IEL have a healthy balance sheet? Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis with six simple checks on key factors like leverage and risk.
  2. Future Earnings: How does IEL's growth rate compare to its peers and the wider market? Dig deeper into the analyst consensus number for the upcoming years by interacting with our free analyst growth expectation chart.
  3. Other High Quality Alternatives: Do you like a good all-rounder? Explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!

PS. Simply Wall St updates its DCF calculation for every Australian stock every day, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any other stock just search here.

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Simply Wall St does a detailed discounted cash flow calculation every 6 hours for every stock on the market, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any company just search here. It’s FREE.

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