Brisbane Broncos' (ASX:BBL) Returns On Capital Not Reflecting Well On The Business

By
Simply Wall St
Published
October 11, 2021
ASX:BBL
Source: Shutterstock

If we want to find a stock that could multiply over the long term, what are the underlying trends we should look for? One common approach is to try and find a company with returns on capital employed (ROCE) that are increasing, in conjunction with a growing amount of capital employed. This shows us that it's a compounding machine, able to continually reinvest its earnings back into the business and generate higher returns. In light of that, when we looked at Brisbane Broncos (ASX:BBL) and its ROCE trend, we weren't exactly thrilled.

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

Just to clarify if you're unsure, ROCE is a metric for evaluating how much pre-tax income (in percentage terms) a company earns on the capital invested in its business. The formula for this calculation on Brisbane Broncos is:

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

0.058 = AU$2.3m ÷ (AU$56m - AU$16m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2021).

Thus, Brisbane Broncos has an ROCE of 5.8%. In absolute terms, that's a low return and it also under-performs the Entertainment industry average of 11%.

Check out our latest analysis for Brisbane Broncos

roce
ASX:BBL Return on Capital Employed October 11th 2021

While the past is not representative of the future, it can be helpful to know how a company has performed historically, which is why we have this chart above. If you're interested in investigating Brisbane Broncos' past further, check out this free graph of past earnings, revenue and cash flow.

How Are Returns Trending?

On the surface, the trend of ROCE at Brisbane Broncos doesn't inspire confidence. To be more specific, ROCE has fallen from 12% over the last five years. Meanwhile, the business is utilizing more capital but this hasn't moved the needle much in terms of sales in the past 12 months, so this could reflect longer term investments. It's worth keeping an eye on the company's earnings from here on to see if these investments do end up contributing to the bottom line.

The Bottom Line On Brisbane Broncos' ROCE

Bringing it all together, while we're somewhat encouraged by Brisbane Broncos' reinvestment in its own business, we're aware that returns are shrinking. Yet to long term shareholders the stock has gifted them an incredible 172% return in the last five years, so the market appears to be rosy about its future. However, unless these underlying trends turn more positive, we wouldn't get our hopes up too high.

Brisbane Broncos does come with some risks though, we found 3 warning signs in our investment analysis, and 1 of those doesn't sit too well with us...

For those who like to invest in solid companies, check out this free list of companies with solid balance sheets and high returns on equity.

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