Stock Analysis

Here's Why Vermilion Energy (TSE:VET) Has Caught The Eye Of Investors

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TSX:VET
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The excitement of investing in a company that can reverse its fortunes is a big draw for some speculators, so even companies that have no revenue, no profit, and a record of falling short, can manage to find investors. But as Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, 'Long shots almost never pay off.' Loss-making companies are always racing against time to reach financial sustainability, so investors in these companies may be taking on more risk than they should.

If this kind of company isn't your style, you like companies that generate revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in Vermilion Energy (TSE:VET). Now this is not to say that the company presents the best investment opportunity around, but profitability is a key component to success in business.

Our analysis indicates that VET is potentially undervalued!

Vermilion Energy's Earnings Per Share Are Growing

If a company can keep growing earnings per share (EPS) long enough, its share price should eventually follow. That makes EPS growth an attractive quality for any company. To the delight of shareholders, Vermilion Energy has achieved impressive annual EPS growth of 50%, compound, over the last three years. Growth that fast may well be fleeting, but it should be more than enough to pique the interest of the wary stock pickers.

Top-line growth is a great indicator that growth is sustainable, and combined with a high earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margin, it's a great way for a company to maintain a competitive advantage in the market. On the revenue front, Vermilion Energy has done well over the past year, growing revenue by 110% to CA$3.1b but EBIT margin figures were less stellar, seeing a decline over the last 12 months. So it seems the future may hold further growth, especially if EBIT margins can remain steady.

In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings and revenue, over time. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.

earnings-and-revenue-history
TSX:VET Earnings and Revenue History November 16th 2022

Fortunately, we've got access to analyst forecasts of Vermilion Energy's future profits. You can do your own forecasts without looking, or you can take a peek at what the professionals are predicting.

Are Vermilion Energy Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?

It should give investors a sense of security owning shares in a company if insiders also own shares, creating a close alignment their interests. So it is good to see that Vermilion Energy insiders have a significant amount of capital invested in the stock. Holding CA$123m worth of stock in the company is no laughing matter and insiders will be committed in delivering the best outcomes for shareholders. This would indicate that the goals of shareholders and management are one and the same.

It's good to see that insiders are invested in the company, but are remuneration levels reasonable? Well, based on the CEO pay, you'd argue that they are indeed. The median total compensation for CEOs of companies similar in size to Vermilion Energy, with market caps between CA$2.7b and CA$8.5b, is around CA$4.5m.

The CEO of Vermilion Energy only received CA$1.5m in total compensation for the year ending December 2021. That's clearly well below average, so at a glance that arrangement seems generous to shareholders and points to a modest remuneration culture. CEO compensation is hardly the most important aspect of a company to consider, but when it's reasonable, that gives a little more confidence that leadership are looking out for shareholder interests. It can also be a sign of a culture of integrity, in a broader sense.

Is Vermilion Energy Worth Keeping An Eye On?

Vermilion Energy's earnings per share growth have been climbing higher at an appreciable rate. The sweetener is that insiders have a mountain of stock, and the CEO remuneration is quite reasonable. The strong EPS improvement suggests the businesses is humming along. Big growth can make big winners, so the writing on the wall tells us that Vermilion Energy is worth considering carefully. Even so, be aware that Vermilion Energy is showing 3 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 1 of those doesn't sit too well with us...

Although Vermilion Energy certainly looks good, it may appeal to more investors if insiders were buying up shares. If you like to see insider buying, then this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying, could be exactly what you're looking for.

Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.

Valuation is complex, but we're helping make it simple.

Find out whether Vermilion Energy is potentially over or undervalued by checking out our comprehensive analysis, which includes fair value estimates, risks and warnings, dividends, insider transactions and financial health.

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