Andacor's (SNSE:ANDACOR) Robust Profit May Be Overstating Its True Earnings Potential

By
Simply Wall St
Published
December 01, 2021
SNSE:ANDACOR
Source: Shutterstock

Shareholders didn't seem to be thrilled with Andacor S.A.'s (SNSE:ANDACOR) recent earnings report, despite healthy profit numbers. Our analysis has found some concerning factors which weaken the profit's foundation.

See our latest analysis for Andacor

earnings-and-revenue-history
SNSE:ANDACOR Earnings and Revenue History December 2nd 2021

A Closer Look At Andacor's Earnings

Many investors haven't heard of the accrual ratio from cashflow, but it is actually a useful measure of how well a company's profit is backed up by free cash flow (FCF) during a given period. In plain english, this ratio subtracts FCF from net profit, and divides that number by the company's average operating assets over that period. This ratio tells us how much of a company's profit is not backed by free cashflow.

As a result, a negative accrual ratio is a positive for the company, and a positive accrual ratio is a negative. That is not intended to imply we should worry about a positive accrual ratio, but it's worth noting where the accrual ratio is rather high. Notably, there is some academic evidence that suggests that a high accrual ratio is a bad sign for near-term profits, generally speaking.

For the year to September 2021, Andacor had an accrual ratio of 0.43. As a general rule, that bodes poorly for future profitability. And indeed, during the period the company didn't produce any free cash flow whatsoever. Even though it reported a profit of CL$1.67b, a look at free cash flow indicates it actually burnt through CL$4.5b in the last year. Coming off the back of negative free cash flow last year, we imagine some shareholders might wonder if its cash burn of CL$4.5b, this year, indicates high risk. Unfortunately for shareholders, the company has also been issuing new shares, diluting their share of future earnings.

Note: we always recommend investors check balance sheet strength. Click here to be taken to our balance sheet analysis of Andacor.

In order to understand the potential for per share returns, it is essential to consider how much a company is diluting shareholders. In fact, Andacor increased the number of shares on issue by 53% over the last twelve months by issuing new shares. As a result, its net income is now split between a greater number of shares. To talk about net income, without noticing earnings per share, is to be distracted by the big numbers while ignoring the smaller numbers that talk to per share value. You can see a chart of Andacor's EPS by clicking here.

A Look At The Impact Of Andacor's Dilution on Its Earnings Per Share (EPS).

Unfortunately, we don't have any visibility into its profits three years back, because we lack the data. And even focusing only on the last twelve months, we don't have a meaningful growth rate because it made a loss a year ago, too. But mathematics aside, it is always good to see when a formerly unprofitable business come good (though we accept profit would have been higher if dilution had not been required). So you can see that the dilution has had a fairly significant impact on shareholders.

If Andacor's EPS can grow over time then that drastically improves the chances of the share price moving in the same direction. But on the other hand, we'd be far less excited to learn profit (but not EPS) was improving. For that reason, you could say that EPS is more important that net income in the long run, assuming the goal is to assess whether a company's share price might grow.

Our Take On Andacor's Profit Performance

In conclusion, Andacor has weak cashflow relative to earnings, which indicates lower quality earnings, and the dilution means that shareholders now own a smaller proportion of the company (assuming they maintained the same number of shares). For all the reasons mentioned above, we think that, at a glance, Andacor's statutory profits could be considered to be low quality, because they are likely to give investors an overly positive impression of the company. With this in mind, we wouldn't consider investing in a stock unless we had a thorough understanding of the risks. Our analysis shows 5 warning signs for Andacor (4 are potentially serious!) and we strongly recommend you look at them before investing.

Our examination of Andacor has focussed on certain factors that can make its earnings look better than they are. And, on that basis, we are somewhat skeptical. But there is always more to discover if you are capable of focussing your mind on minutiae. For example, many people consider a high return on equity as an indication of favorable business economics, while others like to 'follow the money' and search out stocks that insiders are buying. So you may wish to see this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying.

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