For beginners, it can seem like a good idea (and an exciting prospect) to buy a company that tells a good story to investors, even if it completely lacks a track record of revenue and profit. But as Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, 'Long shots almost never pay off.'
If, on the other hand, you like companies that have revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in Scanfil Oyj (HEL:SCANFL). Even if the shares are fully valued today, most capitalists would recognize its profits as the demonstration of steady value generation. Conversely, a loss-making company is yet to prove itself with profit, and eventually the sweet milk of external capital may run sour.
How Fast Is Scanfil Oyj Growing?
As one of my mentors once told me, share price follows earnings per share (EPS). Therefore, there are plenty of investors who like to buy shares in companies that are growing EPS. Who among us would not applaud Scanfil Oyj's stratospheric annual EPS growth of 37%, compound, over the last three years? Growth that fast may well be fleeting, but like a lotus blooming from a murky pond, it sparks joy for the wary stock pickers.
I like to take a look at earnings before interest and (EBIT) tax margins, as well as revenue growth, to get another take on the quality of the company's growth. Scanfil Oyj maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 5.4% to €596m. That's progress.
In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. For finer detail, click on the image.
While we live in the present moment at all times, there's no doubt in my mind that the future matters more than the past. So why not check this interactive chart depicting future EPS estimates, for Scanfil Oyj?
Are Scanfil Oyj Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
Many consider high insider ownership to be a strong sign of alignment between the leaders of a company and the ordinary shareholders. So as you can imagine, the fact that Scanfil Oyj insiders own a significant number of shares certainly appeals to me. In fact, they own 56% of the company, so they will share in the same delights and challenges experienced by the ordinary shareholders. To me this is a good sign because it suggests they will be incentivised to build value for shareholders over the long term. And their holding is extremely valuable at the current share price, totalling €210m. Now that's what I call some serious skin in the game!
Should You Add Scanfil Oyj To Your Watchlist?
Scanfil Oyj's earnings per share growth have been levitating higher, like a mountain goat scaling the Alps. That EPS growth certainly has my attention, and the large insider ownership only serves to further stoke my interest. At times fast EPS growth is a sign the business has reached an inflection point; and I do like those. So to my mind Scanfil Oyj is worth putting on your watchlist; after all, shareholders do well when the market underestimates fast growing companies. You should always think about risks though. Case in point, we've spotted 2 warning signs for Scanfil Oyj you should be aware of, and 1 of them is concerning.
You can invest in any company you want. But if you prefer to focus on stocks that have demonstrated insider buying, here is a list of companies with insider buying in the last three months.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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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. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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