Should You Invest In Société Centrale des Bois et des Scieries de la Manche SA (EPA:CBSM)?

Société Centrale des Bois et des Scieries de la Manche SA is a €81m small-cap, real estate investment trust (REIT) based in Paris, France. REITs own and operate income-generating property and adhere to a different set of regulations. This impacts how CBSM’s business operates and also how we should analyse its stock. Below, I’ll look at a few important metrics to keep in mind as part of your research on CBSM.

Check out our latest analysis for Société Centrale des Bois et des Scieries de la Manche

Funds from Operations (FFO) is a higher quality measure of CBSM’s earnings compared to net income. This term is very common in the REIT investing world as it provides a cleaner look at its cash flow from daily operations by excluding impact of one-off activities or non-cash items such as depreciation. For CBSM, its FFO of €14m makes up 104% of its gross profit, which means the majority of its earnings are high-quality and recurring.

ENXTPA:CBSM Historical Debt November 21st 18
ENXTPA:CBSM Historical Debt November 21st 18

CBSM’s financial stability can be gauged by seeing how much its FFO generated each year can cover its total amount of debt. The higher the coverage, the less risky CBSM is, broadly speaking, to have debt on its books. The metric I’ll be using, FFO-to-debt, also estimates the time it will take for the company to repay its debt with its FFO. With a ratio of 7.5%, the credit rating agency Standard & Poor would consider this as aggressive risk. This would take CBSM 13.4 years to pay off using just operating income, which is a long time, and risk increases with time. But realistically, companies have many levers to pull in order to pay back their debt, beyond operating income alone.

I also look at CBSM’s interest coverage ratio, which demonstrates how many times its earnings can cover its yearly interest expense. This is similar to the concept above, but looks at the upcoming obligations. The ratio is typically calculated using EBIT, but for a REIT stock, it’s better to use FFO divided by net interest. With an interest coverage ratio of 1.9x, CBSM is not generating an appropriate amount of cash from its borrowings. Typically, a ratio of greater than 3x is seen as safe.

In terms of valuing CBSM, FFO can also be used as a form of relative valuation. Instead of the P/E ratio, P/FFO is used instead, which is very common for REIT stocks. In CBSM’s case its P/FFO is 5.72x, compared to the long-term industry average of 16.5x, meaning that it is undervalued.

Next Steps:

Société Centrale des Bois et des Scieries de la Manche can bring diversification into your portfolio due to its unique REIT characteristics. Before you make a decision on the stock today, keep in mind I’ve only covered one metric in this article, the FFO, which is by no means comprehensive. I’d strongly recommend continuing your research on the following areas I believe are key fundamentals for CBSM:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for CBSM’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for CBSM’s outlook.
  2. Valuation: What is CBSM worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether CBSM is currently mispriced by the market.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.