Arden Partners plc (LON:ARDN) shareholders should be happy to see the share price up 13% in the last week. But spare a thought for the long term holders, who have held the stock as it bled value over the last five years. In fact, the share price has tumbled down a mountain to land 90% lower after that period. While the recent increase might be a green shoot, we're certainly hesitant to rejoice. The fundamental business performance will ultimately determine if the turnaround can be sustained.
We really hope anyone holding through that price crash has a diversified portfolio. Even when you lose money, you don't have to lose the lesson.
Given that Arden Partners didn't make a profit in the last twelve months, we'll focus on revenue growth to form a quick view of its business development. When a company doesn't make profits, we'd generally expect to see good revenue growth. Some companies are willing to postpone profitability to grow revenue faster, but in that case one does expect good top-line growth.
Over five years, Arden Partners grew its revenue at 5.0% per year. That's not a very high growth rate considering it doesn't make profits. Nonetheless, it's fair to say the rapidly declining share price (down 37%, compound, over five years) suggests the market is very disappointed with this level of growth. While we're definitely wary of the stock, after that kind of performance, it could be an over-reaction. We'd recommend focussing any further research on the likelihood of profitability in the foreseeable future, given the muted revenue growth.
The graphic below depicts how earnings and revenue have changed over time (unveil the exact values by clicking on the image).
If you are thinking of buying or selling Arden Partners stock, you should check out this FREE detailed report on its balance sheet.
A Different Perspective
While the broader market lost about 15% in the twelve months, Arden Partners shareholders did even worse, losing 82%. However, it could simply be that the share price has been impacted by broader market jitters. It might be worth keeping an eye on the fundamentals, in case there's a good opportunity. Regrettably, last year's performance caps off a bad run, with the shareholders facing a total loss of 37% per year over five years. Generally speaking long term share price weakness can be a bad sign, though contrarian investors might want to research the stock in hope of a turnaround. I find it very interesting to look at share price over the long term as a proxy for business performance. But to truly gain insight, we need to consider other information, too. Like risks, for instance. Every company has them, and we've spotted 4 warning signs for Arden Partners (of which 2 are a bit concerning!) you should know about.
If you like to buy stocks alongside management, then you might just love this free list of companies. (Hint: insiders have been buying them).
Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on GB exchanges.
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