Stock Analysis

Calculating The Fair Value Of Inspecs Group plc (LON:SPEC)

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AIM:SPEC
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In this article we are going to estimate the intrinsic value of Inspecs Group plc (LON:SPEC) by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to today's value. We will use the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model on this occasion. Models like these may appear beyond the comprehension of a lay person, but they're fairly easy to follow.

We generally believe that a company's value is the present value of all of the cash it will generate in the future. However, a DCF is just one valuation metric among many, and it is not without flaws. Anyone interested in learning a bit more about intrinsic value should have a read of the Simply Wall St analysis model.

See our latest analysis for Inspecs Group

Is Inspecs Group fairly valued?

We are going to use a two-stage DCF model, which, as the name states, takes into account two stages of growth. The first stage is generally a higher growth period which levels off heading towards the terminal value, captured in the second 'steady growth' period. To begin with, we have to get estimates of the next ten years of cash flows. Where possible we use analyst estimates, but when these aren't available we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the last estimate or reported value. We assume companies with shrinking free cash flow will slow their rate of shrinkage, and that companies with growing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow, over this period. We do this to reflect that growth tends to slow more in the early years than it does in later years.

A DCF is all about the idea that a dollar in the future is less valuable than a dollar today, so we need to discount the sum of these future cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate:

10-year free cash flow (FCF) estimate

2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 2030
Levered FCF ($, Millions) US$13.3m US$17.0m US$19.7m US$22.0m US$23.8m US$25.3m US$26.4m US$27.3m US$28.1m US$28.7m
Growth Rate Estimate Source Analyst x1 Analyst x1 Est @ 16.01% Est @ 11.49% Est @ 8.32% Est @ 6.1% Est @ 4.54% Est @ 3.46% Est @ 2.7% Est @ 2.16%
Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 5.7% US$12.6 US$15.2 US$16.7 US$17.6 US$18.1 US$18.2 US$18.0 US$17.6 US$17.1 US$16.5

("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$167m

After calculating the present value of future cash flows in the initial 10-year period, we need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all future cash flows beyond the first stage. The Gordon Growth formula is used to calculate Terminal Value at a future annual growth rate equal to the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield of 0.9%. We discount the terminal cash flows to today's value at a cost of equity of 5.7%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2030 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$29m× (1 + 0.9%) ÷ (5.7%– 0.9%) = US$611m

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$611m÷ ( 1 + 5.7%)10= US$353m

The total value is the sum of cash flows for the next ten years plus the discounted terminal value, which results in the Total Equity Value, which in this case is US$520m. To get the intrinsic value per share, we divide this by the total number of shares outstanding. Compared to the current share price of UK£3.9, the company appears around fair value at the time of writing. The assumptions in any calculation have a big impact on the valuation, so it is better to view this as a rough estimate, not precise down to the last cent.

dcf
AIM:SPEC Discounted Cash Flow May 10th 2021

Important assumptions

The calculation above is very dependent on two assumptions. The first is the discount rate and the other is the cash flows. If you don't agree with these result, have a go at the calculation yourself and play with the assumptions. The DCF also does not consider the possible cyclicality of an industry, or a company's future capital requirements, so it does not give a full picture of a company's potential performance. Given that we are looking at Inspecs Group as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighted average cost of capital, WACC) which accounts for debt. In this calculation we've used 5.7%, which is based on a levered beta of 0.891. Beta is a measure of a stock's volatility, compared to the market as a whole. We get our beta from the industry average beta of globally comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable business.

Looking Ahead:

Although the valuation of a company is important, it is only one of many factors that you need to assess for a company. It's not possible to obtain a foolproof valuation with a DCF model. Instead the best use for a DCF model is to test certain assumptions and theories to see if they would lead to the company being undervalued or overvalued. If a company grows at a different rate, or if its cost of equity or risk free rate changes sharply, the output can look very different. For Inspecs Group, we've put together three fundamental elements you should consider:

  1. Risks: For example, we've discovered 2 warning signs for Inspecs Group that you should be aware of before investing here.
  2. Future Earnings: How does SPEC's growth rate compare to its peers and the wider market? Dig deeper into the analyst consensus number for the upcoming years by interacting with our free analyst growth expectation chart.
  3. Other Solid Businesses: Low debt, high returns on equity and good past performance are fundamental to a strong business. Why not explore our interactive list of stocks with solid business fundamentals to see if there are other companies you may not have considered!

PS. The Simply Wall St app conducts a discounted cash flow valuation for every stock on the AIM every day. If you want to find the calculation for other stocks just search here.

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