Today we'll do a simple run through of a valuation method used to estimate the attractiveness of GB Group plc (LON:GBG) as an investment opportunity by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to their present value. We will take advantage of the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model for this purpose. It may sound complicated, but actually it is quite simple!
Remember though, that there are many ways to estimate a company's value, and a DCF is just one method. If you still have some burning questions about this type of valuation, take a look at the Simply Wall St analysis model.
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. In the first stage we need to estimate the cash flows to the business over the next ten years. 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.
Generally we assume that a dollar today is more valuable than a dollar in the future, 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) forecast
|Levered FCF (£, Millions)||UK£36.9m||UK£44.5m||UK£47.1m||UK£64.6m||UK£72.9m||UK£78.7m||UK£83.3m||UK£87.0m||UK£89.9m||UK£92.3m|
|Growth Rate Estimate Source||Analyst x7||Analyst x7||Analyst x2||Analyst x1||Analyst x1||Est @ 8%||Est @ 5.88%||Est @ 4.39%||Est @ 3.35%||Est @ 2.62%|
|Present Value (£, Millions) Discounted @ 6.0%||UK£34.8||UK£39.7||UK£39.6||UK£51.3||UK£54.6||UK£55.6||UK£55.6||UK£54.8||UK£53.4||UK£51.8|
("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = UK£491m
We now need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all the future cash flows after this ten year period. For a number of reasons a very conservative growth rate is used that cannot exceed that of a country's GDP growth. In this case we have used the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield (0.9%) to estimate future growth. In the same way as with the 10-year 'growth' period, we discount future cash flows to today's value, using a cost of equity of 6.0%.
Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2031 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = UK£92m× (1 + 0.9%) ÷ (6.0%– 0.9%) = UK£1.8b
Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= UK£1.8b÷ ( 1 + 6.0%)10= UK£1.0b
The total value, or equity value, is then the sum of the present value of the future cash flows, which in this case is UK£1.5b. The last step is to then divide the equity value by the number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of UK£9.0, the company appears around fair value at the time of writing. Valuations are imprecise instruments though, rather like a telescope - move a few degrees and end up in a different galaxy. Do keep this in mind.
We would point out that the most important inputs to a discounted cash flow are the discount rate and of course the actual cash flows. You don't have to agree with these inputs, I recommend redoing the calculations yourself and playing with them. 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 GB 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 6.0%, which is based on a levered beta of 0.948. 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.
Although the valuation of a company is important, it shouldn't be the only metric you look at when researching a company. It's not possible to obtain a foolproof valuation with a DCF model. Preferably you'd apply different cases and assumptions and see how they would impact the company's valuation. For example, changes in the company's cost of equity or the risk free rate can significantly impact the valuation. For GB Group, we've compiled three relevant elements you should assess:
- Risks: For example, we've discovered 1 warning sign for GB Group that you should be aware of before investing here.
- Management:Have insiders been ramping up their shares to take advantage of the market's sentiment for GBG's future outlook? Check out our management and board analysis with insights on CEO compensation and governance factors.
- Other High Quality Alternatives: Do you like a good all-rounder? Explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!
PS. Simply Wall St updates its DCF calculation for every British stock every day, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any other stock just search here.
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This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. 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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