Stock Analysis

Robust Earnings May Not Tell The Whole Story For Grandshores Technology Group (HKG:1647)

SEHK:1647
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Grandshores Technology Group Limited (HKG:1647) announced strong profits, but the stock was stagnant. Our analysis suggests that shareholders have noticed something concerning in the numbers.

See our latest analysis for Grandshores Technology Group

earnings-and-revenue-history
SEHK:1647 Earnings and Revenue History August 6th 2021

Zooming In On Grandshores Technology Group's Earnings

Many investors haven't heard of the accrual ratio from cashflow, but it is actually a useful measure of how well a company's profit is backed up by free cash flow (FCF) during a given period. To get the accrual ratio we first subtract FCF from profit for a period, and then divide that number by the average operating assets for the period. This ratio tells us how much of a company's profit is not backed by free cashflow.

Therefore, it's actually considered a good thing when a company has a negative accrual ratio, but a bad thing if its accrual ratio is positive. While having an accrual ratio above zero is of little concern, we do think it's worth noting when a company has a relatively high accrual ratio. Notably, there is some academic evidence that suggests that a high accrual ratio is a bad sign for near-term profits, generally speaking.

Over the twelve months to March 2021, Grandshores Technology Group recorded an accrual ratio of 0.23. We can therefore deduce that its free cash flow fell well short of covering its statutory profit. In the last twelve months it actually had negative free cash flow, with an outflow of S$2.8m despite its profit of S$5.28m, mentioned above. We also note that Grandshores Technology Group's free cash flow was actually negative last year as well, so we could understand if shareholders were bothered by its outflow of S$2.8m. Notably, the company has issued new shares, thus diluting existing shareholders and reducing their share of future earnings.

Note: we always recommend investors check balance sheet strength. Click here to be taken to our balance sheet analysis of Grandshores Technology Group.

To understand the value of a company's earnings growth, it is imperative to consider any dilution of shareholders' interests. As it happens, Grandshores Technology Group issued 6.3% more new shares over the last year. As a result, its net income is now split between a greater number of shares. To talk about net income, without noticing earnings per share, is to be distracted by the big numbers while ignoring the smaller numbers that talk to per share value. You can see a chart of Grandshores Technology Group's EPS by clicking here.

How Is Dilution Impacting Grandshores Technology Group's Earnings Per Share? (EPS)

As it happens, we don't know how much the company made or lost three years ago, because we don't have the data. And even focusing only on the last twelve months, we don't have a meaningful growth rate because it made a loss a year ago, too. What we do know is that while it's great to see a profit over the last twelve months, that profit would have been better, on a per share basis, if the company hadn't needed to issue shares. And so, you can see quite clearly that dilution is influencing shareholder earnings.

If Grandshores Technology Group's EPS can grow over time then that drastically improves the chances of the share price moving in the same direction. However, if its profit increases while its earnings per share stay flat (or even fall) then shareholders might not see much benefit. For the ordinary retail shareholder, EPS is a great measure to check your hypothetical "share" of the company's profit.

Our Take On Grandshores Technology Group's Profit Performance

As it turns out, Grandshores Technology Group couldn't match its profit with cashflow and its dilution means that shareholders own less of the company than the did before (unless they bought more shares). For the reasons mentioned above, we think that a perfunctory glance at Grandshores Technology Group's statutory profits might make it look better than it really is on an underlying level. If you'd like to know more about Grandshores Technology Group as a business, it's important to be aware of any risks it's facing. For example, Grandshores Technology Group has 5 warning signs (and 2 which are a bit concerning) we think you should know about.

In this article we've looked at a number of factors that can impair the utility of profit numbers, and we've come away cautious. But there are plenty of other ways to inform your opinion of a company. Some people consider a high return on equity to be a good sign of a quality business. While it might take a little research on your behalf, you may find this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying to be useful.

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