Is Envipco Holding N.V. (AMS:ENVI) Investing Your Capital Efficiently?

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Today we’ll evaluate Envipco Holding N.V. (AMS:ENVI) to determine whether it could have potential as an investment idea. To be precise, we’ll consider its Return On Capital Employed (ROCE), as that will inform our view of the quality of the business.

Firstly, we’ll go over how we calculate ROCE. Then we’ll compare its ROCE to similar companies. And finally, we’ll look at how its current liabilities are impacting its ROCE.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?

ROCE is a metric for evaluating how much pre-tax income (in percentage terms) a company earns on the capital invested in its business. In general, businesses with a higher ROCE are usually better quality. Overall, it is a valuable metric that has its flaws. Author Edwin Whiting says to be careful when comparing the ROCE of different businesses, since ‘No two businesses are exactly alike.’

How Do You Calculate Return On Capital Employed?

Analysts use this formula to calculate return on capital employed:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets – Current Liabilities)

Or for Envipco Holding:

0.038 = €1.1m ÷ (€40m – €12m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to March 2019.)

So, Envipco Holding has an ROCE of 3.8%.

View our latest analysis for Envipco Holding

Does Envipco Holding Have A Good ROCE?

When making comparisons between similar businesses, investors may find ROCE useful. We can see Envipco Holding’s ROCE is meaningfully below the Machinery industry average of 11%. This performance could be negative if sustained, as it suggests the business may underperform its industry. Separate from how Envipco Holding stacks up against its industry, its ROCE in absolute terms is mediocre; relative to the returns on government bonds. Readers may find more attractive investment prospects elsewhere.

Envipco Holding’s current ROCE of 3.8% is lower than its ROCE in the past, which was 8.8%, 3 years ago. This makes us wonder if the business is facing new challenges.

ENXTAM:ENVI Past Revenue and Net Income, June 26th 2019
ENXTAM:ENVI Past Revenue and Net Income, June 26th 2019

When considering this metric, keep in mind that it is backwards looking, and not necessarily predictive. Companies in cyclical industries can be difficult to understand using ROCE, as returns typically look high during boom times, and low during busts. ROCE is, after all, simply a snap shot of a single year. Future performance is what matters, and you can see analyst predictions in our free report on analyst forecasts for the company.

How Envipco Holding’s Current Liabilities Impact Its ROCE

Liabilities, such as supplier bills and bank overdrafts, are referred to as current liabilities if they need to be paid within 12 months. Due to the way the ROCE equation works, having large bills due in the near term can make it look as though a company has less capital employed, and thus a higher ROCE than usual. To counter this, investors can check if a company has high current liabilities relative to total assets.

Envipco Holding has total assets of €40m and current liabilities of €12m. As a result, its current liabilities are equal to approximately 29% of its total assets. It is good to see a restrained amount of current liabilities, as this limits the effect on ROCE.

The Bottom Line On Envipco Holding’s ROCE

That said, Envipco Holding’s ROCE is mediocre, there may be more attractive investments around. Of course, you might also be able to find a better stock than Envipco Holding. So you may wish to see this free collection of other companies that have grown earnings strongly.

I will like Envipco Holding better if I see some big insider buys. While we wait, check out this free list of growing companies with considerable, recent, insider buying.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.