Should You Expect Present24 SA. (WSE:P24) To Continue Delivering An ROE Of 11.81%?

Present24 SA. (WSE:P24) performed in-line with its internet and direct marketing retail industry on the basis of its ROE – producing a return of11.81% relative to the peer average of 8.94% over the past 12 months. But what is more interesting is whether P24 can sustain this level of return. This can be measured by looking at the company’s financial leverage. With more debt, P24 can invest even more and earn more money, thus pushing up its returns. However, ROE only measures returns against equity, not debt. This can be distorted, so let’s take a look at it further. See our latest analysis for Present24

Peeling the layers of ROE – trisecting a company’s profitability

Return on Equity (ROE) is a measure of Present24’s profit relative to its shareholders’ equity. For example, if the company invests PLN1 in the form of equity, it will generate PLN0.12 in earnings from this. Investors seeking to maximise their return in the Internet and Direct Marketing Retail industry may want to choose the highest returning stock. However, this can be misleading as each firm has different costs of equity and debt levels i.e. the more debt Present24 has, the higher ROE is pumped up in the short term, at the expense of long term interest payment burden.

Return on Equity = Net Profit ÷ Shareholders Equity

Returns are usually compared to costs to measure the efficiency of capital. Present24’s cost of equity is 8.35%. Given a positive discrepancy of 3.47% between return and cost, this indicates that Present24 pays less for its capital than what it generates in return, which is a sign of capital efficiency. ROE can be split up into three useful ratios: net profit margin, asset turnover, and financial leverage. This is called the Dupont Formula:

Dupont Formula

ROE = profit margin × asset turnover × financial leverage

ROE = (annual net profit ÷ sales) × (sales ÷ assets) × (assets ÷ shareholders’ equity)

ROE = annual net profit ÷ shareholders’ equity

WSE:P24 Last Perf Mar 14th 18
WSE:P24 Last Perf Mar 14th 18

Basically, profit margin measures how much of revenue trickles down into earnings which illustrates how efficient the business is with its cost management. The other component, asset turnover, illustrates how much revenue Present24 can make from its asset base. Finally, financial leverage will be our main focus today. It shows how much of assets are funded by equity and can show how sustainable the company’s capital structure is. ROE can be inflated by disproportionately high levels of debt. This is also unsustainable due to the high interest cost that the company will also incur. Thus, we should look at Present24’s debt-to-equity ratio to examine sustainability of its returns. Currently, Present24 has no debt which means its returns are driven purely by equity capital. Therefore, the level of financial leverage has no impact on ROE, and the ratio is a representative measure of the efficiency of all its capital employed firm-wide.

WSE:P24 Historical Debt Mar 14th 18
WSE:P24 Historical Debt Mar 14th 18

Next Steps:

ROE is one of many ratios which meaningfully dissects financial statements, which illustrates the quality of a company. Present24 exhibits a strong ROE against its peers, as well as sufficient returns to cover its cost of equity. Its high ROE is not likely to be driven by high debt. Therefore, investors may have more confidence in the sustainability of this level of returns going forward. Although ROE can be a useful metric, it is only a small part of diligent research.

For Present24, I’ve compiled three relevant aspects you should further examine: