Like a puppy chasing its tail, some new investors often chase 'the next big thing', even if that means buying 'story stocks' without revenue, let alone profit. But as Warren Buffett has mused, 'If you've been playing poker for half an hour and you still don't know who the patsy is, you're the patsy.' When they buy such story stocks, investors are all too often the patsy.
In the age of tech-stock blue-sky investing, my choice may seem old fashioned; I still prefer profitable companies like Formpipe Software (STO:FPIP). Even if the shares are fully valued today, most capitalists would recognize its profits as the demonstration of steady value generation. Conversely, a loss-making company is yet to prove itself with profit, and eventually the sweet milk of external capital may run sour.
How Fast Is Formpipe Software Growing?
As one of my mentors once told me, share price follows earnings per share (EPS). That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. We can see that in the last three years Formpipe Software grew its EPS by 9.8% per year. That growth rate is fairly good, assuming the company can keep it up.
One way to double-check a company's growth is to look at how its revenue, and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins are changing. While we note Formpipe Software's EBIT margins were flat over the last year, revenue grew by a solid 13% to kr454m. That's progress.
You can take a look at the company's revenue and earnings growth trend, in the chart below. Click on the chart to see the exact numbers.
The trick, as an investor, is to find companies that are going to perform well in the future, not just in the past. To that end, right now and today, you can check our visualization of consensus analyst forecasts for future Formpipe Software EPS 100% free.
Are Formpipe Software Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
It makes me feel more secure owning shares in a company if insiders also own shares, thusly more closely aligning our interests. So it is good to see that Formpipe Software insiders have a significant amount of capital invested in the stock. With a whopping kr455m worth of shares as a group, insiders have plenty riding on the company's success. That holding amounts to 21% of the stock on issue, thus making insiders influential, and aligned, owners of the business.
Does Formpipe Software Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?
One important encouraging feature of Formpipe Software is that it is growing profits. Just as polish makes silverware pop, the high level of insider ownership enhances my enthusiasm for this growth. The combination sparks joy for me, so I'd consider keeping the company on a watchlist. Even so, be aware that Formpipe Software is showing 2 warning signs in our investment analysis , you should know about...
Although Formpipe Software certainly looks good to me, I would like it more if insiders were buying up shares. If you like to see insider buying, too, then this free list of growing companies that insiders are buying, could be exactly what you're looking for.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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.