Is There An Opportunity With WillScot Mobile Mini Holdings Corp.'s (NASDAQ:WSC) 35% Undervaluation?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
February 23, 2022
NasdaqCM:WSC
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Today we will run through one way of estimating the intrinsic value of WillScot Mobile Mini Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ:WSC) by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to today's value. The Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model is the tool we will apply to do this. Models like these may appear beyond the comprehension of a lay person, but they're fairly easy to follow.

Remember though, that there are many ways to estimate a company's value, and a DCF is just one method. If you want to learn more about discounted cash flow, the rationale behind this calculation can be read in detail in the Simply Wall St analysis model.

View our latest analysis for WillScot Mobile Mini Holdings

The calculation

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. To start off with, we need to estimate the next ten years of cash flows. 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.

A DCF is all about the idea that a dollar in the future is less valuable than a dollar today, 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) estimate

2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 2030 2031
Levered FCF ($, Millions) US$451.8m US$531.2m US$589.6m US$638.3m US$678.9m US$713.1m US$742.3m US$767.9m US$790.8m US$811.9m
Growth Rate Estimate Source Analyst x4 Analyst x3 Est @ 10.99% Est @ 8.27% Est @ 6.36% Est @ 5.03% Est @ 4.1% Est @ 3.44% Est @ 2.99% Est @ 2.67%
Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 7.2% US$422 US$463 US$479 US$484 US$481 US$471 US$458 US$442 US$424 US$407

("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$4.5b

The second stage is also known as Terminal Value, this is the business's cash flow after the first stage. 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 (1.9%) 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 7.2%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2031 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$812m× (1 + 1.9%) ÷ (7.2%– 1.9%) = US$16b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$16b÷ ( 1 + 7.2%)10= US$7.9b

The total value, or equity value, is then the sum of the present value of the future cash flows, which in this case is US$12b. To get the intrinsic value per share, we divide this by the total number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of US$36.2, the company appears quite undervalued at a 35% discount to where the stock price trades currently. 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.

dcf
NasdaqCM:WSC Discounted Cash Flow February 23rd 2022

Important assumptions

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 WillScot Mobile Mini Holdings 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 7.2%, which is based on a levered beta of 1.235. 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.

Looking Ahead:

Although the valuation of a company is important, it shouldn't be the only metric you look at when researching a company. DCF models are not the be-all and end-all of investment valuation. Preferably you'd apply different cases and assumptions and see how they would impact the company's valuation. If a company grows at a different rate, or if its cost of equity or risk free rate changes sharply, the output can look very different. Why is the intrinsic value higher than the current share price? For WillScot Mobile Mini Holdings, we've put together three pertinent elements you should explore:

  1. Risks: Consider for instance, the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 1 warning sign with WillScot Mobile Mini Holdings , and understanding it should be part of your investment process.
  2. Future Earnings: How does WSC's growth rate compare to its peers and the wider market? Dig deeper into the analyst consensus number for the upcoming years by interacting with our free analyst growth expectation chart.
  3. Other Solid Businesses: Low debt, high returns on equity and good past performance are fundamental to a strong business. Why not explore our interactive list of stocks with solid business fundamentals to see if there are other companies you may not have considered!

PS. The Simply Wall St app conducts a discounted cash flow valuation for every stock on the NASDAQCM every day. If you want to find the calculation for other stocks just search here.

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