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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 Peter Lynch said in One Up On Wall Street, ‘Long shots almost never pay off.’
If, on the other hand, you like companies that have revenue, and even earn profits, then you may well be interested in SiteOne Landscape Supply (NYSE:SITE). While that doesn’t make the shares worth buying at any price, you can’t deny that successful capitalism requires profit, eventually. While a well funded company may sustain losses for years, unless its owners have an endless appetite for subsidizing the customer, it will need to generate a profit eventually, or else breathe its last breath.
SiteOne Landscape Supply’s Improving Profits
In the last three years SiteOne Landscape Supply’s earnings per share took off like a rocket; fast, and from a low base. So the actual rate of growth doesn’t tell us much. As a result, I’ll zoom in on growth over the last year, instead. Like a wedge-tailed eagle on the wind, SiteOne Landscape Supply’s EPS soared from US$1.21 to US$1.64, in just one year. That’s a commendable gain of 36%.
I like to see top-line growth as an indication that growth is sustainable, and I look for a high earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margin to point to a competitive moat (though some companies with low margins also have moats). SiteOne Landscape Supply maintained stable EBIT margins over the last year, all while growing revenue 14% to US$2.2b. That’s progress.
In the chart below, you can see how the company has grown earnings, and revenue, over time. To see the actual numbers, click on the chart.
You don’t drive with your eyes on the rear-view mirror, so you might be more interested in this free report showing analyst forecasts for SiteOne Landscape Supply’s future profits.
Are SiteOne Landscape Supply 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 SiteOne Landscape Supply insiders have a significant amount of capital invested in the stock. Indeed, they hold US$31m worth of its stock. That shows significant buy-in, and may indicate conviction in the business strategy. Even though that’s only about 1.2% of the company, it’s enough money to indicate alignment between the leaders of the business and ordinary shareholders.
It’s good to see that insiders are invested in the company, but are remuneration levels reasonable? A brief analysis of the CEO compensation suggests they are. For companies with market capitalizations between US$2.0b and US$6.4b, like SiteOne Landscape Supply, the median CEO pay is around US$5.2m.
The SiteOne Landscape Supply CEO received US$3.5m in compensation for the year ending December 2018. That seems pretty reasonable, especially given its below the median for similar sized companies. CEO remuneration levels are not the most important metric for investors, but when the pay is modest, that does support enhanced alignment between the CEO and the ordinary shareholders. It can also be a sign of a culture of integrity, in a broader sense.
Does SiteOne Landscape Supply Deserve A Spot On Your Watchlist?
You can’t deny that SiteOne Landscape Supply has grown its earnings per share at a very impressive rate. That’s attractive. If that’s not enough, consider also that the CEO pay is quite reasonable, and insiders are well-invested alongside other shareholders. Each to their own, but I think all this makes SiteOne Landscape Supply look rather interesting indeed. Once you’ve identified a business you like, the next step is to consider what you think it’s worth. And right now is your chance to view our exclusive discounted cashflow valuation of SiteOne Landscape Supply. You might benefit from giving it a glance today.
Although SiteOne Landscape Supply 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
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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.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.