A Look At The Intrinsic Value Of Methode Electronics, Inc. (NYSE:MEI)
- Methode Electronics' estimated fair value is US$45.99 based on 2 Stage Free Cash Flow to Equity
- Current share price of US$40.92 suggests Methode Electronics is potentially trading close to its fair value
- Analyst price target for MEI is US$52.33, which is 14% above our fair value estimate
Does the March share price for Methode Electronics, Inc. (NYSE:MEI) reflect what it's really worth? Today, we will estimate the stock's intrinsic value by projecting its future cash flows and then discounting them to today's value. The Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model is the tool we will apply to do this. There's really not all that much to it, even though it might appear quite complex.
We would caution that there are many ways of valuing a company and, like the DCF, each technique has advantages and disadvantages in certain scenarios. For those who are keen learners of equity analysis, the Simply Wall St analysis model here may be something of interest to you.
See our latest analysis for Methode Electronics
We use what is known as a 2-stage model, which simply means we have two different periods of growth rates for the company's cash flows. Generally the first stage is higher growth, and the second stage is a lower growth phase. To start off with, we need to estimate the next ten years of cash flows. Where possible we use analyst estimates, but when these aren't available we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the last estimate or reported value. We assume companies with shrinking free cash flow will slow their rate of shrinkage, and that companies with growing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow, over this period. We do this to reflect that growth tends to slow more in the early years than it does in later years.
A DCF is all about the idea that a dollar in the future is less valuable than a dollar today, so we need to discount the sum of these future cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate:
10-year free cash flow (FCF) forecast
|Levered FCF ($, Millions)||US$79.6m||US$69.1m||US$110.4m||US$118.2m||US$124.7m||US$130.3m||US$135.3m||US$139.7m||US$143.7m||US$147.5m|
|Growth Rate Estimate Source||Analyst x2||Analyst x2||Analyst x1||Est @ 7.04%||Est @ 5.55%||Est @ 4.50%||Est @ 3.77%||Est @ 3.26%||Est @ 2.90%||Est @ 2.65%|
|Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 9.0%||US$73.0||US$58.1||US$85.3||US$83.8||US$81.1||US$77.8||US$74.1||US$70.2||US$66.3||US$62.5|
("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$732m
The second stage is also known as Terminal Value, this is the business's cash flow after the first stage. The Gordon Growth formula is used to calculate Terminal Value at a future annual growth rate equal to the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield of 2.1%. We discount the terminal cash flows to today's value at a cost of equity of 9.0%.
Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2032 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$148m× (1 + 2.1%) ÷ (9.0%– 2.1%) = US$2.2b
Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$2.2b÷ ( 1 + 9.0%)10= US$923m
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$1.7b. In the final step we divide the equity value by the number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of US$40.9, the company appears about fair value at a 11% discount to where the stock price trades currently. Remember though, that this is just an approximate valuation, and like any complex formula - garbage in, garbage out.
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. Part of investing is coming up with your own evaluation of a company's future performance, so try the calculation yourself and check your own assumptions. 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 Methode Electronics 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 9.0%, which is based on a levered beta of 1.163. 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.
SWOT Analysis for Methode Electronics
- Debt is not viewed as a risk.
- Dividends are covered by earnings and cash flows.
- Earnings declined over the past year.
- Dividend is low compared to the top 25% of dividend payers in the Electronic market.
- Annual earnings are forecast to grow faster than the American market.
- Good value based on P/E ratio and estimated fair value.
- Annual revenue is forecast to grow slower than the American market.
Valuation is only one side of the coin in terms of building your investment thesis, and it ideally won't be the sole piece of analysis you scrutinize for a company. The DCF model is not a perfect stock valuation tool. 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. For Methode Electronics, we've compiled three pertinent items you should explore:
- Financial Health: Does MEI have a healthy balance sheet? Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis with six simple checks on key factors like leverage and risk.
- Future Earnings: How does MEI'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.
- Other High Quality Alternatives: Do you like a good all-rounder? Explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!
PS. The Simply Wall St app conducts a discounted cash flow valuation for every stock on the NYSE every day. If you want to find the calculation for other stocks just search here.
Valuation is complex, but we're helping make it simple.
Find out whether Methode Electronics is potentially over or undervalued by checking out our comprehensive analysis, which includes fair value estimates, risks and warnings, dividends, insider transactions and financial health.View the Free Analysis
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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.
Methode Electronics, Inc. designs, engineers, and produces mechatronic products worldwide.
Excellent balance sheet average dividend payer.