For beginners, it can seem like a good idea (and an exciting prospect) to buy a company that tells a good story to investors, even if it currently lacks a track record of revenue and profit. But the reality is that when a company loses money each year, for long enough, its investors will usually take their share of those losses. A loss-making company is yet to prove itself with profit, and eventually the inflow of external capital may dry up.
Despite being in the age of tech-stock blue-sky investing, many investors still adopt a more traditional strategy; buying shares in profitable companies like Somero Enterprises (LON:SOM). While profit isn't the sole metric that should be considered when investing, it's worth recognising businesses that can consistently produce it.
How Fast Is Somero Enterprises Growing?
The market is a voting machine in the short term, but a weighing machine in the long term, so you'd expect share price to follow earnings per share (EPS) outcomes eventually. That means EPS growth is considered a real positive by most successful long-term investors. It certainly is nice to see that Somero Enterprises has managed to grow EPS by 18% per year over three years. As a general rule, we'd say that if a company can keep up that sort of growth, shareholders will be beaming.
Careful consideration of revenue growth and earnings before interest and taxation (EBIT) margins can help inform a view on the sustainability of the recent profit growth. Somero Enterprises shareholders can take confidence from the fact that EBIT margins are up from 27% to 34%, and revenue is growing. Ticking those two boxes is a good sign of growth, in our book.
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.
While it's always good to see growing profits, you should always remember that a weak balance sheet could come back to bite. So check Somero Enterprises' balance sheet strength, before getting too excited.
Are Somero Enterprises Insiders Aligned With All Shareholders?
As a general rule, it's worth considering how much the CEO is paid, since unreasonably high rates could be considered against the interests of shareholders. Our analysis has discovered that the median total compensation for the CEOs of companies like Somero Enterprises with market caps between US$200m and US$800m is about US$1.0m.
Somero Enterprises offered total compensation worth US$929k to its CEO in the year to December 2021. That comes in below the average for similar sized companies and seems pretty reasonable. CEO compensation is hardly the most important aspect of a company to consider, but when it's reasonable, that gives a little more confidence that leadership are looking out for shareholder interests. It can also be a sign of a culture of integrity, in a broader sense.
Is Somero Enterprises Worth Keeping An Eye On?
If you believe that share price follows earnings per share you should definitely be delving further into Somero Enterprises' strong EPS growth. The fast growth bodes well while the very reasonable CEO pay assists builds some confidence in the board. We think that based on its merits alone, this stock is worth watching into the future. However, before you get too excited we've discovered 1 warning sign for Somero Enterprises that you should be aware of.
There's always the possibility of doing well buying stocks that are not growing earnings and do not have insiders buying shares. But for those who consider these important metrics, we encourage you to check out companies that do have those features. You can access a free list of them here.
Please note the insider transactions discussed in this article refer to reportable transactions in the relevant jurisdiction.
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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.
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