While not a mind-blowing move, it is good to see that the Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) share price has gained 12% in the last three months. But that doesn't change the fact that the returns over the last half decade have been stomach churning. In fact, the share price has tumbled down a mountain to land 76% lower after that period. It's true that the recent bounce could signal the company is turning over a new leaf, but we are not so sure. The real question is whether the business can leave its past behind and improve itself over the years ahead.
Stratasys isn't a profitable company, so it is unlikely we'll see a strong correlation between its share price and its earnings per share (EPS). Arguably revenue is our next best option. Shareholders of unprofitable companies usually expect strong revenue growth. That's because it's hard to be confident a company will be sustainable if revenue growth is negligible, and it never makes a profit.
Over five years, Stratasys grew its revenue at 1.1% per year. That's not a very high growth rate considering it doesn't make profits. It's not so sure that share price crash of 25% per year is completely deserved, but the market is doubtless disappointed. We'd be pretty cautious about this one, although the sell-off may be too severe. We'd recommend focussing any further research on the likelihood of profitability in the foreseeable future, given the muted revenue growth.
The graphic below shows how revenue and earnings have changed as management guided the business forward. If you want to see cashflow, you can click on the chart.
It's probably worth noting that the CEO is paid less than the median at similar sized companies. It's always worth keeping an eye on CEO pay, but a more important question is whether the company will grow earnings throughout the years. You can see what analysts are predicting for Stratasys in this interactive graph of future profit estimates.
A Different Perspective
It's good to see that Stratasys has rewarded shareholders with a total shareholder return of 11% in the last twelve months. Notably the five-year annualised TSR loss of 25% per year compares very unfavourably with the recent share price performance. The long term loss makes us cautious, but the short term TSR gain certainly hints at a brighter future. You might want to assess this data-rich visualization of its earnings, revenue and cash flow.
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Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.
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