Why Raisio plc’s (HEL:RAIVV) Return On Capital Employed Is Impressive

Simply Wall St

Today we'll look at Raisio plc (HEL:RAIVV) and reflect on its potential as an investment. To be precise, we'll consider its Return On Capital Employed (ROCE), as that will inform our view of the quality of the business.

Firstly, we'll go over how we calculate ROCE. Then we'll compare its ROCE to similar companies. And finally, we'll look at how its current liabilities are impacting its ROCE.

Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What is it?

ROCE is a measure of a company's yearly pre-tax profit (its return), relative to the capital employed in the business. Generally speaking a higher ROCE is better. In brief, it is a useful tool, but it is not without drawbacks. Author Edwin Whiting says to be careful when comparing the ROCE of different businesses, since 'No two businesses are exactly alike.

So, How Do We Calculate ROCE?

Analysts use this formula to calculate return on capital employed:

Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)

Or for Raisio:

0.10 = €28m ÷ (€316m - €46m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to September 2019.)

Therefore, Raisio has an ROCE of 10%.

View our latest analysis for Raisio

Is Raisio's ROCE Good?

When making comparisons between similar businesses, investors may find ROCE useful. Raisio's ROCE appears to be substantially greater than the 8.7% average in the Food industry. We would consider this a positive, as it suggests it is using capital more effectively than other similar companies. Regardless of where Raisio sits next to its industry, its ROCE in absolute terms appears satisfactory, and this company could be worth a closer look.

Our data shows that Raisio currently has an ROCE of 10%, compared to its ROCE of 7.2% 3 years ago. This makes us think about whether the company has been reinvesting shrewdly. You can click on the image below to see (in greater detail) how Raisio's past growth compares to other companies.

HLSE:RAIVV Past Revenue and Net Income, December 3rd 2019

When considering this metric, keep in mind that it is backwards looking, and not necessarily predictive. ROCE can be misleading for companies in cyclical industries, with returns looking impressive during the boom times, but very weak during the busts. This is because ROCE only looks at one year, instead of considering returns across a whole cycle. Since the future is so important for investors, you should check out our free report on analyst forecasts for Raisio.

How Raisio's Current Liabilities Impact Its ROCE

Current liabilities include invoices, such as supplier payments, short-term debt, or a tax bill, that need to be paid within 12 months. Due to the way ROCE is calculated, a high level of current liabilities makes a company look as though it has less capital employed, and thus can (sometimes unfairly) boost the ROCE. To check the impact of this, we calculate if a company has high current liabilities relative to its total assets.

Raisio has total assets of €316m and current liabilities of €46m. As a result, its current liabilities are equal to approximately 15% of its total assets. Current liabilities are minimal, limiting the impact on ROCE.

Our Take On Raisio's ROCE

Overall, Raisio has a decent ROCE and could be worthy of further research. There might be better investments than Raisio out there, but you will have to work hard to find them . These promising businesses with rapidly growing earnings might be right up your alley.

For those who like to find winning investments this free list of growing companies with recent insider purchasing, could be just the ticket.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.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.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Thank you for reading.