Monday, July 14, 2014

Investing in Industrial Energy Solutions Earnings Growth



EnerSys (ENS) has powered through the last several quarters producing 11 straight beats of the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Today, ENS is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), and it is the Bull of the Day.

Powerful Earnings

Aggressive growth investors appreciate beats. They love them on the bottom line, but they really want to see them on top too. ENS has recorded six straight quarters where the company beat on top and bottom.

Another key metric that aggressive growth investors look for is larger and larger beats of the bottom line. ENS has that too. Over the last three quarts, the positive earnings surprise has increased from 3.5% to 3.9% to 7.3%.

Company Description

EnerSys makes industrial batteries and backup power systems and power related equipment and accessories. EnerSys was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Reading, Pennsylvania.

Most Recent Quarter

ENS reported a strong 1Q14 beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.10 by eight cents. The company reported revenues of $665M when the street was calling for $657M in the quarter. The $8M top line beat translated into a 1.2% revenue surprise.

The stock moved higher by 2.5% in the session following the earnings announcement.

Prior To That Beat

Prior to the most recent beat, ENS not only provided a solid beat, they also gave positive guidance. A big beat on the top line drove the company to guide Wall Street to earnings per share between $1.08 and $1.12 for the next quarter when the consensus was calling for $1.05.

Guiding above consensus is a surefire way to please investors, and as a result of the positive guidance, the stock was bid up more than 9% in the session following that release.

ENS Sees Estimates Moving Higher

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2014 for ENS has been increasing all year. Starting at $4.00 in October of last year, we saw a nice move higher to $4.24 in November. By February, the estimate had kicked higher to $4.38 and now the Zacks Consensus Estimate is at $4.48.

The 2015 Zacks Consensus Estimate has only been around for a few months. The estimate remains where it started out at $4.84 as analysts have limited visibility at this point, but should release full year 2015 estimates following the next quarter.

Valuation

The valuation for ENS is very attractive, as the stock trades at a discount the industry average for all the major metrics investors tend to look at. The trailing PE of 17x comes in under the 19x industry average as the the more attractive forward PE of 15x compared to 18x industry average. The price to book shows a healthy discount as well (2.5x vs 3.9x) as does the price to sales multiple (1.4x vs 1.8x).

The company is expected to produce revenue growth of 9% in Fiscal 2015, while the industry average is calling for a decrease of 1% on the top line. Earnings growth of 13% for ENS is above the 8% industry expectation.

In looking for a reason that this stock trades at a discount, the only thing that I could come up with is a lower net margin of 6.1% compared to a 6.8% and a lower pre-tax margin of 6.6% compared to 9.7% for the industry.

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