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If you're looking for a multi-bagger, there's a few things to keep an eye out for. Typically, we'll want to notice a trend of growing return on capital employed (ROCE) and alongside that, an expanding base of capital employed. Basically this means that a company has profitable initiatives that it can continue to reinvest in, which is a trait of a compounding machine. With that in mind, the ROCE of Craneware (LON:CRW) looks attractive right now, so lets see what the trend of returns can tell us.
Understanding Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)
For those that aren't sure what ROCE is, it measures the amount of pre-tax profits a company can generate from the capital employed in its business. Analysts use this formula to calculate it for Craneware:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
0.27 = US$19m ÷ (US$116m - US$45m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2020).
So, Craneware has an ROCE of 27%. That's a fantastic return and not only that, it outpaces the average of 11% earned by companies in a similar industry.
Above you can see how the current ROCE for Craneware compares to its prior returns on capital, but there's only so much you can tell from the past. If you're interested, you can view the analysts predictions in our free report on analyst forecasts for the company.
What Does the ROCE Trend For Craneware Tell Us?
It's hard not to be impressed by Craneware's returns on capital. The company has consistently earned 27% for the last five years, and the capital employed within the business has risen 45% in that time. With returns that high, it's great that the business can continually reinvest its money at such appealing rates of return. You'll see this when looking at well operated businesses or favorable business models.
The Bottom Line On Craneware's ROCE
In short, we'd argue Craneware has the makings of a multi-bagger since its been able to compound its capital at very profitable rates of return. And the stock has done incredibly well with a 206% return over the last five years, so long term investors are no doubt ecstatic with that result. So while the positive underlying trends may be accounted for by investors, we still think this stock is worth looking into further.
Craneware does have some risks, we noticed 2 warning signs (and 1 which is potentially serious) we think you should know about.
If you want to search for more stocks that have been earning high returns, check out this free list of stocks with solid balance sheets that are also earning high returns on equity.
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. 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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