M.P. Evans Group PLC (LON:MPE) Shares Could Be 49% Below Their Intrinsic Value Estimate

·6 min read

Today we'll do a simple run through of a valuation method used to estimate the attractiveness of M.P. Evans Group PLC (LON:MPE) as an investment opportunity by taking the forecast future cash flows of the company and discounting them back to today's value. One way to achieve this is by employing the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model. There's really not all that much to it, even though it might appear quite complex.

Remember though, that there are many ways to estimate a company's value, and a DCF is just one method. For those who are keen learners of equity analysis, the Simply Wall St analysis model here may be something of interest to you.

Check out our latest analysis for M.P. Evans Group

Crunching The Numbers

We are going to use a two-stage DCF model, which, as the name states, takes into account two stages of growth. The first stage is generally a higher growth period which levels off heading towards the terminal value, captured in the second 'steady growth' period. In the first stage we need to estimate the cash flows to the business over the next ten years. Where possible we use analyst estimates, but when these aren't available we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the last estimate or reported value. We assume companies with shrinking free cash flow will slow their rate of shrinkage, and that companies with growing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow, over this period. We do this to reflect that growth tends to slow more in the early years than it does in later years.

Generally we assume that a dollar today is more valuable than a dollar in the future, so we need to discount the sum of these future cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate:

10-year free cash flow (FCF) estimate

2023

2024

2025

2026

2027

2028

2029

2030

2031

2032

Levered FCF ($, Millions)

US$55.2m

US$66.8m

US$66.1m

US$65.9m

US$66.0m

US$66.3m

US$66.7m

US$67.3m

US$67.9m

US$68.5m

Growth Rate Estimate Source

Analyst x2

Analyst x2

Est @ -0.93%

Est @ -0.31%

Est @ 0.13%

Est @ 0.44%

Est @ 0.65%

Est @ 0.80%

Est @ 0.91%

Est @ 0.98%

Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 6.7%

US$51.7

US$58.6

US$54.4

US$50.8

US$47.7

US$44.9

US$42.3

US$40.0

US$37.8

US$35.7

("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$464m

We now need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all the future cash flows after this ten year period. The Gordon Growth formula is used to calculate Terminal Value at a future annual growth rate equal to the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield of 1.2%. We discount the terminal cash flows to today's value at a cost of equity of 6.7%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2032 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$69m× (1 + 1.2%) ÷ (6.7%– 1.2%) = US$1.2b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$1.2b÷ ( 1 + 6.7%)10= US$648m

The total value is the sum of cash flows for the next ten years plus the discounted terminal value, which results in the Total Equity Value, which in this case is US$1.1b. To get the intrinsic value per share, we divide this by the total number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of UK£8.6, the company appears quite undervalued at a 49% discount to where the stock price trades currently. Remember though, that this is just an approximate valuation, and like any complex formula - garbage in, garbage out.

dcf
dcf

Important Assumptions

The calculation above is very dependent on two assumptions. The first is the discount rate and the other is the cash flows. If you don't agree with these result, have a go at the calculation yourself and play with the assumptions. The DCF also does not consider the possible cyclicality of an industry, or a company's future capital requirements, so it does not give a full picture of a company's potential performance. Given that we are looking at M.P. Evans Group as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighted average cost of capital, WACC) which accounts for debt. In this calculation we've used 6.7%, which is based on a levered beta of 0.800. Beta is a measure of a stock's volatility, compared to the market as a whole. We get our beta from the industry average beta of globally comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable business.

SWOT Analysis for M.P. Evans Group

Strength

  • Earnings growth over the past year exceeded the industry.

  • Debt is not viewed as a risk.

  • Dividends are covered by earnings and cash flows.

Weakness

  • Dividend is low compared to the top 25% of dividend payers in the Food market.

Opportunity

  • Good value based on P/E ratio and estimated fair value.

Threat

  • No apparent threats visible for MPE.

Next Steps:

Although the valuation of a company is important, it ideally won't be the sole piece of analysis you scrutinize for a company. The DCF model is not a perfect stock valuation tool. Rather it should be seen as a guide to "what assumptions need to be true for this stock to be under/overvalued?" For instance, if the terminal value growth rate is adjusted slightly, it can dramatically alter the overall result. What is the reason for the share price sitting below the intrinsic value? For M.P. Evans Group, there are three additional aspects you should look at:

  1. Risks: As an example, we've found 2 warning signs for M.P. Evans Group (1 makes us a bit uncomfortable!) that you need to consider before investing here.

  2. Future Earnings: How does MPE's growth rate compare to its peers and the wider market? Dig deeper into the analyst consensus number for the upcoming years by interacting with our free analyst growth expectation chart.

  3. Other Solid Businesses: Low debt, high returns on equity and good past performance are fundamental to a strong business. Why not explore our interactive list of stocks with solid business fundamentals to see if there are other companies you may not have considered!

PS. Simply Wall St updates its DCF calculation for every British stock every day, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any other stock just search here.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

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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