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Is There An Opportunity With Constellation Software Inc.’s (TSE:CSU) 25.81% Undervaluation?

Ingrid Hart

How far off is Constellation Software Inc. (TSE:CSU) from its intrinsic value? Using the most recent financial data, I am going to take a look at whether the stock is fairly priced by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to today’s value. I will use the Discounted Cash Flows (DCF) model. It may sound complicated, but actually it is quite simple! Anyone interested in learning a bit more about intrinsic value should have a read of the Simply Wall St analysis model. If you are reading this and its not January 2019 then I highly recommend you check out the latest calculation for Constellation Software by following the link below.

View our latest analysis for Constellation Software

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Step by step through the calculation

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. To begin with we have to get estimates of the next five years of cash flows. For this I used the consensus of the analysts covering the stock, as you can see below. I then discount the sum of these cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate.

5-year cash flow forecast

2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Levered FCF ($, Millions) $692.86 $884.60 $1.03k $1.19k $1.39k
Source Analyst x4 Analyst x2 Est @ 16.21% Est @ 16.21% Est @ 16%, capped from 16.21%
Present Value Discounted @ 8.47% $638.76 $751.87 $805.57 $863.11 $923.04

Present Value of 5-year Cash Flow (PVCF)= US$4.0b

After calculating the present value of future cash flows in the intial 5-year period we need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all the future cash flows beyond the first stage. For a number of reasons a very conservative growth rate is used that cannot exceed that of the GDP. In this case I have used the 10-year government bond rate (2.3%). In the same way as with the 5-year ‘growth’ period, we discount this to today’s value at a cost of equity of 8.5%.

Terminal Value (TV) = FCF2023 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$1.4b × (1 + 2.3%) ÷ (8.5% – 2.3%) = US$23b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV) = TV / (1 + r)5 = US$23b ÷ ( 1 + 8.5%)5 = US$15b

The total value is the sum of cash flows for the next five years and the discounted terminal value, which results in the Total Equity Value, which in this case is US$19b. The last step is to then divide the equity value by the number of shares outstanding. If the stock is an depositary receipt (represents a specified number of shares in a foreign corporation) then we use the equivalent number. This results in an intrinsic value of CA$1227.95. Relative to the current share price of CA$911.03, the stock is about right, perhaps slightly undervalued at a 26% discount to what it is available for right now.

TSX:CSU Intrinsic Value Export January 11th 19

The assumptions

Now the most important inputs to a discounted cash flow are the discount rate, and of course, the actual cash flows. You don’t have to agree with my inputs, I recommend redoing the calculations yourself and playing with them. Because we are looking at Constellation Software as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighed average cost of capital, WACC) which accounts for debt. In this calculation I’ve used 8.5%, which is based on a levered beta of 0.800. This is derived from the Bottom-Up Beta method based on comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable business.

Next Steps:

Valuation is only one side of the coin in terms of building your investment thesis, and it shouldn’t be the only metric you look at when researching a company. What is the reason for the share price to differ from the intrinsic value? For CSU, I’ve put together three essential aspects you should look at:

  1. Financial Health: Does CSU have a healthy balance sheet? Take a look at our free balance sheet analysis with six simple checks on key factors like leverage and risk.
  2. Future Earnings: How does CSU’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 High Quality Alternatives: Are there other high quality stocks you could be holding instead of CSU? Explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!

PS. The Simply Wall St app conducts a discounted cash flow for every stock on the TSE every 6 hours. If you want to find the calculation for other stocks just search here.

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com.