What are the early trends we should look for to identify a stock that could multiply in value over the long term? In a perfect world, we’d like to see a company investing more capital into its business and ideally the returns earned from that capital are also increasing. This shows us that it’s a compounding machine, able to continually reinvest its earnings back into the business and generate higher returns. However, after briefly looking over the numbers, we don’t think Tactile Systems Technology (NASDAQ:TCMD) has the makings of a multi-bagger going forward, but let’s have a look at why that may be.
Return On Capital Employed (ROCE): What Is It?
If you haven’t worked with ROCE before, it measures the ‘return’ (pre-tax profit) a company generates from capital employed in its business. The formula for this calculation on Tactile Systems Technology is:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets – Current Liabilities)
0.044 = US$10m ÷ (US$274m – US$49m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to June 2023).
Therefore, Tactile Systems Technology has an ROCE of 4.4%. Ultimately, that’s a low return and it under-performs the Medical Equipment industry average of 9.7%.
In the above chart we have measured Tactile Systems Technology’s prior ROCE against its prior performance, but the future is arguably more important. If you’d like, you can check out the forecasts from the analysts covering Tactile Systems Technology here for free.
So How Is Tactile Systems Technology’s ROCE Trending?
In terms of Tactile Systems Technology’s historical ROCE movements, the trend isn’t fantastic. Around five years ago the returns on capital were 7.0%, but since then they’ve fallen to 4.4%. Although, given both revenue and the amount of assets employed in the business have increased, it could suggest the company is investing in growth, and the extra capital has led to a short-term reduction in ROCE. If these investments prove successful, this can bode very well for long term stock performance.
The Bottom Line
In summary, despite lower returns in the short term, we’re encouraged to see that Tactile Systems Technology is reinvesting for growth and has higher sales as a result. But since the stock has dived 74% in the last five years, there could be other drivers that are influencing the business’ outlook. Therefore, we’d suggest researching the stock further to uncover more about the business.
Tactile Systems Technology does have some risks though, and we’ve spotted 2 warning signs for Tactile Systems Technology that you might be interested in.
For those who like to invest in solid companies, check out this free list of companies with solid balance sheets and high returns on equity.
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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.