Embattled telematics play Quindell (LSE: QPP) cannot stay out of the headlines for love nor money. Since Gotham City Research cast doubt on the firm’s profit forecasts in January shares have oscillated wildly, with investors getting cold feet over whether the Quindell story is too good to be true.
Prices tumbled to multi-year lows this week after it emerged three board members, including company founder Rob Terry, had offloaded millions of shares under a complex sale and repurchase accord with US-based Equities First Holdings.These developments have done little to lift the cloud over what is really going on behind the scenes at the business.
Given these concerns, I have picked out three high-growth tech sector stars which intrigue-averse investors may want to check out instead.
Set-top box builder Pace’s (LSE: PIC) market dominance leaves it in a terrific position to enjoy the fruits of surging Pay-TV subscriptions in the States. Splendid product innovation is helping the firm stay ahead of the pack, while at the other end of the business a more disciplined supply chain is helping to slash costs and drive margins to record levels.
City brokers expect Pace to punch growth to the tune of 13% this year, with an additional 7% advance anticipated for 2015. These projections leave the business dealing on P/E ratings of just 10.6 and 9.9 for 2014 and 2015 correspondingly, camped around the value benchmark of 10 or below.
As well, the company’s progressive dividend policy is also expected to continue this year and beyond, with a yield of 1% for this year and 1.1% for 2015 sweetening the investment case.
Software specialist Globo (LSE: GBO), which provides mobile device services for businesses, has seen significant investment in product development propel revenues skywards in recent times, helped by the transformation of its direct sales model in the US. Indeed, Globo’s cutting edge solutions have seen the business emerge as an important supplier to tech giants including Siemens, SAP and Intel.
Despite many years of consistent earnings growth, the business currently deals at dirt-cheap prices — anticipated expansion of 9% in 2014 and 35% in 2015 produce P/E ratings of just 6 and 4.4 respectively.
And Globo’s terrific value relative to its earnings potential is underlined by price to earnings to growth (PEG) multiples of just 0.7 for this year and 0.1 for 2015 — any reading below 1 is generally regarded as too good to pass up.
NHS information management provider Ideagen’s (LSE: IDEA) acquisition-based approach to growth rather than through in-house R&D is clearly paying dividends, allowing the firm to benefit from an established client base and allowing terrific cross-selling possibilities. And Ideagen has plenty of cash in reserve to keep this lucrative strategy ticking along.
The City’s number crunchers expect Ideagen to continue punching out meaty medium-term earnings growth, with a rise of 14% for the year concluding April 2015 expected to be followed with an extra 15% advance in the following 12 month period.
Although arguably not as jaw dropping as the others mentioned on this page in the value stakes — Ideagen carries P/E ratings of 18.5 and 16.1 for 2015 and 2016 correspondingly — the business still smashes a forward average of 19.6 for the complete software and computer services sector.