Does Internetq Plc Represent a Bargain At Current Prices?

The extreme share price volatility over at mobile marketing specialist InternetQ (LSE: INTQ) over the past week has been nothing short of overwhelming.

From starting December at a shade under 148p per share, InternetQ careered to a record low of 54.25p late last week. And although the London business enjoyed a brief uptick in recent days, shares have sunk by more than a fifth in Tuesday’s session and was recently dealing around 61p.

Winnifrith strikes again

The rockiness over at InternetQ was prompted by a worrying blogpost earlier this month from Tom Winnifrith, the man who helped sound the alarm concerning financial irregularities over at Watchstone Group (or Quindell, as it was formerly known).

Through the Share Prophets website, Winnifrith claimed that InternetQ had capitalised “the majority” of its operating costs, allowing it to report “high” profits. The stocks commentator also made a series of other statements, from questioning the firm’s debt levels and cash generation through to the value of acquisitions made in recent years.

In response, InternetQ took the unusual step of releasing a winding, 3,000+ word rebuttal to Winnifrith’s claims on Monday. The tactic initially did the trick, sending the stock value 36% higher as investors piled back in. But some of the mud has clearly stuck, hence why shares have resumed their downtrend today.

The market has taken little comfort from InternetQ’s impromptu trading update released last week in response to the share price descent. The Athens-located business advised that “there has been no material change to the operational and financial performance or outlook for the business,” and that “trading remains in line with management expectations.”

InternetQ advised in November that revenues galloped 20% higher between January and September, to €105.6m, a result that pushed pre-tax profit 4% higher to €7.9m.

And promisingly, InternetQ noted that it was experiencing “accelerated revenue growth in the second half of the year,” adding that “we expect that the continued shift towards adtech campaigns will have a positive effect on our top line and cash conversion going forward.”

So what does the City think?

Well, The Square Mile’s army of analysts certainly remain bullish concerning InternetQ’s investment case during the medium term, at least. The business has a solid record of generating double-digit earnings growth over the past few years, and further advances to the tune of 19% and 31% are projected for 2015 and 2016 correspondingly.

And thanks to evaporating investor appetite, these projections leave the business dealing on bargain-basement P/E ratios of 2.2 times for this year and 1.7 times for 2016.

Of course, many will point to Winnifrith’s success in highlighting irregularities at the likes of Quindell and more recently Globo as reason not to invest in InternetQ at the present time. But should the so-called Sheriff of AIM’s latest allegations prove wide of the mark, InternetQ could turn out to be a very canny purchase indeed.

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Royston Wild has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.