Shares in Entertainment One (LSE: ETO) jumped in early deals this morning after the company published its full-year figures for the period ending 31 March 2017.
For the year, the company’s revenue grew by 35% to £1.1bn and group reported underlying EBITDA rose by 24% to £160m. Adjusted earnings per share came in at 20p, and net debt has been reduced from 1.4 times EBITDA to 1.2 times.
Unfortunately, higher costs hit the group’s bottom line with pre-tax profit falling to £37.2m, from £47.9m in the year before. This was due to one-off costs it incurred in relation to moves management made to reshape the group’s film business and the renegotiation of a distribution arrangement. These costs should not be repeated and should help improve margins going forward.
The best performing division for the year was the group’s Television and Family arm, which grew by 85% and 33% respectively. Film revenue increased by 7%. The company also revealed today that its leading Peppa Pig television programme will return to screens from spring 2019 with a further 117 episodes set to be created.
Further growth ahead for the company?
Entertainment One has gone from strength to strength over the past five years and today’s results show that the firm still has plenty of energy left for growth.
After this year’s earning blip, analysts expect the company’s earnings per share to grow by 18% for the year ending 31 March 2018 and a further 10% for the following financial year. Based on these forecasts, the company is trading at a forward P/E multiple of 10.6, which seems exceptionally cheap considering Entertainment One’s growth over the past five years (pre-tax profit has exploded from £5.5m to £125m).
This low valuation almost certainly undervalues the business and gives Foolish investors a great opportunity to buy a high quality business at a low price.
Aveva Group (LSE: AVV) also reported its figures today and just like Entertainment One, the earnings report was upbeat. The company reported a massive 60% increase in pre-tax profit as revenue rose from £201.5m to £216m and costs declined. Profit from operations rose to £44.8m, versus £29.4m in the year-ago period. Net cash increase by 21% to £131m from £108m, which gave management confidence to hike the total dividend for the year by 11% to 40p.
Shares in Aveva are falling after this upbeat release because the market has extremely high expectations for the company. Indeed, the shares are currently trading at a forward P/E of 27.9, despite the fact analysts only expects earnings per share to grow by 9% for the year ending 31 March 2018. The dividend yield of 2.1% hardly compensates investors.
Still, over the past year shares in the company have shown resilience, rising 23.2% and outperforming the FTSE 100. If this outperformance continues, investors should be well rewarded. Aveva has grown steadily over the past few years and the group’s high valuation should remain in place on the back of ongoing expansion.
The best growth stocks?
Don't just take my word for it, before buying Entertainment One or Aveva you should first do you're own due diligence. To help, our top analysts here at the Motley Fool have put together this free report.
Rupert Hargreaves has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.