Did you know there are some financial metrics that can provide clues of a potential multi-bagger? Firstly, we'll want to see a proven return on capital employed (ROCE) that is increasing, and secondly, an expanding base of capital employed. This shows us that it's a compounding machine, able to continually reinvest its earnings back into the business and generate higher returns. Although, when we looked at Netcall (LON:NET), it didn't seem to tick all of these boxes.
What is Return On Capital Employed (ROCE)?
For those that aren't sure what ROCE is, it measures the amount of pre-tax profits a company can generate from the capital employed in its business. The formula for this calculation on Netcall is:
Return on Capital Employed = Earnings Before Interest and Tax (EBIT) ÷ (Total Assets - Current Liabilities)
0.086 = UK£2.6m ÷ (UK£50m - UK£20m) (Based on the trailing twelve months to December 2021).
Thus, Netcall has an ROCE of 8.6%. On its own, that's a low figure but it's around the 7.4% average generated by the Software industry.
Above you can see how the current ROCE for Netcall compares to its prior returns on capital, but there's only so much you can tell from the past. If you'd like, you can check out the forecasts from the analysts covering Netcall here for free.
How Are Returns Trending?
In terms of Netcall's historical ROCE trend, it doesn't exactly demand attention. The company has employed 48% more capital in the last five years, and the returns on that capital have remained stable at 8.6%. This poor ROCE doesn't inspire confidence right now, and with the increase in capital employed, it's evident that the business isn't deploying the funds into high return investments.
The Bottom Line
In summary, Netcall has simply been reinvesting capital and generating the same low rate of return as before. And with the stock having returned a mere 32% in the last five years to shareholders, you could argue that they're aware of these lackluster trends. As a result, if you're hunting for a multi-bagger, we think you'd have more luck elsewhere.
On a final note, we found 4 warning signs for Netcall (1 shouldn't be ignored) you should be aware of.
While Netcall isn't earning the highest return, check out this free list of companies that are earning high returns on equity with solid balance sheets.
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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.