Benjamin Graham taught that Intelligent Investors must do a thorough fundamental analysis of investment opportunities to determine their intrinsic value and inherent risk. This is best done by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another company or by reviewing the 5 Undervalued Dow Components to Research – December 2014. By using the ModernGraham method one can review a company’s historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries. What follows is a specific look at how Cintas Corporation (CTAS) fares in the ModernGraham valuation model.
Company Profile (obtained from Google Finance): Cintas Corporation (Cintas) provides specialized products and services to businesses of all types throughout the North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. The Company operates in three segments: Rental Uniforms and Ancillary Products, Uniform Direct Sales and First Aid, Safety and Fire Protection Services. The Rental Uniforms and Ancillary Products segment consists of the rental and servicing of uniforms and other garments including flame resistant clothing, mats, mops and shop towels. The segment also provides restroom cleaning services and supplies and carpet and tile cleaning services. The Uniform Direct Sales segment consists of the direct sale of uniforms and related items and branded promotional products. The First Aid, Safety and Fire Protection Services segment consists of first aid, safety and fire protection products and services.
Defensive Investor – must pass at least 6 of the following 7 tests: Score = 5/7
- Adequate Size of Enterprise – market capitalization of at least $2 billion – PASS
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition – current ratio greater than 2 – PASS
- Earnings Stability – positive earnings per share for at least 10 straight years – PASS
- Dividend Record – has paid a dividend for at least 10 straight years – PASS
- Earnings Growth – earnings per share has increased by at least 1/3 over the last 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end of period – PASS
- Moderate PEmg ratio – PEmg is less than 20 – FAIL
- Moderate Price to Assets – PB ratio is less than 2.5 or PB x PEmg is less than 50 – FAIL
Enterprising Investor – must pass at least 4 of the following 5 tests or be suitable for a defensive investor: Score = 5/5
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition, Part 1 – current ratio greater than 1.5 – PASS
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition, Part 2 – Debt to Net Current Assets ratio less than 1.1 – PASS
- Earnings Stability – positive earnings per share for at least 5 years – PASS
- Dividend Record – currently pays a dividend – PASS
- Earnings growth – EPSmg greater than 5 years ago – PASS
|MG Opinion||Fairly Valued|
|Value Based on 3% Growth||$40.00|
|Value Based on 0% Growth||$23.45|
|Market Implied Growth Rate||8.62%|
|Net Current Asset Value (NCAV)||-$2.30|
Balance Sheet – September 2014
Earnings Per Share
Earnings Per Share – ModernGraham
Cintas Corporation qualifies for the Enterprising Investor but not for the Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned by the high PEmg and PB ratios. The Enterprising Investor, on the other hand, has no initial concerns. As a result, Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach based on Benjamin Graham’s methods should feel very comfortable proceeding with further research and comparing the company to other opportunities. As for a valuation, the company appears to be fairly valued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $1.66 in 2011 to an estimated $2.76 for 2014. This level of demonstrated growth supports the market’s implied estimate of 8.62% earnings growth and leads the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham’s formula, to return an estimate of intrinsic value within a margin of safety relative to the price.
The next part of the analysis is up to individual investors, and requires discussion of the company’s prospects. What do you think? What value would you put on Cintas Corporation (CTAS)? Where do you see the company going in the future? Is there a company you like better? Leave a comment on our Facebook page or mention @ModernGraham on Twitter to discuss.
Disclaimer: The author did not hold a position in Cintas Corporation (CTAS) or in any other company mentioned in this article at the time of publication and had no intention of changing that position within the next 72 hours. Logo taken from Wikipedia for the sole purpose of identifying the company; this article is not affiliated with the company in any manner.