Bottom-Up EquitiesDaily Briefs

Equity Bottom-Up: Bajaj Finance Ltd, China Communications Construction, Mazda Motor, LIC Housing Finance, Oriental Land, Eyebright Medical Technology Beijing and more

In today’s briefing:

  • Bajaj Finance: Undergoing Major Transformation Towards Becoming a Fintech Company
  • China Comm Const (1800 HK): Well Placed for an Upturn
  • Conviction Call Mazda – Blowout Comes Through
  • LIC Housing Finance – Unmitigated Disaster
  • Oriental Land: Too Expensive to Benefit From Japan’s COVID-19 Vaccination Drive
  • Eyebright Medical Technology (688050. CH) – A Good Company but The Valuation Is Too High

Bajaj Finance: Undergoing Major Transformation Towards Becoming a Fintech Company

By Ankit Agrawal, CFA

Bajaj Finance Ltd (BAF IN) reported weaker than expected Q1FY22 earnings led by weakening asset quality and subdued growth due to adverse impact from the second wave of COVID. On the other hand, it reported strong advancement in its next phase transformation of becoming an app based fintech ecosystem. With this app based ecosystem, we think BAF is gearing up to be the next big fintech in the country. If all goes well, we won’t be surprised to see BAF getting bigger than Paytm, PhonePe, etc. over time. BAF has an inherent advantage over its peers in the form of a large vetted and wealthy customer base as well as in-house products that can be tailored as per customer requirements. BAF’s fintech peers, on the other hand, acquire customers through significant discounts and cash burn. Also, these peers have limited in-house products and have to rely mostly on third-party products that provide limited leeway for customization. While, BAF’s current valuations are around fair at 65-70x on a normalized profit base (i.e. ex of COVID impact), we think BAF still has potential to surprise on earnings growth led by its new Fintech avatar. 

China Comm Const (1800 HK): Well Placed for an Upturn

By Osbert Tang, CFA

China Communications Construction (1800 HK) has a fruitful 1H21 as reflected by impressive new contract growth and profit recovery. Driven by the strength at the domestic market, overall new contract addition reached Rmb685.1bn, a good 28.5% YoY growth. Such pace is the fastest when compared with the annual growth rate since FY15, and this solid project pipeline will translate into positive profit momentum over the next three years.

CCCC has also issued positive profit alert for 1H21, guiding for between 109.70% and 139.01% YoY growth in net profit. For 2Q21 standalone, the YoY growth should reach an even higher 1.4-2.1x. We see limited regulatory risks for CCCC given the infrastructure construction industry landscape and its centrally-owned SOE status. In our view, its ROE of 6.9% for FY21F and 7.5% for FY22F highly justify a re-rating in its P/B multiple which currently stands at 0.19x on a 12-month forward basis. 

Conviction Call Mazda – Blowout Comes Through

By Mio Kato

Mazda results came in barely below our estimates but blew away consensus. Revenue hit ¥803bn (LSR ¥817bn and consensus ¥750bn) while OP hit ¥26.1bn (LSR¥28bn and consensus ¥5.2bn). We believe conditions in North America and Australia will continue to drive robust performance and 1Q was in fact held back by extremely weak volumes in Japan which should rebound. These positives could also result in upside surprises on dividends.

LIC Housing Finance – Unmitigated Disaster

By Thomas J. Monaco

*Credibility Gap Widens: LIC Housing Finance (LICHF.IN) [LIC] reported FY 1Q22 bottom-line results of INR 1.5 bn, declining INR 2.5 bn (61.5%) linked quarter. Negative operating jaws, were the culprit, as costs increased INR 469 mn (21.1%) whilst revenues declined INR 2.6 bn (16.7%); and

*Very Negative Credit Delta: Despite the limited NCOs, net new NPLs at LIC still skyrocketed INR 44.7 bn or 190.3% on an annualized basis linked quarter significantly accelerating from a very high INR 12.6 bn (62.0%) during FY 4Q21. By our calculation, if the large blip in credit continues, LIC management ought to think about adding another INR 158 bn to the reserve – which amounts to 78% of stated equity at just 50% cover of NPLs.

Oriental Land: Too Expensive to Benefit From Japan’s COVID-19 Vaccination Drive

By Oshadhi Kumarasiri

Oriental Land (4661 JP) delivered 1QFY22 results late last week with revenue surpassing the consensus estimate by more than 42%. The company’s 1QFY22 operating loss was ¥8.8bn compared to the consensus operating loss estimate of ¥21.5bn.

We have been highlighting the fact that Oriental Land’s consensus estimates have been out of touch with reality since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Initially, consensus was late to downgrade earnings estimates and it took them till 4QFY21 to catch up.

Although, this time around they were quick to react as consensus estimates were lowered rather quickly after reimposing restrictions on park attendance.

Nevertheless, Japan’s rapid vaccination drive in preparation for Olympics would mean that attendance restrictions are likely to be very lifted soon. If Japan follows a similar trend to the US reopening story, Tokyo Disney Land, Disney Sea and Disney Hotels are likely likely to experience the guest numbers that’s never been seen before. Yet, the upside potential to Oriental Land shares are rather low as the company is currently trading at extremely expensive multiples. 

Eyebright Medical Technology (688050. CH) – A Good Company but The Valuation Is Too High

By Xinyao (Criss) Wang

The field of high-value ophthalmic consumables has always been one of the focus of investors. Among them, Eyebright Medical Technology Beijing (688050 CH), which is committed to the R&D, production and commercialization of intraocular lens (IOL) and orthokeratology lens (OK lens) as its core products, attracts continuous attention. Since its listing in July 2020, the stock price of Eyebright had once been as high as RMB398.86/share. As of July 30, 2021, the share price of Eyebright was closed at RMB274.1/share, up about 717% compared with the issue price of RMB33.55/share, with the market value of RMB28.8 billion and P/E ratio of 200.66. So could Eyebright continue to support its high valuation? This insight mainly analyzed the industry characteristics, the business, and thoughts on valuation of Eyebright.

Related tickers: Bajaj Finance Ltd (BAF.NS), China Communications Construction (1800.HK), Mazda Motor (7261.T), LIC Housing Finance (LICH.NS), Oriental Land (4661.T)

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