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LANXESS Aktiengesellschaft (ETR:LXS) Shares Could Be 30% Below Their Intrinsic Value Estimate

Key Insights

  • The projected fair value for LANXESS is €36.35 based on 2 Stage Free Cash Flow to Equity

  • LANXESS' €25.62 share price signals that it might be 30% undervalued

  • Analyst price target for LXS is €28.71 which is 21% below our fair value estimate

Does the May share price for LANXESS Aktiengesellschaft (ETR:LXS) reflect what it's really worth? Today, we will estimate the stock's intrinsic value by taking the forecast future cash flows of the company and discounting them back to today's value. We will take advantage of the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model for this purpose. Models like these may appear beyond the comprehension of a lay person, but they're fairly easy to follow.

Companies can be valued in a lot of ways, so we would point out that a DCF is not perfect for every situation. Anyone interested in learning a bit more about intrinsic value should have a read of the Simply Wall St analysis model.

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View our latest analysis for LANXESS

The Model

We're using the 2-stage growth model, which simply means we take in account two stages of company's growth. In the initial period the company may have a higher growth rate and the second stage is usually assumed to have a stable growth rate. To start off with, we need to estimate the next ten years of cash flows. Where possible we use analyst estimates, but when these aren't available we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the last estimate or reported value. We assume companies with shrinking free cash flow will slow their rate of shrinkage, and that companies with growing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow, over this period. We do this to reflect that growth tends to slow more in the early years than it does in later years.

Generally we assume that a dollar today is more valuable than a dollar in the future, so we need to discount the sum of these future cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate:

10-year free cash flow (FCF) estimate

2024

2025

2026

2027

2028

2029

2030

2031

2032

2033

Levered FCF (€, Millions)

€146.2m

€232.5m

€374.0m

€382.5m

€306.0m

€262.9m

€237.6m

€222.0m

€212.3m

€206.2m

Growth Rate Estimate Source

Analyst x4

Analyst x4

Analyst x4

Analyst x2

Analyst x1

Est @ -14.08%

Est @ -9.65%

Est @ -6.55%

Est @ -4.38%

Est @ -2.86%

Present Value (€, Millions) Discounted @ 7.8%

€136

€200

€299

€283

€210

€168

€140

€122

€108

€97.3

("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = €1.8b

We now need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all the future cash flows after this ten year period. The Gordon Growth formula is used to calculate Terminal Value at a future annual growth rate equal to the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield of 0.7%. We discount the terminal cash flows to today's value at a cost of equity of 7.8%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2033 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = €206m× (1 + 0.7%) ÷ (7.8%– 0.7%) = €2.9b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= €2.9b÷ ( 1 + 7.8%)10= €1.4b

The total value is the sum of cash flows for the next ten years plus the discounted terminal value, which results in the Total Equity Value, which in this case is €3.1b. The last step is to then divide the equity value by the number of shares outstanding. Compared to the current share price of €25.6, the company appears a touch undervalued at a 30% discount to where the stock price trades currently. Valuations are imprecise instruments though, rather like a telescope - move a few degrees and end up in a different galaxy. Do keep this in mind.

dcf
dcf

Important Assumptions

We would point out that the most important inputs to a discounted cash flow are the discount rate and of course the actual cash flows. If you don't agree with these result, have a go at the calculation yourself and play with the assumptions. The DCF also does not consider the possible cyclicality of an industry, or a company's future capital requirements, so it does not give a full picture of a company's potential performance. Given that we are looking at LANXESS as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighted average cost of capital, WACC) which accounts for debt. In this calculation we've used 7.8%, which is based on a levered beta of 1.548. Beta is a measure of a stock's volatility, compared to the market as a whole. We get our beta from the industry average beta of globally comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable business.

SWOT Analysis for LANXESS

Strength

  • Debt is well covered by earnings and cashflows.

Weakness

  • Dividend is low compared to the top 25% of dividend payers in the Chemicals market.

Opportunity

  • Forecast to reduce losses next year.

  • Has sufficient cash runway for more than 3 years based on current free cash flows.

  • Good value based on P/S ratio and estimated fair value.

Threat

  • No apparent threats visible for LXS.

Looking Ahead:

Although the valuation of a company is important, it is only one of many factors that you need to assess for a company. It's not possible to obtain a foolproof valuation with a DCF model. Instead the best use for a DCF model is to test certain assumptions and theories to see if they would lead to the company being undervalued or overvalued. For instance, if the terminal value growth rate is adjusted slightly, it can dramatically alter the overall result. What is the reason for the share price sitting below the intrinsic value? For LANXESS, we've put together three important aspects you should further research:

  1. Risks: Every company has them, and we've spotted 1 warning sign for LANXESS you should know about.

  2. Future Earnings: How does LXS's growth rate compare to its peers and the wider market? Dig deeper into the analyst consensus number for the upcoming years by interacting with our free analyst growth expectation chart.

  3. Other Solid Businesses: Low debt, high returns on equity and good past performance are fundamental to a strong business. Why not explore our interactive list of stocks with solid business fundamentals to see if there are other companies you may not have considered!

PS. Simply Wall St updates its DCF calculation for every German stock every day, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any other stock just search here.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

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.