Crimson Tide issues earnings upgrade

Aim-listed Crimson Tide, issued a very encouraging update today in which it detailed that it expects to beat profit expectations for the year ending 31 December 2015.

It noted: “Profit before tax will be higher than market expectations and significantly higher than for the previous year.”

In addition, analyst Eric Burns at house broker WH Ireland raised his profit forecast for the stock from 2.25p to 3.5p and changed it from a ‘Speculative Buy’ to a ‘Buy’.

The outperformance was due in no small part to the massive win with Tesco that I wrote about on this blog some time ago. (17 September RNS in which Tesco was not named).

In a detailed note out today, Burns confirmed that he expects it to start paying a dividend this year, which coupled with earnings upgrades should lead to a further re-rating of the stock.

He wote: “Forecast risk exists due to the phasing of new customer rollouts (with Tesco being an example of upside risk as it was rolled out faster than anticipated) but recurring revenue is building (65% est of our FY16 revenue forecast) and provided TIDE can continue to build its subscriber base there could be material upside to the shares trading on 12.9x our new FY17 EPS forecast. In our view, the introduction of a dividend in the current year (which we now forecast) will add to the shares’ attractions.”

The EPS for FY16 is estimated at 0.11 putting it on a forward PE of 15.8, dropping to a PE of 12.9 with EPS of 0.22p for 2017.

However, I expect upgrades for 2017 as Tesco and Nestle sign up more users to its subscription-based software as a service.

Just to reiterate, Crimson Tide is a fast growing, profitable, operationally-geared company with great scope for growth. It has no debt and plans to pay a dividend. What’s not to like?

I’d be very surprised if more small cap funds don’t start piling into this very soon. Indeed,  given the illiquid nature of AIM stocks and the fact that the shares are tightly held, this could easily double again in price within 18 months. It is currently around 3.5p to buy.

Of course this is my personal view and not a recommendation to buy. You should do your research before ever investing in a stock and never invest more than you can afford to lose.

The writer holds stock in Crimson Tide.