Calculating The Fair Value Of TopBuild Corp. (NYSE:BLD)
Simply Wall St · 01/29 11:14

Key Insights

  • Using the 2 Stage Free Cash Flow to Equity, TopBuild fair value estimate is US$363
  • With US$366 share price, TopBuild appears to be trading close to its estimated fair value
  • Our fair value estimate is 2.5% lower than TopBuild's analyst price target of US$373

Does the January share price for TopBuild Corp. (NYSE:BLD) reflect what it's really worth? Today, we will estimate the stock's intrinsic value by estimating the company's future cash flows and discounting them to their present value. This will be done using the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model. Before you think you won't be able to understand it, just read on! It's actually much less complex than you'd imagine.

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.

View our latest analysis for TopBuild

The Method

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. In the first stage we need to estimate the cash flows to the business over the next ten years. 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) forecast

2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 2030 2031 2032 2033
Levered FCF ($, Millions) US$696.4m US$740.2m US$767.0m US$791.5m US$814.5m US$836.5m US$857.9m US$879.0m US$899.9m US$921.0m
Growth Rate Estimate Source Analyst x4 Analyst x4 Est @ 3.62% Est @ 3.20% Est @ 2.91% Est @ 2.70% Est @ 2.56% Est @ 2.46% Est @ 2.38% Est @ 2.34%
Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 8.7% US$640 US$626 US$597 US$566 US$536 US$506 US$478 US$450 US$424 US$399

("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$5.2b

After calculating the present value of future cash flows in the initial 10-year period, we need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all future cash flows beyond the first stage. 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 2.2%. We discount the terminal cash flows to today's value at a cost of equity of 8.7%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2033 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$921m× (1 + 2.2%) ÷ (8.7%– 2.2%) = US$14b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$14b÷ ( 1 + 8.7%)10= US$6.3b

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 US$11b. In the final step we divide the equity value by the number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of US$366, the company appears around fair value at the time of writing. 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
NYSE:BLD Discounted Cash Flow January 29th 2024

The Assumptions

The calculation above is very dependent on two assumptions. The first is the discount rate and the other is the cash flows. Part of investing is coming up with your own evaluation of a company's future performance, so try the calculation yourself and check your own 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 TopBuild 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 8.7%, which is based on a levered beta of 1.302. 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 TopBuild

Strength
  • Earnings growth over the past year exceeded the industry.
  • Debt is not viewed as a risk.
Weakness
  • Earnings growth over the past year is below its 5-year average.
  • Expensive based on P/E ratio and estimated fair value.
Opportunity
  • Annual earnings are forecast to grow for the next 3 years.
Threat
  • Annual earnings are forecast to grow slower than the American market.

Moving On:

Valuation is only one side of the coin in terms of building your investment thesis, and it is only one of many factors that you need to assess for a company. DCF models are not the be-all and end-all of investment valuation. Rather it should be seen as a guide to "what assumptions need to be true for this stock to be under/overvalued?" For example, changes in the company's cost of equity or the risk free rate can significantly impact the valuation. For TopBuild, we've compiled three relevant aspects you should further research:

  1. Risks: For example, we've discovered 1 warning sign for TopBuild that you should be aware of before investing here.
  2. Future Earnings: How does BLD'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 American stock every day, so if you want to find the intrinsic value of any other stock just search here.