Investment Analysis: Taitron Components
Taitron has not made money in several years, but it is not losing so much that its current assets are being eroded significantly. Over the last nine months, the company has lost just over $200K. Compared to the $8 million difference between the company's trading price and its net current assets, this is a small sum.
Meanwhile, Taitron is getting closer and closer to profitability. Last quarter, the company lost just $50K, and revenue growth was up 33% year-over-year. As a distributor (and not a manufacturer), Taitron doesn't have to make large capital expenditures with uncertain payoffs that increase the uncertainty of future cash flows. But part of Taitron's strategy is to carry enough inventory such that it can satisfy customer demands on the spot (this is one of the ways in which it can compete with manufacturers which like to keep inventories lean). As such, inventory obsolescence risk is high. In fact, much of Taitron's inventory has been on the shelf for over a year, though many of the components the company carries are pretty standard.
A purchase in Taitron isn't just a play on the current assets, however. The company also owns several properties, the largest of which is a facility in Valencia that is about an hour's drive from downtown L.A. The location was purchased 11 years ago for $3.3 million - but Mr. Market is throwing it in today for free.
The company does have a dual-class share structure, which isn't always in the best interests of minority shareholders. But it should be noted that management does own 46% of the company, so their incentives are to large extent aligned with the remaining shareholders. Furthermore, over the last four years the company has handed out in dividends what equates to more than 15% of the current share price, which suggests that management is willing to give back to shareholders. Dividend payments are not regular, however, so shareholders can't count on any coming any time soon.
If demand for electronic components continues to recover and grow, this company may see profitability relatively soon. In the meantime, investors are offered the opportunity to buy a whole lot of assets at a large discount to their values.