Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) earnings aren’t due to hit until April 24th, but the furor surrounding China’s internet pioneers is making the company’s stock one of the most interesting stories out there. After Alibaba announced an unexpected boost in earnings, delivered through the Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) earnings report, and Weibo Corp (ADR) (NASDAQ:WB) went public, it’s time to take a look at the old hand in the Chinese web space.
Analysts following Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) are expecting the company to show earnings of $1.03 by consensus on revenue totaling $1.5 billion. In the same quarter of 2013 the company managed to earn $1 per share on revenue totaling $961 million. The company is on a growth kick at the moment, but it has a lot of that growth priced in, and investors have been taking their feet off of the pedal in the early months of 2014.
Baidu figures show real value
According to Amigobulls, who authored an earnings preview for Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) over at Seeking Alpha, the company is a long term bet, and one that could have an impressive payoff for the patient investor. Baidu is not going to see the massive growth that other Chinese stocks, like Alibaba, promise; the $50 billion internet powerhouse is too big for that.
“Baidu has an impeccable track record when it comes to revenue growth and profitability. Over a 3 year period, Baidu has recorded a revenue growth of about 64% CAGR with operating profit margins and net profit margins averaging about 46% and 42% respectively” according to the report.
The bottom line is simple: “Baidu has bright prospects in the rapidly growing Chinese internet economy.” The firm has had difficulties so far in 2014, losing more than 12% of its value, but if it continues to manage itself well the company could be a good bet in the long term, even given its 30+ price to equity ratio.
Baidu slows stock growth on momentum bust
Two hotly-anticipated Chinese internet IPOs are occurring this year. Weibo Corp (ADR) (NASDAQ:WB) went public at mid-day Thursday, and Alibaba is set to go public at some future date. Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) is one of two big players in the Chinese web space that are available for the public to buy. The other is Tencent Holdings Ltd (HKG:0700).
Both of these stocks, along with being interesting investments in their own right, form a guide to the performance of Chinese web companies. they also provide information on the kinds of unique challenges that service providers in that country face. Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) earnings will be watched closely in order to show the problems, and potential of the Chinese web space, and interest investors should pay attention.