Confident of double-digit growth in FY22 – HCL Tech

Update on the Indian Equity Market:

On Thursday, NIFTY ended higher at 15,824 (+1.2%) as it closed near the intraday high level of 15,835. METAL (+3.0%), IT (+1.8%), and REALTY (+1.75%) led the sectoral gainers and there were no sectoral losers. Among the stocks, JSWSTEEL (+5.9%), TECHM (+5.4%), and BAJFINANCE (+4.2%) led the gainers while HINDUNILVR (-2.3%), ASIANPAINT (-1.8%), and BAJAJ-AUTO (-1.2%) led the losers.

Excerpts of an interview with Mr. C Vijayakumar, CEO & MD, and Mr. Prateek Aggarwal, CFO of HCL Technologies (HCLTECH) published with CNBC TV18 on 20th July 2021:

  • The company has seen a second consecutive quarter of revenue miss due to execution capabilities getting hit by the second Covid wave, and the company has a lot of concentration in NCR. As the revenue will recover in Q2FY22, the company is confident of the full year’s double-digit growth performance.
  • Speaking on segments, the products and platform segment has been disappointing for the last two quarters. The company expects a low single-digit growth for this segment, as around 25% of the products are either declining in nature or are being discontinued. IT services had a muted quarter, due to some executions and transitions in Europe that are taking longer than expected.
  • The company is expanding in new markets (geographically) categorized as Focus countries and New Frontier countries. The company has a reasonable presence in the countries under the Focus category and the growth rate will be higher than the company growth rate. New frontier countries are mid to long-term bets. These markets have to be built and are expected to give good outcomes in a couple of years.
  • The deals that the company has won are organic in nature, and a lot of them require to be built by hiring more talent, and onboarding them. The hiring of freshers could be more than the current guidance of 20,000-22,000. Speaking on salary hikes, the salaries are currently the same at entry-level, but the company expects to see a salary hike percentage in the next couple of years to be more than the rest of the company.
  • The company has accomplished a very good quality order book in the last 2 quarters, a lot of it being good long-term programs having annuity revenues, and are good capacity programs for digital transformation.

Asset Multiplier Comments

  • As the country recovers from execution capability-related issues caused by the second covid wave, the revenues can be expected to recover in FY22.
  • A strong order book that contributes to annuity revenues will position the company better in the mid to long term.

Consensus Estimate: (Source: market screener website)

  • The closing price of HCLTECH was ₹ 979/- as of 22-July-2021. It traded at 20x/17x/16x the consensus earnings estimate of ₹ 50/57/62 for FY22E/FY23E/FY24E respectively.
  • The consensus target price of ₹ 975/- implies a PE multiple of 16x on FY24E EPS of ₹ 62/-.

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