Canadian software company Sylogist (Sylogist Stock Quote, Chart, News TSXV:SYZ) had an off year in 2019 but there could be a breakout in store in 2020, says Elliot Fishman of Scotia Wealth, who likes the look of the chart right now.
Calgary-based Sylogist offers enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions for both the private and public sectors, including fund accounting, grant management and payroll to public organizations. The company has a long history of being that rare gem in the tech field, especially for stocks on the Venture Exchange, a dividend stalwart. Sylogist has consistently upped its dividend year after year, with the yield currently sitting at 4.5 per cent.
Sylogist’s share price dropped sharply last week as the company released its fiscal fourth quarter and full-year financials for 2019, showing revenue down two per cent for both the Q4 and the year and profit falling to $10 million for 2019 versus $13.2 million for 2018.
But management pointed to the company’s leaner workforce as a sign of greater efficiencies —Sylogist cut its employee base by 20 per cent over 2019 and generated $17.6 million in adjusted EBITDA compared to $17.0 million over the previous year — while also noting that M&A will continue in 2020 but at a selective pace.
“Fiscal 2019 was a year of significant efficiency gains and acquisition focus for the Company,” wrote Jim Wilson, president and CEO, in a January 16 press release. “The Company’s acquisition efforts did not yield results in fiscal 2019 despite making offers on several targeted opportunities. The Company continues to be a prudent custodian of shareholder capital and has resisted engaging in a currently observed acquisition trend of buying revenue that has little prospect of generating cash flow in the medium term or at all without significant follow-on investment.”
Sylogist lost 21 per cent of its value in 2019 and with negative earnings growth predicted for 2020, the company’s payout ratio could become unwieldy.
But the company has been strong in its free cash flow each year over the past decade and has had a share buyback program in effect, as well. Moreover, the stock chart looks promising, according to Fishman, director of US and International Trading at Scotia Wealth.
“This one has been in a little volatile run,” said Fishman, speaking to BNN Bloomberg on Tuesday. “Right where it is right now it was in 2017, in 2016 and for whatever reason it held. And if we’re going to start talking head and shoulders type of formations, it’s at the shoulder, so this is a very interesting pocket here.”
“It has shown no reason that it’s going to break this, although you are playing with a little bit of fire because there really is no support until [around $6.20]. I’d buy it right here. I’d take my chances at the low end of it. It’s done enough over time to hold here,” he said.
“I wouldn’t go all in but I’d be a buyer,” Fishman said.