Overall, it’s been a good year for Canadian tech stocks, but much of that love has been given to the big names in the space like Shopify and Constellation Software. Small caps? Not so much, with many names in the space likely to finish under water for 2021.
But investors looking to pick up some small cap Canadian tech might find this to be a dandy buying opportunity. Here are four ideas for your consideration, in no particular order and all with recent Buy ratings from analysts.
1. Prontoforms (Prontoforms Stock Quote, Charts, News, Analysts, Financials TSXV:PFM)
Market Cap: $124 million
2020 Revenue: $17.7 million
2021 Year-to-date return: +2 per cent
Mobile business software company Prontoforms has solutions for automating field work including sales, service and data collection, with the company currently doing business in Canada, the US, LATAM and Europe. Prontoforms had US$4.9 million in revenue for its most-recently reported quarter, which was up 7.5 per cent year-over-year with an EBITDA loss of US$715,000 compared to a loss of US$240,000 a year ago.
Beacon Securities analyst Gabriel Leung likes PFM going forward, saying its products will go well with technology changes that have made field work more complex.
“We continue to view ProntoForms as a compelling investment vehicle given its resilient business model, strong growth potential and attractive takeout characteristics,” Leung said.
Leung maintained his “Buy” rating and $1.75 target in an update on November 4, which represented a projected one-year return of 62 per cent.
(All returns in this article are as of the publication date of the analyst’s report and all figures are in Canadian dollars except where noted otherwise.)
2. HIRE Technologies (Hire Technologies Stock Quote, Charts, News, Analysts, Financials TSXV:HIRE)
Market Cap: $19 million
2020 Revenue: $11.4 million
2021 Year-to-date return: -73 per cent
Toronto-based HIRE Technologies has truly been banged up this year with the stock taking a 73 per cent cut so far, but the company is putting out strong quarterly numbers, according to Eight Capital analyst Christian Sgro.
HIRE, which has IT, staffing and HR solutions for clients in light industrial, waste management and healthcare, reported its third quarter last month where revenue was up 21 per cent sequentially and up 203 per cent year-over-year to $7.7 million. Gross profit was also strong at a 44 per cent margin at $3.4 million.
Both those top and bottom numbers were beats of Sgro’s forecasts, with the analyst saying that the fourth quarter may be rougher for HIRE but the longer term prospects are great.
“While the company noted strong trends across the staffing industry, we remain cautious on seasonal headwinds that impact the Q4 quarter, including holiday slow-downs,” Sgro said in a November 25 report. “As well, HIRE’s mix of financial services clients generally sees a pull-back in Q4, which we expect to rebuild into Q1. As such, we are modelling relatively flat performance into Q4 into what we expect to be a strong 2022.”
Sgro has HIRE as a “Buy” with a $0.55 target price, representing a projected return of 77 per cent.
3. MediaValet Inc (MediaValet Inc Stock Quote, Charts, News, Analysts, Financials TSX:MVP)
Market Cap: $75 million
2020 Revenue: $7.5 million
2021 Year-to-date return: -28 per cent
Enterprise and SMB cloud software company MediaValet provides digital asset management solutions for a range of industries, with its business mostly in the US. The company’s clients had a rough 2020, although MVP ended the year with revenue up 45 per cent from the previous year. This year has seen similar ground gained, but the road ahead should be more interesting, according to Sgro, who said expanded sales capacity and the promise of pent up demand from its customers could bode well for MVP.
Sgro reviewed MediaValet’s third quarter 2021 numbers in an update on November 16, with the numbers arriving mostly in-line with estimates at $2.4 million in revenue and an adjusted EBITDA loss of $2.1 million.
“We expect new partnerships to widen the top of the funnel, which management noted remains at record levels. We are reiterating our BUY thesis and remain positive on MediaValet’s large market opportunity and the return to 40 per cent+ growth in 2022,” Sgro wrote.
Market Cap: $305 million
2020 Revenue: $76.7 million
2021 Year-to-date return: +42 per cent
kneat.com is in the data and document management space where its software is focused on validation lifecycle management and testing in the medical device, biotech and pharma fields. The kneat Gx platform works for data-intensive management and real-time visibility and control for quality and compliance and the company is headquartered in Limerick, Ireland.
Sgro delivered an update on the company on November 10, saying kneat is still scaling its tech with its clients and that the company is winning more customers through referrals from customers to their supply chain partners. For its most recent quarter, KSI hit record revenue of $3.7 million, up 91 per cent year-over-year, and an adjusted EBITDA loss of $1.1 million.
“Similar to last quarter, we expect momentum to continue as kneat scales, up-lists to the TSX, and delivers on plan. The company has proven product-market fit, with a land & expand strategy that we believe remains in the early innings,” Sgro wrote.
With the update, Sgro reiterated his “Buy” rating and $4.75 target, which represented a projected return of 34 per cent.