Would Warren Buffett have invested in Concor?

There was an interesting article in Mint today on Concor (see link).

The article states that increase in haulage charges has taken business away from Concor towards private roadway operators.Hence the company is facing headwinds.

Lets look at this company from Warren Buffett’s eyes:

1.Does this company have a significant moat?

The answer is Yes.This company is more or less a monopoly.Private operators who tried to enter this business got their heads handed to them on account of govt. regulations.

2.Are the macro trends in favor?

India will grow its international business as it grows.So will its domestic haulage.Not only the volume of business will grow, but also the value due to persistent inflation

The clincher is diesel prices.While short term, diesel prices may not be increased due to political compulsions, long term the laws of economics will prevail.As per the Parikh report (section 4.9), railways consume 1/4th the diesel per net tonne kilometre as trucks.This is a huge huge advantage

3.Does the company need additional equity capital to grow?

The track record of this company is outstanding.It is sitting on 2600 Crores Rupees net cash.The dilution of equity is neither needed nor wanted

4.Is the management competent and ethical?

As the management is government owned,this question is a tricky one.

5.Is the company’s prices regulated?

The finances of this company depends on the haulage charges of the Railways.It is possible that political compulsions may wreak havoc with Concor’s finances but the possibility is remote

6.Are the valuations attractive?

At 11 times estimated fiscal 2013, they are fair.

Conclusion:Warren Buffett would probably buy this stock  and keep it forever !!

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