Silver Spring Networks (SSNI) & ePlus inc. (PLUS) Critical Survey

Silver Spring Networks (NYSE: SSNI) and ePlus inc. (NASDAQ:PLUS) are both small-cap computer and technology companies, but which is the superior investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, institutional ownership, profitability and dividends.

Volatility & Risk

Silver Spring Networks has a beta of 1.63, meaning that its stock price is 63% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, ePlus inc. has a beta of 1.4, meaning that its stock price is 40% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Silver Spring Networks and ePlus inc., as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Silver Spring Networks 0 10 2 0 2.17
ePlus inc. 0 2 1 0 2.33

Silver Spring Networks currently has a consensus target price of $14.95, suggesting a potential downside of 7.23%. ePlus inc. has a consensus target price of $29.73, suggesting a potential downside of 68.90%. Given Silver Spring Networks’ higher probable upside, research analysts clearly believe Silver Spring Networks is more favorable than ePlus inc..

Insider and Institutional Ownership

79.4% of Silver Spring Networks shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 86.2% of ePlus inc. shares are held by institutional investors. 29.6% of Silver Spring Networks shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 3.3% of ePlus inc. shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Silver Spring Networks and ePlus inc.’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Silver Spring Networks -7.47% N/A -5.55%
ePlus inc. 3.81% 15.95% 7.42%

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Silver Spring Networks and ePlus inc.’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Silver Spring Networks $452.27 million 1.91 -$19.70 million ($0.66) -24.42
ePlus inc. $1.40 billion 0.97 $101.15 million $3.84 24.93

ePlus inc. has higher revenue and earnings than Silver Spring Networks. Silver Spring Networks is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than ePlus inc., indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

ePlus inc. beats Silver Spring Networks on 8 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Silver Spring Networks

Silver Spring Networks, Inc. is engaged in creating, building and deploying large-scale networks and solutions enabling the Internet of things (IoT) for critical infrastructure. The Company provides a networking platform and solutions that enable utilities to transform the power grid infrastructure into the smart grid. Its networking platform enables customers to communicate with devices connected to the power grid. Its networking platform comprises hardware, such as access points and relays; its communications modules; its SilverLinkOS network operating software, and its GridScape management and security software. It offers solutions built upon SilverLink Network and Data platforms, including advanced metering, distribution automation, demand-side management, street lights and its wireless Internet protocol version 6 (IPv6) network service for the IoT, Starfish. Through its managed application services, it manages the SilverLink Control Platform and SilverLink Applications.

About ePlus inc.

ePlus inc. is a holding company. The Company is engaged in the business of selling, leasing, financing and managing information technology. It operates through two segments: technology and financing. The technology segment sells information technology (IT) hardware products, third-party software and maintenance contracts, its own and third-party professional and managed services, and its software. The financing segment operations primarily consist of the financing of information technology equipment, software and related services. Both segments sell to commercial entities, state and local governments, government contractors and educational institutions. The Company is a provider of IT solutions, which enable organizations to optimize their IT environment and supply chain processes. It delivers and integrates IT products and software from various vendors, and provides private, hybrid, and public cloud solutions.

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