The S&P 500 climbed 13% over the past 12 months despite ongoing concerns about rising interest rates and trade wars, and several tech stocks crushed the market with triple-digit gains. Today we'll take a closer look at three of those high-growth winners: Baozun (NASDAQ:BZUN), Autohome (NYSE:ATHM), and Match Group (NASDAQ:MTCH).
Shares of Chinese e-commerce services provider Baozun rallied more than 120% over the past 12 months. The company provides retailers with digital storefronts bundled with marketing, customer, fulfillment, and IT services, making it a "one-stop shop" for bringing businesses online in China's bustling e-commerce market. It serves a wide range of clients, from small businesses to multinational giants like Nike.
The bears once claimed that Baozun would be rendered obsolete if Alibaba or JD.com, the two top e-commerce players in China, launched similar services for their marketplaces. But today, Alibaba, JD, and many other e-commerce websites integrate Baozun's platform into their marketplaces.
Baozun's revenue rose 22% as its non-GAAP net income surged 121%. On a GAAP basis, earnings climbed 141%. The company attributes that growth to rising transactions at its clients' stores, an expanding number of brand partners, and its ability to cross-sell new services.
Analysts expect Baozun's revenue and non-GAAP earnings to grow 27% and 68%, respectively, this year. Those are impressive growth rates, but the stock isn't cheap at 46 times this year's earnings.
Another Chinese internet company, Autohome, rallied about 125% over the past 12 months. Autohome's websites provide auto-related news, reviews, and prices for cars, while its Autohome Mall platform connects buyers to dealers. The company is expanding that offering with a cloud-based platform for over 35,000 used car dealers.
Autohome's only meaningful competitor is Bitauto, which generates higher revenue growth but softer earnings growth. Bitauto is notably backed by Tencent and JD, which frequently co-invest in tech and retail companies.
Autohome's revenue rose 4% last year, mostly supported by a 34% jump in revenues from its media and leads generation services. Its non-GAAP net income climbed 53%, while its GAAP net income grew 63%. The company recently shuttered its unprofitable direct sales business and switched over to the ASC 606 accounting standard, both of which will slightly throttle its reported revenue growth this year.
Nonetheless, analysts still expect Autohome's revenue and non-GAAP earnings to climb 14% and 21%, respectively, this year. The stock currently trades at 29 times this year's earnings, which seems slightly pricey relative to its earnings growth potential.
Match Group's stock also easily crushed the market with a 125% gain over the past 12 months. Match owns several well-known dating apps, including Match, Tinder, OKCupid, and Plenty of Fish, and generates revenues from display ads and paid subscriptions. Its total paid subscribers grew 26% annually to 7.4 million last quarter, with Tinder's premium members accounting for 3.5 million of that total.
Match, which was spun off by internet media company IAC in 2015, is the 800-pound gorilla of online dating. However, Facebook's recent introduction of a dating feature caused many investors to question the width of Match's moat. Match subsequently struck back by launching a new "gamified" dating app called Crown, acquiring a stake in NYC-based dating app Hinge, and introducing new interest-based features for Tinder.
Match's revenue rose 19% last year, but its adjusted earnings dipped 19% due to tax reform-related charges. Wall Street expects its revenue to rise 27% this year as its earnings rebound 106% from that temporary dip. That's a solid growth rate for a stock that trades at just 29 times this year's earnings, but analysts expect its earnings growth to decelerate to 19% next year.
The bottom line
Baozun, Autohome, and Match have been kind to investors, but past gains never guarantee future returns. Baozun is still a good growth stock at these prices, but I'd be more cautious about Autohome due to the threat of slowing auto sales and tariffs; and Match, which needs to hold its ground against Facebook's latest moves.