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Better Buy: Fiverr vs. Crowdstrike

By Rich Duprey and Anders Bylund – Updated Nov 16, 2021 at 9:39AM

Key Points

  • Individuals are taking charge of their own financial futures through the gig economy.
  • Massive security breaches of vital data are nearly an everyday occurrence.
  • Which stock offers greater growth prospects?

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The gig economy and cybersecurity protection are each vital to future economic expansion.

The gig economy has unleashed a level of creativity and freedom for creators that freelance platform Fiverr International (FVRR -1.47%) is smartly capitalizing on to the benefit of its clients and customers. Meanwhile, the need to shield important personal or commercial data from the omnipresent risk of hackers is a never-ending battle for Crowdstrike Holdings (CRWD 3.62%) to fight.

Let's take the bull case for both stocks to determine which company has the stronger argument to make it the better buy today.

A woman types on her laptop

Image source: Getty Images.

Fiverr's growth story is just getting started

Anders Bylund (Fiverr): I have nothing but respect for CrowdStrike, but that company is trying to carve out a niche in an extremely crowded network security market. Fiverr International, on the other hand, faces few rivals in the much fresher gig economy. The growth opportunity in front of this company is absolutely massive, and Fiverr is just getting started.

Fiverr's stated mission is to "change how the world works together." That audacious ambition got a helpful push from the coronavirus lockdowns and layoffs in 2020 when millions of people found themselves with spare time and a need for cash. The company's online marketplace helps freelancers find work while solving business problems with freelance services. It's a two-sided approach that works out to a win-win-win situation when both customer classes are satisfied and Fiverr profits. From a longer-term perspective, Fiverr's real upside in successful freelance service matchups lies in creating repeat customers.

According to the company's investor overview, Fiverr's current addressable market is worth over $100 billion per year. That's for the domestic market alone -- just one of 160 countries where Fiverr provides its services. Unstoppable secular trends toward a flexible workforce and online business services should provide plenty of fuel for Fiverr's growth for decades to come.

And the effort is already paying off in spades. In this week's third-quarter report, Fiverr's revenues rose 42% year over year to $74 million, thanks to the one-two punch of 33% more buy-side clients and 20% higher spend per buyer. The company also reported an adjusted net profit of $0.19 per share. Your average analyst would have settled for a net loss of $0.01 per share on sales near $71 million.

I'm thrilled to have a few Fiverr shares in my personal portfolio as the company explores an immense market opportunity. CrowdStrike is a fine business and a good investment; it just can't match Fiverr's incredible potential.

Two people looking at computer servers.

Image source: Getty Images.

Guaranteed business for as far as the eye can see

Rich Duprey (CrowdStrike): I'm also quite bullish on Fiverr, believing the freelance outfit has a long growth runway ahead of it. It's just that CrowdStrike's trajectory is much steeper and arguably longer. Like death and taxes, it seems hackers and security breaches will always be with us, and for that reason, CrowdStrike will have a never-ending conga line of customers lining up for its services.

This year is expected to break all kinds of records for data breaches, and so far, through the third quarter, 40 million people have had their data compromised.

The cybersecurity stock uses a combination of sophisticated machine learning, artificial intelligence, and behavioral analysis to detect and thwart cybersecurity risks. Because its Falcon platform manages trillions of events every week, it grows smarter over time, allowing it to recognize and respond to potential threats more quickly while offering customers cost-effective personalization and customization solutions.

The platform was purpose-built for the cloud, so it's often a more effective and cheaper cybersecurity solution than on-premises security products. And because cyberthreats are an ever-present danger, Crowdstrike's subscriber base has grown from 450 clients to over 13,000 in less than five years, almost all of which renew their subscriptions.

Analysts forecast Crowdstrike's revenue will grow at a compounded annual rate of 37% over the next five years, and operating losses today will transition to a near-$1 billion profit by 2026. Earnings per share is expected to grow 73% annually over the next five years.

Given the level of personalization and customization its enterprise-level customers can dial in -- attaining just the right amount of cloud-based cybersecurity protection they seek -- CrowdStrike should perform well even if the economy tanks, and perhaps even better if it doesn't.

The better buy

Which stock is better for your portfolio really hinges on your technology preference since both are tech stocks with significant tailwinds driving them forward. Gig economy expansion shows no sign of letting up, as the independence the arrangement offers is exhilarating, while data protection remains a vital component to businesses everywhere. Both could be welcome additions to a diversified portfolio.

Rich Duprey has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends CrowdStrike Holdings, Inc. and Fiverr International. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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