When you're looking for growth investments, it can pay to bet on innovators that bring a special technology to the table. That's especially true in industries where there are well-established drawbacks to the traditional way of doing things. Fresh approaches have the potential to shake up everything -- and make investors richer in the process.
On that note, InMode (INMD 4.10%) is a cosmetic medical-device company that's disrupting its industry by giving people the option to avoid plastic surgery while still delivering surgery-like, aesthetic results. The Israel-based company is profitable, growing, and has an impressive collection of products. I'm of the opinion that this stock is one of the best options out there for people looking to invest $3,000 -- or at least some part -- so let's explore why.
Painless beauty treatments could be decisive
InMode got its start in 2008 and its products today have a handful of key advantages that its competitors don't have.
One of the biggest downsides to cosmetic plastic surgery is the procedure itself. Whether or not the patient needs to be anesthetized, surgeries entail at least some amount of discomfort, not to mention recovery time and the potential to leave a scar. So these are significant factors for anyone considering a cosmetic procedure, which tamps down demand.
Then there's the fact that plastic surgeries tend to cost at least a few thousand dollars per operation, which also reduces the number of people who are able and willing to undergo these procedures.
In contrast, InMode makes devices that physicians and aesthetic surgeons can use to accomplish cosmetic effects similar to those provided by plastic surgery but which don't require actual surgery. The company's secret ingredient is its radio frequency (RF) technology, which uses electromagnetic energy to tighten skin, sculpt body parts, and liquidate fat deposits without being as invasive as traditional methods.
Importantly, the radio frequency devices can also perform some of the same functions of other, less invasive cosmetic medical procedures like laser treatments -- and potentially do them even better. No matter the application, the company's training seminars teach practitioners the skills they need.
While it's difficult to do an objective, side-by-side comparison of the company's results with RF hardware vs. results using legacy techniques, the business case for InMode's lineup is quite clear. If a company can deliver comparable or even better results than the traditional way of doing things, it stands to win market share. And if its treatments are less expensive than surgeries, as they may be with certain providers, it's icing on the cake. However, given that some clinics charge on the order of $2,250 for a full course of skin-tightening therapies, the cost isn't always dramatically lower than plastic surgery.
InMode is looking to release machines with improved capabilities each year. So far, that plan seems to be working; regulators at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have assented to the company's applications for commercialization.
In terms of sales, InMode's revenue grew 58% year over year in the third quarter, reaching $94 million, the latest in a long streak of rising inflows. Meanwhile, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) have grown more than 382% in the past three years.
Why it's worth buying today
Like other growth stocks, InMode's financial performance has been on a strong trajectory recently as you can see here:
From 2018 through the end of 2020, diluted earnings per share (EPS) grew at a compound annual rate of 36%. If the company can continue to grow its earnings at a slightly slower rate of 30% annually for the next three years, it would have an EPS of around $3.82 by the end of 2024. Of course, 30% is just an estimate and growth could accelerate or slow.
Plus, if InMode continues to trade at a trailing price-to-earnings ratio of around 50, its shares could be much higher in three years or so -- all other things being equal.
A note of caution: the stock tends to be on the volatile side. Also, I wouldn't be too surprised if competitors will try to copy the technology behind InMode's devices. But for now, the competitors aren't even public companies and their device and treatment offerings are not anywhere near as extensive as InMode's. In my view, the company's potential for massive growth is too good to pass up.