Ark Investing CEO Cathie Wood seemingly went from never being wrong to never being right during the span of the pandemic. Her company invested in a lot of stocks that flew high during the early days of the pandemic.
Now, with the pandemic moving toward the endemic stage and life returning somewhat to normal shares in companies like Peloton (PTON) – Get Peloton Interactive, Inc. Class A Report, Netflix (NFLX) – Get Netflix, Inc. Report, and the pandemic granddaddy of them all, Zoom (ZM) – Get Zoom Video Communications, Inc. Class A Report have fallen hard. The challenge for Wood (and anyone holding shares in these companies) is deciding what the real value of these companies is going forward.
Do you believe the narrative that people stopped buying Peloton’s, watching Netflix, and using Zoom because the pandemic has mostly (sort of) ended? Or, do you think these are valuable companies with huge growth ahead being caught up in a false narrative?
Cathie Wood Claps Back
Ark’s flagship Ark Innovation ETF ARKK owned $761.9 million worth of Zoom stock as of March 21. That made Zoom the No. 4 holding in the fund. Not only has Wood held onto her shares of the struggling teleconferencing company she used Twitter to show her support. The CEO didn’t make a comment, but she shared the following with her 1.3 million followers:
“At 28, Zoom Video $ZM now has a lower price to earnings multiple than Hormel (spam), Hershey (chocolate), Clorox (bleach), McCormick (spices), and Church & Dwight (baking soda),” Bespoke Investing shared.
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Wood said nothing but her Retweet was very loud. She’s basically questioning whether commodities companies should trade at a higher multiple than a company (Zoom) which has been very innovative. It’s a subtle way to show her belief in the company and not all of her followers agreed.
How Has Zoom Performed?
The so-called pandemic stocks have benefitted (and suffered) from public perception. People think that Zoom’s revenue has suffered as some offices reopen, but, has it?
The videoconference had a pretty strong fourth quarter when it comes to growth, but saw a slight drop in income. The company reported just over $1 billion in Q4 revenue, up 21% year-over-year. Revenue for the full year was up 55%. Income from operations was down 2% in Q4, but up 61% year-over-year.
Those numbers certainly don’t suggest that the company’s share price should have dropped 63% over the past 12 months, but it has. CEO Eric Yuan tried to counteract some of that narrative during his comments in the earnings release.
“Looking forward, we are addressing a large opportunity as we expect customers will continue to transform how they work and engage with their customers. It is apparent that businesses want a full communications platform that is integrated, secure, and easy to use” he said. “…To sustain and enhance our leadership position, in fiscal year 2023 we plan to build out our platform to further enrich the customer experience with new cloud-based technologies and expand our go-to-market motions, which we believe will enable us to drive future growth.”
Zoom had about $5.5 billion in cash on hand to close the year. The company offered the following guidance for its full fiscal 2023.
“Total revenue is expected to be between $4.53 billion and $4.55 billion and non-GAAP income from operations is expected to be between $1.43 billion and $1.45 billion. Full fiscal year non-GAAP diluted EPS is expected to be between $3.45 and $3.51 with approximately 312 million non-GAAP weighted average shares outstanding.”