Why Did Concordia Healthcare Corp. Drop Over 20% Yesterday?

Investors were in for a rude awakening yesterday when the price of shares for Concordia Healthcare Corp.  (TSX:CXR)(NASDAQ:CXRX) dropped from $44.20 to $33.87 between 1:20 pm and 1:30 pm. While the stock spent the rest of the day clawing back some of those losses, it still ended nearly 10% down from where it opened.

The drop is actually pretty easy to explain. On April 21, 2016, Concordia revealed that it had forked a special committee to “consider various strategies alternatives available to the company.” That’s code for “sell, sell, sell.” And it makes sense because the stock had declined more than 60% within a year.

It was expected that Blackstone Group LPApollo Global Management LLC, and Carlyle Group LP were all considering bidding for these assets. Naturally, an acquisition has investors excited because it could be a short-term windfall. Yesterday, though, the Wall Street Journal reported that Blackstone (the most likely acquirer) and Carlyle had both backed out, leaving Apollo as the sole suitor. The price dropped from there.

Only a couple of hours after that, the company released a statement that “confirmed today that its review of strategic alternatives is ongoing.” In other words, “we’re still trying to sell, don’t crater the stock price please!”

Whether the acquisition goes through or not, investors might want to consider whether or not Concordia belongs in their portfolios because, quite frankly, it is as cheap as it gets. At these prices, its forward P/E is around 3.75, its price/book is nearly one, and it trades less than its enterprise value.

What’s so impressive is that the company is very lucrative. In its third-quarter earnings, the company had an adjusted earnings per share of US$1.46 on revenues of US$94.91 million. Consider that one year earlier, its adjusted EPS was US$0.56 on revenues of $36.43. The company gave a guidance of anywhere between US$6.39 and US$6.77 for earnings per share. The reason its earnings have grown is because it integrated the 18 products it bought from Covis Pharma for $1.2 billion.

It’s also acquiring other assets. It recently bought Amdipharm Mercury Ltd. for US$3.5 billion and expects that the purchase will immediately add to earnings. Further, Amdipharm has exposure to over 100 countries, whereas Concordia only really sells in the United States. That’s big for Concordia. And yesterday, the company announced that it had paid £21 million for the global rights to four generic products, including Sodium Feredetate oral solution for anemia, Trazadone oral solution for depression, and two other products still in the pipeline.

Buying up all of these assets has given Concordia a significant amount of debt. Based on numbers released at the end of March, it has $3.3 billion in long-term debt. There’s no denying that this is risky, all things considered.

However, Concordia is a fast-growing company that is generating significant earnings from its acquisitions. For those who are looking for growth, I believe at present-day values, Concordia is a steal. Once it gets a few more earnings reports under its belt, shares of this stock should rise significantly. While an acquisition may not happen, investors could wind up making more money just because Concordia is a solid investment. I recommend this company.

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Fool contributor Jacob Donnelly has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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