BZC is an illiquid microcap that has a strong core business and attractive growth opportunities.
Investors are frustrated that the Company will not receive revenue from its large Airbus A400M contract until 2013 (years later than initially expected). Recent results also understate normalized earnings as engineering/development expenses are above normalized levels due to preparation for Airbus and other upcoming programs.
I value BZC's stock at ~50-100% more than its current price. As the A400M program ramps up, and engineering expenses decline in 2013, BZC’s FCF will increase to higher levels.
Management/Board and shareholder interests are aligned given large insider ownership. The Company is 57% owned by two PE firms (Tinicum Capital and Wynnefield Capital) who have made an agreement not to purchase more stock or to seek control before 2013. I expect the PE owners to exit via a sale once the Company puts up solid results in 2013.
BZC is the leading manufacturer of electric & hydraulic helicopter rescue hoists and cargo hook systems. BZC sells primarily to militaries and aerospace contractors; its products are used for rescue operations, extraction and transporting cargo.
BZC is the market leader with ~50-70% global share. BZC equipment is entrenched in most helicopter brands (including Agusta, Alenia, Sikorsky, Boeing etc.)
Business model is to sell equipment and benefit further from recurring after-market sales of spare parts & overhaul/repairs. The installed base offers visibility to the after-market sales. It is a low capital-intensive business.
BZC’s core business has high barriers to entry
High switching costs: Hoist/winch equipment is highly customized and integrated. A helicopter type is typically produced for ~20 years, providing a tail of revenue that competitors cannot steal away. Moreover, displacing BZC would be difficult for a new entrant as customers would have to disrupt their business to customize and test a new product (qualification testing etc. is costly and timely).
Economies of scale: The economics of developing hoists and winches are not attractive given the small size of the addressable market. An entrant would also face poor ROI as it entered the business, given BZC and Goodrich’s high share.
Airbus: BZC has a large order for a cargo positioning system for the A400M. BZC will begin to generate revenue late 2012 or early 2013; the program is projected to continue until at least 2020 (backlog includes $71M for Airbus). Not only equipment orders but the associated after-market business will be significant.
Geographic expansion: The Company has a solid presence with helicopter companies in regions beyond North America and Europe (such as Hindustan Aeronautics in India). BZC will benefit from increasing demand in emerging markets.
Other growth opportunities: BZC is working with several OEM-partners on new platform opportunities (programs include the AW-159, V-22, C-27J and H-92). Slide 12 in the most recent company presentation (http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=114678&p=irol-irhome) highlights the recent above-normal development costs and the expected benefits of $10-20M incremental revenue per annum over the next decade.
Other key points
Market/Competition: Goodrich Hoist and Winch is BZC’s only key competitor. Goodrich operates in some of the same sub-segments. Goodrich is a miniscule division of Goodrich Corp, recently acquired by UTX (see risks below)
Debt: BZC has continually paid down debt in recent years and now has a strong balance sheet. BZC inherited significant debt unrelated to its actions when its former parent Transtech Corp was wound down.
Tinicum Capital: Board Chairman Charles Grigg’s PE firm, Tinicum Capital Partners, owns ~35% of BZC and purchased more stock in 2011.
Environmental liabilities: BZC has environmental liabilities of ~$14M related to former facilities of Transtech, BZC’s former parent. The ~$14M is based on a 2010 review. BZC spent $638K on environmental costs in fiscal 2011.
Deferred-tax assets (DTAs): At Sep. 30. 2011, the balance sheet had current DTAs of $6.8M and non-current DTAs of $8.1M indicating BZC will pay minimal tax in the near-term.
Valuation and financials
Products (hoist/winch, cargo hooks)
Services (overhaul/repairs, eng services)
EBIT (excluding non-recurring)
BZC is trading at ~10x EV/2012E FCF. I forecast ~$74M revenue and ~$8.5M FCF (after-tax) in 2012. These results are below normalized earnings; as Airbus and other new programs generate revenue and the engineering expense decline plays out in 2013, revenue and FCF will be higher.
BZC offers an attractive risk/reward given the strength of the business and the balance sheet. I believe the stock is worth ~50-100% more than the current price, depending on the timing and magnitude of Airbus and other new programs – operating leverage offers meaningful margin expansion. Additionally, value should be given to the tax assets as BZC will pay minimal tax in the coming years.
I also expect the PE owners to sell following strong results in 2013. A strategic owner would benefit from reducing the SG&A.
Significant cancellations or delays in orders and programs
Any major reduction in across-the-board defense spending. As the majority of equipment is used for training, the withdrawal from active military engagements would not have a major impact.
United Technologies (UTX) purchase of Goodrich (GR): UTX owns Sikorsky, a key customer of BZC. Goodrich Hoist & Winch is an immaterial (<1%) part of Goodrich but it is possible that new Sikorsky programs go to Goodrich. While this offers some concern, current Sikorsky programs will remain at BZC (as programs are locked in for a long time) and BZC could also benefit as Goodrich risks losing customers who do not want to a supplier to be owned by a competitor.
Improved results in 2012 and 2013 (partly driven by lower engineering expenses)