Echostar (NASDAQ: SATS) and Ciena (NYSE:CIEN) are both mid-cap computer and technology companies, but which is the superior investment? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, institutional ownership, dividends and profitability.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Echostar and Ciena’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Echostar $3.06 billion 1.84 $179.93 million $1.24 47.50
Ciena $2.80 billion 1.11 $1.26 billion $7.99 2.71

Ciena has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Echostar. Ciena is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Echostar, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Risk and Volatility

Echostar has a beta of 0.78, indicating that its stock price is 22% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Ciena has a beta of 1.66, indicating that its stock price is 66% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for Echostar and Ciena, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Echostar 0 1 1 0 2.50
Ciena 0 3 18 0 2.86

Echostar presently has a consensus price target of $70.00, suggesting a potential upside of 18.85%. Ciena has a consensus price target of $28.55, suggesting a potential upside of 31.64%. Given Ciena’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Ciena is more favorable than Echostar.

Profitability

This table compares Echostar and Ciena’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Echostar 5.55% 2.85% 1.26%
Ciena 45.04% 18.32% 7.02%

Insider & Institutional Ownership

44.5% of Echostar shares are held by institutional investors. 73.5% of Echostar shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 1.5% of Ciena shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Ciena beats Echostar on 9 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

Echostar Company Profile

EchoStar Corporation is a holding company. The Company is a provider of satellite operations, video delivery solutions, digital set-top boxes, and broadband satellite technologies and services for home and office, delivering network technologies, managed services, and solutions for enterprises and governments. The Company operates through three segments: Hughes, EchoStar Technologies (ETC) and EchoStar Satellite Services (ESS). The Company’s Hughes segment provides broadband satellite technologies and broadband services for the home and office, delivering network technologies, managed services and communication solutions to domestic and international consumers and enterprise and government customers. The ETC segment provides end-to-end video and broadcast technology products and services to businesses and directly to consumers. The ESS segment operates its business using its owned and leased in-orbit satellites. Its operations also include real estate and other activities.

Ciena Company Profile

Ciena Corporation is a network strategy and technology company, which provides solutions that enable a range of network operators to adopt communication architectures and deliver an array of services, relied upon by enterprise and consumer end users. It provides equipment, software and services that support the transport, switching, aggregation, service delivery and management of voice, video and data traffic on communications networks. It segments include Networking Platforms; Software and Software-Related Services, and Global Services. The Networking Platforms segment consists of Converged Packet Optical, Packet Networking and Optical Transport product portfolios. The software business is engaged in the development and licensing of element and network management software and software-related services that support its hardware offerings. It offers a suite of consulting and support services that help its customers to design, optimize, deploy and maintain their communications networks.

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