LivePerson (NASDAQ: LPSN) and Monotype Imaging (NASDAQ:TYPE) are both small-cap computer and technology companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, profitability, institutional ownership, risk, dividends, valuation and earnings.

Volatility & Risk

LivePerson has a beta of 1.19, meaning that its share price is 19% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Monotype Imaging has a beta of 1, meaning that its share price has a similar volatility profile to the S&P 500.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings and recommmendations for LivePerson and Monotype Imaging, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
LivePerson 0 1 6 0 2.86
Monotype Imaging 1 1 0 0 1.50

LivePerson currently has a consensus price target of $15.26, indicating a potential upside of 24.10%. Monotype Imaging has a consensus price target of $24.25, indicating a potential upside of 0.83%. Given LivePerson’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe LivePerson is more favorable than Monotype Imaging.

Profitability

This table compares LivePerson and Monotype Imaging’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
LivePerson -11.07% -4.41% -2.77%
Monotype Imaging 0.06% 2.47% 1.50%

Dividends

Monotype Imaging pays an annual dividend of $0.45 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.9%. LivePerson does not pay a dividend.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

75.9% of LivePerson shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 93.3% of Monotype Imaging shares are owned by institutional investors. 11.4% of LivePerson shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 2.3% of Monotype Imaging shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares LivePerson and Monotype Imaging’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
LivePerson $222.78 million 3.29 -$25.87 million ($0.42) -29.29
Monotype Imaging $203.44 million 4.93 $14.88 million N/A N/A

Monotype Imaging has lower revenue, but higher earnings than LivePerson.

Summary

Monotype Imaging beats LivePerson on 7 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

About LivePerson

LivePerson, Inc. (Liveperson) is a provider of mobile and online business messaging technologies that power digital communication between brands and consumers. The Company’s segments include Business and Consumer. The Business segment enables brands to leverage its cloud-based LiveEngage’s intelligence engine. The Consumer segment facilitates online transactions between independent service providers (Experts) and individual consumers (Users) seeking information and knowledge for a fee through mobile and online messaging. The Company’s platform, LiveEngage, enables businesses to create a meaningful connection with consumers by offering messaging as a preferred channel of communication. The Company’s products and services include LiveEngage, Professional Services and Consumer Offering. As a cloud computing or software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider, LivePerson provides solutions on a hosted basis. LiveEngage enables the combination of real time on-site data and off-site behavioral data.

About Monotype Imaging

Monotype Imaging Holdings Inc. is engaged in the development, marketing and licensing of technologies and fonts. The Company empowers expression and engagement for creatives, designers, engineers and marketers. It organizes its business operations into two areas: creative professionals and original equipment manufacturer (OEM). For Creative Professional market, it provides content across multiple devices and mediums. Its solutions, which include type, branded mobile content, visual content marketing solutions, custom design services, and tools and technologies that enable the creative process, are licensed through its direct sales channel, e-commerce platforms and partner platforms. It also provides consumer device manufacturers and independent software vendors with the right solutions for delivering consistent, compelling user experiences. It works with a range of customers, including brands, agencies and publishers. As of December 31, 2016, it offered over 17,000 typeface designs.

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