Comparing Williams Industrial Services Group (WLMS) & Sterling Construction (STRL)

Williams Industrial Services Group (OTCMKTS:WLMS) and Sterling Construction (NASDAQ:STRL) are both small-cap construction companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their profitability, dividends, institutional ownership, valuation, risk, analyst recommendations and earnings.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

19.9% of Williams Industrial Services Group shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 78.3% of Sterling Construction shares are held by institutional investors. 19.5% of Williams Industrial Services Group shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 5.2% of Sterling Construction shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Williams Industrial Services Group and Sterling Construction’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Williams Industrial Services Group -19.74% -46.48% -12.60%
Sterling Construction 2.19% 14.47% 4.85%

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current recommendations and price targets for Williams Industrial Services Group and Sterling Construction, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Williams Industrial Services Group 0 0 0 0 N/A
Sterling Construction 0 0 1 0 3.00

Sterling Construction has a consensus target price of $20.00, indicating a potential upside of 55.40%. Given Sterling Construction’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Sterling Construction is more favorable than Williams Industrial Services Group.

Volatility and Risk

Williams Industrial Services Group has a beta of 1.99, suggesting that its share price is 99% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Sterling Construction has a beta of 0.7, suggesting that its share price is 30% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Williams Industrial Services Group and Sterling Construction’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Williams Industrial Services Group $186.98 million 0.23 -$56.52 million N/A N/A
Sterling Construction $957.96 million 0.36 $11.61 million $0.55 23.40

Sterling Construction has higher revenue and earnings than Williams Industrial Services Group.

Summary

Sterling Construction beats Williams Industrial Services Group on 9 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

Williams Industrial Services Group Company Profile

Williams Industrial Services Group Inc. provides general and specialty construction, maintenance and modification, and plant management support services to the nuclear, hydro and fossil power generation, pulp and paper, refining, petrochemical, and other process and manufacturing industries. The company offers nuclear power plant maintenance, modification, and construction services; maintenance, repair, and capital project services for other industrial and power generation facilities, including paper, fossil fuel, industrial gas, hydro power, and natural gas; and repair, modifications, maintenance, and builds services for municipal water and wastewater facilities. It also provides cleaning, surface preparation, coatings application, quality control, and inspection testing services for nuclear and fossil fuel power plants, industrial facilities, and petrochemical plants; industrial insulation services for power generation installations; and abatement services for the removal of asbestos and heavy metal based coatings, such as lead paint. In addition, the company replaces, repairs, and upgrades industrial facility roofing systems at pulp and paper manufacturing facilities and nuclear power plants; offers oil and gas modifications and construction services; engages in the conversion of analog control systems to digital controls; and provides nuclear decommissioning services. It markets its services in the United States through sales and marketing personnel, as well as its on-site operations personnel. The company was formerly known as Global Power Equipment Group Inc. and changed its name to Williams Industrial Services Group Inc. in June 2018. Williams Industrial Services Group Inc. was founded in 1998 and is based in Tucker, Georgia.

Sterling Construction Company Profile

Sterling Construction Company, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a heavy civil and residential construction company in Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Nevada, Texas, Utah, and other states in the United States. The company's Heavy Civil Construction segment undertakes heavy civil construction projects, including highways, roads, bridges, airfields, ports, light rail, water, wastewater and storm drainage systems, foundations for multi-family homes, commercial concrete projects, and parking structures. This segment primarily serves the departments of transportation in various states, regional transit authorities, airport authorities, port authorities, water authorities, and railroads, as well as commercial construction customers. Its Residential Construction segment undertakes construction projects, such as concrete foundations for single-family homes. This segment serves home builders. The company was formerly known as Oakhurst Company, Inc. and changed its name to Sterling Construction Company, Inc. in November 2001. Sterling Construction Company, Inc. was founded in 1955 and is headquartered in The Woodlands, Texas.

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