Autoweb (NASDAQ:AUTO) and 21Vianet Group (NASDAQ:VNET) are both small-cap auto/tires/trucks companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, profitability, valuation, risk, dividends, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Autoweb and 21Vianet Group’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Autoweb $125.59 million 0.35 -$38.82 million ($1.10) -3.10
21Vianet Group $494.66 million 1.76 -$29.83 million ($0.24) -32.42

21Vianet Group has higher revenue and earnings than Autoweb. 21Vianet Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Autoweb, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

23.0% of Autoweb shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 37.7% of 21Vianet Group shares are owned by institutional investors. 30.6% of Autoweb shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 12.1% of 21Vianet Group shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares Autoweb and 21Vianet Group’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Autoweb -30.91% -30.35% -20.96%
21Vianet Group -5.86% -1.15% -0.57%

Volatility & Risk

Autoweb has a beta of 0.12, suggesting that its share price is 88% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, 21Vianet Group has a beta of 1.24, suggesting that its share price is 24% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current recommendations and price targets for Autoweb and 21Vianet Group, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Autoweb 0 2 1 0 2.33
21Vianet Group 0 0 2 0 3.00

Autoweb currently has a consensus price target of $5.00, indicating a potential upside of 45.77%. Given Autoweb’s higher probable upside, equities analysts plainly believe Autoweb is more favorable than 21Vianet Group.

Summary

21Vianet Group beats Autoweb on 11 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Autoweb

AutoWeb, Inc. operates as a digital marketing company for the automotive industry in the United States. It assists automotive retail dealers and manufacturers to market and sell new and used vehicles to consumers through its programs. The company's products include new vehicle lead program, which allows consumers to submit requests for pricing and availability of specific makes and models; and used vehicle lead program, which allows consumers to search for used vehicles according to search parameters, such as price, make, model, mileage, year, and location of the vehicle. The company's products and services also comprise WebLeads+ that offers various coupon options, which display marketing messages to consumers visiting the dealer's Website; and Payment Pro, a dealer Website conversion tool that offers consumers real-time online monthly payment information, as well as sells fixed placement advertising across its Website to automotive advertisers. It owns and operates automotive Websites that offers consumers with the information and tools to aid them with their automotive purchase decisions; an automotive search engine that enables manufactures and dealers to optimize advertising campaigns; AutoWeb Traffic Product, a pay-per-click advertising program that offer targeted offers to consumers based on make, model, and geographic location; and AutoWeb consumer traffic referral product that engages car buyers from the AutoWeb's network of automotive Websites to present them with offers based on their make and model of interest, as well as geographic location. The company was formerly known as Autobytel Inc. and changed its name to AutoWeb, Inc. in October 2017. AutoWeb, Inc. was founded in 1995 and is headquartered in Irvine, California.

About 21Vianet Group

21Vianet Group, Inc. provides carrier-neutral Internet data center services to Internet companies, government entities, blue-chip enterprises, and small-to mid-sized enterprises in the People's Republic of China. It offers hosting and related services to house servers and networking equipment in its data centers, and connects them through a data transmission network; and other hosting related value-added services. Its hosting and related services include managed hosting services that offer data center space to house its customers' servers and networking equipment, and provide tailored server administration services; and interconnectivity services that enable customers to connect their servers with Internet backbones and other networks through its border gateway protocol network or single-line, dual-line, or multiple-line network. Its hosting and related services also comprise content delivery network services that optimize the speed and security of data transmission; cloud services that enable businesses to run their applications over the Internet using its IT infrastructure; virtual private network services; and other value-added services, such as firewall, server load balancing, data backup and recovery, data center management, server management, and backup server services. In addition, the company provides traffic charts and analysis, gateway monitoring for servers, domain name system setup, defense mechanism against distributed denial of service attacks, basic setting of switches and routers, and virus protections; and managed network services consisting of hosting area network, and route optimization services. As of December 31, 2017, it operated 19 self-built and 38 partnered data centers located in approximately 20 cities with 29,080 cabinets. It has a strategic partnership with Microsoft Corporation. 21Vianet Group, Inc. was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Beijing, the People's Republic of China.

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