Kronos Worldwide (NYSE: KRO) and Platform Specialty Products Corporation (NYSE:PAH) are both mid-cap basic materials companies, but which is the better investment? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, profitability, dividends, risk and institutional ownership.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Kronos Worldwide and Platform Specialty Products Corporation’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Kronos Worldwide $1.36 billion 2.23 $43.30 million $2.86 9.17
Platform Specialty Products Corporation $3.59 billion 0.81 -$73.70 million ($0.53) -19.19

Kronos Worldwide has higher revenue, but lower earnings than Platform Specialty Products Corporation. Platform Specialty Products Corporation is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Kronos Worldwide, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Volatility & Risk

Kronos Worldwide has a beta of 2.16, suggesting that its stock price is 116% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Platform Specialty Products Corporation has a beta of 3.27, suggesting that its stock price is 227% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

15.5% of Kronos Worldwide shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 93.9% of Platform Specialty Products Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. 0.1% of Kronos Worldwide shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 6.0% of Platform Specialty Products Corporation 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.

Dividends

Kronos Worldwide pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.3%. Platform Specialty Products Corporation does not pay a dividend. Kronos Worldwide pays out 21.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Profitability

This table compares Kronos Worldwide and Platform Specialty Products Corporation’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Kronos Worldwide 20.52% 31.38% 12.00%
Platform Specialty Products Corporation -4.12% 7.45% 2.15%

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Kronos Worldwide and Platform Specialty Products Corporation, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Kronos Worldwide 1 2 0 0 1.67
Platform Specialty Products Corporation 0 3 6 0 2.67

Kronos Worldwide currently has a consensus price target of $20.50, suggesting a potential downside of 21.82%. Platform Specialty Products Corporation has a consensus price target of $13.11, suggesting a potential upside of 28.92%. Given Platform Specialty Products Corporation’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Platform Specialty Products Corporation is more favorable than Kronos Worldwide.

About Kronos Worldwide

Kronos Worldwide, Inc. (Kronos) is a producer and marketer of titanium dioxide (TiO2) pigments, a base industrial product that is used in a range of applications. The Company, along with its distributors and agents, sells and provides technical services for its products with sales in Europe and North America. It offers its customers a portfolio of products that include TiO2 pigment grades under the Kronos brand, which provides a range of performance properties. It offers its products to domestic and international paint, plastics, decorative laminate and paper manufacturers. It ships TiO2 to its customers in either a powder or slurry form through rail, truck or ocean carrier. It sells and provides technical services for its products in three end use markets, which include coatings, plastics and paper. It produces TiO2 in two crystalline forms, which include rutile and anatase. Rutile TiO2 is manufactured using both a chloride production process and a sulfate production process.

About Platform Specialty Products Corporation

Platform Specialty Products Corporation produces and sells specialty chemical products in the Americas, the Asia-Pacific, and Europe. It operates through two segments, Performance Solutions and Agricultural Solutions. The Performance Solutions segment offers plating products that are used to plate holes; electroless nickel products, which are applied to various metal and plastic surfaces; electronic assembly materials for use in the electronic market and residential boiler systems; final finishes that are used on printed circuit boards; circuit formation products for surface preparation; oxides, which are used in the fabrication of multilayer circuit boards; semiconductor materials and packaging products; and pre-treatment and cleaning solutions. This segment also provides functional conversion coatings that are applied to metals to enhance corrosion resistance and paint adhesion; hard-coated films, which are used for the membrane switch in the touch screen markets; production and drilling fluids used in subsea control systems; solid sheet printing elements for use in flexographic printing and platemaking processes; liquid products to produce printing plates; and printing equipment. The Agricultural Solutions segment offers fungicides and biofungicides to prevent the spread of fungi and other diseases in crops; herbicides to control unwanted plants; insecticides, bioinsecticides, and acaricides; biostimulants and nutrition products; and seed treatment products, which are applied to seed before planting, as well as animal health products, such as honey bee protective miticides and veterinary vaccines. The company was formerly known as Platform Acquisition Holdings Limited and changed its name to Platform Specialty Products Corporation in October 2013. Platform Specialty Products Corporation was founded in 1922 and is headquartered in West Palm Beach, Florida.

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