Tidewater (NYSE: TDW) and Helix Energy Solutions Group (NYSE:HLX) are both small-cap energy companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, earnings, dividends, valuation, risk and analyst recommendations.

Profitability

This table compares Tidewater and Helix Energy Solutions Group’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Tidewater N/A N/A N/A
Helix Energy Solutions Group -13.72% -1.80% -1.11%

Insider and Institutional Ownership

27.7% of Tidewater shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 85.9% of Helix Energy Solutions Group shares are held by institutional investors. 5.7% of Helix Energy Solutions Group shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings and price targets for Tidewater and Helix Energy Solutions Group, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Tidewater 0 0 1 0 3.00
Helix Energy Solutions Group 0 3 5 0 2.63

Helix Energy Solutions Group has a consensus target price of $8.55, suggesting a potential upside of 19.08%. Given Helix Energy Solutions Group’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Helix Energy Solutions Group is more favorable than Tidewater.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Tidewater and Helix Energy Solutions Group’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Tidewater N/A N/A N/A ($670.29) -0.04
Helix Energy Solutions Group $487.58 million 2.18 -$81.44 million ($0.60) -11.97

Tidewater has higher earnings, but lower revenue than Helix Energy Solutions Group. Helix Energy Solutions Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Tidewater, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Helix Energy Solutions Group beats Tidewater on 6 of the 10 factors compared between the two stocks.

Tidewater Company Profile

Tidewater Inc. provides offshore service vessels and marine support services. The Company operates through four segments: Americas, Asia/Pacific, Middle East/North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa/Europe. Its Americas segment includes the activities of the Company’s North American operations, which include operations in the United States Gulf of Mexico (GOM), and the United States and Canadian coastal waters of the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, as well as operations of offshore Mexico, Trinidad and Brazil. The Asia/Pacific segment includes its Australian and Southeast Asian and Western Pacific operations. The Middle East/North Africa segment includes its operations in the Mediterranean and Red Seas, the Black Sea, the Arabian Gulf and offshore India. The Company’s Sub-Saharan Africa/Europe segment includes operations conducted along the East and West Coasts of Africa, as well as operations in and around the Caspian Sea, the North Sea, and certain other arctic/cold water markets.

Helix Energy Solutions Group Company Profile

Helix Energy Solutions Group, Inc. is an international offshore energy services company. The Company provides services to the offshore energy industry, with a focus on well intervention and robotics operations. The Company operates in three segments: Well Intervention, Robotics and Production Facilities. Its Well Intervention segment includes the Company’s vessels and equipment used to perform well intervention services primarily in the Gulf of Mexico and North Sea regions. Its Robotics segment includes remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), trenchers and ROVDrills designed to complement offshore construction and well intervention services, and operates chartered ROV support vessels. Its Production Facilities segment includes the Helix Producer I (the HP I), a floating production vessel, the Helix Fast Response System (the HFRS), and its ownership interest in Independence Hub, LLC (Independence Hub).

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