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Long/Short Investments in L/S Equity: Valuation and Ideas,

Air Methods Corp (AIRM) Hit Hard on Earnings

I own shares in AIRM – a company that specializes in air medical transport – which just came off a poor earnings report today. Shares were down nearly 12%, erasing the past two months’ gains and now back down around my entry point just below $34. I have another limit order set in the low-to-mid 33’s to add, if necessary.

I’ve been a believer in the company for a few main reasons. For one, its services is a highly price inelastic good. Namely, if air medical transport is necessary to help a patient who has been badly injured, there will be little attention paid to the cost of the service. There is, however, regulatory concerns regarding pricing practices with respect to air medical transport. Many companies that offer services in such industries drive top-line growth through simple price increases due to this inelastic demand. To protect the consumer, this practice may face legislative backlash. AIRM is in the process of improving its revenue growth through accretive acquisition possibilities, is arguably an acquisition candidate in its own right, and is working to convert many of its air bases from hospital- to community-based models (more profitable business model). The company also has a projected un-levered free cash flow margin of 10%+. On top of that, the company has remained under-levered and has the opportunity for an accretive debt issuance.

The earnings report is slightly disappointing given the steady gains that were erased in one swoop, but I continue to believe in the company, its product, and general strategy.