Conventional wisdom in choppy markets is to avoid high valuation stocks. The volatility will give you nightmares. If properly prepared, volatility can also give you opportunity.
In a correction good young companies often see the price of their equity fall more than average. This is what successful investors look for in the overall strategy. Let me give you an example.
Start with a long time favorite in the healthcare field: Intuitive Surgical (ISRG:NASDAQ). I ran across ISRG in April 2008. Wow that was right in the middle of the financial crisis when Bear Stearns was going out: volatile times back then.
Intuitive Surgical are the guys that pioneered robotic surgery. Their Di Vinci surgical suite specializes in procedures like prostatectomies and hysterectomies.
From a patient perspective, Di Vinci offered faster, less invasive and quicker recovery times than conventional surgery. For physicians it meant being able to offer a better service and a happier customer. For Intuitive Surgical it meant big upfront revenues on the sale of the equipment and even more continuous income from sale of disposable products consumed during the surgery. A true win win situation.
Back in 2008 when I discovered ISRG it was selling at nearly 100 times a token level of earnings. The total market cap was somewhere around $500 million. To rich for my blood at the time. After all, it was the middle of the financial crisis. Not a time to take chances.
Today Intuitive Surgical is worth just over $45 billion. They are far and away the leader in robotic surgery. The lesson: if there is a long term investment thesis, even a major financial crisis is a short term hurdle.
Along Comes Mazor Robotics For Spinal Surgery
Mazor Robotics (MZOR:NASDAQ) created the Renaissance Robotic Surgical System. This dramatically simplifies the very nature of spinal surgery. The system is 98%-99% accurate, reduces complications by more than two-thirds and reduces exposure to harmful radiation by 35%-50%. Finally, it reduces recovery time and that makes for happy patients. When it comes to alleviating back pain a satisfied customer is a walking endorsement for the Renaissance System.
Image Credit: Mazor Robotics