Share buyback trend
In order to enhance shareholder wealth, Autodesk (ADSK) continues to buy back shares on a regular basis. Over the last five years, the company has repurchased shares worth ~$2.6 billion, maintaining a steady average of nearly $515 million each year.
In the graph above, we can see Autodesk’s share repurchase trend over the last five years.
In fiscal 2018, Autodesk bought back shares worth $699 million at an average of nearly $175 million each quarter compared to $622 million in fiscal 2017. In fiscal 4Q18, the company made share repurchases worth $261 million compared to $224 million in fiscal 4Q17.
At the end of January 31, 2018, the company was still left with nearly 19.6 million shares to be repurchased under its buyback program.
Factors influencing share buybacks
The company has generated healthy free cash flow in the last five years. During the period, it’s maintained an average free cash flow of nearly $304 million each year. Such strong free cash flow clearly indicates that the company isn’t dependent on debt to drive its share repurchase plan.
Falling leverage coupled with such a healthy free cash flow trend could continue to boost the company’s future share repurchase plan going forward.