3 ASX growth shares that need your attention now

Investors often look towards the blue-chip shares as their first point of call, usually because they’re regarded as being reliable and offer great dividends. The fact that they’re well followed by the investment community and written about regularly in the newspapers can also add that extra layer of comfort.

But while that might be the case, there’s also a great argument for investing in growth shares as well – some of which may actually become leaders of their own industries in the future.

For starters, there is their ability to grow considerably in size over the coming years, whereas the blue chips have typically already done most of their growing. Meanwhile, the fact that the blue-chips are so widely followed in the media makes it difficult to ‘gain an edge’ over your fellow investor, while the up-and-comers can typically be ignored until many of the gains have already been made.

With that in mind, here are three ASX companies that are worth your attention right now. While they might be expensive, they could still be worth a closer look.

1-Page Ltd (ASX: 1PG)

It’s been a rough six months for shareholders of 1-Page, who have watched their shares plunge almost 60% from a high of $5.69 to $2.31 today. In saying that, they’re still trading at a 1,055% premium to their October 2014 offer price of just 20 cents.

1-Page is a Silicon Valley-based business that provides cloud-based human resources from a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform. It claims that its products can save both time and costs in the hiring process, whilst also improving staff retention rates, and it is being employed up by an increasingly large customer base.

Of course, there are risks involved in owning shares of the business and it is still very early days, but there are certainly some encouraging signs. I own shares in the business and would be interested in increasing my stake if the shares were to fall much further.

However, I’ll also be watching to ensure they can retain the new customers they sign up, while I would also hope to see some more meaningful cash receipts in the upcoming periods.

Catapult Group International Ltd (ASX: CAT)

Catapult Group’s share price has been on fire over the last 12 months, generating some very healthy returns for shareholders. Pleasingly, there are reasons to believe the share price could go even higher.

Catapult Group is a global sports analytics business which provides the hardware and technology used to track the performances of athletes in various sporting fields including (but not limited to) AFL, NRL, NFL and the NBA. This is a growing field which could go a long way to helping athletes and sports teams prepare for game day, whilst also showing them where they can improve and when they are at risk of injury.

Catapult’s products have received some very encouraging reviews while the company is also quickly building up its subscriber base. This is great as it provides a recurring source of revenue for the business over the coming years.

As is the case with any company, there are risks with owning shares of Catapult Group. To begin with, given the growth prospects of the industry there is a very real competitive threat from big-name players such as Adidas or Nike, while there are other firms carving out niche positions in the industry as well. For example, the unlisted Sports Performance Tracking, or SPT, is reportedly focused on the “sub-elite” level of sports, which also has the potential to be a huge market.

Still, Catapult appears to be doing everything right for now and is well worth keeping your eye on.

oOh!Media Ltd (ASX: OML) is another company worthy of your attention, even though its shares have already risen strongly over the last 12 months.

The company is one of Australia’s leading out-of-home advertising groups – an area of the advertising market which is experiencing strong growth (unlike other channels such as free-to-air networks or newspapers). This is largely due to the fact that the audience cannot simply “switch off” from out-of-home media (such as roadside billboards or shopping centre signs), which they can do with TV or newspapers.

What I particularly like about oOh!Media is its push towards a more digital future. It is quickly replacing its traditional static billboards with new digital signs which not only give the company an opportunity to expand margins, but also the ability to target other advertising customers.

Indeed, it is quicker and easier to update a digital sign than it is to send someone out to manually change a static sign. So as an example, it would be possible for a car dealer to advertise a three-day flash sale through a digital sign, whereas it was not possible with the traditional signs.

For the year just ended, oOh!Media grew its digital revenue by 48% year on year.

Some of the things I’d be watching closely for is a drop in advertising if the economy does take a turn for the worse, while investors should also keep a close eye on how oOh!Media’s primary rival, APN Outdoor Group Ltd (ASX: APO) is performing. If it seems like APN Outdoor is gaining market share at a quicker and more meaningful rate than oOh!Media on a sustained basis, it could be potentially damaging.

Still, oOh!Media’s share price is sitting at $4.02, down from a recent high of $4.93, but still up nearly 65% over the last 12 months. In my opinion, it’s well worth a closer look.

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Now, I'm not saying you should go out and buy each of these companies today -- nor am I suggesting you should ditch your blue-chips in their favour. There is an element of speculation behind each of them, and none are guaranteed success so investors should always do their own due diligence before making a financial decision. Still, all could be worth adding to your watchlist today.

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman owns shares of 1-Page Ltd. Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ASXvalueinvest.

The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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