We can readily understand why investors are attracted to unprofitable companies. For example, biotech and mining exploration companies often lose money for years before finding success with a new treatment or mineral discovery. But while history lauds those rare successes, those that fail are often forgotten; who remembers Pets.com?
So should Audioboom Group (LON:BOOM) shareholders be worried about its cash burn? For the purposes of this article, cash burn is the annual rate at which an unprofitable company spends cash to fund its growth; its negative free cash flow. First, we'll determine its cash runway by comparing its cash burn with its cash reserves.
How Long Is Audioboom Group's Cash Runway?
A cash runway is defined as the length of time it would take a company to run out of money if it kept spending at its current rate of cash burn. When Audioboom Group last reported its balance sheet in December 2018, it had zero debt and cash worth US$1.6m. Importantly, its cash burn was US$6.6m over the trailing twelve months. Therefore, from December 2018 it had roughly 3 months of cash runway. With a cash runway that short, we strongly believe that the company must raise cash or else douse its cash burn promptly. Depicted below, you can see how its cash holdings have changed over time.
How Well Is Audioboom Group Growing?
It was fairly positive to see that Audioboom Group reduced its cash burn by 23% during the last year. And arguably the operating revenue growth of 78% was even more impressive. We think it is growing rather well, upon reflection. Clearly, however, the crucial factor is whether the company will grow its business going forward. So you might want to take a peek at how much the company is expected to grow in the next few years.
How Easily Can Audioboom Group Raise Cash?
Given Audioboom Group's revenue is receding, there's a considerable chance it will eventually need to raise more money to spend on driving growth. Generally speaking, a listed business can raise new cash through issuing shares or taking on debt. Commonly, a business will sell new shares in itself to raise cash to drive growth. By comparing a company's annual cash burn to its total market capitalisation, we can estimate roughly how many shares it would have to issue in order to run the company for another year (at the same burn rate).
Audioboom Group has a market capitalisation of UK£26m and burnt through US$6.6m last year, which is 20% of the company's market value. That's not insignificant, and if the company had to sell enough shares to fund another year's growth at the current share price, you'd likely witness fairly costly dilution.
Is Audioboom Group's Cash Burn A Worry?
On this analysis of Audioboom Group's cash burn, we think its revenue growth was reassuring, while its cash runway has us a bit worried. Looking at the factors mentioned in this short report, we do think that its cash burn is a bit risky, and it does make us slightly nervous about the stock. Notably, our data indicates that Audioboom Group insiders have been trading the shares. You can discover if they are buyers or sellers by clicking on this link.
If you would prefer to check out another company with better fundamentals, then do not miss this freelist of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity and low debt or this list of stocks which are all forecast to grow.
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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.