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ClearSign Technologies (NASDAQ:CLIR) Is In A Good Position To Deliver On Growth Plans

Just because a business does not make any money, does not mean that the stock will go down. For example, although software-as-a-service business Salesforce.com lost money for years while it grew recurring revenue, if you held shares since 2005, you'd have done very well indeed. But while the successes are well known, investors should not ignore the very many unprofitable companies that simply burn through all their cash and collapse.

So should ClearSign Technologies (NASDAQ:CLIR) shareholders be worried about its cash burn? In this report, we will consider the company's annual negative free cash flow, henceforth referring to it as the 'cash burn'. The first step is to compare its cash burn with its cash reserves, to give us its 'cash runway'.

Check out our latest analysis for ClearSign Technologies

How Long Is ClearSign Technologies' Cash Runway?

You can calculate a company's cash runway by dividing the amount of cash it has by the rate at which it is spending that cash. When ClearSign Technologies last reported its balance sheet in September 2022, it had zero debt and cash worth US$9.8m. In the last year, its cash burn was US$5.6m. That means it had a cash runway of around 21 months as of September 2022. While that cash runway isn't too concerning, sensible holders would be peering into the distance, and considering what happens if the company runs out of cash. You can see how its cash balance has changed over time in the image below.

debt-equity-history-analysis
debt-equity-history-analysis

How Is ClearSign Technologies' Cash Burn Changing Over Time?

In our view, ClearSign Technologies doesn't yet produce significant amounts of operating revenue, since it reported just US$378k in the last twelve months. As a result, we think it's a bit early to focus on the revenue growth, so we'll limit ourselves to looking at how the cash burn is changing over time. While it hardly paints a picture of imminent growth, the fact that it has reduced its cash burn by 25% over the last year suggests some degree of prudence. 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.

Can ClearSign Technologies Raise More Cash Easily?

Even though it has reduced its cash burn recently, shareholders should still consider how easy it would be for ClearSign Technologies to raise more cash in the future. Issuing new shares, or taking on debt, are the most common ways for a listed company to raise more money for its business. Many companies end up issuing new shares to fund future 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).

Since it has a market capitalisation of US$32m, ClearSign Technologies' US$5.6m in cash burn equates to about 18% of its market value. Given that situation, it's fair to say the company wouldn't have much trouble raising more cash for growth, but shareholders would be somewhat diluted.

How Risky Is ClearSign Technologies' Cash Burn Situation?

ClearSign Technologies appears to be in pretty good health when it comes to its cash burn situation. Not only was its cash burn reduction quite good, but its cash runway was a real positive. While we're the kind of investors who are always a bit concerned about the risks involved with cash burning companies, the metrics we have discussed in this article leave us relatively comfortable about ClearSign Technologies' situation. On another note, we conducted an in-depth investigation of the company, and identified 4 warning signs for ClearSign Technologies (1 is potentially serious!) that you should be aware of before investing here.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of companies insiders are buying, and this list of stocks growth stocks (according to analyst forecasts)

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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