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Here's Why We're Watching Greenstone Resources' (ASX:GSR) Cash Burn Situation

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There's no doubt that money can be made by owning shares of unprofitable businesses. 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. Nonetheless, only a fool would ignore the risk that a loss making company burns through its cash too quickly.

So should Greenstone Resources (ASX:GSR) shareholders be worried about its cash burn? For the purpose of this article, we'll define cash burn as the amount of cash the company is spending each year to fund its growth (also called its negative free cash flow). We'll start by comparing its cash burn with its cash reserves in order to calculate its cash runway.

Check out our latest analysis for Greenstone Resources

When Might Greenstone Resources Run Out Of Money?

A company's cash runway is the amount of time it would take to burn through its cash reserves at its current cash burn rate. When Greenstone Resources last reported its balance sheet in June 2021, it had zero debt and cash worth AU$839k. In the last year, its cash burn was AU$1.3m. That means it had a cash runway of around 7 months as of June 2021. That's quite a short cash runway, indicating the company must either reduce its annual cash burn or replenish its cash. The image below shows how its cash balance has been changing over the last few years.

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

How Is Greenstone Resources' Cash Burn Changing Over Time?

Greenstone Resources didn't record any revenue over the last year, indicating that it's an early stage company still developing its business. Nonetheless, we can still examine its cash burn trajectory as part of our assessment of its cash burn situation. It's possible that the 20% reduction in cash burn over the last year is evidence of management tightening their belts as cash reserves deplete. Greenstone Resources makes us a little nervous due to its lack of substantial operating revenue. We prefer most of the stocks on this list of stocks that analysts expect to grow.

How Easily Can Greenstone Resources Raise Cash?

Even though it has reduced its cash burn recently, shareholders should still consider how easy it would be for Greenstone Resources to raise more cash in the future. Generally speaking, a listed business can raise new cash through issuing shares or taking on debt. Many companies end up issuing new shares to fund future growth. By looking at a company's cash burn relative to its market capitalisation, we gain insight on how much shareholders would be diluted if the company needed to raise enough cash to cover another year's cash burn.

Greenstone Resources has a market capitalisation of AU$28m and burnt through AU$1.3m last year, which is 4.7% of the company's market value. Given that is a rather small percentage, it would probably be really easy for the company to fund another year's growth by issuing some new shares to investors, or even by taking out a loan.

Is Greenstone Resources' Cash Burn A Worry?

On this analysis of Greenstone Resources' cash burn, we think its cash burn relative to its market cap was reassuring, while its cash runway has us a bit worried. We don't think its cash burn is particularly problematic, but after considering the range of factors in this article, we do think shareholders should be monitoring how it changes over time. Separately, we looked at different risks affecting the company and spotted 5 warning signs for Greenstone Resources (of which 2 can't be ignored!) you should know about.

If you would prefer to check out another company with better fundamentals, then do not miss this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity and low debt or this list of stocks which are all forecast to grow.

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.