We can readily understand why investors are attracted to unprofitable companies. For example, although Amazon.com made losses for many years after listing, if you had bought and held the shares since 1999, you would have made a fortune. But the harsh reality is that very many loss making companies burn through all their cash and go bankrupt.
Given this risk, we thought we'd take a look at whether GoldSpot Discoveries (CVE:SPOT) shareholders should 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'. Let's start with an examination of the business's cash, relative to its cash burn.
When Might GoldSpot Discoveries Run Out Of Money?
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. As at June 2019, GoldSpot Discoveries had cash of CA$9.3m and no debt. Importantly, its cash burn was CA$1.0m over the trailing twelve months. So it had a cash runway of about 9.3 years from June 2019. Even though this is but one measure of the company's cash burn, the thought of such a long cash runway warms our bellies in a comforting way. You can see how its cash balance has changed over time in the image below.
How Is GoldSpot Discoveries's Cash Burn Changing Over Time?
Although GoldSpot Discoveries had revenue of CA$1.6m in the last twelve months, its operating revenue was only CA$1.6m in that time period. Given how low that operating leverage is, we think it's too early to put much weight on the revenue growth, so we'll focus on how the cash burn is changing, instead. Over the last year its cash burn actually increased by 40%, which suggests that management are increasing investment in future growth, but not too quickly. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but investors should be mindful of the fact that will shorten the cash runway. Of course, we've only taken a quick look at the stock's growth metrics, here. You can take a look at how GoldSpot Discoveries is growing revenue over time by checking this visualization of past revenue growth.
Can GoldSpot Discoveries Raise More Cash Easily?
Given its cash burn trajectory, GoldSpot Discoveries shareholders may wish to consider how easily it could raise more cash, despite its solid cash runway. 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 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.
GoldSpot Discoveries's cash burn of CA$1.0m is about 12% of its CA$8.5m market capitalisation. 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.
So, Should We Worry About GoldSpot Discoveries's Cash Burn?
As you can probably tell by now, we're not too worried about GoldSpot Discoveries's cash burn. In particular, we think its cash runway stands out as evidence that the company is well on top of its spending. While its increasing cash burn wasn't great, the other factors mentioned in this article more than make up for weakness on that measure. Looking at all the measures in this article, together, we're not worried about its rate of cash burn; the company seems well on top of its medium-term spending needs. When you don't have traditional metrics like earnings per share and free cash flow to value a company, many are extra motivated to consider qualitative factors such as whether insiders are buying or selling shares. Please Note: GoldSpot Discoveries insiders have been trading shares, according to our data. Click here to check whether insiders have been buying or selling.
Of course GoldSpot Discoveries may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying.
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If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at email@example.com. 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.