We Think Azincourt Energy (CVE:AAZ) Needs To Drive Business Growth Carefully

By
Simply Wall St
Published
September 04, 2021
TSXV:AAZ
Source: Shutterstock

Just because a business does not make any money, does not mean that the stock will go down. For example, Azincourt Energy (CVE:AAZ) shareholders have done very well over the last year, with the share price soaring by 150%. 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.

Given its strong share price performance, we think it's worthwhile for Azincourt Energy shareholders to consider whether its cash burn is concerning. In this article, we define cash burn as its annual (negative) free cash flow, which is the amount of money a company spends each year to fund its growth. Let's start with an examination of the business' cash, relative to its cash burn.

View our latest analysis for Azincourt Energy

How Long Is Azincourt Energy'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. In June 2021, Azincourt Energy had CA$4.1m in cash, and was debt-free. Looking at the last year, the company burnt through CA$3.2m. So it had a cash runway of approximately 15 months from June 2021. That's not too bad, but it's fair to say the end of the cash runway is in sight, unless cash burn reduces drastically. Depicted below, you can see how its cash holdings have changed over time.

debt-equity-history-analysis
TSXV:AAZ Debt to Equity History September 5th 2021

How Is Azincourt Energy's Cash Burn Changing Over Time?

Because Azincourt Energy isn't currently generating revenue, we consider it an early-stage business. So while we can't look to sales to understand growth, we can look at how the cash burn is changing to understand how expenditure is trending over time. Over the last year its cash burn actually increased by 19%, which suggests that management are increasing investment in future growth, but not too quickly. However, the company's true cash runway will therefore be shorter than suggested above, if spending continues to increase. Azincourt Energy makes us a little nervous due to its lack of substantial operating revenue. So we'd generally prefer stocks from this list of stocks that have analysts forecasting growth.

How Hard Would It Be For Azincourt Energy To Raise More Cash For Growth?

Given its cash burn trajectory, Azincourt Energy 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 and 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).

Azincourt Energy has a market capitalisation of CA$26m and burnt through CA$3.2m last year, which is 12% of the company's market value. As a result, we'd venture that the company could raise more cash for growth without much trouble, albeit at the cost of some dilution.

So, Should We Worry About Azincourt Energy's Cash Burn?

Even though its increasing cash burn makes us a little nervous, we are compelled to mention that we thought Azincourt Energy's cash burn relative to its market cap was relatively promising. 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. Taking a deeper dive, we've spotted 5 warning signs for Azincourt Energy you should be aware of, and 3 of them can't be ignored.

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)

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