Stock Analysis

Is Rykadan Capital (HKG:2288) A Risky Investment?

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David Iben put it well when he said, 'Volatility is not a risk we care about. What we care about is avoiding the permanent loss of capital.' So it seems the smart money knows that debt - which is usually involved in bankruptcies - is a very important factor, when you assess how risky a company is. We note that Rykadan Capital Limited (HKG:2288) does have debt on its balance sheet. But the real question is whether this debt is making the company risky.

Why Does Debt Bring Risk?

Debt is a tool to help businesses grow, but if a business is incapable of paying off its lenders, then it exists at their mercy. In the worst case scenario, a company can go bankrupt if it cannot pay its creditors. However, a more frequent (but still costly) occurrence is where a company must issue shares at bargain-basement prices, permanently diluting shareholders, just to shore up its balance sheet. By replacing dilution, though, debt can be an extremely good tool for businesses that need capital to invest in growth at high rates of return. When we examine debt levels, we first consider both cash and debt levels, together.

Check out our latest analysis for Rykadan Capital

What Is Rykadan Capital's Debt?

As you can see below, at the end of September 2022, Rykadan Capital had HK$244.9m of debt, up from HK$171.0m a year ago. Click the image for more detail. However, because it has a cash reserve of HK$120.0m, its net debt is less, at about HK$124.9m.

SEHK:2288 Debt to Equity History March 17th 2023

A Look At Rykadan Capital's Liabilities

According to the last reported balance sheet, Rykadan Capital had liabilities of HK$300.8m due within 12 months, and liabilities of HK$24.8m due beyond 12 months. Offsetting these obligations, it had cash of HK$120.0m as well as receivables valued at HK$72.6m due within 12 months. So its liabilities outweigh the sum of its cash and (near-term) receivables by HK$133.0m.

This is a mountain of leverage relative to its market capitalization of HK$169.0m. This suggests shareholders would be heavily diluted if the company needed to shore up its balance sheet in a hurry. There's no doubt that we learn most about debt from the balance sheet. But it is Rykadan Capital's earnings that will influence how the balance sheet holds up in the future. So if you're keen to discover more about its earnings, it might be worth checking out this graph of its long term earnings trend.

Over 12 months, Rykadan Capital reported revenue of HK$96m, which is a gain of 6.4%, although it did not report any earnings before interest and tax. That rate of growth is a bit slow for our taste, but it takes all types to make a world.

Caveat Emptor

Over the last twelve months Rykadan Capital produced an earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) loss. Its EBIT loss was a whopping HK$24m. Considering that alongside the liabilities mentioned above does not give us much confidence that company should be using so much debt. So we think its balance sheet is a little strained, though not beyond repair. We would feel better if it turned its trailing twelve month loss of HK$92m into a profit. In the meantime, we consider the stock very risky. There's no doubt that we learn most about debt from the balance sheet. But ultimately, every company can contain risks that exist outside of the balance sheet. Be aware that Rykadan Capital is showing 2 warning signs in our investment analysis , and 1 of those shouldn't be ignored...

At the end of the day, it's often better to focus on companies that are free from net debt. You can access our special list of such companies (all with a track record of profit growth). It's free.

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