Is Career Point (NSE:CAREERP) A Risky Investment?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
February 19, 2022
NSEI:CAREERP
Source: Shutterstock

The external fund manager backed by Berkshire Hathaway's Charlie Munger, Li Lu, makes no bones about it when he says 'The biggest investment risk is not the volatility of prices, but whether you will suffer a permanent loss of capital.' When we think about how risky a company is, we always like to look at its use of debt, since debt overload can lead to ruin. As with many other companies Career Point Limited (NSE:CAREERP) makes use of debt. But the real question is whether this debt is making the company risky.

Why Does Debt Bring Risk?

Debt assists a business until the business has trouble paying it off, either with new capital or with free cash flow. If things get really bad, the lenders can take control of the business. However, a more common (but still painful) scenario is that it has to raise new equity capital at a low price, thus permanently diluting shareholders. Having said that, the most common situation is where a company manages its debt reasonably well - and to its own advantage. When we examine debt levels, we first consider both cash and debt levels, together.

See our latest analysis for Career Point

What Is Career Point's Debt?

You can click the graphic below for the historical numbers, but it shows that Career Point had ₹447.8m of debt in September 2021, down from ₹570.7m, one year before. However, because it has a cash reserve of ₹243.4m, its net debt is less, at about ₹204.4m.

debt-equity-history-analysis
NSEI:CAREERP Debt to Equity History February 19th 2022

A Look At Career Point's Liabilities

We can see from the most recent balance sheet that Career Point had liabilities of ₹382.7m falling due within a year, and liabilities of ₹305.1m due beyond that. Offsetting these obligations, it had cash of ₹243.4m as well as receivables valued at ₹1.67b due within 12 months. So it can boast ₹1.22b more liquid assets than total liabilities.

This luscious liquidity implies that Career Point's balance sheet is sturdy like a giant sequoia tree. With this in mind one could posit that its balance sheet means the company is able to handle some adversity. The balance sheet is clearly the area to focus on when you are analysing debt. But you can't view debt in total isolation; since Career Point will need earnings to service that debt. So when considering debt, it's definitely worth looking at the earnings trend. Click here for an interactive snapshot.

Over 12 months, Career Point made a loss at the EBIT level, and saw its revenue drop to ₹452m, which is a fall of 26%. That makes us nervous, to say the least.

Caveat Emptor

Not only did Career Point's revenue slip over the last twelve months, but it also produced negative earnings before interest and tax (EBIT). Indeed, it lost ₹12m at the EBIT level. That said, we're impressed with the strong balance sheet liquidity. That will give the company some time and space to grow and develop its business as need be. While the stock is probably a bit risky, there may be an opportunity if the business itself improves, allowing the company to stage a recovery. When analysing debt levels, the balance sheet is the obvious place to start. But ultimately, every company can contain risks that exist outside of the balance sheet. These risks can be hard to spot. Every company has them, and we've spotted 4 warning signs for Career Point (of which 1 is a bit unpleasant!) you should know about.

If you're interested in investing in businesses that can grow profits without the burden of debt, then check out this free list of growing businesses that have net cash on the balance sheet.

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