Does Tigné Mall (MTSE:TML) Have A Healthy Balance Sheet?

By
Simply Wall St
Published
August 30, 2021
MTSE:TML
Source: Shutterstock

Some say volatility, rather than debt, is the best way to think about risk as an investor, but Warren Buffett famously said that 'Volatility is far from synonymous with risk.' 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 can see that Tigné Mall p.l.c. (MTSE:TML) does use debt in its business. But is this debt a concern to shareholders?

What Risk Does Debt Bring?

Generally speaking, debt only becomes a real problem when a company can't easily pay it off, either by raising capital or with its own cash flow. If things get really bad, the lenders can take control of the business. However, a more usual (but still expensive) situation is where a company must dilute shareholders at a cheap share price simply to get debt under control. Having said that, the most common situation is where a company manages its debt reasonably well - and to its own advantage. The first step when considering a company's debt levels is to consider its cash and debt together.

See our latest analysis for Tigné Mall

What Is Tigné Mall's Net Debt?

The image below, which you can click on for greater detail, shows that Tigné Mall had debt of €14.0m at the end of June 2021, a reduction from €16.4m over a year. However, because it has a cash reserve of €2.52m, its net debt is less, at about €11.5m.

debt-equity-history-analysis
MTSE:TML Debt to Equity History August 31st 2021

How Healthy Is Tigné Mall's Balance Sheet?

Zooming in on the latest balance sheet data, we can see that Tigné Mall had liabilities of €5.98m due within 12 months and liabilities of €26.9m due beyond that. On the other hand, it had cash of €2.52m and €2.15m worth of receivables due within a year. So it has liabilities totalling €28.2m more than its cash and near-term receivables, combined.

This is a mountain of leverage relative to its market capitalization of €44.6m. This suggests shareholders would be heavily diluted if the company needed to shore up its balance sheet in a hurry.

We use two main ratios to inform us about debt levels relative to earnings. The first is net debt divided by earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA), while the second is how many times its earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) covers its interest expense (or its interest cover, for short). Thus we consider debt relative to earnings both with and without depreciation and amortization expenses.

Tigné Mall has net debt worth 2.2 times EBITDA, which isn't too much, but its interest cover looks a bit on the low side, with EBIT at only 5.2 times the interest expense. While these numbers do not alarm us, it's worth noting that the cost of the company's debt is having a real impact. Tigné Mall grew its EBIT by 8.2% in the last year. Whilst that hardly knocks our socks off it is a positive when it comes to debt. When analysing debt levels, the balance sheet is the obvious place to start. But you can't view debt in total isolation; since Tigné Mall 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.

But our final consideration is also important, because a company cannot pay debt with paper profits; it needs cold hard cash. So it's worth checking how much of that EBIT is backed by free cash flow. Over the last three years, Tigné Mall actually produced more free cash flow than EBIT. That sort of strong cash generation warms our hearts like a puppy in a bumblebee suit.

Our View

On our analysis Tigné Mall's conversion of EBIT to free cash flow should signal that it won't have too much trouble with its debt. However, our other observations weren't so heartening. For example, its level of total liabilities makes us a little nervous about its debt. When we consider all the elements mentioned above, it seems to us that Tigné Mall is managing its debt quite well. But a word of caution: we think debt levels are high enough to justify ongoing monitoring. There's no doubt that we learn most about debt from the balance sheet. However, not all investment risk resides within the balance sheet - far from it. For example, we've discovered 3 warning signs for Tigné Mall (2 are significant!) that you should be aware of before investing here.

Of course, if you're the type of investor who prefers buying stocks without the burden of debt, then don't hesitate to discover our exclusive list of net cash growth stocks, today.

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