We're Hopeful That Nordic Mining (OB:NOM) Will Use Its Cash Wisely

By
Simply Wall St
Published
May 11, 2021
OB:NOM
Source: Shutterstock

Even when a business is losing money, it's possible for shareholders to make money if they buy a good business at the right price. For example, biotech and mining exploration companies often lose money for years before finding success with a new treatment or mineral discovery. 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 this risk, we thought we'd take a look at whether Nordic Mining (OB:NOM) shareholders should be worried about its cash burn. For the purpose of this article, we'll define cash burn as the amount of cash the company is spending each year to fund its growth (also called its negative free cash flow). First, we'll determine its cash runway by comparing its cash burn with its cash reserves.

See our latest analysis for Nordic Mining

When Might Nordic Mining 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. Nordic Mining has such a small amount of debt that we'll set it aside, and focus on the kr92m in cash it held at March 2021. Looking at the last year, the company burnt through kr36m. Therefore, from March 2021 it had 2.5 years of cash runway. Arguably, that's a prudent and sensible length of runway to have. You can see how its cash balance has changed over time in the image below.

debt-equity-history-analysis
OB:NOM Debt to Equity History May 12th 2021

How Is Nordic Mining's Cash Burn Changing Over Time?

While Nordic Mining did record statutory revenue of kr188k over the last year, it didn't have any revenue from operations. That means we consider it a pre-revenue business, and we will focus our growth analysis on cash burn, for now. Even though it doesn't get us excited, the 54% reduction in cash burn year on year does suggest the company can continue operating for quite some time. Admittedly, we're a bit cautious of Nordic Mining due to its lack of significant operating revenues. So we'd generally prefer stocks from this list of stocks that have analysts forecasting growth.

How Easily Can Nordic Mining Raise Cash?

While we're comforted by the recent reduction evident from our analysis of Nordic Mining's cash burn, it is still worth considering how easily the company could raise more funds, if it wanted to accelerate spending to drive growth. Generally speaking, a listed business can raise new cash through issuing shares or taking on debt. Many companies end up issuing new shares to fund future growth. We can compare a company's cash burn to its market capitalisation to get a sense for how many new shares a company would have to issue to fund one year's operations.

Nordic Mining's cash burn of kr36m is about 6.3% of its kr576m market capitalisation. That's a low proportion, so we figure the company would be able to raise more cash to fund growth, with a little dilution, or even to simply borrow some money.

How Risky Is Nordic Mining's Cash Burn Situation?

It may already be apparent to you that we're relatively comfortable with the way Nordic Mining is burning through its cash. For example, we think its cash runway suggests that the company is on a good path. And even its cash burn reduction was very encouraging. 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. Taking a deeper dive, we've spotted 5 warning signs for Nordic Mining you should be aware of, and 2 of them make us uncomfortable.

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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