Here's Why We're Not Too Worried About Saudi Ground Services' (TADAWUL:4031) Cash Burn Situation

By
Simply Wall St
Published
August 19, 2021
SASE:4031
Source: Shutterstock

There's no doubt that money can be made by owning shares of unprofitable businesses. For example, biotech and mining exploration companies often lose money for years before finding success with a new treatment or mineral discovery. Having said that, unprofitable companies are risky because they could potentially burn through all their cash and become distressed.

So, the natural question for Saudi Ground Services (TADAWUL:4031) shareholders is whether they should be concerned by its rate of cash burn. For the purposes of this article, cash burn is the annual rate at which an unprofitable company spends cash to fund its growth; its negative free cash flow. We'll start by comparing its cash burn with its cash reserves in order to calculate its cash runway.

Check out our latest analysis for Saudi Ground Services

When Might Saudi Ground Services Run Out Of Money?

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. As at June 2021, Saudi Ground Services had cash of ر.س1.5b and no debt. In the last year, its cash burn was ر.س569m. Therefore, from June 2021 it had 2.6 years of cash runway. That's decent, giving the company a couple years to develop its business. The image below shows how its cash balance has been changing over the last few years.

debt-equity-history-analysis
SASE:4031 Debt to Equity History August 20th 2021

Is Saudi Ground Services' Revenue Growing?

Given that Saudi Ground Services actually had positive free cash flow last year, before burning cash this year, we'll focus on its operating revenue to get a measure of the business trajectory. Regrettably, the company's operating revenue moved in the wrong direction over the last twelve months, declining by 28%. Of course, we've only taken a quick look at the stock's growth metrics, here. You can take a look at how Saudi Ground Services has developed its business over time by checking this visualization of its revenue and earnings history.

How Easily Can Saudi Ground Services Raise Cash?

Given its problematic fall in revenue, Saudi Ground Services shareholders should consider how the company could fund its growth, if it turns out it needs more cash. Generally speaking, a listed business can raise new cash through issuing shares or taking on debt. One of the main advantages held by publicly listed companies is that they can sell shares to investors to raise cash and fund 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.

Saudi Ground Services has a market capitalisation of ر.س6.4b and burnt through ر.س569m last year, which is 8.9% of the company's market value. 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.

Is Saudi Ground Services' Cash Burn A Worry?

It may already be apparent to you that we're relatively comfortable with the way Saudi Ground Services is burning through its cash. In particular, we think its cash runway stands out as evidence that the company is well on top of its spending. Although its falling revenue does give us reason for pause, the other metrics we discussed in this article form a positive picture overall. Considering all the factors discussed in this article, we're not overly concerned about the company's cash burn, although we do think shareholders should keep an eye on how it develops. Its important for readers to be cognizant of the risks that can affect the company's operations, and we've picked out 1 warning sign for Saudi Ground Services that investors should know when investing in the stock.

Of course Saudi Ground Services may not be the best stock to buy. So you may wish to see this free collection of companies boasting high return on equity, or this list of stocks that insiders are buying.

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