Health Check: How Prudently Does Baozun (NASDAQ:BZUN) Use Debt?

Published
June 30, 2022
NasdaqGS:BZUN
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Warren Buffett famously said, 'Volatility is far from synonymous with risk.' So it might be obvious that you need to consider debt, when you think about how risky any given stock is, because too much debt can sink a company. We note that Baozun Inc. (NASDAQ:BZUN) 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 and other liabilities become risky for a business when it cannot easily fulfill those obligations, either with free cash flow or by raising capital at an attractive price. Ultimately, if the company can't fulfill its legal obligations to repay debt, shareholders could walk away with nothing. 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. Of course, the upside of debt is that it often represents cheap capital, especially when it replaces dilution in a company with the ability to reinvest at high rates of return. When we think about a company's use of debt, we first look at cash and debt together.

View our latest analysis for Baozun

What Is Baozun's Net Debt?

You can click the graphic below for the historical numbers, but it shows that Baozun had CN¥1.69b of debt in March 2022, down from CN¥1.78b, one year before. But on the other hand it also has CN¥3.37b in cash, leading to a CN¥1.68b net cash position.

debt-equity-history-analysis
NasdaqGS:BZUN Debt to Equity History June 30th 2022

How Strong Is Baozun's Balance Sheet?

The latest balance sheet data shows that Baozun had liabilities of CN¥3.15b due within a year, and liabilities of CN¥1.01b falling due after that. On the other hand, it had cash of CN¥3.37b and CN¥2.03b worth of receivables due within a year. So it actually has CN¥1.24b more liquid assets than total liabilities.

This excess liquidity suggests that Baozun is taking a careful approach to debt. Due to its strong net asset position, it is not likely to face issues with its lenders. Simply put, the fact that Baozun has more cash than debt is arguably a good indication that it can manage its debt safely. There's no doubt that we learn most about debt from the balance sheet. But it is future earnings, more than anything, that will determine Baozun's ability to maintain a healthy balance sheet going forward. So if you want to see what the professionals think, you might find this free report on analyst profit forecasts to be interesting.

Over 12 months, Baozun saw its revenue hold pretty steady, and it did not report positive earnings before interest and tax. While that's not too bad, we'd prefer see growth.

So How Risky Is Baozun?

Statistically speaking companies that lose money are riskier than those that make money. And in the last year Baozun had an earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) loss, truth be told. And over the same period it saw negative free cash outflow of CN¥449m and booked a CN¥343m accounting loss. Given it only has net cash of CN¥1.68b, the company may need to raise more capital if it doesn't reach break-even soon. Overall, its balance sheet doesn't seem overly risky, at the moment, but we're always cautious until we see the positive free cash flow. 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. For instance, we've identified 1 warning sign for Baozun that you should be aware of.

When all is said and done, sometimes its easier to focus on companies that don't even need debt. Readers can access a list of growth stocks with zero net debt 100% free, right now.

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About NasdaqGS:BZUN

Baozun

Baozun Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides e-commerce solutions to brand partners in the People’s Republic of China.

The Snowflake is a visual investment summary with the score of each axis being calculated by 6 checks in 5 areas.

Analysis AreaScore (0-6)
Valuation5
Future Growth4
Past Performance0
Financial Health3
Dividends0

Read more about these checks in the individual report sections or in our analysis model.

Undervalued with reasonable growth potential.