We're Hopeful That Talga Group (ASX:TLG) Will Use Its Cash Wisely

·4 min read

Just because a business does not make any money, does not mean that the stock will go down. For example, although Amazon.com made losses for many years after listing, if you had bought and held the shares since 1999, you would have made a fortune. But while history lauds those rare successes, those that fail are often forgotten; who remembers Pets.com?

Given this risk, we thought we'd take a look at whether Talga Group (ASX:TLG) shareholders should be worried about its 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. Let's start with an examination of the business' cash, relative to its cash burn.

View our latest analysis for Talga Group

Does Talga Group Have A Long Cash Runway?

A company's cash runway is the amount of time it would take to burn through its cash reserves at its current cash burn rate. When Talga Group last reported its balance sheet in June 2021, it had zero debt and cash worth AU$53m. Importantly, its cash burn was AU$18m over the trailing twelve months. That means it had a cash runway of about 3.0 years as of June 2021. That's decent, giving the company a couple years to develop its business. You can see how its cash balance has changed over time in the image below.

debt-equity-history-analysis
debt-equity-history-analysis

How Is Talga Group's Cash Burn Changing Over Time?

In our view, Talga Group doesn't yet produce significant amounts of operating revenue, since it reported just AU$109k in the last twelve months. Therefore, for the purposes of this analysis we'll focus on how the cash burn is tracking. With the cash burn rate up 40% in the last year, it seems that the company is ratcheting up investment in the business over time. However, the company's true cash runway will therefore be shorter than suggested above, if spending continues to increase. Talga Group makes us a little nervous due to its lack of substantial operating revenue. We prefer most of the stocks on this list of stocks that analysts expect to grow.

Can Talga Group Raise More Cash Easily?

While Talga Group does have a solid cash runway, its cash burn trajectory may have some shareholders thinking ahead to when the company may need to raise more cash. Companies can raise capital through either debt or equity. 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.

Talga Group has a market capitalisation of AU$431m and burnt through AU$18m last year, which is 4.1% 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 Talga Group's Cash Burn A Worry?

As you can probably tell by now, we're not too worried about Talga Group's cash burn. For example, we think its cash runway suggests that the company is on a good path. While its increasing cash burn wasn't great, the other factors mentioned in this article more than make up for weakness on that measure. After taking into account the various metrics mentioned in this report, we're pretty comfortable with how the company is spending its cash, as it seems on track to meet its needs over the medium term. Taking a deeper dive, we've spotted 3 warning signs for Talga Group you should be aware of, and 2 of them are concerning.

Of course Talga Group 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.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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