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Here's Why We're Watching Ora Banda Mining's (ASX:OBM) Cash Burn Situation

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There's no doubt that money can be made by owning shares of unprofitable businesses. By way of example, Ora Banda Mining (ASX:OBM) has seen its share price rise 147% over the last year, delighting many shareholders. But while history lauds those rare successes, those that fail are often forgotten; who remembers Pets.com?

In light of its strong share price run, we think now is a good time to investigate how risky Ora Banda Mining's cash burn is. In this article, we define cash burn as its annual (negative) free cash flow, which is the amount of money a company spends each year to fund its growth. First, we'll determine its cash runway by comparing its cash burn with its cash reserves.

See our latest analysis for Ora Banda Mining

Does Ora Banda Mining Have A Long Cash Runway?

A company's cash runway is calculated by dividing its cash hoard by its cash burn. In December 2020, Ora Banda Mining had AU$33m in cash, and was debt-free. In the last year, its cash burn was AU$40m. Therefore, from December 2020 it had roughly 10 months of cash runway. To be frank, this kind of short runway puts us on edge, as it indicates the company must reduce its cash burn significantly, or else raise cash imminently. However, if we extrapolate the company's recent cash burn trend, then it would have a longer cash run way. The image below shows how its cash balance has been changing over the last few years.

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

How Is Ora Banda Mining's Cash Burn Changing Over Time?

In our view, Ora Banda Mining doesn't yet produce significant amounts of operating revenue, since it reported just AU$168k in the last twelve months. As a result, we think it's a bit early to focus on the revenue growth, so we'll limit ourselves to looking at how the cash burn is changing over time. Over the last year its cash burn actually increased by 45%, which suggests that management are increasing investment in future growth, but not too quickly. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but investors should be mindful of the fact that will shorten the cash runway. While the past is always worth studying, it is the future that matters most of all. For that reason, it makes a lot of sense to take a look at our analyst forecasts for the company.

How Easily Can Ora Banda Mining Raise Cash?

Since its cash burn is moving in the wrong direction, Ora Banda Mining shareholders may wish to think ahead to when the company may need to raise more cash. 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.

Since it has a market capitalisation of AU$206m, Ora Banda Mining's AU$40m in cash burn equates to about 19% of its market value. Given that situation, it's fair to say the company wouldn't have much trouble raising more cash for growth, but shareholders would be somewhat diluted.

So, Should We Worry About Ora Banda Mining's Cash Burn?

On this analysis of Ora Banda Mining's cash burn, we think its cash burn relative to its market cap was reassuring, while its increasing cash burn has us a bit worried. Looking at the factors mentioned in this short report, we do think that its cash burn is a bit risky, and it does make us slightly nervous about the stock. Taking a deeper dive, we've spotted 4 warning signs for Ora Banda Mining you should be aware of, and 1 of them is a bit unpleasant.

Of course, you might find a fantastic investment by looking elsewhere. So take a peek at this free list of interesting companies, and this list of stocks growth stocks (according to analyst forecasts)

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. 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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