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Here's Why We're Watching Empress Royalty's (CVE:EMPR) Cash Burn Situation

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Just because a business does not make any money, does not mean that the stock will go down. For example, although made losses for many years after listing, if you had bought and held the shares since 1999, you would have made a fortune. Nonetheless, only a fool would ignore the risk that a loss making company burns through its cash too quickly.

So, the natural question for Empress Royalty (CVE:EMPR) shareholders is whether they should be concerned by its rate of 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). The first step is to compare its cash burn with its cash reserves, to give us its 'cash runway'.

See our latest analysis for Empress Royalty

How Long Is Empress Royalty's Cash Runway?

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. When Empress Royalty last reported its balance sheet in June 2021, it had zero debt and cash worth CA$15m. Importantly, its cash burn was CA$10m over the trailing twelve months. Therefore, from June 2021 it had roughly 17 months of cash runway. That's not too bad, but it's fair to say the end of the cash runway is in sight, unless cash burn reduces drastically. You can see how its cash balance has changed over time in the image below.


How Hard Would It Be For Empress Royalty To Raise More Cash For Growth?

Issuing new shares, or taking on debt, are the most common ways for a listed company to raise more money for its business. Commonly, a business will sell new shares in itself to raise cash and drive growth. By comparing a company's annual cash burn to its total market capitalisation, we can estimate roughly how many shares it would have to issue in order to run the company for another year (at the same burn rate).

Empress Royalty's cash burn of CA$10m is about 29% of its CA$36m market capitalisation. That's not insignificant, and if the company had to sell enough shares to fund another year's growth at the current share price, you'd likely witness fairly costly dilution.

How Risky Is Empress Royalty's Cash Burn Situation?

Because Empress Royalty is an early stage company, we don't have a great deal of data on which to form an opinion of its cash burn. We would undoubtedly be more comfortable if it had reported some operating revenue. And it is worth keeping in mind that early stage companies are generally more risky than well established ones. Even though we don't think shareholders should be alarmed by its cash burn, we do think they should be keeping a close eye on it. An in-depth examination of risks revealed 3 warning signs for Empress Royalty that readers should think about before committing capital to this stock.

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. 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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