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Is Touyun Biotech Group (HKG:1332) Using Too Much Debt?

Simply Wall St ·  {{timeTz}}

Warren Buffett famously said, 'Volatility is far from synonymous with risk.' So it seems the smart money knows that debt - which is usually involved in bankruptcies - is a very important factor, when you assess how risky a company is. As with many other companies Touyun Biotech Group Limited (HKG:1332) makes use of debt. But is this debt a concern to shareholders?

When Is Debt A Problem?

Generally speaking, debt only becomes a real problem when a company can't easily pay it off, either by raising capital or with its own cash flow. In the worst case scenario, a company can go bankrupt if it cannot pay its creditors. However, a more usual (but still expensive) situation is where a company must dilute shareholders at a cheap share price simply to get debt under control. By replacing dilution, though, debt can be an extremely good tool for businesses that need capital to invest in growth 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 Touyun Biotech Group

How Much Debt Does Touyun Biotech Group Carry?

You can click the graphic below for the historical numbers, but it shows that as of June 2022 Touyun Biotech Group had HK$428.1m of debt, an increase on HK$375.1m, over one year. However, because it has a cash reserve of HK$60.9m, its net debt is less, at about HK$367.2m.

debt-equity-history-analysisSEHK:1332 Debt to Equity History September 13th 2022

How Healthy Is Touyun Biotech Group's Balance Sheet ?

The latest balance sheet data shows that Touyun Biotech Group had liabilities of HK$577.6m due within a year, and liabilities of HK$10.7m falling due after that. On the other hand, it had cash of HK$60.9m and HK$154.7m worth of receivables due within a year. So its liabilities total HK$372.6m more than the combination of its cash and short-term receivables.

This deficit isn't so bad because Touyun Biotech Group is worth HK$1.63b, and thus could probably raise enough capital to shore up its balance sheet, if the need arose. But it's clear that we should definitely closely examine whether it can manage its debt without dilution. The balance sheet is clearly the area to focus on when you are analysing debt. But you can't view debt in total isolation; since Touyun Biotech Group will need earnings to service that debt. So when considering debt, it's definitely worth looking at the earnings trend. Click here for an interactive snapshot.

Over 12 months, Touyun Biotech Group reported revenue of HK$313m, which is a gain of 24%, although it did not report any earnings before interest and tax. Shareholders probably have their fingers crossed that it can grow its way to profits.

Caveat Emptor

While we can certainly appreciate Touyun Biotech Group's revenue growth, its earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) loss is not ideal. To be specific the EBIT loss came in at HK$37m. When we look at that and recall the liabilities on its balance sheet, relative to cash, it seems unwise to us for the company to have any debt. Quite frankly we think the balance sheet is far from match-fit, although it could be improved with time. However, it doesn't help that it burned through HK$217m of cash over the last year. So suffice it to say we consider the stock very risky. 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 example, we've discovered 1 warning sign for Touyun Biotech Group that you should be aware of before investing here.

If, after all that, you're more interested in a fast growing company with a rock-solid balance sheet, then check out our list of net cash growth stocks without delay.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.
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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