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Xero burns through the cash

04 Aug 15

Xero, the cloud-based accounting software developer, burned through cash at a faster pace in the June quarter as it ramped up spending on an expanding workforce and more than doubled expenditure on marketing and advertising.

The Wellington-based company's operating cash outflow more than doubled to $17 million in the three months ended June 30 from the same quarter a year earlier, and widened from the $12.2 million outflow reported in the March period. Customer receipts jumped 72 percent to $40.5 million from a year earlier, with staff costs up 66 percent to $31.8 million and Xero's advertising and marketing spend more than doubling to $11.5 million. The staff costs included $3.7 million relating to annual tax payments on share-based compensation, more than twice the $1.4 million it spent a year earlier

The company's investing activities reported a cash outflow of $11.5 million in the quarter as Xero bought intellectual property and other current assets, up from the $9 million outflow a year earlier.

"Xero continues to believe that ongoing investment in customer growth and product innovation is the correct strategy given the substantial opportunity and potential long-term returns," it said in a statement. "Xero is focused on containing its full financial year cash outflow to similar levels to Xero's prior financial year."

The software developer's total operating and investment outflow was $88.4 million in the 2015 financial year, and it raised a further $147 million in the year from US-based institutional funds.

Xero had cash and deposits totalling $243.5 million as at June 30, down from $268.9 million at the start of the quarter.

The shares fell 0.6 percent to $17.60, and have gained 9.6 percent this year.

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