On demand healthcare startup Mfine has been claiming spurt in usages of its services such as diagnostic and virtual consultations since the outbreak of the pandemic. Even as these can be verified once the firm files its FY21 financials, Mfine’s financial performance in FY20 has not been strong.
The three-year-old startup generated a total income of Rs 12.23 crore during the fiscal ended in March 2020 with more than half these collections being earned through interest on deposits and mutual fund returns. Revenue from operations has registered a sharp uptick and swelled up 7.3X to Rs 5.12 crore in FY20 from only Rs 70 lakhs earned in FY19.
Despite a jump in the actual revenue, Mfine paid a pretty penny to achieve this surge in scale. It lost more than eight times the money it earned during the financial year 2019-20. Losses during the last fiscal grew 2.9X from Rs 34.4 crore in FY19 to Rs 99.5 crore during FY20.
It appears that leadership at the early stage startup requires to work on operational efficiencies as Mfine burnt cash at an abysmal EBITDA margin of – 775.14% during FY20. Outstanding losses at the end of March 2020 stood at Rs 140.12 crore, outweighing total assets held by Mfine by nearly 148%.
Expenditure on business promotion stood out as one of the largest cost factors for Mfine, constituting 35.1% of the total expenses incurred by the company in the last fiscal year. Such expenses grew 2.7X to Rs 39.2 crore in FY20 from Rs 14.3 crore in FY19. Last month, Mfine had onboarded Bollywood actor Sonu Sood as its brand ambassador advertising the company’s at-home telemedicine and consultation services and COVID-19 antibody tests.
Mfine functions as an intermediary between its network of partnering hospitals, health professionals, diagnostic labs and its users. It pays a subcontracting fee to these partnering institutions for the services provided by them. These payments rose 2.5X to Rs 11.34 crore in FY20 from Rs 4.5 crore in FY19
To harness the growth in scale, Mfine increased its workforce significantly and spent Rs 39.4 crore on employee benefit expenses, registering a 3.5X jump as compared to Rs 11.4 crore spent on the same during FY19. Further, rentals paid for leased property and electronic equipment also ballooned 4.3X to Rs 6.04 crore.
Mfine spent another Rs 4.9 crore on IT support services and pushed its expense sheet further in the red. Total expenditure grew 3.1X to Rs 111.6 crore in FY20 from Rs 36.2 crore in FY19. The company spent Rs 21.87 to earn a single rupee of operating revenue during the fiscal ended in March 2020.
Burning through cash piles to acquire a customer base and set up operational infrastructure isn’t uncommon for early-stage startups like Mfine, but its Return on Capital employed or RoCE: -309.4% in its third year of operations would be a cause of concern for stakeholders for sure.