May 1st, 2002

default, pepper

The numbers game

I've just heard from my boss that NetPoodles is going to get another $4.1M in financing, with "more on the way." At our most recently reported burn rate (from 4Q 2001) that's enough money for over five months. Of course, $3.35M of that is likely committed to buying a network services company they've already agreed to pay cash (not stocks) for: the total purchase price is $7.5M and half of the balance is due when the deal closes--which is supposed to be within 60 days now, after one extension. (They've put $400K down as a downpayment.) So, they really only bought a month; they'll need another $7M to survive to--not past, just to--the end of the year. If their one contract pays off like it looks like it might, that'll probably add another $3.5M, so they need $3.5M in additional investment. (Ongoing that contract is less then $3M a year.)

You'd conclude two things from the above report: (a) I could have been an accountant, and (b) I'd be happy. As to the first--no, I'm just a closet statistics geek; I don't really like keeping track of money. And as to the second, I'm perversely disappointed.

I recognize that it is perverse. I'm getting a good salary here, after all, and I'm not being overworked. This means that things here are stable enough that I could move close to work, too. (See previous angst about moving, but at least we're only talking about cross-county rather than cross-country!) At least they might be stable enough. That extra three and a half million would need to arrive sometime in the third quarter or it all goes tits up. But, if there's anything positive to be said about NetPoodles' management, it's that they're clearly unparalleled at wheedling money out of people.

When it comes down to it, I guess it'd be easier if the company definitively collapsed instead of remaining in a perpetual state of living quarter-to-quarter. If I had to leap, there wouldn't be any question of whether it was an unnecessary risk to do so--definitionally, it'd be a necessary risk. But with a debt load higher than my savings, leaping off into the unknown while I still have a regular income--even from a job I don't like--seems less daring than merely foolhardy.

But still.

Off to look at internet job boards, again.