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Several Tallinn Stock Exchange growth companies made losses last year

An ELMO Rent car.
An ELMO Rent car. Source: ELMO Rent

The financial results of several growth companies on the Tallinn Stock Exchange have deteriorated significantly. ELMO Rent for instance, recently announced losses twice as high as anticipated. Investors who put money into in growth companies during the boom are already facing considerable losses.

Several growth companies on the Tallinn Stock Exchange including Clevon, Hagen Bikes and ELMO Rent, made clear losses last year. ELMO Rent's annual turnover was half of the amount forecast, while its losses were more than twice as high as expected, reaching almost €1.5 million.

"That's right, we have losses. In the forecast we anticipated, that at the beginning of last year we would acquire a functioning taxi business, and that taxi business would also bring in a considerable amount of turnover. However, that did not happen. Therefore, understandably, our turnover is lower in reality than the forecast," explained ELMO Rent CEO Enn Laansoo Jr.

At the same time, he also acknowledged that there are cash flow problems.

"Certainly, cash flow is high in the First North market //…but one of the weak spots for so-called start-ups. Now it's a question of how to overcome that. In ELMO's favor is the fact that we also have a functioning car-sharing business," Laansoo said.

Laansoo hopes that technology sales will help ELMO Rent to survive. He says ELMO has grown from being a car-sharing business to a company that also develops remote technology. By the end of 2023, the company expects to have six to seven customers in this area.

Two years ago, ELMO Rent's share price was almost €7. Today, it is less than a third of that.

However, Ivar Mägi, one of the investors who put money into the company, has not lost faith. "Maybe the €10 is not quite enough, and at the moment, you can't say it's coming. But I still see positive developments on the horizon. I don't know the number at the moment," said Mägi.

According to Mägi, growth company shareholders are now starting to panic. "You have to monitor the situation, people are panicking a bit. I'm not doing anything directly at the moment, but I'm keeping an eye on things. I think that selling is not justified," he said.

Peter Priisalm, fund manager at investment firm Avaron, said it had been easy to raise money from small investors during the equity boom, but now the value of money and the situation have both changed.

"When raising money, the reality is that investors have to take into account that many of them will need more funds. And it is true, that today the market situation is such, that some of these companies need more money, but the market is no longer prepared to provide it on the same terms," explained Priisalm.

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Editor: Michael Cole

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