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Kevin Quon

 
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  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    cfishnc,

    Shorts have to cover. Some make money and disappear, some get caught on the rise up & bolster the price. That's really all there is to it.

    My estimates will not suffice to the real figures, and the company still appears on track despite the market performance. As a whole, I would expect total revenue to be slightly higher this coming quarter - probably 17-19 million, as much of it is dependent on Clinton.

    Unfortunately, the real acceleration in revenue shouldn't occur until Moema is consolidated, which should happen in 2015 (early? late? who knows). Moema's consolidation is timed with certain shifts in responsibilities based on accounting rules supposedly.

    I wouldn't discount news at this point. The stock merely needs a rallying point at these levels. Sadly, i'm not in charge of that and the company is clearly operating as if there is a better reason to stay low. From what I can tell, there isn't anything wrong apart from a harsh market reaction (along w/ general market weakness & poor crude oil markets).

    To be honest, I believe even an update on production details could be enough to rally investors.

    Wish you the best, but if its any solace, this burn has been hurting me too. All the same, if I had to do it all over again, I would in a heartbeat. If I had tried to time the market, I would not have cared long enough to stay around.

    -Kevin
    Oct 7, 2014. 10:19 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Solazyme: Taking Advantage Of Healthy Food Trends And The Need For Innovation [View article]
    txpe2003,

    I believe the comment on analyst expectations are overstated and a repeated effort of his fellow peers. Analyst expectations have always been high, but the latest repercussions aren't a result of this situation. The market wasn't paying attention to the analysts to begin with so its difficult to argue that their expectations are now the justification for the decline.

    As for the rest of the commentary, I have no qualms with it. It may be a fear or a perceived weak point for traders, but SZYM has derisked much of the underlying concern. Those who think otherwise, simply don't have a good grasp of what's going on. Unfortunately, the effect of the less informed and those who would profit in share price deterioration is equally real all the same.

    The author might make it sound like this was inevitable, but much of biotech is in the same situation (no earnings, promising tech, no quick pathway to profitability). It's really up to the whims of those with capital as to how they'll want to affect the company. Right now it seems like they dont mind beating it up.

    -Kevin
    Oct 7, 2014. 10:04 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    FT,

    I don't want to be a dream crusher, but I don't think its in the interest of SZYM to pursue points #1, 2, or 3... and possibly 5 (although if you mean by burning biomass or utilities using the fuel for energy, then sure).

    #1 - Clean waters not a huge deal for SZYM when compared to open pond co's that have to deal with evaporation. So the water cost isn't nearly as high. SZYM's process likely uses less water than a lot of agricultural ops too. On top of that, having a more uniform result likely comes about from controlling the inputs. This is why the co has been spending so many months just getting the exact settings correct before ramping up volumes. It's ideal to stick w/ clean water rather than introducing impurities. However, that's not to say that the process necessarily NEEDS it. Their work on cellulosics already show that the process works well (but could use improvement) in less than than ideal conditions (including acidic/salinated conditions). All said, can they use seawater? maybe. Do they likely want to? probably not.

    #2 - I just don't see this happening as the organisms not created to affect its surroundings as much as its meant to survive in it.

    #3 - Salty environments is already a less than ideal environment needing to be overcome by SZYM's algae. I highly doubt it's going to be making salt anytime soon.


    This old report does give some insight into the challenges with salt.
    http://bit.ly/13rbMm6
    Oct 7, 2014. 12:43 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    Nice catch on that original extension.
    Oct 3, 2014. 12:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    6000991,

    There isn't enough information to presume one thing over another as to whether the JDA is to be extended further or if that was even part of the plan. I would wait for additional information before making any conclusions.

    If the intended implication is to assert that Bunge has lost confidence in Solazyme, I would say the actions to date say otherwise. The more likely scenario is that the company is holding its cards tight to the chest right now - not announcing everything that is going on. For whatever reason, they probably see this to be beneficial to them. Considering bits of news can be discovered online (ie Hitachi, Stephenson, etc) without company announcements, I believe there is more going on than investors are aware of.

    -Kevin
    Oct 2, 2014. 10:28 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Angie's List COO Leaves And Company Struggles To Prove Worth [View article]
    The story is finally coming to an end.
    Oct 1, 2014. 10:55 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Solazyme: Taking Advantage Of Healthy Food Trends And The Need For Innovation [View article]
    Well summarized
    Sep 30, 2014. 10:23 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Solazyme: Taking Advantage Of Healthy Food Trends And The Need For Innovation [View article]
    txpe2003,

    Fair value will always be a subjective matter, but considering the revenue growth expected from two new large facilities and the defined channels of long-term growth ahead, I would imagine they should be at least worth the amount of capital that has been put into the company thus far (that's approximately $935 million when you consider the retained losses + capital surplus to date, even though this neglects the leveraged value of additional partnership capital).

    There's really 3 approaches to measuring value: Income, Comparable businesses, and Cost.

    -Income remains hazy given the lack of defined costs/ASPs/margins/tim...
    -Comparable businesses is misleading given the lack of real comparisons (no co's out there making tailored designer oils), and when coupling in the tech/funding setbacks to the supposed peer groups (ie. AMRS/GEVO)

    Therefore the cost approach makes the most valid case in my opinion (at least for now).

    But how can anyone expect for the market to follow suit with my opinion. Until the income approach becomes more clear, the haze of market whim remains the model to follow.

    -Kevin
    Sep 30, 2014. 10:19 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Solazyme: Taking Advantage Of Healthy Food Trends And The Need For Innovation [View article]
    Rwratti,

    As txpe2003 noted, it depends on how I tagged it. The proterro article was a Bunge-focus article with a subtag of SZYM. In almost all my prior articles, I tagged SZYM as the focus. The reason I did not for that article was because SZYM was never explicitly mentioned in the agreement and would not have been able to get it past my editors otherwise.

    -Kevin
    Sep 29, 2014. 09:59 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    Just an FYI going forward, but it's Proterro not Proterra. Proterra deals with electric battery busses.
    Sep 28, 2014. 10:51 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    Frankly, no. Prices at the pump would still go up. The markets are way too large for SZYM to address them as a whole. Even if Proterro became some large multi-billion company that expanded out across the globe, there would still not be enough fuel produced by SZYM to replace our current fuel usage. Of course even if this were to happen it'd be several decades away.

    But again this is why fuels remains an attractive market to be in. A ubiquitous market with low barriers to entry that appears to have growing margins going forward.

    Sadly, our world is vastly underestimating how unprepared we are to make the switch to renewable energy sources.
    Sep 27, 2014. 05:50 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    The patents might have some information about that, but when I broadly scanned through them most of it just referenced "nutrients" in the general sense. The company did appear to leave the door open as to some other things it might need to use as well. Here's one such phrase:

    "A solid cultivation support of a photobioreactor can be inoculated with a photosynthetic microorganism, along with addition of moisture and other components including, but not limited to, nutrients, salts, buffers, metals, nitrogen, phosphate, sulfur, etc. "

    In any case, I believe "nutrients" aren't meant to be a significant component - at least not to the point where one worries that such nutrients become too costly for reasonable operation.
    Sep 27, 2014. 01:41 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    Thanks, I appreciate it. I also agree with you about the transition now underway.
    Sep 27, 2014. 01:37 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    I think it would be best to separate the company's performance from Wall Street's view of their own money in the company's performance.

    The company is performing just fine, and their outlook IMO is as strong as ever. They ran into 2 hiccups - Roquette & the Moema delay, but have otherwise delivered as promised & introduced a number business broadening product lines. From what I see in the patent applications, there will be even more to come.

    I am not so bullish on Wall Steet. Investors have become a mob of traders believing they are still investing. I blame the Internet for democratizing this mob-mentality and opening up the already non-informed user base with low-commission trading. The fact Alibaba can become the largest IPO even if Jack Ma controls it all, the fact that Tesla can be a $30 billion company even though its gambling its future on a battery plant, and the idea that an action camera company like GoPro is somehow justified at $10 billion are all signs of these times. Traders don't understand the fundamental (nor do they care) of a good business nor do they care. They want to make money now and fast, and they'll starve a few companies of their financial lifelines along the way to doing so.

    So if you ask me what I think is the greatest risk to SZYM right now? Honestly, I think its the weak investor who doesn't know what he's holding onto. I don't doubt that SZYM will prefer to raise capital in the future to build out more plants. I do believe their current plants could sustain a build out but that it would be more ideal to raise funds in order to accomplish this more quickly.

    But I also believe that momentum will begin to fortify over the next year and that current investors will feel more confident. I also believe that larger funds will begin to pick up on SZYM given the momentum already underway for cleantech companies. This past week was a large signal that more investment demand is going to be driven down the path of cleantech. GS already positioned itself (and SZYM as an example) for the new investment period in cleantech. Others will follow as they divest from "dirty" fossil fuel companies.

    Internally, I see few risks for SZYM at this point. Tech's proven, plants made, relationships founded, production ramping. The largest risk is probably a partnership failure for one of its base-customers (ie. bunge, unilever, azko). But even with this, I see the long-term future of the co still intact. Apart from that, squeezed margins & additional delays are always possibilities.

    Externally, the largest risk might be a growing debate from those who want to destroy the company's plans. Paid activists looking to yell fire in a crowded theater are more than willing to derail progress if it would satisfy their tunnel vision ideologies. Given Ecover's size and customer base it was easy to blow that one out of proportion, but larger companies that understand whats really going on in the world might not be so easily troubled by such rabble-rousers. Even still, I believe Ecover hasn't been chased away even if its been put on the defensive.
    Sep 26, 2014. 03:23 PM | 14 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Did Bunge And Solazyme Just Enter A New Age Of Sugar Production? [View article]
    Sorry, I'm not sure what you mean.
    Sep 26, 2014. 02:28 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
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