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  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    One day till the CC.

     

    Here is the link to the
    Axion Power 2012 EOY Conference Call Questions
    http://bit.ly/104QpVB

     

    People who can are invited to ask questions.
    Either their own or from the list.
    You can add to the list as well.

     

    Good luck everybody.
    24 Mar 2013, 08:51 AM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (879) | Send Message
     
    If ePower's statements of 35%+ are just hype, how would not delivering effect Axion's price? Isolated to just them or would the association bring Axion's performance claims into question also?
    24 Mar 2013, 09:06 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    ePower is using Axion's battery. It's responsible for its own claims. As ePower matures and it gets to a hybrid series drive solution that's acceptable to a meaningful percentage of the market, it's claims will be refined and the fuel savings will probably go down as users demand more performance.

     

    The only claim that should matter to Axion or its stockholders is that the PbC is the only battery on the market that offers the charge acceptance ePower needs for its system.
    24 Mar 2013, 09:35 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    Greentongue, I think the performance claims reside mostly with ePower. They would be the one's generating the data and doing the comparisons to some other, hopefully, appropriate data set. I would however think poorly of Vani should this happen so there would be some level of credibility called into question by me. If it's pumped up a little, well, I guess that's the game these days. If it's pure fantasy then Axion should have left the claim up to ePower and kept quiet.

     

    I'd love to see at least a couple hundred thousand miles on the first rig with a follow up announcement on performance compared to a known data set with a level of battery life new vs used.
    24 Mar 2013, 09:39 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    The critical point to remember with ePower is that they need to compare the fuel economy of their 5-year retrofit with the fuel economy of other five-year retrofits.

     

    This is not a case where the fuel economy of a new Freightliner or Kenworth is even relevant. New truck customers have one set of choices to make and five-year retrofit customers have a different and more limited set of choices.

     

    It's not entirely clear to me where one would go searching for hard data on the expected fuel economy of five-year retrofits, but that will ultimately be the standard by which ePower will be judged.
    24 Mar 2013, 10:04 AM Reply Like
  • footleg
    , contributor
    Comments (29) | Send Message
     
    show
    24 Mar 2013, 09:27 AM Reply Like
  • footleg
    , contributor
    Comments (29) | Send Message
     
    The pertinent paragraph:
    "Our PbC batteries and management system, together with the ingenuity and intellectual property of ePower, are cutting fuel consumption by a significant factor," Granville said. "Our early testing has gone well and has demonstrated an ability to increase miles per gallon by more than 35%. We believe, and more importantly ePower believes, that with improved synergy of function between the proprietary hybrid drive train and our PbC batteries, that improvements in miles per gallon exceeding 50% can be achieved..."

     

    Was it ever determined what the 35% was an improvement over?:
    Conventional rebuilds?
    New truck off the lot?
    Worn-out old truck getting what, 3-4 mpg?
    24 Mar 2013, 09:44 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    ePower has been getting 8 to 12 mpg from its series hybrid while the national average for OTR Class 8 tractors is closer to 5 mpg. That being said, ePower is not yet satisfied with the acceleration and hill climbing performance of its tractor and it will probably have to make some adjustments that sacrifice fuel economy for better performance. First on the list of likely changes is an upgrade from 4 cylinders to 6 cylinders.

     

    Comparing ePower's five-year retrofit option to a new truck would be inappropriate because new truck customers and retrofit customers have different choices to make. The real issue how does the fuel economy of an ePower retrofit compare with the fuel economy of a conventional retrofit.
    24 Mar 2013, 10:13 AM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2140) | Send Message
     
    The easiest way to figure mileage improvement would be to use the owners first year of running previous records to establish a baseline for each vehicle before refit, then compare. Transportation companies keep very good records of mileage and fuel for each vehicle (double check with Tim).
    24 Mar 2013, 11:05 AM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    Tracking MPG per unit. The short answer is every truck on the road knows their fuel economy if they are paying their fuel taxes (IFTA). The tax is collected (per gallon) at the pump and they must report miles traveled in each state. This is how you get miles/gallons. This is not very accurate (miles can be fudged) but will give you a pretty good idea.

     

    The fueling process is pretty automated for the vast majority of the trucks. If the company requires the hub to be entered on each fill-up then the mpg are know immediately and is just about as accurate as it gets. Also, the refer fuel is tracked separately during the fueling process. The hub is also tracked at every service.

     

    So if you are sitting on any of these data sets a simple SELECT statement will give you the answers you seek. And if you can join to the unit table you can produce results based on the year of the unit...
    24 Mar 2013, 01:15 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (1027) | Send Message
     
    If the anticipated reduction in the PbC price leads to a less expensive ePower retrofit, would the terrain where a retrofit is economical be expanded fairly significantly?
    24 Mar 2013, 01:17 PM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (879) | Send Message
     
    I'm not seeing the relationship between battery price and terrain. Acceptable performance can be effected by terrain but the battery performance has nothing to do with the price you paid for it.
    ROI is can see but, not changing where a battery boost is feasible.
    24 Mar 2013, 02:06 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (1027) | Send Message
     
    Hi Greentongue, thanks for your reply. I was thinking in terms of whether a lower-priced ePower retrofit would become economical if it split its time between a relatively flat terrain and one that was more mixed, say in which the retrofit economics worked only half the time. If so, it would seem the potential market for the retrofit would be expanded considerably.
    24 Mar 2013, 02:22 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    If the batteries were cheaper, such that more of them could be put on the truck without breaking the bank, you'd have more boost power and boost energy available for longer and/or steeper hills, provided of course that the drive motor and its electronics could make use of the additional current/voltage available... To do it right though I would think they'd have to plus-up nearly all the main components..
    24 Mar 2013, 02:26 PM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2427) | Send Message
     
    48, the battery price is one constraint, but weight and volume are critical constraints, too.

     

    Assuming a 33% diesel energy efficiency, one needs over 100,000 lbs of PbC batteries to equal the energy in 100 gallons of diesel. Even if the batteries were free, you don't want to carry so many batteries there is no payload.
    24 Mar 2013, 03:48 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    Rick, complete agreement... I mean in this application they're not trying to replace bulk diesel fuel... that's a total fool's errand. Obviously there will be an upper bound on how many batteries you want to carry aboard, if not for price, certainly for mass and volume constraints.... But again, we should reinforce the concept of why the batteries are there in the first place... they're there to store and deliver just enough energy and power to help the (optimally sized for flat highway) driveline get the truck up any hills, as well as boost acceleration (and then recover on the downhill/decel phase as much of that expended energy as possible.) Ideally they should be sized to store only that amount of energy and/or deliver/absorb that amount of power... I would think adding any more energy / power capacity beyond that is basically then waste. That said, the size/steepness of hills that the truck will be able to climb expeditiously *is* going to be determined/limited by both the total power available (determining steepness) and total energy available (determining length/duration) from the battery bank. More capacious battery = bigger longer hills you can climb and faster... but again, obviously there would be an ideal sweet spot, even if the batteries were free. But since they're not free, I wonder if the current price puts some limit right now on how many batteries ePower *chooses* to use, vice how many they might *want* to use...
    25 Mar 2013, 01:04 AM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2427) | Send Message
     
    48, I think we both on the same page. Certainly with the public info available, we have no idea of either maximum profitability of PbC batteries nor of ePower's use of them.

     

    Basically, we're mushrooms - in the dark with lots of "fertilizer". OK, fertilizer constrained.
    25 Mar 2013, 06:53 AM Reply Like
  • Futurist
    , contributor
    Comments (2127) | Send Message
     
    I am looking forward to the call tomorrow. I'm sure TG will have the concentrators humming in a way that makes fuel mpg topic irrelevant for a few days. I like the topic. But with no comparisons it doesn't offer a lot to discuss.
    24 Mar 2013, 07:15 PM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (368) | Send Message
     
    Last year the first comment to link the EOY 2011 PR was at 834AM EDT. I'll be watchn for it. We should have a couple hours to dissect it prior to the CC. I plan on asking a few questions.
    24 Mar 2013, 07:33 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    I cheated and used WinMerge to compare the 2011 10-K to the 2012.

     

    There were more changes then I thought there might be but there was a fair amount of grooming. The tone of the document changed from a passive projecting to an active completed sort of tone (from demonstrate to demonstrated). The sort of thing you might expect from an R&D company changing to production. So here are some things I found that have not been mentioned here (or seen by me anyway).

     

    They have put aside the ability to adjust for more energy and less power in their description. I think they clearly see their market in the power side of things now and will focus on their current product (not that they can't come back to this later).

     

    I am noticing the use of Standby Power (UPS) that wasn't there before. Is this just the Residential Cube or is there more. Or perhaps a new term for stationary power?

     

    Military has been added to their focus on specific markets statement.

     

    Prototype Manufacturing statement has been removed. In its place is: “Our R&D focus will now be working with prospective customers on the commercial application of our PbC technology to fit their unique requirements”. I think this goes along with a focus on the current power product.

     

    “Our planned demonstration projects...” section has been removed and the “Commercialization Phase” has been completely rewritten. Again, the tone change from what they are “going to do” to what they are “doing”.

     

    Three more patents but we knew that already.

     

    Some more Prototype and Commercial Production statements removed from the patent section (goes along with the new focus mentioned above).

     

    Another mention of the R&D's new focus “Going forward R&D will be primarily focused working with prospective customers to determine how our PbC technology best fits their unique requirements.”

     

    As of 12/31/2012, they are down from 90 to 80 employees. Including a reduction from 16 to 11 on the scientific and engineering team but growth in the manufacturing from 51-53 people.

     

    More “Future Production” language removed from the risk section. Again, due to the fact that we are in production...

     

    “On October 17, 2012, the Board of Directors amended the Axion Power International, Inc. independent director’s stock option plan to increase the number of shares of common stock available there under from 500,000 shares to 1,000,000 shares.” Does this mean the leadership wants the opportunity to put more skin in the game? Is this a benefit or out of pocket for them?

     

    There were more changes under salaries and other stuff that is beyond my understanding so I will stop here. The wheels are turning and and we are building momentum...
    24 Mar 2013, 08:23 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    Tim I think "stand by power" is like the emergency generator at a hospital...it's usually a Caterpillar or John Deere engine. Mostly CAT.

     

    otherwise, it can cover a million things.
    24 Mar 2013, 08:45 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    LT, yes and uninterrupted power supply (UPS) which moves the slidder a little closer to the "critical need" as opposed to just a stationary power which may or may not provide uninterrupted service. Data centers come to mind but so does the uniqueness of the Residential Cube...

     

    Edit: And I would do a back-flip (yes I still can) if CAT showed interest. So would DRich (not sure if he still can <smile>)
    24 Mar 2013, 09:33 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >Tim Enright ... I'll bet your last dollar CAT knows a lot about the PbC since it is a direct competitor in the NS999 versus the genset arena.
    24 Mar 2013, 09:37 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    >DRich ... I can see both applications working well together, lets hope they eventually do. And I will keep my last dollar - thank you! <smile>
    24 Mar 2013, 10:40 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    Tim, FYI, under "Our Business and Products" there is still this verbiage:

     

    "Our PbC energy storage device is a hybrid battery supercapacitor that combines the simplicity of lead-acid batteries with the faster recharge rate, longer cycle life and greater charge acceptance of supercapacitors. The result is a relatively low cost device that has versatility of design that will allow differing iterations to deliver maximum power; maximum energy; or a range of balances between the two. "

     

    ---So they are still citing the ability to tune the battery for energy vs power--just perhaps not emphasizing it as much as before?
    25 Mar 2013, 01:20 AM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2140) | Send Message
     
    86,
    I am sure that if the price is right and with some cash up front, accommodation could be made for customization within known working parameters. Just my personal opinion of course. :-)
    25 Mar 2013, 01:29 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    SD, agreed. Different applications will have somewhat differing requirements, and it's good to know that the PbC has the inherent "versatility of design" to be able to be tailored and optimized, power/energy wise, for each application's specific demands...at least to some extent. All depending of course on how big that particular potential customer wants to be. If GM says tomorrow they want a million batteries per year starting 2H2014, *and* they want them tuned for max-energy over power, I'm sure Axion would adjust the design and their line accordingly and make it happen ... if, OTOH, it's some specialty hybrid lawn tractor company that wants to buy only a thousand batteries a year, Axion might not deem tweaking the design to be worth the expense/effort just for them...
    25 Mar 2013, 01:42 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    DRich, I couldn't agree more. I bet CAT & GE is all over every development on the PbC in that 999 and any other info they can get.
    You can also expand that to Cummins in trucks too.
    25 Mar 2013, 04:50 AM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    86/SD, I agree that the door was left open. However, there was verbage that was dropped. I think they are done prototyping (unless compensated fully) and have settled into a product that serves their target markets.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:10 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >Tim Enright ... You might be correct but I would really like to know over what Farad range the PbC is capable of being "tuned". My interest is for a market niche that it could make a difference.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:19 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    I'd call Vani and tell him what you need to accomplish DRich.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:24 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    > DRich ... Maybe now that they have moved into production, we might start seeing some performance numbers published...
    25 Mar 2013, 12:24 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >Tim Enright ... There is no chance of that happening because there is no need to do it. The information that ya'll have gleaned from Rosewater is about it and that is as it should be for awhile.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:36 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    > DRich ... Perhaps for now. As the maket awareness grows they will eventually need to flex their muscles by publishing numbers...
    25 Mar 2013, 12:59 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    Nice work, Tim. Thanks.
    24 Mar 2013, 08:37 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    Thanks D/FP. I have limited knowledge in the world of finance and have to get at the story in creative ways. However, my learning burden has been greatly reduced by the APC's - thanks for all...
    24 Mar 2013, 10:44 PM Reply Like
  • Fancy Pants
    , contributor
    Comments (36) | Send Message
     
    Tim -- thank you.
    24 Mar 2013, 09:27 PM Reply Like
  • BugEYE
    , contributor
    Comments (194) | Send Message
     
    Some excerpts from 10-Q and 10-k
    -----Q3------Q4
    raw 951k 945k
    wip 2,198k 472k
    finished 337k 1678k
    total 3486k 3095k
    difference (391k)

     

    As NS order of 400k had been shipped before year end, it seems to me the total wip (2,198k) in Q3 was transformed into finished goods (1,678k) in Q4 plus NS order.

     

    The company seemed accumulating something in WIP in the first three quarters from 1,071k to 2,198k then suddenly finished it in Q4.
    24 Mar 2013, 10:16 PM Reply Like
  • BugEYE
    , contributor
    Comments (194) | Send Message
     
    It is my first time trying to put a table in the concentrator. However SA system seems ignoring those spacing. Little wonder how ugly the table looks! Sorry.
    24 Mar 2013, 10:21 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    Bug
    We've all tried and failed.
    A few dots does help keep spacing.

     

    I suspect the WIP for Q3 was higher due to the batteries that were not completed waiting to ship the order to NSC. "In the form" Where we waited month for it to ship.

     

    Where as the finished product in Q4 would be in anticipation of a near immediate ship.
    25 Mar 2013, 07:37 AM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    "Where as the finished product in Q4 would be in anticipation of a near immediate ship. "

     

    TG said that keeping the battery fully made is not a problem.
    Dang
    25 Mar 2013, 01:18 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): Axion Power Reports Results For 2012

     

    http://prn.to/YzFZQS

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 09:15 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): "The increase in revenue was principally due to the sale of specialty lead-acid batteries to a major lead-acid battery company that sells the batteries under its own brand – but the revenue in the fourth quarter included $475,000 from the sale, recognized in the period, of PbC batteries to Norfolk Southern for a yard-switcher locomotive. The Norfolk Southern sale was the first significant sale of PbC batteries."

     

    EDIT: "With our increase in sales, and more specifically sales of our core business product, we are now recognized as a commercial entity for filing purposes".

     

    EDIT: "Our strategic partnership with Rosewater Energy Group is in place, and we are told that interest in the Hub product line is increasing. We are taking the Hub products to a second design stage working with a new outside vendor whose products and electronics will enable us to upgrade our quality assurance and maintainability".

     

    EDIT: "The Company's plan at the end of 2011 was to raise go forward capital in two stages in early 2012 and early 2013 in order to achieve its goals for 2013 and beyond. The Company has not wavered in pursuing that strategy and to that end, has been working with a highly reputable and experienced investment bank".

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 09:16 AM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1777) | Send Message
     
    HTL,

     

    "EDIT: "Our strategic partnership with Rosewater Energy Group is in place, and we are told that interest in the Hub product line is increasing. We are taking the Hub products to a second design stage working with a new outside vendor whose products and electronics will enable us to upgrade our quality assurance and maintainability".

     

    It will be interesting to hear if this is the outside manufacturer that TG has spoken of in the past, for ramping up Hub production, of if this is a completely different application, where a Hub will be integrated into someone else's system (ie a company that is selling a renewable energy system and wants to directly link it to a Hub as an integrated system). I'm assuming the first, but it hopefully TG will explain this more in the CC.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:08 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Labtech: I think that's an excellent question. Let's hope it gets asked during the cc. Along with that, is UL re-certification then needed?

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 10:12 AM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (368) | Send Message
     
    I just found the PR on Scottrade, reading it now.

     

    Edit: http://bit.ly/14iV7FO
    25 Mar 2013, 09:15 AM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (368) | Send Message
     
    "We are taking the Hub products to a second design stage working with a new outside vendor whose products and electronics will enable us to upgrade our quality assurance and maintainability. We completed our onsite PowerCube in December of 2011 and it was immediately tied into the PJM utility network. We completed our Siltek project for the US Washington DC Navy Yard in the summer of 2012. These projects are part of the reason that we have seen a huge increase in proposal activity in our energy storage systems overall. These include grid tied applications as well as stand-alones that incorporate renewables such as wind and solar and are located in and out of North America." Granville stated."
    25 Mar 2013, 09:22 AM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    The Company's plan at the end of 2011 was to raise go forward capital in two stages in early 2012 and early 2013 in order to achieve its goals for 2013 and beyond. The Company has not wavered in pursuing that strategy and to that end, has been working with a highly reputable and experienced investment bank.

     

    Opinions on strategic investments?
    25 Mar 2013, 09:27 AM Reply Like
  • carlosgaviria
    , contributor
    Comments (799) | Send Message
     
    Please:

     

    What means this:
    ...has been working with a highly reputable and experienced investment bank.

     

    The bank will be the investor?

     

    Good luck today-Carlos
    25 Mar 2013, 09:29 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    Carlos, my grasp of some financial market terms seems a bit dated from time to time so please take what I say as perhaps indicative (not definitive) of current terminology.

     

    Historically, 'investment bank' activity in the US was largely the business of marketing equity and bond securities issued by other companies. Investment banks would undertake an "underwriting" on either a "firm" or "best efforts" basis. With a "firm" underwriting agreement, the investment bank or investment banking syndicate guaranteed the issuing corporation that securities offered would be purchased at a predetermined price. In essence, the investment bank or syndicate committed to purchase the entire offering but did so with intent to resell most if not all of the securities purchased. In best efforts underwriting exercises, OTOH, the investment bank (syndicate) committed only to make its best efforts to sell securities offered by an issuing corporation.

     

    Investment banks differed fundamentally from commercial banks (which were not allowed to invest in equity securities, were members of the federal reserve system, and were regulated by State banking regulators and/or Federal Reserve and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Investment banks were not members of the Federal Reserve system,were regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission, and some State regulators.
    25 Mar 2013, 09:48 AM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1777) | Send Message
     
    D-inv,
    I agree with your assessment. To me, this is no different that what Axion did in the 2012 capital raise. They basically used an investment company to find a group of investors to agree to purchase a set amount of stock. The investment company was then paid for their services with money and stock generated from the capital raise. I assume this will be the same practice for the 2013 capital raise.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:02 AM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    Does this suggest that a strategic investor is not available at this time?
    25 Mar 2013, 10:04 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    I would think this is different because an investment bank would have a reputation of making good valuations, and thus sell shares at a higher price and/or different capital structure. 2012 was based purely on what financial investors could flip on the market. I'd be very happy to see shares sold at a higher valuation that couldn't be sold immediately.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:05 AM Reply Like
  • carlosgaviria
    , contributor
    Comments (799) | Send Message
     
    Ranma:

     

    Very interesting opinion.

     

    Thanks-Carlos
    25 Mar 2013, 10:07 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    And then the equity houses were allowed to mingle with the banks as long as there were fire walls between the two institutions. And they all lived happily ever after......the bailout.

     

    D-inv, Your recollection of the meaning of investment bank is mine as well.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    Ah, but this time they're using a "highly reputable and experienced" one :-)

     

    Ouch.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:17 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    I guess the meaning of "firewalls", relative to financial institutions anyway, should be modified now: "A partition, between two disparate compartments, composed of highly flammable and porous material designed to enhance the possibility and severity of any conflagration that can be imagined. An intended side-effect is to inflict maximum damage on innocent bystanders. See 'collateral damage'".

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 10:21 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    I think this is an overreaction, and precisely opposite to what an investment bank is for. Their job is to sell a large block of stock using their underwriting backing and valuation experience. That implies somebody out there is going to buy a large block in an entirely different process than the 2012 investors. Sounds like a strategic investor to me. At the very least, the sharks from 2012 are out.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    Investment banks have a hierarchy just like all other businesses. They range from small shops like Axion's had to deal with in the past through mid-tier firms and up to the behemoths like Goldman and Morgan Stanley. The growth process with a company like Axion starts with the small boutique banks, moves up the food chain to middle-tier firms and ultimately ends with the top tier. Moving down the investment banking food chain is rarely positive. Moving up the food chain is rarely a bad thing.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:27 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2797) | Send Message
     
    I always thought the use of 2 unknown brokerages was a sign of weakness. You only go to the unknowns when you have to. And they've struggled to do deals---just look at their websites----almost no deals in the last couple of years except Axion.

     

    Hopefully the I-Bank is a big step up, although I-Bank is very loosely used these days. Long ago, it meant that the bank was investing some of its own capital in the deal, and was a well-respected industry. Smart, thoughtful guys giving trusted advice and investing their own money. Now, best I can tell, it's a grab bag of companies.

     

    Hope we can get at least a little more color shortly.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:30 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    " That implies somebody out there is going to buy a large block in an entirely different process than the 2012 investors. Sounds like a strategic investor to me. At the very least, the sharks from 2012 are out. "

     

    I think this remains to be seen. Investment bankers serve(d) two functions - valuation and sales network formation -- sometimes alone and sometimes together. My sense of the last capital raise was that it was an exercise of a single regional broker placing securities with well heeled clients already maintaining accounts with the broker. Working with an seasoned, "reputable" investment banker could mean an effort to sell a large block of securities to one buyer or it could mean securities will be sold to a larger audience through a "syndicate" of broker-dealers.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:34 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    Either way this is good. What we really cared about was hgiher valuation and long term holders. If this bank can get it, we got what we wanted for as much as any strategic partner could have offered. The fact that the 2012 buyers are out - especially Special Sits - is a very big plus.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:39 AM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    OT

     

    Anybody watching ZBB this morning? I would love our AXPW to follow suit!
    25 Mar 2013, 09:33 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    Second that "follow suit" thought.
    25 Mar 2013, 09:55 AM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2656) | Send Message
     
    RBrun -

     

    Not sure. Seems to be a continuation from Friday. Doesn't appear to be news to support it.
    25 Mar 2013, 09:39 AM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    Stefan,

     

    I agree, I have not found any new data out on it.
    25 Mar 2013, 09:49 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    This report from Friday may have gotten bigger "mind share"

     

    http://bit.ly/14praV5
    25 Mar 2013, 09:54 AM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    3.5m shares traded. Could this be the first infusion from their new financier?
    25 Mar 2013, 12:40 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    With the change to a commercial entity, rather than an R & D company, I guess this now means we start the circus of quarterly beats and misses, apply DCF metrics, etc.

     

    So now we have a whole 'nother set of problems to deal with, as to our wall of worry activities.

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 09:52 AM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    I am interested in TG's selection of words that he has chosen to describe the rest of this year.

     

    "We believe that we are off to an excellent start in 2013, a start that will firmly position us for a step change year."

     

    I unfortunately have not used the term "step change" in my conversations recently so am not exactly certain how to gage it! Any help from you out there? ;-))

     

    RBrun357
    25 Mar 2013, 09:54 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    Let us just hope that "step change" is upward as opposed to the other direction. To my way of thinking, indications are that the step change will be large, and upward.
    25 Mar 2013, 09:58 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    :-) How many APCers would like the challenge of standing in TG's shoes during this mornings' cc?
    25 Mar 2013, 09:59 AM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    D-inv

     

    Thanks, I just Googled it

     

    step change

     

    A sudden, discontinuous change.

     

    See also
    paradigm shift
    quantum leap
    25 Mar 2013, 10:02 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    In the 10-k or whatever form last week, we discussed that AXPW had 4.8 million in cash...the earnings states $2 M cash, so is the difference the inventory ? and maybe it was sold ?
    25 Mar 2013, 10:13 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2797) | Send Message
     
    No, we mentioned $4.8 mil working capital. Cash is but one component of that.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:18 AM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    LT
    It was 2 mil in cash.
    4.8 mil in working capital.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:22 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    Did TG mention strategic partners at the end of 2011 PR?

     

    Cause he sure didn't go out of his way to mention that in the new release. I suppose the lawyers wouldn't let him till it's signed on the dotted line, but still a little disappointing after he raised it in the last conference call, and the word strategic is all over the just filed SEC doc.
    25 Mar 2013, 10:15 AM Reply Like
  • dlmca
    , contributor
    Comments (358) | Send Message
     
    step change

     

    A sudden, discontinuous change.

     

    paradigm shift - quantum leap

     

    Someone should ask TG to elaborate
    25 Mar 2013, 10:17 AM Reply Like
  • dlmca
    , contributor
    Comments (358) | Send Message
     
    Financial results about as expected

     

    Most developments were known but seem to be moving forward with no hiccups

     

    Still no apparent answer on the 2013 financing. The improvement in current ratio and current assets suggests near cash items at December 31, 2012 are likely what is carrying us to a deal - but time may be running out and developments will need to be finalized

     

    Feel is TG and group have the financing required in hand - but the conference call will hopefully deliver more
    25 Mar 2013, 10:35 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    10:34: Someone just released ~100K shares into a bid @ $0.28 from NITE for 100K $0.28.

     

    Buy sell was/is looking horrible even as, prior to that trade, VWAP was up at $0.2898 from yesterdays' $0.2813 at EOD. The bids have been getting hit hard, but the bids had been rising.

     

    VWAP now $0.2828 and buy:sell looks like 1:46.3.

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 10:40 AM Reply Like
  • Poul Brandt
    , contributor
    Comments (278) | Send Message
     
    HTL

     

    I placed the purchase order for the 100K
    25 Mar 2013, 05:17 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    Some people watch the charts to look for a bottom. I watch Poul <smile>...
    25 Mar 2013, 05:21 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Poul: Congrats on what I think will be a very good play as time passes. I think that also helped keep price from tanking further today!

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 05:26 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    Poul, You have to be close to asking for a board seat!

     

    Or are you just trying to get enough leverage to demand a couple PbC batteries in the family fleet to cut down on the trips to the dealership for replacement? ;))
    25 Mar 2013, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • Poul Brandt
    , contributor
    Comments (278) | Send Message
     
    Well, actually the last 200K (of which 100K today) investment is made as I need financing to purchase a German supplier (for my company). My thinking is: When the price reached 3 USD, I have made around 300.000 USD (after 45% tax). And that may be enough to purchase them.

     

    The news about the continuous roll process helped the decision a lot. :-)
    25 Mar 2013, 06:30 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    Poul, Thanks for sharing your thoughts concerning your decision to buy. I wish you well with your investment and your business! I am also very pleased with the carbon sheeting announcement.

     

    A selfish comment on the well wishes for Axion appreciation I'm afraid! ;-)

     

    PS Thanks for covering my back today. I was glad to see someone close by when I was done adding.
    25 Mar 2013, 06:53 PM Reply Like
  • Occam's_Razor
    , contributor
    Comments (1549) | Send Message
     
    Poul: Glad I wasn't the only one buying today (although it felt like it at times). I added another 55k, but your buy order dwarfs mine.

     

    My spider sense tells me somebody hit the bid into the last half hour to make sure we didn't close up today. Whatever... I'm still content to accumulate below .30c

     

    FWIW, I don't think we stay below .30 for much longer.

     

    26 Mar 2013, 12:10 AM Reply Like
  • Poul Brandt
    , contributor
    Comments (278) | Send Message
     
    Nice to hear we are many that are accumulating.
    26 Mar 2013, 04:31 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    :)

     

    "You know the nearer your destination
    The more you're slip slidin' away"

     

    http://bit.ly/YPwvNq
    25 Mar 2013, 10:48 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Today's PR didn't include the time of the CC? Anyway, from the 3/18 PR, 11:00 A.M. AFAICT, webcast link is not yet on web site?

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 10:57 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    HTL, click directly the investors tab. It's not obvious, but it's there. I'm in the webcast now.
    25 Mar 2013, 11:00 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    Only classical music at this moment.
    25 Mar 2013, 11:00 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    I was logged in early and got dumped for some reason. Phew, Thank God TG was not early!!! lol
    25 Mar 2013, 11:02 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Ah! Thanks! I was looking the usual way: hover on investors and select either presentations or schedule of events.

     

    <*sigh*>

     

    Thanks.

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 11:04 AM Reply Like
  • footleg
    , contributor
    Comments (29) | Send Message
     
    Ranma,
    I'd probably point more toward the Romantic period ;-)
    25 Mar 2013, 11:06 AM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    The fidelity was from the 40s. Where did they find that old phonograph?
    25 Mar 2013, 11:19 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    It's on the investor relations page.

     

    http://bit.ly/13GdnJ6
    25 Mar 2013, 10:59 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    They sound really confident!
    25 Mar 2013, 11:15 AM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1633) | Send Message
     
    I sincerely believe that with Axion we have a great company with a dedicated management team, and more importantly a great product with many application markets. We sometimes think that just because the stock market "votes" in a certain way, then we are probably wrong about the company, but in my view the right approach is to recognize that a company is successful regardless of what the market says, and it is usually only a matter of time before the stock market catches up on reality...

     

    My two cents :)
    25 Mar 2013, 11:31 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    For later.

     

    As U.S. tightens rules on lead emissions, battery recycling has moved to Mexico

     

    http://bit.ly/WR6ZL8
    25 Mar 2013, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • rastros
    , contributor
    Comments (38) | Send Message
     
    Hey WTB,

     

    Excellent questions. Thanks.
    25 Mar 2013, 11:49 AM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2656) | Send Message
     
    Any commentary on Viridity partnership?
    25 Mar 2013, 11:57 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    No. Mentioned the tons of RFPs coming in, their sales team, the fact it needs to be ramped up, but nothing about Viridity
    25 Mar 2013, 11:59 AM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1633) | Send Message
     
    wtb,

     

    Have they outlined whether they intend to ramp up the sales and marketing teams? Any talks about the approximate amount of PbC sales for the year, and yoy growth estimates, etc...?

     

    Thanks
    A
    25 Mar 2013, 12:06 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    yes to ramping up, but no details on how big it would be. Sometimes companies given you a clue through their job postings ... haven't hunted for their's lately.

     

    TG got burned early last yearly giving projections, after that, even under direct questioning (and still now) he's not going to do that again soon in my opinion.

     

    We lost Merci because he wouldn't even talk about "goals."

     

    It's UPOD, not NPOD :-)

     

    It's an issue ... stay tuned.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:12 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Amouna: They said that they were ramping Vani's crew to handle all the RFP. IIUC correctly.

     

    My notes have two refs: in intorductory remarks I wrote "PC: Large increase in RFP requests. Staffing up to support this"

     

    and from KentG's question I noted "TG: # of RFPs out there is large. Competitiveness is not the batteries, but is the electronics, inverters, racking, ... was in one-off before. Now beyond that and doing economies of scale, & redesigned some of the electronics specs (was overbuilt before). Expect '13 sales, lots of opportunities for Vani & his team."

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 12:20 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    Dang missed it.
    I wanted to ask what the other "lower hanging fruit" for trucks was.
    It sounded like he thought it was a bigger deal as well.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:04 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    TG mentioned start/stop w.r.t trucks ... my guess is that's the low hanging fruit
    25 Mar 2013, 12:07 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2302) | Send Message
     
    My impression was the other low-hanging fruit would be stop/start in trucks.

     

    From my rough notes on WTB's first questions:

     

    <<
    "Exclusive use of PbC batteries for their hybrid application" with ePower. They have to use PbC, but Axion can and is working with other OEM's (APU, but no others working on hybrid trucks, other truck OEMs doing stop/start work). Axion not restricted to hybrid work with ePower.
    >>
    25 Mar 2013, 12:07 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    wrote down TG said

     

    "expanded into larger truck fleets of various sizes and uses"
    25 Mar 2013, 12:17 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    Believe every questioner was a private investor ...

     

    not great.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:14 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    My thoughts as well...
    25 Mar 2013, 12:28 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13542) | Send Message
     
    Yes. BR alumni waiting another model year...
    25 Mar 2013, 12:29 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1777) | Send Message
     
    WTB,
    Yes, looks like the 2009 investing groups have pretty much sold all their shares and didn't have a reason to call in anymore.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:52 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Wtb: First, thanks for "Being There". And to the other folks too!

     

    As to "Believe every questioner was a private investor ... not great".

     

    Recall when we had some pros, including Blackrock? Follow-on price action didn't favor us. Maybe this is a blessing in disguise?

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 01:27 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (1038) | Send Message
     
    Despite the generally positive tone, TG completely sidestepped the questions about financing. To me that is the big elephant in the room and he gave no indication of the level of confidence that financing on reasonable terms could be achieved in the next 30 days. I am no less worried than I was before the CC.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:14 PM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1633) | Send Message
     
    He could be under NDAs with potential investors who make it absolutely clear that unless a deal is signed, he can't even hint to one.

     

    I guess I am seeing the glass half full, but I do understand your worry!
    25 Mar 2013, 12:20 PM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    I guess I was confused about the APU testing as when I asked the question to TG he stated they did not have any in vehicle testing currently taking place. I looked back at their presentation in Oct 2012 and near the bottom they stated the following:

     

    "Axion is aiming to begin in-vehicle APU system testing with lead-carbon hybrid battery/supercapacitor modules by 2013."

     

    http://bit.ly/TEWNPy

     

    I guess that did not materialize!
    25 Mar 2013, 12:15 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    my guess:

     

    depends on the meaning of "by" (insert Bill Clinton joke here)

     

    By "sometime" in 2013
    25 Mar 2013, 12:20 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    I didn't get anything out of this conference call. Nothing to relieve our concerns about the financing, no reference to financiing with an entity aligned with our strategic interests. Tom seems to have learned a lesson about avoiding any comment that could possibly lead to a disappointed shareholder or an annoyed customer. If subsequent market activity is seen as a vote on AXPW's value, I think the market is getting it wrong. To the extent today's activity is seen as a vote on the value of today's conference call, I think it's getting it right.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:18 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    Seems to me it's going be pretty tough to have a CC right in the middle of ongoing financing negotiations, no matter how you slice it...
    25 Mar 2013, 12:23 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >481086 ... At least TG sounded confident that Axion would be here going into the rest of the year. Should have been here listening back in 2007 to 2009 when you could feel the depressed optimism when he said "We're still here" and not much more.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:41 PM Reply Like
  • Karima
    , contributor
    Comments (21) | Send Message
     
    Everything he said presupposed that the company would still be in existence. Knowing that he can sound depressed when things aren't looking up is another very positive indicator that things will turn out for the better! Thank you for that info, DRich :o)
    25 Mar 2013, 12:50 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    > DRich ... I haven't been here as long as you but I will agree and can't remember a time where TG sounded this confident (in all things)...
    25 Mar 2013, 12:55 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    I should add that I'm as optimistic as ever, but no better informed.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:13 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13542) | Send Message
     
    Its apparent that TG has learned some skillz as regards talking to investors... Its like talking to dogs. Its all about the "tone".
    25 Mar 2013, 01:22 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    :-) He omitted tone as well as substance in responding to my questions. Now he will have the opportunity to either respond or not respond to hard copy, private communication.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:32 PM Reply Like
  • Futurist
    , contributor
    Comments (2127) | Send Message
     
    D-Inv.
    I do believe TG will respond to you privately. But would like to know if he does not.
    If the past is any indication. He will.
    25 Mar 2013, 08:33 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (1038) | Send Message
     
    I guess we'll know in about 30 days.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:25 PM Reply Like
  • Karima
    , contributor
    Comments (21) | Send Message
     
    At least with regards to financing, we won't have to wait as long as it can take for someone to make up their minds to buy the product! Money is running out on April 30th, so we'll DEFINITELY know before then! Even if we don't know what's on or not on the table, we'll know soon enough. In all their history, they have a good track record in this respect. They might not be good at getting the sales, but they are great at finding the money to keep the dream going.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:25 PM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    After the CC and looking at my trading platform on AXPW I am thinking that I may have to watch ZBB trading for a while just to clear my head! lol
    25 Mar 2013, 12:27 PM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (787) | Send Message
     
    All in all I would rate the CC as "ok" but definitely missing some data points that I would enjoy hearing! I almost feel like I am being strung out with "future" hopes and opportunities. I still do not have a sensing that PbC sales will actually start in any significance in 2013! The one thing that I was hoping to get a clue on was when one of the "low hanging" fruits would ripen and start to be picked!
    25 Mar 2013, 12:37 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    RBrun, " I almost feel like I am being strung out with "future" hopes and opportunities."

     

    now you know how some of us feel that has heard this for years.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:47 PM Reply Like
  • mds5375
    , contributor
    Comments (159) | Send Message
     
    FWIW – Here is my “step-back-and-think-a... take. In management’s mind, EVERYTHING was hinging on the automated production line.

     

    My initial overall impression is that the lack of an automated production line was standing in the way of a number of opportunities. It affected the cost/price (giving investors profitability questions); and it affected the reliability, consistency, and volume (giving customer’s worries). The mass production question is now out of the way and opens the door a lot wider in a number of directions (e.g., BMW Fleet testing) leading to more sales.

     

    Because these issues have been resolved, potential funders have had major risk removed. I firmly believe that is the reason for the delay in the funding announcement (and we didn’t really hear anything today, either). I further believe that there is very likely to be a quantum step up in PbC sales.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:38 PM Reply Like
  • thotdoc
    , contributor
    Comments (1722) | Send Message
     
    I believe that a great deal hinges on the automated line...I can see myself as a CEO questioning my purchasing department. "OK, let's see. You committed us to buy our batteries from a company that cuts the parts out by hand?????"
    25 Mar 2013, 09:45 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1777) | Send Message
     
    Thanks to everyone who asked questions. I got to listen to the CC via computer, so I couldn't call in.
    Overall, a mixed bag CC. I was happy to hear that they believe they have enough sales in the pipeline that they needed to rebalance their inventories towards PbCs and away from LA batteries, and that they were going to be increasing their sales staff. Axion has never been a company to increase workforce unless there was a need.
    My biggest disappointment from the CC was auto. It was clear that TG didn't have much to say about this and didn't want to say much. No comment on the 3rd party testing for BMW, other to say that it is "ongoing" and no suggestion when fleet testing would begin for BMW or others...other than it hasn't happened yet.
    Start-stop in trucking seems to be moving forward, but, as RBrun357 pointed out, they aren't even close to doing any type of field testing for an APU system.
    No new discussion of NS999 or the OTR engine, though now that the batteries have shipped for NS999, we probably won't get any news from Axion on this that doesn't first come from NS.
    And, of course, financing is still a worry until it happens.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:46 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    I was surprised the fleet testing he had referred to in the Q3 cc was the Asian automaker.

     

    'So I was curious whether or not fleet testing with anybody had started and whether that new Asian automaker that we talked about six months ago has started some kind of in-car testing?

     

    Thomas Granville - Chief Executive Officer
    That was the fleet testing that we were referring to and that has not happened to this point. We continue to work with them and are working with them and expect to continue to work with them in the future, but their schedule didn't quite dovetailed with what they thought it was going to.
    25 Mar 2013, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    TG said BMW has put PbC in their cars - was that a previous event, or the fleet testing?
    25 Mar 2013, 07:46 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    Most automakers conduct vehicle testing during the testing and validation of a new battery. Fleet testing is a more detailed process that includes a much larger number of cars and is designed to see how the battery functions as part of an integrated vehicle system. BMW has done vehicle testing, but it sounds like their planned fleet testing schedule got pushed back a bit by their third party confirmation testing.
    25 Mar 2013, 08:04 PM Reply Like
  • User432382
    , contributor
    Comments (85) | Send Message
     
    Froggey, I was scratching my head about this as well. The fleet testing TG referred to in the Q3 cc was not the Asian automaker, it was BMW. So he either misunderstood the question or forgot or ?? From the Q3 transcript:

     

    The next question is from Charles Mackall of Avenir Corporation.

     

    Charles Mackall - Avenir Corporation
    My understanding is that BMW has an eight party testing batteries and I just wondered, are you getting any feedback on that and then that was about testing as opposed to sort of be completed by early first quarter ’13. Is that right?

     

    Tom Granville - CEO
    The initial program when we hope to do is get that completed so that we still could take advantage and they could take advantage hopefully of some FLEET testing in the winter season. That was the target. The testing has been ongoing. We can’t get into a lot of the details about it. Like anything there have been some starts and stops but we’re still positive about it.
    25 Mar 2013, 08:56 PM Reply Like
  • rastros
    , contributor
    Comments (38) | Send Message
     
    The emotional tone of the call was a bit flat, but perhaps that's just "us" hanging on every word and looking/hoping for something like TG said on a conference call last year---- " hang on to your seatbelts" ( or tighten your seatbelts)..
    If we look at what was said about international RFP's, and also consider the progress made in the last few months, it seems pretty positive.
    I think, as has been stated above, that TG has deliberately altered his choice of words a bit, and that we should not read anything too negative into all this.
    25 Mar 2013, 12:48 PM Reply Like
  • Karima
    , contributor
    Comments (21) | Send Message
     
    You're making me realize that "Hang onto your seatbealts" is what I wanted to hear but... look where it got us. Under promise, over deliver. This is what I'm hoping this conference was all about!
    25 Mar 2013, 12:57 PM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (368) | Send Message
     
    mds " (and we didn’t really hear anything today, either)" That is how I feel too.

     

    I tried to get in a second set of questions and they did not come back to me. I was ready to ask about the Grant progress.
    Anyone else feel he might have avoided answering questions?
    25 Mar 2013, 12:48 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    kentG: I *suspect* that the ccs are arranged on a time limited basis. IIRC, all the recent ones have gone about an hour(?) and then lots of folks didn't get to ask questions.

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 01:02 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    My biggest pluses and minuses ...

     

    Pluses:
    - PC RFP increases and feeling a need to staff up to handle.
    - Expecting '13 to be very good for the HUB.
    - Vehicle effort expanded into trucks of various sizes.
    - Expect more batteries to ePower in '13.
    - The description of the carbon sheeting improvement process when replying to APMarshall's question: suppliers gave horrible numbers (7 digits) for design and wouldn't estimate cost of product - TG & Co. said, effectively, "Screw it - we'll get folks in here and do it ourselves". I *like* that sort of response.

     

    Minuses:
    - lack of clarity on financing.
    - no fleet testing yet.

     

    So, IMO significant battery sales to auto delayed for unknown period. Effect on pps of financing round can't even get a SWAG made.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 12:56 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    "Screw it - we'll got folks in here and do it ourselves".

     

    HTL, this is both good and bad. It delayed getting to the manufacturing point that we are today, by years. IMO, they should have raised more money years ago when it was easy and bit the bullet on the costs involved and been making batteries faster years ago..

     

    There is a reference in earlier CC's where he said they had to bring in a large reputable engineering firm to complete the process anyway.

     

    So IMO, they eventually had to spend the money anyway....and just lost a couple of years or more trying to do it them self. I would wager that between the opportunity cost of lost sales & time, and having to hire someone in the end, that the cost was higher in the long run.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:01 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2248) | Send Message
     
    LT I respectfully disagree. The people they were talking to didn't have a clue what it would cost in the end. Two years ago they were focused on the GEN II line. The designers they were talking to about carbon sheeting wanted a blank check.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:10 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    The outside engineering money was spent to fabricate the automated second generation electrode assembly line. That's an entirely different process from the carbon sheeting which was developed in house.

     

    Capital spending on PP&E over the last five years was:

     

    2008 - $1.4 million
    2009 - $1.4 million
    2010 - $3.6 million
    2011 - $3.0 million
    2012 - $0.9 million

     

    If you can find room in those numbers for a Gen1 electrode line, a Gen2 electrode line and a $10 million outlay for the carbon sheeting you're a far smarter analyst than I'll ever hope to be.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:11 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    LT, IMO Axion was right to keep this in house given they could not find processes in the market place that would satisfy their needs. I'm sure they exist but they are not for sale. Far too many times I've seen engineering firms take on tasks like this and not take on the same level of urgency, responsibility and focus as doing it in house. And in not committing to a final number, How can they? But then once they develop the process the final number is not going to be too aggressive because basically the hook has been set.

     

    If the process doesn't exist you're far better off finding the process engineers and having them close to the scientists, original process experts, and all the in house resources. Get a qualified machine builder to support the team and create it in house where you have control to add and remove support as necessary. There are times when your the obvious expert so you have to step forward and act like it.

     

    In the end this is behind them. I sense TG has had one of many big time loads removed from his shoulders and I'm happy because all my finger nails are gone anyway! ;)
    25 Mar 2013, 01:22 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    We all have our opinions, and that's ok.

     

    thanks for posting those numbers JP, it just reinforces my opinion that AXPW has been "undercapitalized" from the beginning. The past 4 years made it more difficult to raise money. The easy money was gettable before '08...therein lies the mistake. Now we are sweating year to year.

     

    Opportunity costs are such things as :
    -not being including in some battery testing because they were not a production battery
    -currently the PbC has been and may still be too high priced for some markets
    -the competition is also bringing on new products, thus every year that goes by we lose some of the window of opportunity

     

    Grant you that an increase in sales staff to handle new inquiries and requests is a very positive thing. Something big may be on the horizon, maybe not.

     

    The CEO refusing to set goals, establish milestones, and give guidance is not a positive thing to me.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:22 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (4200) | Send Message
     
    After that cc I suspect TB just might pick up those shares he has bid for at $.25.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:24 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    LT> "The easy money was gettable before '08...therein lies the mistake. Now we are sweating year to year." ???

     

    Balderdash!

     

    Cumulative investment in Axion has been about $70 million.

     

    $18 million of that came from Quercus in 2008;
    $26 million of that came from the 2009 placement; and
    $9 million of that came from the 2012 placement.

     

    2004 through 2007 were times to try men's souls. I should know since I was board chairman at the time. Suggesting that Axion could have been financed differently and management somehow dropped the ball shows an amazing ignorance of corporate history.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:28 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    "2004 through 2007 were times to try men's souls. I should know since I was board chairman at the time."

     

    Is that why you get so defensive when someone asks tough questions or suggests things should have been done differently ?
    25 Mar 2013, 01:35 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2248) | Send Message
     
    LT> You can't just throw money at all problems at once. You would probably find the money's all gone and many of the problems still remaining. I once helped a major Canadian company start a US subsidiary with $50M in start up money. In the end it failed (not having to do with my efforts.) When it died my client said "All we had was money." They simply didn't have the solutions their target market wanted.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:46 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    LT> 2004 through 2007 were years of non-stop litigation and immense uncertainty over whether the PbC electrodes could ever be reduced to a plug and play format that would work in any AGM plant. Between the legal and technical risks, there wasn't a snowball's chance in hell that things could have been done differently.

     

    I don't get defensive over questions about ancient history. I do, however, get darned tired of responding to serial factual mis-statements from you.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:51 PM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (658) | Send Message
     
    Another very important thing to note about trying to throw money at getting the carbon roll process done quicker: There wasn't a market ready for the PbC. Only now are several industries beginning to look for a battery as durable as the PbC. If the PbC had been ready five years or even 2 years ago, it would have been a battery waiting for a market to develop. The only potential market may have been NSC. But if they had tried the cheaper battery first, we may still be exactly where we are now.

     

    It appears that all parts of the puzzle are coming together exactly at the right time.
    25 Mar 2013, 03:02 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2248) | Send Message
     
    Sitting on the sidelines I believe the most positive aspect of the CC was a major increase in finished PbC inventory. The continuous roll carbon sheet process was already announced.

     

    I would suspect they looked at their pipeline of opportunities and when product would be required calender-wise based on ALL outstanding leads and concluded they better have a minimum of X PbC's ready to go at a moments notice. I also gathered they still aren't completely thrilled with the speed of the Gen II line. No mention of the OTR loco or when 999 might be actually in use.

     

    I would be interested in hearing JP's, Indelco's and Tim's insight into using stop start in trucks.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:01 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >bangwhiz ... I've been reading some on this trucking start/stop recently (though it is almost all just future sales PR with not much meat). It seems the preferred method is to go the super-capacitor route. It make sense to me to at least check out a self renewing capacitor like the PbC even if it is not mentioned. I mean, you really can't go about crowing of a solution that isn't in the realm of being accepted within the transport industry. Here's to hoping that an unknown multipurpose, cheap device can gain a foothold within the durable, expensive cool category.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:12 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    IIRC the Maxwell BoostCap module for truck starting is a $1,300 item in a Group 31 case.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    25 Mar 2013, 01:19 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    JP: Refresh my (faulty) memory: also doesn't the PbC have a very good farad capacity? Combine a couple *much* less expensive PbCs in the circuit and don't they get about as much or more capacitive "bang for the *buck*" plus the additional benefits of the LA side?

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 01:33 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    The only reference I've seen to the PbC's faradic capacitance was a single (13,000F) parenthetical note in the Axion-GM grant application. Since I don't have more detail it's hard to put flesh on those bones.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:37 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    Bang, We discussed the possibility in this forum about the PbC being a good fit for improving the storage system for starting heavy equipment in more hostile climates. This would be true for both SS and even for common starter systems.

     

    I'm hoping that Axion is looking into this application with someone who wants to put together a battery/electronics package for the augmentation of existing systems. This would IMO bear fruit quicker. We see this with the Maxwell offering and others. It's OK if they are also working with a major but some after market specialist would get it out there quicker.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:49 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    JP, the actual retail price turned out to be more like $1800. I called my local outlet and several across the nation (several months ago). Way too much for most independents to consider.
    25 Mar 2013, 02:53 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    If you kept a PbC at top of charge and just used it for engine starting, or for that matter stop-start cycling like you'd see in a car, the darned thing would probably last forever.
    25 Mar 2013, 03:45 PM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1633) | Send Message
     
    There is a lot of work and studies being done currently on how to improve the reliability of the grid by making it smarter. If you look at StreamPower Inc, the Ontario-based local distribution utility and the number of smart-grid programs it is currently involved in (one project with RoseWater using Axion PbC technology), you get the idea. It is also not the only LDC involved in this type of project.

     

    This alone makes for a sizable PowerCube/HUB sales market. In the US, we know that PJM and other RTOs are also work in progress. This gives us a pretty good idea about potential customers in this segment...
    25 Mar 2013, 01:05 PM Reply Like
  • steeleydock
    , contributor
    Comments (31) | Send Message
     
    I am a bit reluctant to comment on this sophisticated board but the author E. L. Doctorow once was asked his advice about writing. His answer is one I have offered my children about life. I suppose it might be applied to companies as well. "Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way."
    25 Mar 2013, 01:16 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Steelydock: excellent thought!

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 01:34 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    steeleydock, The worst question is the one not asked as it leaves you without an answer.

     

    Also, in an open forum, most often when one question is asked more than one person gets an answer they can learn from. We see that today along with the thanks from just a few of those that in fact benefited from the exchanges in the cc.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:41 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    For those of us on the outside, even though we believe we're headed to a great destination, it often seems we're driving with the headlights off!
    25 Mar 2013, 01:42 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    The headlights are on, unfortunately the fog is still pretty thick ;-p
    25 Mar 2013, 01:46 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    Steely
    We all started there.
    Congratulations your first comment was a winner.
    My first one turned out to be wrong. Oops.
    But live and learn.
    Welcome.
    25 Mar 2013, 03:53 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2248) | Send Message
     
    I wonder if the delay in the financing is TG has a number in mind he would like to raise and all the delay is about how many shares and any other sweeteners it will require to achieve it. With a fairly large PbC inventory sitting there it is also possible he may be contemplating a major sale in the near-term. If that is the case I would bet it would be some sort of PowerCube based on activity in all the other markets.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:25 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >bangwhiz ... Yeah, a sale of just 4 PowerCubes into a demonstration project would certainly cheer this place up a little. I know I'd feel better.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:32 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2248) | Send Message
     
    Powercubes can be installed in real property versus trailers. Might be one 4MW facility if I remember recent bids mentioned by Axion as an example.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:38 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    BW: Reinforcing your thought, let's not forget that a lot of folks have been buzzing about "community storage" recently, included in the collaboration of RW and Queens College.

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 02:13 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    DRich: "demonstration project"

     

    Yeah, but they still wouldn't qualify as customer # 1 would they? ;-))

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 02:56 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >H.T.Love ... Sadly ... No! Though I do need some cheering up while I wait.
    25 Mar 2013, 03:07 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2770) | Send Message
     
    Actually I'm very encouraged about the Hub/Cube.
    Frankly I was relegating the Residential use to slim and none.
    Personally I would consider initial price and length of time I could go between charges, as the most important metrics. LA wins on both.
    They would have to sell me on PbC.

     

    I considered the utility timeline to be far away.
    To hear that they are getting more prospects than the sales people can handle is excellent news. Yes an actual sale or 10 will be necessary to remove all doubts. Still I feel much better about that part.
    25 Mar 2013, 04:17 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    I was also pleased to hear about the PC/Hub. I had always written those off as small/infrequent money. To hear a reason for lack of sales, and the mounting RFPs, is very encouraging. It could be partly why there is a ramp in PbC builds. Between this and trucking, 2013 could finally we our cash flow break even year, even without any other news.
    25 Mar 2013, 04:20 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2656) | Send Message
     
    Happy about things progressing and happy about the completion of the automated carbon line. However, TG was vague about the carbon sheeting in the past and it took another year before the break through.

     

    Additionally, under no circumstances am I happy about a vague promise of Hub sales. I am not that optimistic on the Hub ever contributing a meaningful amount to sales. With that said, there could potentially be a follow-on unit that is priced for more price conscious consumers that might be successful.

     

    I'm sorry, but in the face of an imminent raise and trading at these prices -- this call left me feeling, blah.
    25 Mar 2013, 04:30 PM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2140) | Send Message
     
    Opened up my sock drawer and looked inside. Cleaned out the cobwebs and dust bunnies and looked at my treasures. There must be something going on that we don't know about and can't be said. I trust the management of Axion, my piddling investment is nothing next to theirs. Closed my sock drawer with all my treasures intact. Just waiting for the day when management is in a position to share the things that NDA's and regulations make secret today. http://bit.ly/108oQdS
    25 Mar 2013, 01:56 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Stilldazed: Anticipation is an excellent song for this crew too!

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 02:14 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2248) | Send Message
     
    JP> What was your take on confirmation that the inventory increase was in fact PbC's?
    25 Mar 2013, 01:56 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    Management wouldn't build an inventory of PbC batteries without a clear view of who was going to buy them and when. Given the 2/3 PbC - 1/3 flooded breakdown we heard about on the call, it looks like there's about $1.2 million in finished PbC inventory ready to go.
    25 Mar 2013, 02:17 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (9563) | Send Message
     
    John, Since this is your expertise. Would I be correct in wondering if TG was reserved in sharing information because he has already had an exchange with one or more parties concerning the financing and he would not want to distribute added information in certain channels until this process has closure. I am thinking that this is why he pre-announced the carbon sheeting process improvement in another manner even though it stole some thunder from the annual meeting. Seems like a very material event.
    25 Mar 2013, 01:59 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    I pay a lot of attention to Tom's voice tones because I know what he sounds like when he's worried, I know what he sounds like when he's irritated and I know what he sounds like when he has a clear path and is following it. I didn't hear anything approaching worry when it comes to financing. Tom's trying to structure a Goldilocks raise (not too big and not too small) and seems comfortable that it will close in a timely fashion. I sense some irritation that automotive is taking longer than he'd like, but hell, it's taking longer than any of us would like. Tom seems to be very excited about the potential for the PowerCube and Hub this year, and he's beside himself over some of the new trucking applications.

     

    Like me, Tom seems to think most stockholders have failed to grasp the significance of stripping 80% of the labor out of a PbC battery in one fell swoop. These kinds of economies are scarcer than hen's teeth and incredible accomplishments when you can pull them off. But I guess it's something that won't be appreciated for a while.
    25 Mar 2013, 02:16 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    JP: "... stripping 80% of the labor out of a PbC battery in one fell swoop".

     

    Recalling you article about the learning curves and volume vs % gains, this impressed me mightily. I *suspect* this means we made a lot of the eventual gains much earlier in the cycle than anyone could anticipate.

     

    The downside is that *may* mean smaller percentage gains going forward from the learning curve. I'll take that in a heartbeat as it should mean increased price-competitiveness at an earlier stage in the learning/scaling process. Fewer capital raises going forward?

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 02:24 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    If you think in terms of cumulative volumes with learning curve efficiencies of 20% for each doubling of cumulative volume the costs fall off a cliff during the early days of a product's development and then stabilize.

     

    I've never calculated a cumulative PbC production number for Axion, but I'd be amazed if it was more than 5,000 units to date and it's probably smaller than that. If we assume for the sake of discussion that the materials costs were $100 and the value added component was $400 for the first 5,000 units, you'd expect the value added cost to fall to $164 by the time you hit a cumulative total of 80,000 units and $84 by the time you hit 640,000 units.

     

    All investors understand the wonders of high rate compound interest. What many don't understand is that the same thing happens with high rate compounded cost reductions. A smart manufacturer tries to keep the first fruits of cost reductions to reduce margins, and eventually starts sharing the wealth with customers who are always willing to pay less.
    25 Mar 2013, 02:39 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2797) | Send Message
     
    I like the grin I heard in TG's voice when he answered a question something along the lines of whether the price of the PbC will drop with this big labor cost reduction, and I read between the lines that he's thinking more of margin expansion.

     

    To make the new break-even analysis easy for everyone, has anyone ventured into the numbers? Just need to state your biggest assumptions. Sounds to me like we might be cash flow break-even with a lot less sales than before.
    25 Mar 2013, 04:08 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    John, would it be fair to say that most of us didn't have any idea, until today's CC, that automation of the production process has been a huge concern of Tom? I understand now that the absence of this development could be a major explanation behind the lack of solid revenue announcements that most of us anticipated in the first quarter. I hope this advance triggers a flood of good news a quarter or so behind our expectations. But is there something remiss when a CEO talks about "buckling down" for a wild ride when the production efficiency doesn't exist to support such a wild ride?

     

    Another issue I have is that of a "fog" existing for current shareholders that presumably doesn't exist for new shareholders. Any new shareholder is likely to be acting on highly sensitive inside information not available to the rest of us. It is entirely possible that the market price (and thus the price of admission for new investors) would be dramatically higher if the general public were privy to the same information being provided to new investors. I certainly have issues with the ethics of such situation, and I also wonder about the legality.
    25 Mar 2013, 04:51 PM Reply Like
  • battman
    , contributor
    Comments (373) | Send Message
     
    Alpha,
    >>But is there something remiss when a CEO talks about "buckling down" for a wild ride when the production efficiency doesn't exist to support such a wild ride?<<

     

    In other words, was he lying then or is he lying now? Was that you question because I think it is a good one.
    25 Mar 2013, 05:09 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    My question is whether an issue that may have been quite a huge risk to successful large-scale commercialization was adequately addressed in previous communications to shareholders.
    25 Mar 2013, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • battman
    , contributor
    Comments (373) | Send Message
     
    Alpha, exactly, was he lying then or is he lying now?
    25 Mar 2013, 05:57 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    The original sheeting process was very labor intensive and finding a way to make the sheets more cheaply was a high priority R&D item, but it never precluded production and sale of PbC batteries. The fact that a company wants to find ways to perform labor intensive operations more efficiently does not render the original operations flawed or defective. Hells bells, PbC's that were built using the old manufacturing methods survived three and a half years of validation testing at BMW and resulted in a design win from Norfolk Southern.

     

    The gains announced last week are nothing but good news for stockholders and frankly I'm appalled that they're being portrayed as something that was somehow hidden.

     

    Public companies like Axion are careful to avoid disclosing information to new investors that is not available to the broader market. While the investment bankers typically do a very deep due diligence dive, the information provided to the investors is generally limited to information that has been made available to the public. Last week I speculated that the carbon sheeting announcement and year-end financial statements were key conditions precedent to closing a financing. We should know pretty soon whether that speculation was good or bad.
    25 Mar 2013, 05:58 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    It has become increasingly clear that hand-crafted PbC batteries can meet the functional needs of BMW and other manufacturers. What has not been clear is whether the economic needs of BMW and others could be met absent the huge production breakthrough recently disclosed by Axion. I agree that this is hugely positive news for Axion and deserved a correspondingly huge market reaction. The absence of such a reaction at least hints at the possibility that this new capability was already assumed to exist.
    25 Mar 2013, 06:20 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5073) | Send Message
     
    "The absence of such a reaction at least hints at the possibility that this new capability was already assumed to exist"

     

    This was assumed to exist by most here. Other investors, who knows?
    The key is, we were lead to believe AXPW could build x number of batteries / day & was licensed to build more. Lines could be installed quickly and cheap to ramp up electrode production.

     

    All the above is probably true, but at what cost per battery? How much labor & material cost doing it manually? Would it ever be competitive enough to meet the lofty goals that mgt. statements implied?

     

    I have no doubt they will raise their money. I also expect a sale or else why the inventory. Question is then what ?
    And yes, after this raise is over new investors have the advantage over others.
    25 Mar 2013, 06:42 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2797) | Send Message
     
    The mkt for AXPW is so inefficient, I believe, that it's too hard to tell what any of its mkt behavior really means.
    25 Mar 2013, 06:52 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2873) | Send Message
     
    Alpha and Batt,

     

    Can you guys point to me toward a CC or PR in the past where TG said the carbon sheeting was fully automated? I never assumed it was and in fact had heard on these boards that it was very labor intensive.

     

    Where does the idea of "remiss" or "lying" come from? Regardless of one's past assumptions I don't see how this huge jump in efficiency can be seen as anything less than a resounding positive piece of news.
    25 Mar 2013, 06:53 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    The two biggest cost reduction challenges have always been improving the carbon sheeting process and reducing the cost of the corrosion barriers. I've discussed both issues at length any number of times.

     

    More importantly, Axion has discussed its ongoing efforts to improve the carbon sheeting process several times and the new line announced last week was clearly described in the press release as "this second generation continuous-roll carbon sheeting production line."

     

    You can't develop a second generation line unless you already have a first generation line. The second generation line turned out to be far better than the team thought it would be, but that's never a bad thing.
    25 Mar 2013, 07:02 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    *increase* margins?
    25 Mar 2013, 07:06 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4672) | Send Message
     
    >bazooooka ...

     

    Question: "Where does the idea of ... come from?
    Answer: Amateurs.
    25 Mar 2013, 07:09 PM Reply Like
  • growsmart
    , contributor
    Comments (172) | Send Message
     
    Somewhere else until you can be civil.
    25 Mar 2013, 07:10 PM Reply Like
  • carlosgaviria
    , contributor
    Comments (799) | Send Message
     
    Hi Mr John:

     

    Let me ask you three questions:

     

    1-. How do you feel after hearing today the conference call of Mr TG-AXION?
    2-.Could you explain how currently manufactured corrosion barrier?
    3-.How they can reduce manufacturing costs?

     

    Have a good night and thanks by the answers.-Carlos
    25 Mar 2013, 07:30 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    I just try to process available evidence to provide a clue as to a reality I cannot fully know. There are productivity gains that enhance a product's competitiveness, and productivity gains that are essential to a product's competitiveness. Do we really know to which category this latest Axion news belongs? The absence of barking dogs in the first quarter at least suggests the possibility that Axion needed this recently announced productivity gain to have a chance at the goals we hope to achieve through our investment. It is human nature to "accentuate the positives and eliminate the negatives," and as shareholders we need to gauge the extent to which this natural tendency influences communications to AXPW shareholders.
    25 Mar 2013, 07:43 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    I would have preferred more detail on the financing and near term sales prospects, but understand that there are many things that Tom simply can't discuss. There was nothing in today's call that raised red flags for me.

     

    The copper current collector at the center of every PbC electrode must be protected from the electrolyte. Currently Axion is using sheets of a conductive acid resistant material for that function. If it can develop a cost-effective coating or film that does the same job, the materials cost should fall and the internal resistance should improve. The team is working with several ideas that may work, but until something does work it's just another item on the wish list.

     

    Every new technology gives rise to a wide variety of economies that come from learning how to perform tasks more efficiently and substitute cheaper or simpler materials for expensive ones. The rule of thumb from the Boston Consulting Group is that variable cost fall by 20% for every doubling of cumulative production volumes. Additional economies arise from buying in larger volumes and other supply chain enhancements.

     

    While its tough to identify additional savings from a distance, it's a target rich environment for cost reduction and product improvement going forward.
    25 Mar 2013, 07:43 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    MrI: Maybe some of the data tells the story?

     

    EOD b:s Buy:Sell 1:3.26. That sounds bad but at 13:38 it was 1:19.42.

     

    Early (I didn't catch the time) VWAP was below $0.2820. EOD ended at $0.2850. Considering that in light of recent price action ...
    $0.2907, $0.2833, $0.2780, $0.2835, $0.2819, $0.2813 and today $0.2850, I think we held up reasonably well.

     

    My take is the remainder of those that had been trying to exit anyway were unimpressed and saw the price holding up at above $0.27, again, and said this is the time to get out.

     

    Are they smarter than us? I doubt that.

     

    Are they more risk averse? Most likely.

     

    Are they nearly exhausted? That's my hope.

     

    HardToLove
    25 Mar 2013, 08:33 PM Reply Like
  • battman
    , contributor
    Comments (373) | Send Message
     
    Mr. 481086 (Mr. because it's a sign of respect),

     

    >>"increase" margins<<

     

    Great! But if my math serves me correct, 100% of nothing is.....wait, I know this one.

     

    JP,

     

    Is it the tech or the management? Can't be both. If it is then this is all pointless.
    25 Mar 2013, 08:47 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    HTL, I saw at the market close a 75k or so block at ask. Was that the same 170k+ block at ask? If so, perhaps that means our seller will be exhausted in the next day or so.
    25 Mar 2013, 08:48 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3450) | Send Message
     
    Battman, pardon for adding to confusion... I should have better referenced John's post which I was attempting to question/clarify--- thought I had spotted a typo there and wanted to make sure I was on the same page.

     

    From John's post:

     

    "All investors understand the wonders of high rate compound interest. What many don't understand is that the same thing happens with high rate compounded cost reductions. A smart manufacturer tries to keep the first fruits of cost reductions to reduce margins, and eventually starts sharing the wealth with customers who are always willing to pay less."

     

    It was the "reduce margins" in there that confused me. It seemed like a typo to me and that what John actually meant was "increase margins"... but my post landed nowhere near his original comment... lesson to me.
    25 Mar 2013, 08:59 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30231) | Send Message
     
    Sorry for the typo 481066; but thanks for catching my error.
    25 Mar 2013, 09:08 PM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2140) | Send Message
     
    battman,
    I doubt that TG was lying, it would be more probable that the auto sheeting line took a little longer to finish and fine tune than he thought it would.
    26 Mar 2013, 03:47 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Ranma: Right after the close, @ 16:02, UBSS had a 78K ask @ $0.28 still showing. My first entry noting this was at 15:23 it was 79.5K. I can't tell at what time and size it was originally entered as I only have time to make quick loggings of the bids and ask aperiodically during the day.

     

    I don't have any log entry showing 170+K, but I could have just missed it. Another possibility, depending on what your platform shows, is that you saw an aggregate amount from several MMs? E.g. ~80K from UBSS, xxK from MM1, yyK from MM2, etc. If that's the case it didn't last long, on *presentation*, as otherwise I likely would have caught at least a glimpse of it.

     

    HardToLove
    26 Mar 2013, 06:24 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    Sorry HTL, I meant to ask if you thought the closing large ask was the same seller of the large block last week. They seem to follow the same pattern. I am hopeful he is done today or so.
    26 Mar 2013, 12:23 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Ranma: Unless a repetitive thing appears that catches my eye and causes me to follow closely, I don't retain too much detail for too long. I guess that's an effect of 1) never complete information means I can never know certain things so I don' try too hard to remember too much of the lopwest-level detail, 2) I'm focused on trends that might be useful, in aggregate, and 3) brain cell shortage.

     

    I don't make notes as strongly as I might either. :-((

     

    HardToLove
    26 Mar 2013, 01:00 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2434) | Send Message
     
    on the 21st, as discussed in APC 219

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    26 Mar 2013, 01:13 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18033) | Send Message
     
    Thx Wtb: Since it's ATDF, OF COURSE they have tons more to sell! :-))

     

    HardToLove
    26 Mar 2013, 01:35 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (1027) | Send Message
     
    I thought Tom's comments on the "Continuous Roll Carbon Sheeting Process" was one of the higher points of the CC. This, plus his positive comments on their plans to increase the sales staff seemed to address longer-term viability, which seemed to be somewhat of a theme this morning. — I wish his tone would have sounded as optimistic on the financing front.
    .........................

     

    TG — I don’t have any compunction about telling you that that was a concern of mine for a lonngg, lonnnggg time... We could not be any more pleased with how that turned out... The speed of the line, without really tweaking it up, and without really running it full bore, FAR EXCEEDs what we thought we were going to get out of the first continuous roll sheet. It’s just been AMAZING how that’s worked out. ...... This one [out of other equipment that also went through long, long shakedowns], the one that we thought was going to be the most troublesome, actually turned out the best.
    .........................

     

    TG — We feel the success we’ve had in deploying our onsite cube into the PGM utility network, and the success of our net zero energy cube in the Washington Naval Yard, are partially responsible for the huge increase in quotation requests we’ve been receiving for projects in the U.S, and for projects in many countries outside of the U.S. Our sales force has been hard pressed to keep up with these requests, and to properly service the opportunities. As you might suspect, we have already made plans to staff up in this important segment of our company.
    25 Mar 2013, 02:09 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1841) | Send Message
     
    http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    One of my favorite traders on SA to read posted this on Tesla. It would be nice if this marked a beginning of money pulling out of Tesla and into "other" batteries.
    25 Mar 2013, 02:30 PM