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  • Axion Power Concentrator 225: April 4: Axion Power Completes New Continuous Roll Carbon Sheeting Process 259 comments
    Apr 4, 2013 4:12 PM | about stocks: AXPW

    Latest News, Articles and Presentations...

    Axion Power's CEO Discusses Q4 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

    Thomas Granville CEO: "We left the designation 'development stage company' in the dust in 2012 and there's no slowdown in sight."

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Axion Power Reports Results for 2012 --

    Chairman & CEO Thomas Granville commented, "Axion continued to make important strides in the fourth quarter, making 2012 a landmark year overall. Obviously our best year ever will be the first year when PbC revenue starts to show significant growth but it was a good step in that direction that we were able to recognize the first big PbC sale in the 4th quarter, to Norfolk Southern. This coincides with our first 10K filing without "development stage company" status. 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.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Axion Power Completes New Continuous Roll Carbon Sheeting Process

    "This is a giant leap forward for us and allows us to make a better product at a reduced cost," said Axion Power's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Thomas Granville. "It's the final step in automating our complete activated carbon negative electrode manufacturing process and it brings us tighter quality control, better production yields, meaningful production quantities and significant labor cost reductions..."

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------Axion Power and EPower Engine Systems Inaugurate Strategic Alliance Using PbC Batteries in Hybrid Drivetrains for Class 8 Trucks

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Dr. Ed Buiel, Axion's CTO until the end of 2010 -- A link to an archive of his comments on yadoodle about the PbC battery and much more. Invaluable commentary! Thanks to 481086 for putting the list together.

    Axion Power PbC Batteries Continue To Demonstrate Effectiveness For Railroad Applications -- Axion completed shipping its high-performance PbC batteries to Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE:NS), one of North America's leading transportation providers, for use in Norfolk Southern's first all electric locomotive - the NS-999.

    Axion Power Residential Energy Storage HUB Certified to UL, CSA Standards -- Axion receives UL certification and CSA Standards for their Residential Energy Storage HUB.

    "ePower's Series Hybrid Electric Drive - Unmatched Fuel Economy for Heavy Trucks" -- by John Petersen. Discusses the potential fuel savings for ePower's Hybrid electric drive for class 8 trucks using Axion's PbC batteries.

    "Axion Power - A Battery Manufacturer Charging Forward" -- by John Petersen. This is an excellent summation on Axion Power's history. It is a good starting point for introducing Axion Power to friends and family.

    13th European Lead Battery Conference, ELBC -- Sliderocket of John Petersen's presentation at the ELBC.

    Dr. Ender's Dickinson's Presentation on Axion's PbC -- Link to his slideshow at the 13th ELBC.

    Axion Power's 3rd Quarter Report and Press Release -- Seeking Alpha also published the transcript of the conference call here.

    RoseWater Joins Queen's University on Energy Storage Study -- Testing will determine the effects of residential energy storage systems on local power grids.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Axion Power Weighted Moving Average Prices and Volume:

    (updated through 04/01/13)

    (click to enlarge)

    (click to enlarge)

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Axion Power Monthly Volume versus FINRA Short Percentage:

    (by John Petersen)

    In late January I wrote an Instablog about the precipitous decline in reported FINRA short sales as a percentage of total trading volume. Over the last two weeks that trend has accelerated and the percentages for the month of February and the last four weeks are solidly in single digits. I view this graph as another confirmation of seller exhaustion. The big uglies are history and it looks like everybody who really wanted to sell already has.

    John Petersen's instablog here.

    (click to enlarge)

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Axion Power Concentrator Comments:

    (click to enlarge)

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Links to important Axion Power research and websites:

    The Axion Power Concentrator Web Sites, created by APC commentator Bangwhiz. It is a complete easy-to-use online archive of all the information contained in the entire Axion Power Concentrator series from day one, including reports, articles, comments and posted links.

    Axion Power Wikispaces Web Site, created by APC commentator WDD. It is an excellent ongoing notebook aggregation of Axion Power facts.

    Axion Power Website. The first place any prospective investor should go and thoroughly explore with all SEC filings and investor presentations as well as past and present Press Releases.

    Axion Power Intra day Statistics Tracking: HTL tracks and charts AXPW's intra-day statistics.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Be sure and either follow the Axion Power Host ID on Seeking Alpha or click the check-box labeled "track new comments on this article" just ahead of the comments section!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    WARNING: This is a troll free zone. We reserve the right to eliminate posts, or posters that are disruptive.

    Enjoy!

    Disclosure: I am long OTCQB:AXPW.

Back To Axion Power Host's Instablog HomePage »

Instablogs are blogs which are instantly set up and networked within the Seeking Alpha community. Instablog posts are not selected, edited or screened by Seeking Alpha editors, in contrast to contributors' articles.

Comments (259)
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  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Strike!...Strike!...
    4 Apr 2013, 04:15 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    When you make mistakes and can't deliver the goods this is what happens:
    http://bit.ly/ZepGMm
    4 Apr 2013, 04:16 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    4:16 PM H-P (HPQ) chairman Ray Lane steps down. Director/activist investor Ralph Whitworth will serve as interim chairman while the company looks for a permanent replacement. Lane had come under fire in recent weeks from H-P investors and shareholder advisory firm ISS, but had been re-elected at last month's shareholder meeting. Comment! [Tech, Breaking News]
    4 Apr 2013, 04:17 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2487) | Send Message
     
    Deux
    4 Apr 2013, 04:16 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/12mEKUW
    more of the story
    4 Apr 2013, 04:22 PM Reply Like
  • Johhny rambo
    , contributor
    Comments (117) | Send Message
     
    Holy Cow !

     

    Up 2c on the day to .28c on 440k volume - call the Fire Brigade, we're on fire !
    4 Apr 2013, 04:35 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2108) | Send Message
     
    Johhhhny, you seem to be the only thing what's smokin' round here.
    4 Apr 2013, 06:59 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2235) | Send Message
     
    Last second 100 shares at .2855 (up from .27) to paint the tape at the close! Same paint trick as yesterday. Sick
    4 Apr 2013, 07:24 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    Those of us still in like that color of paint <smile>...
    4 Apr 2013, 08:14 PM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie
    , contributor
    Comments (1824) | Send Message
     
    Bw, when we know others have played shenanigans with us, I see nothing wrong with a little fun at the end of the day.

     

    D
    4 Apr 2013, 09:46 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2235) | Send Message
     
    Tim> I'm on the outside with my face pressed up against the window trying to find something positive to support re-buying but painting the tape isn't going to work with anyone who has half a brain. In my case, that's debatable, but serious investors and potential strategic partners can see thru that crap in a heart beat.
    4 Apr 2013, 10:16 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    In my experience serious investors and strategic partners don't care one way or the other abou the closing price on a particular day because they're going to be working with multi-day VWMAs in any event.
    4 Apr 2013, 10:39 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2235) | Send Message
     
    Thanks for the insight John.
    4 Apr 2013, 11:30 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Tim--absolutely. IF the new deal pricing determination uses volume-weighted CLOSING historical prices (in your experience, JP, is that likely with Axion?), then it is in the best interest of current investors to help make the resulting number as high as possible. Less new shares will need to be issued for a given amt of money desired.

     

    I continue to be amazed that some here either don't understand this very basic concept or don't give a rat's as*, or somehow know that the prices used will not be the closing prices but every trades' price. If closing prices are used, then painting the tape or whatever you want to call trying to help yourself is actually one of the few things that can easily be influenced by every single investor here. If someone wants to be an activist, even in the smallest way, here's their chance to put their $ where their mouth is. Typically, only a $10 transaction cost, plus an additional $25-$30 of more stk, which is only a cost if u think it's going down and staying down, in which case you shouldn't be invested in the stk in the 1st place.
    5 Apr 2013, 01:22 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    People's memories are short, so painting the tape does work. Especially if you get someone who didn't follow the stock intraday.

     

    I've seen a market maker do the reverse - down a penny after close every single day for months. Now why would he do that if painting the tape doesn't work. I know it frustrated the hell out of all of us long that stock.
    5 Apr 2013, 01:48 AM Reply Like
  • BugEYE
    , contributor
    Comments (193) | Send Message
     
    Mr I
    Bravo!
    5 Apr 2013, 02:00 AM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    I always thought volume-weighted implies the number of shares times the price they actually traded for, add it all up, then divided by the total shares traded. If that is correct, the closing price based on a 100-share trade does not have any significant effect.
    5 Apr 2013, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    That's why I asked JP for his guess as to which method would likely be used--every single price over the look-back period or just each day's ending price. If there is a mention by Axion about the method they used in the last deal, that would help. I've never seen it, and it's never been commented on here, as far as I know. Even though it can matter. Maybe these days it's simply understood to always be one way or the other. Ancient history, I know, but back when I was investing in deals, both for my own acct and for the company's, the calc used each day's closing price.

     

    From Axion's 2/7/2012 PR:

     

    "The shares sold, par value $0.0001, were priced at $0.35, which was the volume-weighted average price of the shares over a 40-day trading period prior to the commencement of the offering."

     

    No mention of closing prices, so maybe they used every price.

     

    Side note--funny how in the quote above, there is no mention of a discount.

     

    But there is in the Prospectus Supplement:

     

    "...based upon a per share purchase price of $0.35 (based upon a 10% discount from the volume weighted average price of a share of Axion common stock for the 40 trading days immediately preceding January 31, 2012)"
    5 Apr 2013, 10:33 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Most sophisticated investors would rather work with VWAP numbers than closing numbers because the close is too easy to manipulate up or down. They also tend to focus on long-term trends which say a lot about the relative liquidity and risk of their planed investment. In the end it's all about balancing the risk and reward equation. The tools get more sophisticated with each passing year, but the goals never change.
    5 Apr 2013, 10:40 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    NGS: AFAIK, nobody tracks the actual price of every trade other than the entities that have to make sure every share goes where it's supposed to at the proper price. I'm not aware of anyone that reports the *actual* VWAP like I do for AXPW.

     

    If anyone knows of a cheap source for that, I'd love it.

     

    If my understanding is correct, the determinations are left to some other device - mean price, median price, closing price, ...? Then multiply by volume I guess.

     

    There's two reasons that close might be preferred: it's widely available and no end-user math is needed to calculate it.

     

    The use of volume as a factor is probably a concession to try and minimize strong infrequent deviations from the mean I would guess.

     

    HardToLove
    5 Apr 2013, 10:46 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    I just calc's 90% of the volume-weighted closing price for the 40 trading days preceding 1/31/2012 (therefore 12/1/2011 thru 1/30/2012), and I got $.3569, which does not quite = $.3500.

     

    The source of which days were trading days (1/16/2012 was not), the closing prices and the volumes was Axion's own website:

     

    http://bit.ly/10BqZAt

     

    So this suggests some other calc method was used. Oh well, I've run out of interest in figuring this out on my own, so if anyone wants to figure it out using every trade, or by just calling Axion, feel free. I just ask that you post your findings here. Thanks. Lid back on the tape paint.

     

    Agreed about the perspective---I think it was commented on here before, that the price was running up in Jan 2012, so the investors may have pushed for a way to get the price back down somewhere in between. Just change the look-back period's number of days, when it ends and/or the discount; i.e., any of the variables. The point is, however you calc it, there is a price that works.
    5 Apr 2013, 11:21 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The most common practice is the one I use – you take an average of the high, low and close and multiply that average by volume to calculate a rough VWAP. It's not perfect, but the differences between your transaction based VWAP and my estimates are not significant enough to matter to most folks.
    5 Apr 2013, 11:29 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    :-) "volume-weighted" can mean many things. You suggest one definition which implies full knowledge of each trade every day. An alternative relying on less information could use closing prices weighted by volume traded for that day. Another could be average of high and low prices each day weighted by volume traded that day.
    5 Apr 2013, 11:30 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    So, got a second wind, and recalculated the 90% price making one change: used a simple average of each day's high, low and closing price, instead of just using the closing price alone. Got $.3561, which is only slightly closer to $.3500 than $.3569 before.

     

    The tape painting has less effect with this method, but more than using every price, where its effect is almost zero.

     

    Ok, back to just watching the paint dry.
    5 Apr 2013, 11:55 AM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    If you look at any intra-day price chart, such as on yahoo, each price data point has a volume associated with it. This may not represent each individual trade, but it is readily available data and can easily be used to compute the VWAP for the day.
    5 Apr 2013, 11:58 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    NGS: That's good t know.

     

    Thanks.

     

    HardToLove
    EDIT; NGS. I don't see how I would use it. I just went to finance.yahoo interactive chart. For each time-point it shows only one price and one volume. Might be good enough I guess.
    5 Apr 2013, 12:15 PM Reply Like
  • Milhouse
    , contributor
    Comments (330) | Send Message
     
    Explosion at Bowen Power Plant in Euharlee, Ga.
    25 miles from Atlanta, supposedly this is the largest coal plant in North America.

     

    http://bit.ly/10fyL4b
    4 Apr 2013, 05:03 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/YVVToN

     

    that was quick. just a faint trace of blood in the water...
    4 Apr 2013, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1766) | Send Message
     
    48,
    This is what these ambulance chasers do. The moment anything goes wrong they announce that they are setting up a class action lawsuit against the company and start trolling for complainants. Had a similar thing happen with another stock I follow. There was a question about who was in charge of a study, and suddenly there were a dozen law firms claiming to represent class action claimants. But when you looked at the details you found out there were only two people who had filed claims and both were stock holders who had owned the stock for a week. But the law firms don't care because they are hoping to get a cut of the company if it is broken up in bankruptcy or hoping the company will throw some money at them to make them go away.
    4 Apr 2013, 09:44 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The goal is actually more cynical than that. The strike lawyers are looking to force a settlement from the D&O insurance company.
    4 Apr 2013, 09:47 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Data, Data, Data.

     

    EnerNOC Launches Green Button Initiative Open Data Project

     

    Company Makes Anonymized Energy Data from 100 Buildings Available for Open Source Collaboration to Advance Energy Management Innovation

     

    http://bit.ly/YVWEOG

     

    Interview with Ian Kalin: Presidential Innovation Fellow and Evangelist of Green Button
    Posted by Rachel Perry on Thu, Apr 04, 2013

     

    http://bit.ly/Y0JLQ5

     

    About GB: http://bit.ly/YVWEOH

     

    "Green Button is the common-sense idea that electricity customers should be able to securely download their own easy-to-understand energy usage information from their utility or electricity supplier. Armed with this information, consumers can use a growing array of new web and smartphone tools to make more informed energy decisions, optimize the size and cost-effectiveness of solar panels for their home, or verify that energy-efficiency retrofit investments are performing as promised"
    4 Apr 2013, 05:39 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    (XIDE): 25-day averge volume through yesterday was ~387.3K/day. Today's volume was 22.38MM. Finished down 48.44% @ $1.34.

     

    HardToLove
    4 Apr 2013, 05:46 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Aquion’s Battery-Eating CEO Gives Investors a Charge

     

    http://on.wsj.com/XTCLsz

     

    "Pearson was in a meeting with investors and their limited partners where he was showing, on an old prototype, how the company’s battery is assembled.

     

    “A piece broke off and I ate it,” said Pearson when asked about the incident. “We know it’s safe, it’s been eaten before,” he added, referring to the carbon-based anode piece of the battery that is not a regular part of employees’ diets"
    4 Apr 2013, 06:17 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    EnerG2 Awarded U.S. Patent For Ultrapure Carbon Materials
    Company’s Carbon Technology Platform Has Created 10x Improvement in Purity Level.

     

    http://bit.ly/14RsIay

     

    U.S. Patent 8,404,384

     

    http://bit.ly/16zRUAz
    4 Apr 2013, 06:30 PM Reply Like
  • Milhouse
    , contributor
    Comments (330) | Send Message
     
    "MILTON, Ga., April 4, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Exide Technologies (XIDE) (http://www.exide.com), a global leader in stored electrical energy solutions, announced today that the financial advisory firm of Lazard has been retained to advise the company on financing alternatives to maximize the value of the company for all stakeholders. The company does not anticipate making any further announcements regarding its review until the process is complete. In addition, the company expects that fiscal 2013 fourth quarter free cash flow will be approximately $50 million, exceeding prior guidance of $30 million, with total liquidity (cash and availability under credit lines) at March 31, 2013 of greater than $230 million. These amounts are all subject to final audit and, therefore, could be subject to change. "

     

    http://bit.ly/14RsP65

     

    I am interested to see what effect this news and guidance have on the share price over the next few weeks.
    4 Apr 2013, 06:30 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    just unhalted afterhours @1830 EDT... up right now
    4 Apr 2013, 06:34 PM Reply Like
  • BugEYE
    , contributor
    Comments (193) | Send Message
     
    Milhouse, you beat me to it.
    Is Lazard qualified as an investment bank? Anyone got something from the tea leaves? (joke intended)
    A huge fluctuation in stock price is all I can guess now.
    4 Apr 2013, 08:27 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2487) | Send Message
     
    Didn't Lazard do some funding for Capstone?
    4 Apr 2013, 09:13 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Lazard is a highly regarded middle-tier investment bank and bringing in Lazard as a financial advisor only gets scary when the other named advisor is a top national law firm.
    4 Apr 2013, 09:19 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4428) | Send Message
     
    >JP ... I'm not any kind of knowledgeable about all the legal eagles on The Street. Do you know anything about Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP? About all I know of them is they are a Top Twenty firm and are international in scope and specialize in M&A and distressed finance as an advocate.

     

    I guess my question or quandary (don't expect an answer) is this: Is some company or government trying to break Exide?
    4 Apr 2013, 09:37 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    That pretty well says all you need to know. Akin Gump is a fine firm and companies only bring in that kind of firepower when they need it.
    4 Apr 2013, 09:49 PM Reply Like
  • rupers
    , contributor
    Comments (62) | Send Message
     
    My guess is the relatively recent revelation about the arsenic emissions exposing up to 110,000 people to (what California considers) dangerous arsenic levels. City of LA will be out to crucify Exide. Apparently, the arsenic emissions (but not the exact source within Exide's Vernon battery recycling facility) have been known both by Exide and South Coast Air Quality Mgt District since 2010. Under California toxic pollutant laws and proclivity of state courts to be generous in toxic tort awards, it may be prudent for Exide to look at possible corporate restructuring to isolate or limit liability.

     

    See article below:
    http://lat.ms/ZC7epY
    4 Apr 2013, 10:56 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9592) | Send Message
     
    Where is Erin Brocovich? Where is Jan Schlichtmann?

     

    Right now, there is a humongous global-sized battery maker out there with severe bond trouble, restructuring coming, with a past history of both a terrible business model and previous bankruptcy due to equally terrible management, and then! combined with today's announcement of *perhaps* Exide has deceived the EPA...again.

     

    Wow! What Tontine-sized investing house will ever invest in Exide again?

     

    This is a buying opportunity...yep, buy some JCI ;-)
    4 Apr 2013, 11:49 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    ?Apparently, the arsenic emissions (but not the exact source within Exide's Vernon battery recycling facility) have been known both by Exide and South Coast Air Quality Mgt District since 2010."

     

    What is this but not the exact source?

     

    I can't believe Exide would keep recycling for almost 3 years knowing they were not meeting standards or still releasing arsenic. Especially in CA,

     

    This is the sort of crap that makes investors shy away from anything "Lead" and keeps $$$ flowing to any other chemistry.
    5 Apr 2013, 04:33 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I don't think arsenic issues in California are the source of Exide's problems. This page from the California Department of public health puts the issue in perspective by noting that "Arsenic is ubiquitous in nature and is commonly found in drinking water sources in California." The regulatory limit is 10 micrograms per liter

     

    http://bit.ly/XtmgEh

     

    The risk is expressed in "excess cases of cancer per million people per 70-year lifetime." They'll have to clean up their act no doubt, but this is a bit of a tempest in a teapot.
    5 Apr 2013, 07:49 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    The way I read it, the EPA "flew over it and took air samples, not water"

     

    Too high an amount in the air "down wind" of the plant is not good.
    5 Apr 2013, 08:19 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Do you have a link?
    5 Apr 2013, 08:43 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/17gXg4Y

     

    http://bit.ly/10EneZN

     

    http://lat.ms/17gXg53

     

    http://bit.ly/10EneZP
    5 Apr 2013, 09:18 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    All of the links confirm the tests were performed by California's South Coast Air Quality Management District, not the EPA.

     

    None of the links suggest that air samples were collected in a flyover.

     

    The regulations I cited properly described the cancer risk metric as "excess cases of cancer per million people per 70-year lifetime."

     

    These kinds of factual mis-statements are individually minor, if not petty. When thousands of minor factual mis-statements are aggregated in thousands of comments the overall impact can be substantial.

     

    You're making a mountain out of a molehill. I can understand why a Los Angeles politician might do so to curry favor with voters. I can't understand why an alleged investor in a lead-acid battery company would take the same tack.
    5 Apr 2013, 09:34 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    keep searching and you will find the article. I really don't have time to do more research for you. Everything there is about "air" not water. Of course if it's in the air first, then water and land next is a normal conclusion.

     

    I did not create this mess for XIDE, it's been going on for years. If you read it goes back to 2007. There are letters written to them even dating Mar. 1 from AQMD ... it's odd it was just released a month later ?

     

    Investing in anything to do with lead has risks....I have nothing to do with it, you are the one who keeps on over & over.
    5 Apr 2013, 09:59 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Prudent investing involves a recognition of risks, an understanding of the magnitude of the risks, and an understanding of the steps that must be taken to mitigate the risks. Exide has a technical problem at a recycling facility that its management will need to deal with. Exide's management appears to be taking reasonable steps to deal with the problem. There are no claims that its operations have increased the incidence of cancers in the area or that the problems are insurmountable. In any event Exide's problems with a recycling facility in California have nothing to do with Axion's operations in Pennsylvania.

     

    I'm all too aware that lead-acid battery manufacturing entails environmental risks. That's one of the big reasons Axion decided that it would be better off manufacturing carbon electrode assemblies as a long term growth strategy instead of building company-owned battery plants. Axion owns one battery plant in New Castle that it bought for use as a prototyping facility. While management will do its best to optimize the income of the New Castle plant, the odds that it will ever build a second battery plant are pretty remote. The goal is to build electrode plants and supply those electrodes as components to other companies that operate battery plants.
    5 Apr 2013, 10:08 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Last time I looked, the Lead-Acid battery biz was a global multi-billion dollar enterprise, going on over a century now... And last time I checked, we're all still here also. Somehow the world has decided it must be worth it and found a way to deal and survive... Kinda doubt that's going to change much soon.
    5 Apr 2013, 10:35 AM Reply Like
  • rupers
    , contributor
    Comments (62) | Send Message
     
    John

     

    I respectfully disagree, having been an environmental counsel in California for many moons representing a federal agency. California regulators (and the state laws they abide by) are premised on not allowing any discharge, whether into water, ground water, or air (ESPECIALLY air) that results in an excess lifetime cancer risk of greater than 1 in a million.

     

    And they go ape chit (from an enforcement perspective) if you have someone, even if unknowingly, discharges contaminants resulting in a potential excess cancer risk of 176 in a million.

     

    I agree with you that arsenic, in the comparative scheme of other pollutants, is not that big of a deal (the old drinking water standard used to be 50 ppb, and EPA changed it several years ago to 10 ppb, but a lot of states [not California] still allow 50 ppb as a cleanup standard).

     

    Enforcement from a state regulatory agency is one thing; exposure to toxic tort claims is another, and it is the likely exposure to litigation costs and a California-type toxic tort award that can really, really hurt Exide.
    6 Apr 2013, 09:10 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I'm not blowing off the problem, because Exide is going to have to get its act together or it will have problems in California.

     

    What I'm saying is (1) Exide's price crash was based on the failed offering Exide tried to do with DB Securities and their decision to bring in Lazard and Akin Gump as advisors, and (2) the fact that Exide has a problem with its recycling operations in California is irrelevant to Axion stockholders because (a) Axion does not engage in recycling, (b) Axion does not operate in California, and (c) over the long term Axion plans to make carbon electrode assemblies and sell them as components to battery manufacturers, rather than making the batteries themselves.

     

    Axion's business model was carefully crafted to minimize the risk that it would ever become embroiled in environmental litigation. Aside from one battery plant in New Castle, all of Axion's future activities will be in carbon electrode fabrication rather than lead-acid battery manufacturing.
    6 Apr 2013, 12:00 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    As much as some of us hate Exide, in the long run we should be rooting for them to buy a vowel. If they were reasonably strong and became a customer, they get us a lot of worldwide coverage in one interface/sales channel.

     

    Imagine if they went bankrupt ... who would pick up the pieces? Iindelco reminds us frequently just what a hard/not all that profitable business OEM batteries is. Not sure for example East Penn would step into the bidding ... they may be smarter than that :-) Maybe a couple of small pieces, but not the whole enchilada.

     

    Would a chastened but improved Exide be more likely to become an Axion customer than JCI?
    6 Apr 2013, 12:38 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    WTB: IIRC, XIDE isn't big in the OEM market? Please correct if wrong. Anyway, w/o that segment, I don't know how much they could help the PbC. Even assuming they could develop an after-market, it would take a long time before pay off started to appear.

     

    If they went after OEM, could they get them with their recent travails?

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 01:03 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    About 80% of Exide's automotive battery business is replacements rather than OEM.
    6 Apr 2013, 01:39 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    Don't know the extent but Exide does have some OEM business. My 2011 Camry has original equip Exide battery.
    6 Apr 2013, 02:06 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Speaking of patents, let's go in the way back machine:

     

    Electric double layer capacitor
    US 4862328 A

     

    http://bit.ly/16zT134

     

    Publication date Aug 29, 1989

     

    Check out the "referenced by" list ... quite impressive and extensive, including EnerG2, Axion, Maxwell, and Honda Motor!
    4 Apr 2013, 06:38 PM Reply Like
  • BugEYE
    , contributor
    Comments (193) | Send Message
     
    About Xide:
    Exide Technologies (Nasdaq:XIDE) (http://www.exide.com), a global leader in stored electrical energy solutions, announced today that the financial advisory firm of Lazard has been retained to advise the company on financing alternatives to maximize the value of the company for all stakeholders. The company does not anticipate making any further announcements regarding its review until the process is complete. In addition, the company expects that fiscal 2013 fourth quarter free cash flow will be approximately $50 million, exceeding prior guidance of $30 million, with total liquidity (cash and availability under credit lines) at March 31, 2013 of greater than $230 million. These amounts are all subject to final audit and, therefore, could be subject to change.

     

    http://bit.ly/14Ruf0c
    4 Apr 2013, 06:47 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    Just glancing at the Exide Debt to see if they really are a bk candidate. They only have $55M in debt due in Sep of this year and their big nut $675M in 2018. They seemingly should have enough cash to make that payment if they have to.

     

    I can see the need to try and restructure from the 8.2% they currently have on the 2018 debt but I don't see the immediate BK risk?
    4 Apr 2013, 07:08 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    Are there covenants on the 2018 debt? Like, are they senior secured and bar Exide from issuing any debt senior to that? If so, maybe Exide couldn't refi the 55m because nobody believes they will be able to pay off the 2018 debt, and thus will suffer a complete loss. If that is the case then Exide is headed towards BK or massive dilution.
    4 Apr 2013, 07:24 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    I would assume but I don't have time to check it tonight.
    4 Apr 2013, 07:26 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    XIDE just came thru one bankruptcy restructuring, that's why the 8% on the 2018 notes. Not sure they can do another one.
    4 Apr 2013, 09:02 PM Reply Like
  • BugEYE
    , contributor
    Comments (193) | Send Message
     
    from their Q3 CC,
    "The current year includes $80 million in cash and approximately $82 million under the revolving credit facility. The amount available under the revolver excludes $30 million of the facility as a result of not meeting the required fixed charge coverage ratio. "

     

    from their press release today,
    " with total liquidity (cash and availability under credit lines) at March 31, 2013 of greater than $230 million."

     

    I think that 30 million revlover credit line annotated as "not meeting the required fixed charge coverage ratio" becoming availabe as of March 31. And 50 million FCF helped relieving their shortterm liquidity.
    4 Apr 2013, 09:32 PM Reply Like
  • Johhny rambo
    , contributor
    Comments (117) | Send Message
     
    Latest news from the afterhours tickertape.

     

    "Mr Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, and all things space age like, was about to wash an old pair of work trousers and was surprised to find a huge wad of cash leftover from one of his recent Hi Tech buyouts.
    When asked by his 20 something supermodel girlfriend what he should do with it, she suggested buying an old school company fallen on hard times - Exide'
    After all it will do wonders for his reputation as a man for all seasons - yesterday, today and tomorrow !!
    4 Apr 2013, 08:15 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    WTB, Did I miss this months NS-999 update? It would be nice to have a sighting right now (things are a little slow these days)...
    4 Apr 2013, 08:16 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Decided not to send the request on April Fool's day :-)

     

    Didn't send till last night, and haven't heard back yet.

     

    It's discouraging to ask basically the same question month after month.

     

    At this point, even an "order" for the OTR version will be met with skepticism about when they would actually take delivery, complete the unit, start testing, and how long they would test before making a decision on a serious rollout :-(
    5 Apr 2013, 11:58 AM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    Music to my ears would be that they have assembled a team to work specifically on this project, staffed with mechanics and engineers (the kind that drive the train). At this point, it seems very piecemeal to me...
    5 Apr 2013, 12:14 PM Reply Like
  • JohnM121
    , contributor
    Comments (359) | Send Message
     
    Peterbilt and Cummins have successfully demonstrated a tractor-trailer that gets just under 10 mpg under real-world conditions.

     

    Nothing wrong with a little healthy competition. No mention of price.

     

    http://bit.ly/10wSH2i
    4 Apr 2013, 08:57 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    :-) Would indeed be nice, Tim.

     

    NSC Q1 cc is scheduled for 4:30 pm on Tuesday, 4/23. Which shall we see first, the NS999 or quarterly financials?
    4 Apr 2013, 08:58 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    Another Know Nothing voice of the global anti EV conspiracy raises it's head.

     

    France's electric car push presents power grid challenge

     

    <"If it's badly managed, it could prompt power surges, which would cost a lot in peak production, CO2 emissions and would also necessitate the construction of relatively costly infrastructure," Olivier Grabette, head of R&D at French power grid RTE, told Reuters.

     

    Grabette said that under the "ambitious" scenario of a fleet of two million electric vehicles by 2020, total French annual electricity consumption would rise by 1 to 3 percent.

     

    "It's not huge in terms of energy," Grabette said. "But if all these vehicles charge at peak times, even with slow car chargers, it could add between 3 and 6 gigawatts (GW) of peak demand, which would be felt if it comes at the wrong moment."

     

    Data last year from U.S. eco-town Mueller, in Texas, showed that owners of electric cars typically plugged in their vehicles when home electricity use spiked, causing potential problems for the grid. >

     

    Probably paid for by the oil companies. (Oh yeah he's a Electrical transmission guy in a land of nuke plants. )
    Umm err ......Well... What can you expect from the establishment?
    Yeah that's the ticket!

     

    http://bit.ly/16AiqJY

     

    End sarcasm font
    4 Apr 2013, 09:46 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    04/04/2013: EOD stuff partially copied from instablog (up later).
    # Trds: 70, MinTrSz: 100, MaxTrSz: 28400, Vol 446792, AvTrSz: 6383
    Min. Pr: 0.2602, Max Pr: 0.2950, VW Avg. Tr. Pr: 0.2655
    # Buys, Shares: 20 98800, VW Avg Buy Pr: 0.2747
    # Sells, Shares: 50 347992, VW Avg Sell Pr: 0.2628
    # Unkn, Shares: 0 0, VW Avg Unk. Pr: 0.0000
    Buy:Sell 1:3.52 (22.1% “buys”), DlyShts 11884 (02.66%), Dly Sht % of 'sells' 3.42%

     

    Regardless that we got our predicted “death cross” today, with the 50-day SMA at $0.3058 and the 200-day at $0.3063, I'm starting to get optimistic. All the oscillators I watch are suggesting this possibility as well. Regardless, I'm not yet ready to again step deep into the traditional TA.

     

    I've noted the last several days that it looked like things were improving. Today continues that ... to the point that I think our unrelenting selling down may be either ended or very near so. This due to a combination of volume, volatility, strength into the close and no late-day weakness, among other things.

     

    First, we had a strong close. In the last 30 minutes of the day we had VWAP of $0.2703, above our previous short-term support of $0.27 when we churned sideways for a bit, and we had a close of $0.27 if we throw out our wizard's EOD $0.2855 trade. This was on 70K shares too. You might say that this wasn't strength because the VWAP and close were much lower than the day's higher ranges. You'll see in the brackets below that this wasn't bad.

     

    There was some trading action that makes me somewhat optimistic ...

     

    I wondered during the earlier part of the day if we were seeing distribution of that ATDF ~143K offer that WTB(?) and I previously noted.

     

    This seems possible from the stuff I saw through 14:32: buy:sell 1:6.90 (12.65% “buys” -> 87.35% “sells”) and VWAP $0.2617, very near the day's low. We've seen this sort of stuff several times before. The difference is in the late-day action. Subsequent to that time, our buy:sell was 1:1.18 (45.9% “buys”) with a VWAP of $0.2750. Our typical behavior has been one of late-day weakness and today it was not. This doesn't prove anything, but ...

     

    Although ATDF is only one market-maker (and its clients?), it is so active (and somewhat dominate due to the willingness to always move to best ask and best bid positions, apparently regardless of price) in our market that I felt it was a good proxy for the overall tenor of things. This made me think it was worth noting that a) I had no glimpse on the ask of the ~143K from ATDF today, b) this made me wonder if they were just “hitting the bid” without competing on the asks, and c) the action today might be signaling the end of our extended weakness. I do suspect that ATDF, and some other folks, spent a good part of the day hitting the bid.

     

    Breaking down the action may answer the “just hitting the bid” question (you can derive the "sells"):
    $0.2602-$0.2630: 277392 shares, 62.09% of volume, VWAP $0.2608, “buys” 03.61%
    $0.2650-$0.2699: 078150 shares, 17.49% of volume, VWAP $0.2674, “buys” 57.65%
    $0.2700-$0.2722: 050150 shares, 11.22% of volume, VWAP $0.2714, “buys” 05.28%
    $0.2819-$0.2950: 041100 shares, 09.20% of volume, VWAP $0.2861, “buys” 100%

     

    In that first bracket, only 12,200 shares in four trades went off after 14:30. Showing a little strength into EOD, the third bracket, except for one trade, all went off after 15:28 and into the close. The last bracket trades were after 14:42 and continued into the close.

     

    The potential for the end of the downward pressure seems somewhat supported by the ask behavior today. With one brief exception, the asks stayed pretty much in the upper range of the $0.26xx and above area, including some periods in $0.28xx range, running from the low to the high areas of that range. We didn't see anywhere near the usual amount of constant stepping down by various MMs trying to get to the front of the ask. On the bid side, during most of the day the bids stayed in the low-$0.26xx area. But later in the day (after 15:00) we saw some bids move into the high-$0.26xx range and even a couple stints in the low-$0.27xx area. This is a change from the most commonly observed late-day behavior.

     

    Volume of ~437K is more than double the 25-day average of ~211K and well above the 10-day average of ~237K. It's more than four times yesterday's 100K as well. Although my judgment hasn't always been correct on this, it does often suggest the end of a trend is near.

     

    The volatility seen may also suggest this. Even if we throw out bracket four above, we had an intra-day price range of 4.6%. Including bracket four gives a ridiculous 13.5%.

     

    Details of “Dly Sht % of 'sells'” and inflection points omitted here.

     

    HardToLove
    5 Apr 2013, 06:39 AM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    Energy Storage: Why We Need It, Why We Don't
    http://bit.ly/10Bus1K

     

    Seems a very useful article on where storage stands.

     

    For FR, storage is useful right now. Otherwise,

     

    "Today it's more "economically rational" to build more generation, whether it's solar or wind or even coal, he noted. As energy storage technology costs come down — and as there is better understanding and calculation of externalized costs, such as societal impacts — "we will see those lines cross, and more utilities will go to energy storage as a more economical means to serve the grid."
    5 Apr 2013, 11:50 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Original of this article generated some comments here:

     

    http://bit.ly/XhX3u6
    5 Apr 2013, 12:04 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    Thanks, WTB!
    5 Apr 2013, 12:12 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    D Lane: I've not read it yet, but did they address the potential benefit of dispersed storage allowing grid upgrade deferrals while added generation capacity probably doesn't?

     

    ISTM that any true capacity and financial evaluation would need to include that sort of stuff.

     

    HardToLove
    5 Apr 2013, 12:26 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    HTL, I don't think they did address that exactly. A very good point on your part.
    5 Apr 2013, 01:02 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    Judging from the comments, I need to better understand hydrogen storage. . .
    5 Apr 2013, 01:05 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    D Lane: But it was a good article regardless. I found the comments in the original article re hydrogen quite interesting too.

     

    HardToLove
    5 Apr 2013, 01:30 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Call for Renault to ‘include battery’

     

    http://bit.ly/10BFjJ5
    5 Apr 2013, 01:01 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    In Wisconsin.

     

    Bill would allow stores to increase deposits for used car batteries

     

    http://bit.ly/Z6OWOL
    5 Apr 2013, 02:05 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Xtreme Power to Sell Battery Factory, Focus on Software

     

    10-year warranties for grid batteries are hard for startups—but software makes sense.

     

    JEFF ST. JOHN: APRIL 5, 2013

     

    http://bit.ly/14Ke5p7

     

    "plans to sell the Oklahoma-based factory where it makes its solid-state, advanced lead-acid PowerCell batteries, and has a signed letter of intent from a buyer with experience in the battery business.

     

    After a temporary shutdown, that buyer intends to restart the plant to help Xtreme fill its ongoing orders for its PowerCell batteries, he said. At that point, the new owner will become another customer to the startup’s new line of business, its Xtreme Active Control Technology (XACT) software platform."
    5 Apr 2013, 03:32 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Lots of goodies in this article, including

     

    "At the same time, a fire that destroyed Xtreme’s 10-megawatt battery on Hawaii’s Oahu Island last year has put those claims under scrutiny. Gotcher told me this week that investigators have ruled out 30 of the 32 possibilities they started out with, leaving only two hypotheses, including the possibility that “foreign material” was somehow set on fire within the building. In fact, a security video recording of the event shows that the fire actually started on the concrete floor of one of the aisles running in between the battery arrays, indicating that it did not start in the batteries themselves, or in the inverters that connect the batteries to the grid, as was the case in a previous, smaller fire at the facility, he said."
    5 Apr 2013, 03:37 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    Very good WTB! I expect the business case for
    Xtreme's batteries is not compelling.
    5 Apr 2013, 05:07 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Electric-Car Maker Fisker to Cut Three-Fourths of Workers

     

    http://bit.ly/12rA28B
    5 Apr 2013, 05:11 PM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    SEC filing for three year employment extension of TG, Vani, Charles Trego, and Philip Baker.

     

    http://bit.ly/YYiaCq
    5 Apr 2013, 05:44 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    Jveal
    Beat me by thaat much.

     

    End Maxwell Smart font.
    5 Apr 2013, 05:58 PM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    froggey,

     

    You gave more detail so people didn't have to look unless they wanted to.
    5 Apr 2013, 06:12 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    Jveal
    I didn't include $500 a month for Vanis car allowance.
    After Tuesday, I thought; Nope not going there.
    5 Apr 2013, 06:46 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    Unfortunately not the Axion news we were hoping for but an 8K was filed.

     

    ITEM 1.01 Entry Into Material Definitive Agreements

     

    See Item 5.02(e) below.

     

    ITEM 5.02(e) Compensatory Arrangements with Named Executive Officers

     

    Effective as of April 1, 2013, Axion Power International, Inc. (the "Company") entered into new three year employment agreements ("Agreement" or "Agreements") with each of Thomas Granville, Charles Trego, Phillip Baker and Vani Dantam, which expire on March 31, 2016. Each of the Agreements is identical to the prior employment agreements in effect with each of the officers, except with respect to the new terms and as set forth below.

     

    For each officer, there is a new payment schedule, which calls for a stipend payment equal to 10% of base salary (which is the same as in the prior Agreement and which remains unchanged during the term of said Agreement), in cash within 45 days from the date of effectiveness of each Agreements, and then the same stipend payment is due on the first, second and third anniversaries of the effective date of the Agreement so long as the executive is still employed by the Company on each said anniversary date.

     

    The following table sets forth the stipend payment schedule:

     

    The chart will turn into a jumbled mess.
    Here is the link.
    It's on yahoo if there is a problem.

     

    http://bit.ly/YYiwZD;_ylt=AvfcY9dNFjggPMq3...

     

    Well at least they are planning to have jobs and an income for a while. :-)
    5 Apr 2013, 05:48 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Obviously not too worried about cash flow if they are paying out 100k USD in bonuses within 45 days of April 1.

     

    I guess that's better than announcing executive departures when a capital raise is required.
    5 Apr 2013, 06:23 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Are these (new?) stipends bonuses? IE are they in addition to base salary, or just some kind of accelerated payment of same?

     

    I'm not sure what to think. Better, more cash-flush days ahead? Anyone find the timing curious?
    5 Apr 2013, 06:23 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    New I believe. I don't think these existed before.
    5 Apr 2013, 06:27 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    Funny, I was thinking this was their new pay schedule until financing is arranged or we get customer #1. Looks about right to me (kidding)...
    5 Apr 2013, 06:33 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    48
    " Anyone find the timing curious? "
    I was wondering if there are any legal-accounting rules that might be involved. Such as: Must be before or after X event.

     

    Tim
    Epower
    Signed an exclusive 5 year deal
    Tho small amounts at present they are customer #1.
    Rosewater will have to sell one, then I will call them a customer.
    While they have one in Canada I think of that as testing.
    5 Apr 2013, 07:04 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    "Epower signed an exclusive 5 year deal, Tho small amounts at present they are customer #1"

     

    ePower, to me, is still experimental and in a market that has yet to be proven. I want to believe they are customer #1 and I also want to believe NS was/is customer #1. Until their experiments turn into reality...
    5 Apr 2013, 07:16 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    I'd like to hear more informed views on this stipend. On one hand I understand that executives normally get bonuses. On the other, if there is no financing done already, this is coming straight out of shareholder dilution, and way to early to give themselves a congratulatory bonus. I'm still hopeful, given the tone of the CC, that this is well deserved for bringing Axion to better times.
    5 Apr 2013, 08:10 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    That's just the board treating pennies & nickels like
    "manhole covers"
    5 Apr 2013, 08:43 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    I can't help but think this is not something you want to have to do right before revealing a needed financing deal that features, uh, less-than-pleasing terms... I mean, that would be awkward. Since I don't think the headshed is that tone deaf, I'm going with growsmart and calling it positive...
    5 Apr 2013, 09:02 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Have to wait to find out. Waiting............

     

    However, We saw TG advise the CFO to cut expenditures last year so what's changed? You don't stop that if nothing has changed. Also all that inventory build.

     

    Signs. sniff sniff sniff.
    5 Apr 2013, 09:33 PM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    TG, his staff, and the board know all the details. We don't. That is what is so frustrating during this wait. Unfortunately with a micro-cap, publicly traded company, that is what we have to put up with. We either believe in the product and the management from their past record or we don't.

     

    This whole process has taken far longer than anyone thought it would. If you compare the progress to where we were a year or two years ago, the progress has been impressive. However, our hopes and expectations are always for future events to happen quicker. I remember when we were surprised by the first powercube. IIRC we were told that the powercube would be the first major seller. A year and a half later, according to the latest CC, it appears that it may be true. We just all thought that the first sales would be months with NSC soon to follow and BMW shortly behind them. We now have a top 5 Asian car maker nosing ahead of BMW, ePower committed to purchase PbCs for as many as 12 trucks over the next year, and a flood of proposal requests for powercubes that has required additional staff to help write the proposals. The carbon roll process is fully automated. Axion is ready to produce whole batteries for the first customers, and could soon ramp to produce electrodes for many more customers. We sure are down in the mouth to have so much more potential than we had a year ago. I do hope that we soon get that good news that is going to reignite the hope we have piled up. I believe JP has expressed that he has never seen a stock with the potential that Axion now has. One little spark could ignite a blaze like the Texas A & M bonfires.

     

    (For those who don't know, they would take several truck loads of huge logs and stack them vertical to make an unbelievably huge fire) http://bit.ly/17iaheH

     

    But you know, if the company had progressed like JP and the other original investors had hoped, I would not have the opportunity to invest at such a low price with the potential of making a good return on my investment. I hope we get good news Monday morning. I have to pay my taxes by the 15th!!!
    5 Apr 2013, 10:04 PM Reply Like
  • Johhny rambo
    , contributor
    Comments (117) | Send Message
     
    We need Mr Musk to come in here and sweep the floor clean.

     

    Whatever happened to commission based performance pay - I wasn't aware Axion was a government corporation, where you are overpayed for not making a profit, or in fact any decisions of any kind - Disappointed !
    6 Apr 2013, 12:13 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    The 10% "stipends" are new. New employment contracts for Granville and Dantam as of April 1 are a change in cycle. Previously, Granville's contract anniversary was June 29 or June 30. Dantam's initial three-year employment contract began January 1, 2012. (Date info is from Axion's most recent 10K).

     

    Performance meriting new three-year employment contracts for Granville and Dantam remains to be seen IMO.
    6 Apr 2013, 10:00 AM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2235) | Send Message
     
    "Performance meriting new three-year employment contracts for Granville and Dantam remains to be seen IMO."

     

    My feelings exactly D-Inv,
    6 Apr 2013, 10:21 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Well if they don't find investors I guess the length of the contract doesn't matter does it? I'd worry more about the terms of the next raise than I'd worry about the terms of these contracts.

     

    However, IMO, the fact that Axion managment has not been issuing and lowering options prices with the weakness in the share price shows a level of character not often seen at US companies. I have in the past and continue to take this as a good sign regarding the character of management. Doesn't assure success but it tells me that they are working and waiting for the efforts to bear fruit and have the character not to jump forward in line while we all wait.

     

    I still view this filing as a prerequisite to closure of the next financial round and an indication that we're well on our way to dotted I's and T's crossed. It's always good to have your top management focused on the task at hand vs looking around for their next role.
    6 Apr 2013, 11:51 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    D-Inv, I have never seen an offering close when the company that was getting the financing didn't have long-term employment agreements in place with its key executive officers. We can question merit till hell freezes over and it won't change the fact that without the contracts there won't be any more money.
    6 Apr 2013, 12:03 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    None of us have the info to make a judgement on these new contracts, but I for one would be worried if either Granville or Dantam were walking out the door right now.

     

    I believe Danatam opened a lot of doors for us, and possibly opened TG to some new strategies and opportunities.

     

    Is it exceedingly hard to make the big sale when you're such a tiny fish, with no big corporation to back you up, e.g., to finance a deal.

     

    GE is making sales, but they fall in the "no one ever got fired for hiring IBM" mold. Plus I think generally they've found the right application niche. But who is going to buy an expensive PowerCube from someone with a Going Concern? Or Rosewater which is private and not part of some massive Private Equity moneyed firm?

     

    Now if we could partner with say some giant inverter firm, e.g., Eaton, then maybe. Dying to know who the "manufacturer" we're working with is ...

     

    The anti-government spending bent ain't helping ... things have changed dramatically on that front in the last 2 years. There ain't no "recovery act" walking through that door anytime soon (phrased for you old Boston Celtic fans)

     

    Xtreme made a lot of sales, and they're exiting the hardware side of the biz! I was really surprised my article linked above
    http://bit.ly/14Ke5p7
    didn't general more discussion, though I got some good likes. Thought that article had a ton of important points in it about just how hard this biz is. I suppose we already knew most of them though ...

     

    AXPW is still a long shot. Believe it would be an even longer shot if those 2 gentlemen walked out the door right now.
    6 Apr 2013, 12:07 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Seems like now a significant portion of the management team are now on the same timeline. Shared incentive. Reminds me of the debate/tricks plays over the last decade or so over staggered boards.

     

    Hoping those guys have a hell of a party in 3 years.

     

    Really agree with iindelco on the fact that options have not been rewritten. Very unusual in these times ... impresses me too.
    6 Apr 2013, 12:24 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    :-) Dantam's initial contract was good for another 21 months so it seems to me he already had a "long-term contract" in place. Granville's contract was up for renewal in June according to what I have found thus far in the March 2013 10K. I'm convinced, however, Axion issued a document of some kind within the past month that stated Granville's contract had been renewed and Trego's (and Baker's?) was up for renewal on April 1. I have no memory of any mention of Dantam's employment agreement.

     

    :-) There may well be sound performance meriting contract renewals all around that is not yet visible to shareholders. For everyone's sake, I hope that is the case.
    6 Apr 2013, 02:23 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    My experience is the same as JP's regarding key employee contracts. No way was I, or the Investment Committee, going to green light a deal without knowing who the company's key people were going to be.

     

    For the smaller companies, with their less diversified talent pool, we required key man insurance, too. Anyone can get hit by a bus, everyone used to say.

     

    Hopefully this filing wasn't a surprise to anyone, as TG mentioned in the conf call they were working on it. Nice to have it done. Not much left to check-mark. Got the key guys, manufacturing process, plant, patents, etc. Maybe still need to nail down suppliers, as the company discussed they are pursuing. And a nice end-user order would be about the last thing, but that might not come before the cash runs out.
    6 Apr 2013, 03:20 PM Reply Like
  • billa_from_sf
    , contributor
    Comments (369) | Send Message
     
    The bonuses, which the management team obviously agreed to, signals that they are not going anywhere.

     

    So whoever gets dinged for the capital raise knows who they are investing in.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:59 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2329) | Send Message
     
    Yup, the Extreme exodus makes one suspect the prospects for our PowerCube. I think NS or auto oem hold more promise in the near term. Also near term might be measured in years; where as long term means a decade. =(
    6 Apr 2013, 08:03 PM Reply Like
  • growsmart
    , contributor
    Comments (158) | Send Message
     
    Positive.
    5 Apr 2013, 05:49 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    04/05/2013: EOD stuff partially copied from instablog (up later).
    # Trds: 48, MinTrSz: 100, MaxTrSz: 25000, Vol 360500, AvTrSz: 7510
    Min. Pr: 0.2600, Max Pr: 0.2960, VW Avg. Tr. Pr: 0.2653
    # Buys, Shares: 16 71500, VW Avg Buy Pr: 0.2705
    # Sells, Shares: 32 289000, VW Avg Sell Pr: 0.2640
    # Unkn, Shares: 0 0, VW Avg Unk. Pr: 0.0000
    Buy:Sell 1:4.04 (19.8% “buys”), DlyShts 1700 (00.47%), Dly Sht % of 'sells' 0.59%

     

    Well, we didn't get any follow-through from yesterday's apparent improvement. There was a mild weakening in VWAP, “buys” percentage and volume (this is the “good” part of this action). The big difference today is that buyers did not step up as strongly as yesterday. We opened at $0.2750 and immediately started weakening, hitting $0.2610 on the third trade. I guess buyers saw no reason to increase the bids with that going on. We did come back to $0.2749, but from 10:24 on we never saw a $0.27 handle again.

     

    From then through EOD we traded 262.2K at a (falling) VWAP that ended at $0.2632. During this stretch we had 14 consecutive trades at generally weakening prices, eventually going to $0.2605, that were all “sells”.

     

    Of the seventeen instances of bid changes I caught, ten were lowered bids. Over half the rest were improvements only into the low $0.26 area. On the asks nine were lowered offers and only three were raised.

     

    As usual, ATDF was an important part of this action, with others joining in, out of necessity I guess.

     

    I mentioned the volume as the “good” part: falling volume does suggest that some portion of the sellers at these prices are getting exhausted. However with a seeming wellspring of sellers at ever-lower prices, I wonder if they can ever be exhausted.

     

    Details of “Dly Sht % of 'sells'” and inflection points omitted here.

     

    HardToLove
    5 Apr 2013, 06:11 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    CAP-XX - Stop-Start Automotive Supercapacitor Module in vehicle trial

     

    http://bit.ly/10Bkxuz

     

    Edit http://bit.ly/XYYIGz
    5 Apr 2013, 07:03 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    More on the Cap-X topic since it's hard to hear.

     

    http://bit.ly/Z7iqMe
    5 Apr 2013, 07:24 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2235) | Send Message
     
    Giving management all new 3 year employment contracts with no significant sales announcements looks like they are putting the cart ahead of the cap raise and the shareholders. Might be a defensive move prior to formation of a new BOD with representatives from a strategic investor. Personally, that move ended any interest by me in owning Axion stock under the current management. Peace.
    5 Apr 2013, 10:07 PM Reply Like
  • Occam's_Razor
    , contributor
    Comments (1138) | Send Message
     
    Based on the volume flush-out Thursday and today (Friday), I'd say we have a short term floor. Stocks usually bottom when everyone is wary and grumpy... not when things are swell. My humble two cents.
    5 Apr 2013, 11:46 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    If management has brought in a strategic investor, it's only prudent for them to protect themselves as well. That is what I would expect for them and also us. If they managed to fetch a good price, then I am happy that they get a 10% bonus.
    6 Apr 2013, 12:27 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Bang, that seems like a lot of linked conjecture. But if it's a valid scenario as to what may come about, in my (limited) sense of things, I tend to think I would be happy 1) with a strategic investor coming in big enough to take board seat(s) and 2) the fact that current management (who I'm still an admirer of) will be sticking around in force, and 3) that they will apparently have secured for themselves some durability of position vis a vis any new board that might be imposed. Sounds like could even be best of both worlds for us-- Axion gets some serious funding, and perhaps a partner with clout, all in exchange for yielding the minimum amount of true control as is/was possible... I know I don't have much real insight into the mechanics here, and of course none of us are going to know until we know, but at this point, I'm believing that management is acting in our best interests, as well as theirs.

     

    Bottom line, enough wall hugging, it's time to dance! Viva la Strategic Investor!
    6 Apr 2013, 12:40 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    Still, the question to be asked now is: if management has already a deal placed and provisions made for themselves, why the heck can't they announce what the deal is already?
    6 Apr 2013, 12:50 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    That's a good question. Who knows what the relevant timings/ mechanics really are. Maybe there's a piece or two yet that still need to fall in place. It's not like this was all that huge and extravagant an expenditure, though the point is certainly valid that it is shareholder money.
    6 Apr 2013, 01:00 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2329) | Send Message
     
    Bang, there won't be another 3 years without revenues and/or a strategic investors. This new info of compensation increases may actually portend good things.
    6 Apr 2013, 03:37 AM Reply Like
  • Poul Brandt
    , contributor
    Comments (271) | Send Message
     
    Ranma
    If the strategic investor is fx. BMW, they will want to delay until they are ready to inform about their plan to purchase PcB batteries, and probably want to wait as long as possible.I understand your frustration.

     

    But note they have been talking about this "aligned" investor for a long time. So my feeling is that there are absolutely no problems.
    6 Apr 2013, 06:41 AM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie
    , contributor
    Comments (1824) | Send Message
     
    Do you think maybe that any strategic investor wants to make sure that they have current management locked down and in place for the duration?

     

    When you invest your money you want to know that management isn't going to award themselves massive golden parachutes and then walk away.

     

    The stipends aren't huge and the deal commits our brass to another 3 years without a raise.

     

    I'd say this is good news.

     

    D
    6 Apr 2013, 07:00 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    D. McHattie: I agree it's good news. I see a couple things suggesting this.

     

    A strategically aligned investor is most likely someone that has at least followed, and maybe been involved with, Axion for some time. They have knowledge not only of the product potential, but also the management performance during some rough periods.

     

    If these contract extensions are a mandated part of the investing deal, it says a lot about the investor, the management and the prospects going forward for the products.

     

    The unknown, for me, is how my thoughts hold in light of an investment bank involvement. Would one be involved if the investor was one with good knowledge of Axion? Since I have no knowledge at all about the machinations of these these things, it's not a rhetorical question.

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 07:18 AM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2487) | Send Message
     
    Poul, Axion has been talking about a lot of things for a long time.
    6 Apr 2013, 12:49 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    A Question
    If Axion has a strategic investor is an investment bank necessary?

     

    I've gotten into contracts where we hired an independent third party ti be an intermediary. I just don't know if Axion (or any small company) would do that with a strategic investor in the wings.
    Or should we be crossing out BMW etc. as investors for the raise?
    6 Apr 2013, 01:45 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I don't see any way to predict who the investors might be. That makes it almost impossible to cross anyone off the list. We're in a period of infinite possibilities until Axion signs a deal and reduces the number of possible outcomes to one.
    6 Apr 2013, 02:05 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    "If Axion has a strategic investor is an investment bank necessary?"

     

    Since I am the least experienced among us, I thought I would answer the question with a question. What if the strategic investor wished to remain anonymous or a silent investor. Would the investment bank fill this roll?
    6 Apr 2013, 03:52 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2329) | Send Message
     
    I'm surprised by all the "likes" to Bang's comment above. Either Axionistas have lost all faith or there are many here who feel TG isn't the right leadership. =(

     

    For those who hit "like" I hope to hear your logic. I still feel Axion the company and Axion the stock are on different trajectories but that may soon change as hopefully they both move forward and upward.
    6 Apr 2013, 08:11 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    In the bazoook camp on this one. I've got undying respect for Bang, but in this case, until we know something definitively, I just don't see how this is so damning. Above all though, it's certainly understandable that everyone's patience is getting a bit worn. We've all been living on anticipation and informational dogtreats for too long a time now, some longer than others... and it's surely natural that folks are getting more itchy. In fact, this is probably one of the itchiest times we've gone through yet, and well, it's just a fact, itchers gotta itch. Plenty guilty myself sometimes. But we know this: Something *is* going on in the kitchen. We're sure to discover soon enough whether it's crap sandwich or roast beef.
    6 Apr 2013, 08:34 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1766) | Send Message
     
    Bazooooka,
    I think a lot of the people here are just frustrated at the pace of things and are still worried about the terms of the upcoming financing. So instead of getting a filing saying the financing is behind us, we got an email saying that the exec board got new contracts and bonuses. And more than a few of us probably looked at those bonuses and said "for what?" I'm not arguing that they are over paid, but at the same time, those four men's salaries are 1/8th of the yearly budget for Axion.
    That being said, I can completely understand the logic behind needing to make sure all the key people are locked up for many reasons. It reminds me of one of my favorite scenes from Mad Men where the company is being taken over, and the new guy turns to Don and says, "you'll honor your contract or you won't work for anyone else", to which Don replies "I don't have a contract."
    So to me, both sides have reasonable arguments and reasonable reasons to feel the way they do. Time will tell who is right but I'm still hoping TG and the rest will prove to us that they are worth every penny and then some.
    6 Apr 2013, 10:19 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    It's also worth remembering that there won't be any pennies without a completed financing to provide the pennies.
    7 Apr 2013, 06:01 AM Reply Like
  • magounsq
    , contributor
    Comments (967) | Send Message
     
    bangwhiz...
    "Personally, that move ended any interest by me in owning Axion stock under the current management. Peace."
    In perspective, "that move" is small potatoes.

     

    Frustration absolutely understandable...but I suspect any announcement of significance just might change your stand.

     

    That said, it has been a long frustrating ride...but a fascinating one.
    7 Apr 2013, 10:17 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The existing Baker and Trego employment agreements expired on March 31st. Granville's employment agreement was set to expire on June 30th and Dantam's still had a couple years to run. See page 38 of the 10-K (http://1.usa.gov/14LPWyF)

     

    New investors invariably require a couple years of running room on executive employment contracts as a condition of doing a financing. They want to know the key people are in place on agreed terms before writing a check.

     

    The new contracts are simply corporate clean-up, just like the extension of the battery plant lease was. They are not a guarantee of good news, but they're certainly not bad news.
    6 Apr 2013, 06:52 AM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    I am not exactly accustomed to salaries as high as the officers of Axion are getting, but I want to point out something that I don't think has been mentioned. The base salaries of the four officers have remained the same. A few years ago, I worked for a company that was rewarding good workers with increases in pay each year. I got three raises within my first year. The management decided that they had to be more profitable, so they froze salaries for over a year. Then they made a grand announcement that they would start raises and bonuses. It sounded good until we saw the fine print. Those of us who had been good workers and receiving raises each year had reached the maximum allowed for our positions. Unpublished caps had been placed on each position. We would only get yearly performance bonuses. That meant every year we would be working for the same pay, no matter how well we worked. Once the reality set in, we felt like we had been lied to. We got bonuses during the year salaries were frozen, so nothing had changed for the workers who had continually proven themselves. I ended up working until the first bonus and left.

     

    I don't know how bonuses are usually set up, such as the 45 days to allow for payment of the bonuses. If the time delay is not standard, it could be signalling that Axion fully expects to have plenty of cash to pay the bonuses by the middle of May. Assuming that the board would not allow the payments to come due without knowing the funds would be available, hopefully an announcement of financing will be forthcoming before the end of April.
    6 Apr 2013, 06:54 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Jveal: if the contract renewals were part of the investing deal, I would expect an announcement much sooner than EOM April. I would think all the other pieces are agreed upon before the BOD commits to these renewals.

     

    So we should be down to "the stroke of a pen" stage now.

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 07:24 AM Reply Like
  • JohnM121
    , contributor
    Comments (359) | Send Message
     
    Also on page 38, their option price is $1.5. I think it's reasonable to assume that the vast majority of shareholders have a much lower average price than that. The people making the decisions do not have any incentive to let the price flounder.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:21 AM Reply Like
  • Occam's_Razor
    , contributor
    Comments (1138) | Send Message
     
    JohnM121: At the end of the day, that is why I'm invested in AXPW. I hope I haven't overlooked something, but I think the game is at the *very* early stages.... um.... still....
    6 Apr 2013, 03:17 PM Reply Like
  • Futurist
    , contributor
    Comments (2124) | Send Message
     
    I don't know whether a 10% raise is warranted or not. From what I've seen in other companies the wages paid to officers of a 10 million dollar company are higher than Axion pays its top people. I also see options awarded to execs that are based on current market price to act as a bonus if the company succeeds.
    I'm never in favor of wasting money. I'm more against wasting resources. And long term employees are a valuable resource.

     

    Can anyone really imagine what would happen to Axion during a year of transition where the executive staff is replaced? Its easy to criticize management. Its often healthy. But unless someone thinks the Board of Directors is unwise, the current extension seems healthy to me.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:58 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    I will restate that I think the financing deal is already cut. As JP stated, most of this is just tieing up loose ends. As to the bonuses, it isn't the amount of money...it's just that principal isn't very well accepted after the financial crisis.
    However, I imagine the board felt that each one had met certain objectives and were deserving of it. Especially all but Granville. He may be a good lab guy to get us to here, but I do not think he has the skills to move forward. I would like to see the goals and milestones laid out clearly.
    A little synopsis below:
    Mgt. is in place for another 3 years, short of a disaster.
    The building lease is renewed.
    Financing probably arranged (or else I think TG would not have gotten an extension) terms to be announced.

     

    All that is lacking is strategic partners, sales, more working relationships within the industry. I would like to see more participation at the conferences similiar to what ZBB has done. The right CEO can build many relationships and partnerships through this.

     

    I have no doubts there will be bumps in the road. I hope they are able to handle them.
    As to financing, I hope it is big enough to end this yearly cap raise. Let the stock price bottom out and then it will move up on good news and maybe hold the gains. It removes a tremendous weight and cloud of uncertainty.
    6 Apr 2013, 08:13 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Anyone have a clue about the used inverter market?

     

    As I understand it, a major part of the cost of a PowerCube is the inverter. Wondering what a PowerCube's recovery value might be if Axion were to go away ... just how risky is it to own one?

     

    Wonder if that concept has come up in the discussions with the various manufacturers Axion is negotiating with? We did hear in the last conference call the notion that they may have originally been "over engineered" to help prevent any blame being directed at the batteries when they weren't the real issue.

     

    Worked for AT&T Bell Labs (later Lucent Technologies) quite a while ... still remember when we over-engineered things to last forever ... rightfully proud of the quality, but we got killed on cheap equipment from competitors, and had to adapt to the market.

     

    Note that sometimes companies get bought and their technology goes away even though it may still be useful ... see Oracle for example. One more thing potential customers may be worried about :-(
    6 Apr 2013, 12:58 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    WTB: W.E. -> AT&T Technologies. Moment of pride when the Manhattan switching office fire showed how the Bell System could marshal forces - we diverted ESS swtiches, ... anyway, programmers with installation experience working underground up there from all over the country.

     

    Good company back then. Good system back then.

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 02:14 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    I always thought it was cool that one of the Naperville bldgs is shaped like a bell, from the air.
    6 Apr 2013, 02:55 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Well it was shaped like a bell till they added on. Saw a presentation there on software architecture once that used the before and after pictures as a cautionary tale ...

     

    Later during the telecom equipment boom Lucent bought or leased 2 other huge buildings within 2 miles, added on somewhat significantly to another former Western Electric building also nearby, and had another huge building about 4 miles away. The initial promise of Lucent worked for a while as firms bought stuff from us that they wouldn't from a competitor (AT&T) And then the sh*t hit the fan ...

     

    Sad to drive past all those buildings now repurposed. Navistar has one, Paychex another, and I believe it's Travelers in another. And now they name on the remaining one is Alcatel-Lucent.
    6 Apr 2013, 03:20 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Yeah, my brother still works for A-L. His wife retired from Lucent and sold her stock before it crashed, thank goodness for her and them. Cautionary tales all over the place.
    6 Apr 2013, 03:40 PM Reply Like
  • MitchS
    , contributor
    Comments (47) | Send Message
     
    Another thing to be worried about: lack of UL approval. I still have not found any independent evidence that the Hub/PowerCube indeed meets any UL standard. I even sent an e-mail to Axion--no answer. My suspicions have not been allayed.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:35 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Mitch, Do you think for one second that an officer of a public company is going to risk lying in a public statement over something like having UL approval on a UPS? I don't.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:40 PM Reply Like
  • MitchS
    , contributor
    Comments (47) | Send Message
     
    iindelco,
    I normally wouldn't either, but my experience with regulatory test agencies led me fully to expect that the UL cert. would be recorded and published a whole three months post-test. I haven't found it on any body's site.

     

    As I posted earlier, I have become more skeptical of Axion as time goes by with no sales. In this matter, I'll trust my own research but welcome any information.
    Mitch
    6 Apr 2013, 07:49 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    Mitch, we know that Axion has worked with Princeton Power on the initial PowerCube and is who I suspect to be the company TG states they originally started with and are now back with. Their DRI-10 is UL certified...

     

    http://bit.ly/Zrh6qu

     

    Take it a little further and look at the specifications and you will find an interesting "supported" battery type. They specifically mention the PbC by name.

     

    http://bit.ly/Zrh6qu

     

    We are good on the UL certification. IMO...
    6 Apr 2013, 07:57 PM Reply Like
  • MitchS
    , contributor
    Comments (47) | Send Message
     
    Tim,

     

    Excellent points and good finds. Princeton carries approvals and the PbC batteries carry their own approvals, so risks during the testing should have been minimized.

     

    I'm going to keep searching, though, for any certs on a Hub or Powercube (mating the two major components together).

     

    You did indeed give me hope. Thanks.

     

    Mitch
    6 Apr 2013, 08:22 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Mitch S> "I have become more skeptical of Axion as time goes by?"

     

    I took some time and read all 40 of your comments to date and the vast majority are either skeptical or damning with faint praise.

     

    http://bit.ly/XwobrC

     

    Who are you trying to kid anyway?
    6 Apr 2013, 08:39 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    "I'm going to keep searching, though, for any certs on a Hub or Powercube (mating the two major components together)."

     

    Maybe the process takes awhile until it becomes visible to the sleuths such as yourself. Looking forward to your findings...
    6 Apr 2013, 08:41 PM Reply Like
  • jcrjg
    , contributor
    Comments (172) | Send Message
     
    John,

     

    This is a wow statement! You said this about LT yesterday. You accuse them of being trolls because they are "either skeptical or damning with faint praise"??? I went back and looked at some of Mitch's comments which go back at least a year. Many of which were positive and with nothing that I saw as factually wrong. If there is something wrong please correct it but just because they evaluate Axion's position differently than you do does not make them dishonest. Posting over a year and getting gradually more skeptical seems like a pretty long con.

     

    Yesterday when I asked about professional investors on the call, you tried to argue that retail investors are better than professional investors for companies like Axion. While I said that I think there is a lot wrong with the professional investment community, and you pointed out some of the reasons why, I can't understand how having only retail investors interested in Axion now is a good thing. Does that make you a pumper because you made an argument that while true in a certain way is not the most relevant to the situation Axion is in now. Is that the opposite of damning with faint praise.

     

    As I have said I am long Axion, but there is a lot to be skeptical about. For example a lot of hope is placed in the automotive market. I share that hope and see that as potentially a great application and a good way to eliminate waste. Your articles on this are very convincing. You also wrote an article that convincingly shows that PbC does not meet the cost targets (yet). While PbC is better than the other options it still does not seem to be good enough. TG does not even directly address this on the call. He has to be asked if we are in fleet testing with BMW. What else is he not telling us? I understand that Axion is early stage and is creating new markets and that makes it difficult to make predictions about revenue and timing but fleet testing is a pretty clear milestone that is of major interest on this board and TG did not tell us until he was asked. So I think skepticism is warranted.

     

    Automotive is just one area, but there are many other areas that have major impacts on the economic return to existing shareholders. The purpose of this site is to help us sort through these but I feel that John's attitude and attacks on people who "damn with faint praise" gets in the way of that and is a major reason that I have a smaller position than I otherwise would.
    7 Apr 2013, 01:50 PM Reply Like
  • MitchS
    , contributor
    Comments (47) | Send Message
     
    John,
    Apparently you view skepticism and kidding as the same. No, I couldn't be more serious or straightforward.

     

    As a shareholder and investor it behooves me to evaluate this company in which I have significant (to me) capital invested. Your tone suggests I should accept management's actions and statements without question or keep my concerns to myself. That attitude runs contrary to the purpose of a community-based investment forum.

     

    I second jcrjg's suggestion that you "doth protest too much."

     

    Mitch
    7 Apr 2013, 04:09 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I'm sorry if you've taken offense, but you might want to take a hard look at what you say and how you say it. Whether we know it or not, our words influence others.

     

    In 2004 I got into a hell of a fight with an Axion director after I told him that he needed to put on a coat and tie before sending me e-mails.

     

    The same principle applies here. Think about the impact your words have on others before blithely typing the emotion of the day and enshrining it in history.
    7 Apr 2013, 04:53 PM Reply Like
  • shaggydude4hire
    , contributor
    Comments (19) | Send Message
     
    John's attitude towards you is a major reason that you have a smaller position in AXPW?

     

    wow
    8 Apr 2013, 10:44 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Shaggydude, You'll see some level of tolerance here. Or, at times, exhaustion.

     

    In an environment like this, you should never hear such a comment.
    8 Apr 2013, 11:55 PM Reply Like
  • JRP3
    , contributor
    Comments (7623) | Send Message
     
    "Think about the impact your words have on others before blithely typing the emotion of the day and enshrining it in history."

     

    If only you took the same advice. It's rather obvious that your habit of calling into question the motives of anyone not towing your line is less than productive. jcrg was right on the money with his post, probably why it has 17 likes at this point. I'm sure you won't change your tactics but hopefully you are at least becoming aware that they aren't very affective. I will confess to not wearing a coat and tie for this reply.
    9 Apr 2013, 09:41 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    I originally chose not to add my reply to this matter, but since others are piling in: Even before John called out those two, I have always noticed them to be on the negative side, with sometimes having the facts distorted. It wasn't enough to label them as trolls, but it was enough to make me read their words more or less carefully.

     

    That said, John does have a knack for telling a good tale, so it's probably a case of high expectations being dashed with impatience. I can only hope it doesn't end that way for all of us.
    9 Apr 2013, 02:19 PM Reply Like
  • Futurist
    , contributor
    Comments (2124) | Send Message
     
    Ranma,
    As fair a way of saying it as I have heard.
    9 Apr 2013, 02:29 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    Ranma, I have not "always" been negative. The past 18-24 months I have been negative with spurts of optimism like with the NSC purchase.. 2 years ago the enthusiasm here was always BMW fleet testing in the next 6 months when everything you read was "maybe" SS might be in 2015-2016 models.

     

    and, if you bought the stock in the last 2 years, is the stock price up or down ? That's the true measurement of an investment to me.

     

    JP has done an excellent job of telling the story and in the process allowed the redistribution of large blocks of stock from large holders to individuals. Time will tell if he did them a favor or if we just caught a falling knife.
    9 Apr 2013, 02:54 PM Reply Like
  • MitchS
    , contributor
    Comments (47) | Send Message
     
    Ranma,
    My search for information apparently has come across to you as a negative slant. Of late I confess to having a more negative opinion of Axion, as I've stated, but I believe for good reason. It has consumed and currently continues to consume, not generate, capital, which to me is the primary purpose of a corporation. I was disappointed when an announcement and expectation of 300% revenue growth turned out to be false. I am disappointed that other products are getting design wins in Axion's markets (auto and grid energy storage, e.g.) while Axion doesn't.

     

    I admit my expectations may be aggressive for an until-recently development stage company, but I don't think unreasonable. This board's attitude generally seems more lenient towards management and results than mine. I have a different view and contribute what I think are useful and generally critical points. I of course think this forum could benefit from my approach. By definition I think everyone else must feel the same, or he wouldn't post.
    10 Apr 2013, 11:45 AM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    Thanks everybody for your thoughts and comments on the employment extensions. I found the discussion to be quite helpful, and am now feeling a bit more optimistic.
    6 Apr 2013, 01:25 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Well Bunky, want to make a living developing CSP projects?

     

    "The Genesis Solar Energy Project in California likewise received financial help from the Department of Energy. The department partially guaranteed an $852 million loan to support the development of the Genesis project, according to the department’s website.

     

    NextEra Energy Resources, the developer of the Genesis project, built the solar energy project in a flood-prone California valley, which performed as expected in the middle of last year, flooding and inflicting “massive” damage on the Genesis project.

     

    The California Energy Commission indicates that the Genesis project is just over 43 percent complete. A NextEra spokesman said the project will come online in two phases, half at the end of 2013 and the other half in late 2014."

     

    from:

     

    The Solar Panel Domino Effect
    Bankruptcy of mirror manufacturer may disrupt government solar projects

     

    http://bit.ly/11C1f9N

     

    (BTW, the answer seems to be no ... there are enough other competitors/suppliers)

     

    But the "performed as expected" leads to this "read it and weep" cautionary tale:

     

    Genesis Solar Energy Project Updates (lots of history lessons)

     

    http://bit.ly/10DO1qb
    6 Apr 2013, 01:42 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    Seeking Alpha Article --- Trends in the Cost of Energy

     

    Here's an interesting paragraph in the beginning:

     

    In this article, the cost evolution of a variety of energy sources is examined. In particular, the role of renewable "Electronic Energy" in the form of PV will be examined in detail. The author shows data indicating that by 2020, photovoltaic electricity will be the lowest cost electrical energy available. This further asserts the need for a reliable storage solution compatible with wind and PV electricity generation.
    6 Apr 2013, 01:50 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Wayne: If you're a golfer you know you can't get anywhere until you hit the links! Where's the "links"? ;-))

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 02:17 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    Woops! -- Thanks for letting me know.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    6 Apr 2013, 03:00 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    I can't tell you how many times I've forgotten that last step. Especially in e-mails for some reason.

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 03:27 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    I know I was curious about the "who" - from the 10-K...

     

    Compensation Committee – Our board of directors has created a compensation committee that presently consists of Messrs. Averill, Kishinevsky and Wainwright. Mr.Wainwright serves as chairman of the compensation committee. The compensation committee makes recommendations concerning compensation of the executive management team and non-employee directors and administers our stock-based incentive compensation plans. The compensation committee typically meets in separate sessions independently of board meetings. The compensation committee typically schedules telephone meetings as necessary to fulfill its duties. The chairman establishes meeting agendas after consultation with other committee members and Mr. Thomas Granville, our Chief Executive Officer. Subject to supervision by the full board of directors, the compensation committee administers our stock option plans. Our Chief Executive Officer and other members of management regularly discuss our compensation issues with compensation committee members. Subject to compensation committee review, modification and approval, Mr. Granville typically makes recommendations respecting bonuses and equity incentive awards for the other members of the executive management team. The compensation committee in conjunction with other non-employee directors establishes all bonus and equity incentive awards for Mr. Granville and the other executive members of the management team. Our board of directors has determined that all members of the compensation committee would meet the independence requirements applicable to NYSE Amex listed companies although such standards do not apply to us.
    The compensation committee met twice during the year ended December 31, 2012. The compensation committee charter can be found on our website under “ About Axion; Corporate Governance; Committees ,” at http://bit.ly/nG6x1f.

     

    The Compensation Committee Charter:

     

    http://bit.ly/Xku492
    6 Apr 2013, 03:34 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    PROCESS FOR THE MANUFACTURE OF CARBON SHEET FOR AN ELECTRODE

     

    "A method of making a single carbon sheet for an electrode includes mixing activated carbon; adding a dispersion comprising a PTFE binder and water to the activated carbon to form a mixture; adding the mixture to a jet mill, and fibrillating the PTFE binder; and feeding the mixture with fibrillated PTFE to a roll mill to form a single carbon sheet in a single pass. "

     

    http://bit.ly/16EEJhO
    6 Apr 2013, 05:07 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Iindelco: Interesting reading. Really. E.g. here's where PbC V.2.0 cme from (do you recall - a set of test results showed a higher something or other for one version than the other?): "Double layer capacitance of an electrode made according to the Comparative Example measured in an edlc test cell on 1 mm electrodes, was measured to be 72.8 F/cm3 at 1 mV/s. An electrode made from sheet manufactured by Example 2 was measured to have a capacitance of 80.0 F/cm3 by the same method".

     

    I was also impressed that carbon sheets up to 3 meters lebgth have been produced.

     

    HrdToLove
    EDIT: A bit later: "The test results for the single cell batteries show about a 15% improvement in energy density. For the six cell batteries undergoing a deeper discharge, an increase of about 25% is seen. The increased energy is due to the more uniform fibrillation and distribution of the PTFE binder obtained by the process of the present invention, which leaves more of the carbon surface area available to the electrolyte".
    6 Apr 2013, 05:40 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    We know that they dropped entire sections from the 2012 10-K that had to do with prototyping and custom PbC creations. We also know the R&D has a new charter that has more to do with customer integration. Could the new sheeting process along with some other tweeks have created a new breed of PbC? one that doesn't suffer in the energy side of things?

     

    My first instinct is to believe it might be true. But when I give it some thought I wonder why Tom is not shouting the news from the roof tops. The only thing that I can think of is that the testing of the new product is not yet complete and that Tom is waiting for the results to make an announcement. That would be some announcement...

     

    EDIT: a link to my walk through comparison of the 2011-2012 10-K

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    6 Apr 2013, 06:03 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2108) | Send Message
     
    Really a fascinating description of the process. Furthermore, this description is clearly how they did it by hand as they developed the process and fine tuned the shear rate of the fibrillated PTFE, active carbon, conductive carbon and surfactant mixture.

     

    They have recently announced that this entire process has been automated at a scale for manufacturing the electrodes continuously. That is bound to result in a number of further patents for the tricks they used to scale up this process and automated it, I would imagine.

     

    Thanks, iindelco.

     

    Here is a description of the jet mill process that is critical to getting the PTFE shear fibrillation just right. http://bit.ly/12vm05N
    6 Apr 2013, 06:07 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin: Don't overlook the statement about using larger rollers - higher throughput possible with them.

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 06:31 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    Okay, so you might not want to shout from the roof tops about PbC v2.0 in the direction of NS or ePower unless you were prepared to swap out their PbC v1.x product. That would be quite the dilemma for the folks at Axion. Your two biggest demonstration projects have PbC v1.x? or do they? excess Finished goods...

     

    I better give it a rest. it's getting pretty hot under this TFH...
    6 Apr 2013, 06:35 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Tim: Actually I believe NSC & ePower would welcome the news. I'm sure they both comprehend the concept of evolution and refinement of a product and would see it a sign of strength that development and improvement continues that will benefit their later follow-on efforts.

     

    Besides, having a "better" one doesn't make the original "bad" - just makes the new one "even gooder"!

     

    HardToLove
    6 Apr 2013, 06:44 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2108) | Send Message
     
    I noticed that. My thought was larger rollers to make foot-wide, or two-foot wide electrodes could allow the PbC to be scaled up to make industrial-size stationary batteries for grid storage or hybrid marine applications, for example.

     

    We wouldn't want to be limited to the 30HT size described in the patent. ;-)
    6 Apr 2013, 06:46 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin, Thanks for the info. on jet milling.

     

    I love when people find and share things concerning our common interest because there is such diverse expertise here that we all get all kinds of input we'd never get individually. Tis' good.

     

    I thought it interesting that the input carbon for the negative electrode is not just coconut shell but can also include a percentage of "conductive carbon".

     

    Also find it interesting the opportunities for variables in the process. Read "Hard to replicate". In the last report from East Penn and Sandia on carbon additives for the NAM in VRLA batteries they indicated in their conclusions statement that it appears that the process of how the various carbons are added to the NAM appears to be just as important as what's added. That'sa nice if you're the one that's got the process down.

     

    HTL, Agree with your comments on advancing the technology to yield better performance. That's what "gooder" companies do and their customers will appreciate it.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:07 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    It's great that the new patent application explains how things used to be done and how new process differs from the original process. i'm also very happy that the application provides enough detail to show how and why the new process cuts out 95% of the labor while slashing waste, improving consistency and boosting performance.

     

    Whenever I've tried to explain the old way of doing things, I've found myself limited by my own technical depth, and reluctant to describe things that Axion might view as triple-secret IP. Now that they're talking in more detail than I could have provided, you guys with the technical and process engineering credentials can reach your own conclusions.
    6 Apr 2013, 07:08 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin, nice to have your experience even though most is beyond me. I agree on the form factor and even question the 30HT in rack mounted configurations. I would like to see a front terminal form factor that I believe is also the form factor for fork lifts...

     

    http://bit.ly/10FnnOW
    6 Apr 2013, 07:12 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    Question re-PbC V.2.0 with higher capacitance and higher energy density. Doesn't "higher capacitance" indicate more power and greater dynamic charge acceptance? Doesn't improved energy density indicate V.2.0 PbCs can store more energy so instead of a 30HT form factor PbC holding 70Ah and 500Wh (al la Rosewater PowerCube Technical Specifications) they might store 625 Wh?
    6 Apr 2013, 07:32 PM Reply Like
  • anthlj
    , contributor
    Comments (227) | Send Message
     
    The patent application linked above is a international PCT (patent Cooperation Treaty) filing that follows upon a U.S. provisional patent application 61/481 ,848 filed on May 3, 201 1 in the U.S. The initial US application publishes 18 months after submission.

     

    A PCT application is usually filed at any point in time up to 12 months from the initial or priority filing in the home country and can incorporate additional information in support of the claims. So the info Axion placed in the PCT filing is not super recent, at least 12 months old and may not speak directly to the recently heralded automated system.

     

    But there may not ever be a filing on that specific process. It can perhaps better serve the company by being maintained as a trade secret.
    6 Apr 2013, 08:31 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin, that is the best post yet today. To scale it up and be more competitive on large grid projects / solar/wind....that is really a big deal if they can pull it off,
    Along with higher energy doesn't hurt either, if they could get past the airport test would open many doors.

     

    Just wondering....the batteries sent back to AXPW from the test lab...Could that be the test that gave TB the ammunition about higher density ? Maybe not necessarily from BMW or the Asian manufacturer but the new AXPW batteries for AXPW ?
    6 Apr 2013, 08:50 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Anthlj, Thanks for the information. It's nice to know that we have someone on the board that knows about the patent process. And some of the advantages of trade secrets for that matter.
    6 Apr 2013, 09:58 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    You guys think it might eventually make sense for Axion to supply other battery chemistries that use a carbon electrode? IIRC, recently wtb or iinde or someone posted about some other chemistry that uses a carbon electrode. Seems to me it doesn't really matter in the long run who buys our electrodes, as long as they buy a lot of 'em at decent margins. Heck, if there was half a dozen different chemistries that wanted our carbon electrodes that might be great.
    6 Apr 2013, 10:40 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2108) | Send Message
     
    Excellent point, Mr I.

     

    I do not recall the patent ever specifying H2SO4 electrolyte chemistry in the claims section. It only refers to aqueous electrolyte and specifies the details of forming a carbon sheet electrode suitable for either batteries or capacitors. This leaves the door open for multiple chemistries and alternative devices that might benefit from a patented thin carbon electrode.
    7 Apr 2013, 12:47 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    SM, thanks, blind squirrel here.

     

    If I understand their patents correctly, Axion has a patent on lead acid batteries that use a carbon electrode, and now they have a patent for a superior way to make carbon sheets, but no patent on other battery chemistries that use a carbon electrode.

     

    Axion wants to be the carbon-electrode provider to the LA industry, but why not broaden that out to any battery industry that uses carbon electrodes? If Axion achieves dominance in the first, it well could help them dominate the second.

     

    Not saying they should do this now, as it might stretch them too thin, but eventually. Unless there is demand right now, or very soon from the other battery types. I'm not at all adverse to shifting a bit on the fly if it makes good sense.

     

    Anyone know what other devices might want our carbon products? Are there any big/profitable mkts? Heat shields for re-entry space vehicles? lol Water filters? Can I getta Brita?
    7 Apr 2013, 01:21 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin: Actually I was refering to the diameters - 2" and 3" now, IIRC, and they mentioned the benefits of 12" rollers. I'd have to read again, but the "nip" of the larger-diameter rollers offer some benefits.

     

    Since they've already produced a 3 meter long sheet with good mechanical properties and consistency, I don't they are limited in scaling up ATM.

     

    HardToLove
    7 Apr 2013, 06:45 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin: Indelco's post reminded me - I forgot to say thanks for the jet milling link. I found it fascinating. The primary reason is it gives a small view into what Axion must have gone through to bring the development of the process in-house. Just imagine the R & D for *every* step of the process, the milling being only one, to find existing tools and processes that could be adapted, adopted and refined to get the final product.

     

    It, for me, gives small insight into *why* things take so long.

     

    Thanks for the link!
    HardToLove
    7 Apr 2013, 06:52 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The critical thing to remember with the carbon sheeting is that there was nobody in the world making a similar component when we started the process, which means there were no production processes and machines for making similar components and Axion had to do its own innovation from the ground up. It all goes back to the idea that the electrode assemblies are simple five layer laminations, but the amount of innovation and know how embodied in each layer is immense because a potential knock-off artist can easily learn what Axion has done but that teaches nothing about how Axion did it, and that's the true IP stockade.
    7 Apr 2013, 08:06 AM Reply Like
  • Al Marshall
    , contributor
    Comments (498) | Send Message
     
    Delayed reaction to the management contracts.

     

    I have to admit that I'm not very excited about new contracts all around. Looking on the bright side, the board seems to be trying to fortify management for its negotiation with potential investors. Nevertheless, by making the announcement late on a Friday, it's clear that they want to keep this low profile. Doesn't exactly inspire confidence.

     

    Personally, I'm losing patience. Mr. Granville seems like a guy who knows how to negotiate with unions but I'm not sure he knows how to negotiate with customers.

     

    You could paint a picture that this would have been the time to change management. Maybe Mr. Granville is Moses, the person with the discipline to lead the company through the desert, but not the guy to lead the company into the promised land. If you don't like the biblical analogy, try Winston Churchill being voted out of office at the end of WWII. I feel misled on the carbon sheeting issue (and we have tens of thousands of concentrator comments that would indicate I'm not the only one) and while maybe the secrecy on that issue was necessary (I'm not ready to concede that point) I no longer trust this management team.

     

    That said, IF the carbon sheeting issue was the last big cost hurdle, then Axion should have a clear path to success. I've been running the numbers trying to come up with a cost estimate for the PbC. If you assume 50,000 PbC batteries/year of production then it appears Axion should be the low cost producer of advanced batteries that it has always claimed it would be. If you assume much lower production volumes then you arrive at $463 batteries (my recollection of the Norfolk Southern price). The primary issue appears to be allocating the fixed costs of the electrode and sheeting lines and some assumption about operating expense for those lines (I’m thinking $5m and $2m fixed costs respectively depreciated over 5 years ($1.4m) along with an equal amount for operations. So, $2.8m / 50k equals $56 dollars/unit offset by $12 (comparing the cost of the carbon to the reduced lead content vs. AGM) for net $44 additional cost vs. AGM. If you assume 10,000 batteries then you get $268 in additional costs. I’m working on a separate post on costs that I’ll post in the coming days if this post doesn’t get me tarred and feathered first.

     

    I think Axion needs a leader who will do some forward pricing, i.e. who will make pricing decisions based on a higher percentage of capacity utilization than is currently being utilized. When Mr. Granville stated that he intends to use his cost breakthrough to increase margins rather than lower prices, that made me think he doesn't intend to do any forward pricing. I am hoping he was just saying that so as not to give potential customers more leverage in pricing negotiations, but I’ve lost enough faith that I wouldn’t bet on it.

     

    This management team seems to be swinging for the fences, hoping to land a major customer like a BMW, at a very high margin. If they can do so, Axion's market cap will skyrocket. However, I don't think that's going to happen anytime soon for reasons I’ve discussed in numerous other posts. I'm starting to wonder if BMW will turn out to be the worst thing that has ever happened to Axion because it caused Axion to change course from a bottom-up strategy that was by definition very incremental in nature, to a top down strategy that puts us in what looks like an all or nothing position that is costing us nearly 10m shares/quarter to maintain

     

    Apologies for the long rant. Hopefully, this isn't just my frustration with the fund-raising process. Even if that is announced tomorrow, I still think all of the above still applies. A successful funding doesn't change what appears to be a disappointing job of marketing.
    6 Apr 2013, 06:51 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2329) | Send Message
     
    I do appreciate the counter argument in your post. I hopes others with some knowledge about these things come forward and defend TG or add to the points you made.

     

    My only impression of TG compared to hundreds of CC calls I've listened to is that he seems to lack charisma. Then again he is older than many and I always figured batteries is kind of a dry subject anyhow.
    6 Apr 2013, 08:18 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1341) | Send Message
     
    Al, I really like your Moses analogy and had similar thoughts about some of your leadership points myself. That was until the contract announcement late Friday. It appears the board has announced that they are behind the current leadership.

     

    Perhaps things will be different if we are fortunate enough to have landed a strategic partner and can now focus on production instead of where our next meal is coming from...
    6 Apr 2013, 08:57 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    APM, very good and legitimate questions. More people should ask / demand answers to them. Even to the point of writing to all the board members and express concerns.
    If everything is rosy and just not announced, then let them respond.

     

    The power of axionista's is used very poorly IMO.
    6 Apr 2013, 08:58 PM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2094) | Send Message
     
    LT,
    " If everything is rosy and just not announced, then let them respond."

     

    How can they respond if they are not ready to make an announcement? I am encouraged by the contracts and lease renewal. To me it speaks of continuity and planned growth. I also think that the financing problem is solved, you don't commit to something if you don't know the money is there. Constant focus on this blog can increase anxiety and anticipation (let alone frustration) if you let it. Might be time to focus on other parts of your life while this sorts out. Remember all the speculation, frustration and some harsh words last year? I hope we have all grown from that rough experience. It isn't what the company or management are putting us through, but what we are putting ourselves through.
    I come here to learn and for the social contact, the stock is in my sock drawer for a reason.
    6 Apr 2013, 09:19 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    Apmarshall
    I feel like you are telling a mouse to kick an elephant into gear and getting frustrated with the mouse for his inaction.
    ePower is moving. Rosewater has performance goals it has to reach or it will be replaced.
    Exactly what you expect anyone with a company the size of Axion to do to get BMW or NSC to move?

     

    Yeah I want them to move too but that ain't going to change things or speed them up.

     

    We are all hoping the financial part is going well. The technical parts seem to be coming together. Yes we have to wait on the elephants. The cubes will be interesting. I expect one time orders at first.

     

    I have no Idea how long those will take. I expect none went far without UL listing.

     

    Money now. Contracts after I'm afraid.
    6 Apr 2013, 10:51 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Let me start by saying that frank, thoughtful discussion here is not only helpful, but necessary to my ongoing due diligence efforts. Thanks.

     

    I think if an AXPW investor thinks TG is not good enough, they probably shouldn't have bought shares in the first place (otherwise they were assuming a replacement, based on no evidence that one was forthcoming), but if having done so, they should probably sell. Investing in a company if you think there's an inadequate or crappy guy at the top is no way to invest.

     

    Ever since I first invested in AXPW, I assumed, after reading the emphasized parts in TG's bio and seeing what has happened at Axion, that TG's strength would be cost control and his weakness, sales. So he hired a battery sales heavyweight in Vani to compensate. Excellent admission and mitigation. And Averill on the Board matters, too, I think.

     

    In the end, though, we've got TG and the other three mgmt guys for three more years, regardless of personal opinion as to their efficacy. My patience is wearing thinner, too, but I'm still all-in.
    7 Apr 2013, 12:54 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    SD: "It isn't what the company or management are putting us through, but what we are putting ourselves through".

     

    So true, so true. But it must be expected as part of DD with always incomplete and maybe poorly comprehended information. The only bad part is the normal human tendency to swing to the extremes of suppositions and doubts rather than being somewhere in the middle, which is where the truth more likely resides the vast majority of the time.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    7 Apr 2013, 07:09 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1909) | Send Message
     
    One worry of mine has always been that the current executives would not be around long enough to fully execute their plan and approach that I believe they have been crafting pretty meticulously for years; mainly, putting out a fully developed, fully automated, fully scalable, fully quality controlled product into the market. I could not imagine new executives coming in and pretending to be able to take over at this stage in the companies development with the relationships that have already been forged and considering the uniqueness of the PbC and the carbon electrodes. There may be a time for that down the road but the new team has come way too far for that last second debacle now. Vani was hired a week before the last offering and we assumed it was part of the deal for the investors to get a solid marketing leader in place, I believe we are seeing the same thing here with the contracts.

     

    "This management team seems to be swinging for the fences"
    We are all swinging for the fences here and we should be so lucky to have a management team and stockholder base all on the same page. One off sales for nickels and dimes is not what I am looking for which is why I shrug my shoulders at the HUB and even ePower, it is great these things can help put food on the table considering the crumbs it takes to keep Axion alive (and they should offer some level of comfort and margin of safety on the risk side) but I want to get fat on a feast and so does management. The less ties and constraints they have to smaller one or two-off deals the more maneuverability in negotiations they have with customer number one who shows up with a mighty check.
    7 Apr 2013, 08:51 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    "I assumed, after reading the emphasized parts in TG's bio and seeing what has happened at Axion, that TG's strength would be cost control and his weakness, sales. So he hired a battery sales heavyweight in Vani to compensate. Excellent admission and mitigation."

     

    Excellent admission and mitigation PROVIDED TG listens and learns from competent sales heavyweight vice other voices. It remains to be seen whether sales/marketing resources used in 2012 are effective and where responsibility for lack of successful marketing rightly falls.
    7 Apr 2013, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    D-Inv: "...lack of successful marketing rightly falls".

     

    IMHO, until we had a process that can reliably and repetitively produce, at scale, a finished product suitable to various applications, a "successful" marketing effort, i.e. "sales", would have been highly unlikely ... and very risky.

     

    What *major* industry is going to commit to a manually-produced product of (likely) inconsistent quality that can't be assured producible at the scales needed? Remember, the base product is considered a "commodity".

     

    To carp about lack of sales success before such a production process is available seems incongruous to me. Even if we allow for the fabrication capability to have been in place for a year or more, we know the snails with which we are dealing cause *very* long lead-times from first contact to *any* progress at all.

     

    One possible scenario if they had successfully sold prior to the mentioned capability: customer dissatisfaction with quality, delivery schedule failures or inability to contract a schedule to meet customer needs, excessive warranty cost, deterioration of reputation, increased cost to remedy production issues (A123 failure anyone?), ...

     

    What odds would anyone give that a focus on "get *something* sold *now*" would produce results other than these?

     

    I'll take the options and potential we have now in a heartbeat over those others.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    EDIT: Risk vs. reward applies in places other than the stock market you know.
    7 Apr 2013, 10:45 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    HTL >"What *major* industry is going to commit to a manually-produced product of (likely) inconsistent quality that can't be assured producible at the scales needed?"

     

    The answer for automotive is no way. And probably for rail as well. The fact that the two have progressed in their testing to the level they have tells me that Axion has shown progress in their commitments to scale. Progress to a level that the management of these two industries are finding acceptable risk as they move toward possible deployment.

     

    Today I once again spent a little time looking around at forms concerning battery issues in BMW vehicles. After looking some I have no doubt BMW has a problem. It's, IMO, masked by consumer ignorance and if it wasn't they might just have a revolt. It's no wonder they are giving some concessions to Toyota to work together on battery technology. This is not how a premium auto concern should be treating their customers and I think BMW well knows it.
    7 Apr 2013, 11:00 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2384) | Send Message
     
    Good points HTL.

     

    Wonder if this explains the delay in delivery for NS-999 ... maybe NSC demanded batteries with electrodes from the new automated line. And maybe we had said "we'll be done any day now" too soon ... hence the order announcement so much earlier.

     

    Unfortunately, not at all clear on when the "big breakthrough" actually happened on the calendar (as opposed to the press release.)

     

    Taking this even further, might it be possible that the inventory buildup was part of an NSC demand to be shown a certain demonstrated/proven (not just predicted) production level above and beyond their needs for just one locomotive?
    7 Apr 2013, 11:07 AM Reply Like
  • metroneanderthal
    , contributor
    Comments (1500) | Send Message
     
    HTL,
    Agree with you fully. However, my criticism is that I am so unaware and left in the dark - and I feel that we do an extra amount of DD on this board, that I've been expecting sales for the last six months. I expected that comments like "strap on", or "strap in" meant that sales were on the way within a few months and that production issues were pretty much resolved and just being fine tuned: maybe it's just all the abundant sunshine from my posterior and I'm not listening closely enough, or am asking the wrong questions, but seems that I've been barking up the wrong path - intentional mixed metaphor - for whatever reason.
    7 Apr 2013, 11:11 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Metro, IMO You're absolutely right. TG really screwed up with his insinuations that we were ready for takeoff when he did last year. Really dumb move. Your a%$ may be enlightened but it was TG blowing smoke out of his.
    7 Apr 2013, 11:18 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Metro: "... like "strap on", or "strap in" meant that sales were on the way ..."

     

    Agree. We're all tossed about by things like that. As to whether TG should say such, I chalk it up to him being human and getting excited as he sees things he worked on for so long start to bloom.

     

    It's sort of a "damned if you do and damned if you don't" situation though. I commented a long time ago about his dry delivery needing improvement. So when he lets some of his excitement seep out, he gets pilloried there because it was, in retrospect and the eyes of us long-suffering, inappropriate.

     

    Some have commented in the past that TG needs to be more supportive of the stock in his demeanor. There's probably a "happy medium" that would produce a bell curve of satisfaction among us investors, but I have no idea where that point lies in the range of "too dry" to "too exuberant".

     

    That would also leave the issue of timing, which his "strap in" comments exposed. So much is outside his control and he can only work with the cloudy crystal ball he's got.

     

    I'm glad it's not me.

     

    HardToLove
    7 Apr 2013, 11:24 AM Reply Like