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  • Axion Power Concentrator 355 August 3 '14: Changed Loan, IP-Secured MDA; David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved [View instapost]
    I thought a lot about selling out my Axion holdings over the past two months after tenaciously holding on over a mighty bumpy road over the past several years. (In anticipation of the NS rollout and imminent significant sales, I even added 25% to my holdings as recently as early May, 2014). — As a bit of courtesy, I thought I would make the disclosure that I finally (very reluctantly) did sell out this past week (125K). Given my own circumstances, the risk/reward ratio was no longer compelling for me, and I no longer felt it worked in my favor.

    My decision was influenced by some of our resident bears/critics, Stefan, Mayascribe, Rick, NGS, Amouna, LT, etc. The pragmatic posts of more neutral to bullish parties such as Mr I, APMarshall, RA and others also played a role. I also appreciated Ranma’a and Patrick’s posts for their consistently upbeat perspectives. These combined posts helped me balance many differing viewpoints, and I’m grateful to have had them all. I was also influenced by one our most vocal bulls, JP. Here’s a couple of snippets he posted recently, with his notable words in triple quotes:

    — The reverse split and market upgrade proposal tell me that management is serious about dealing with a better class of investor. “”“There's simply no way to tell whether their efforts will be successful.”“”

    — Axion has buyers, but many have suffered from battered stockholders syndrome and painful experience is “”“enough to make anyone cautious when another financing appears on the horizon with no clear business development timeline.”“”
    ---
    There were many factors involved in my decision, with none being more important than my own unique risk tolerance at this particular time. A primary consideration that eventually brought clarity to my decision came from none other than TG himself. His words from just after the PIPE deal in May, 2013 went something like, “It’s a tough market out there; we feel fortunate to have secured this financing.”

    If TG felt grateful for getting the PIPE deal, it should be clear just how close Axion came to closing up shop back then. In other words, they barely survived. I now agree with Mayascribe, who wrote in a recent post, “Axion is in a perilous situation”. (http://is.gd/sJyFPm) — I have no idea whether I’m correct in my assessment, but I don’t think the odds of Axion securing a favorable financing are particularly good. I also don’t like the odds that they can secure any financing at all.

    It became clear to me that there’s way too much I don’t know about too many important things. This insufficient information eventually made it too difficult for me to justify staying invested in this high risk/high reward adventure (at this time). My main concern: Will there be ANY kind of financing available when there are no recurring sales, no permanent CFO, and a recent CEO change? How will the venture capital markets look at all this? I’ve determined I’m just not a sophisticated enough investor to discern how to evaluate what the true risks are at this critical juncture. Hearing nothing from DDG left me with nothing tangible enough to hang my hat on.
    ---
    Of course, this uncertain scenario could change in the blink of an eye with a nod from a major partner, and/or some significant sales that had a lot of potential to be recurring, and more. I no longer believe however that a single sale, such as the BySolar one which increased the pps by 30%, would be significant enough to avoid a less than optimal financing.

    I had a hope at one point that DDG could successfully negotiate some kind of strategic partnership, but we don’t even know if he’s trying. I do think there’s good potential in a couple weeks if DDG comes across well at the August 15 quarterly meeting. I had initially decided to wait until then before making a selling decision, but given how quickly things deteriorated these past two weeks, which made me think the NASDAQ uplisting is now in jeopardy, that just became too late for me.

    Though I sold out completely, I may reinvest some available monies after the financing takes place, unless the terms are so onerous that it will (like the PIPE) weigh on the pps for a long time to come. I’m currently inclined to re-purchase at least 25K shares or so, and hope for a miracle that will take the pps to a dollar in the coming years, at which point I could come close to break even (and perhaps salvage a little dignity as well).
    ---
    Though my experience as an Axion shareholder has been fairly disastrous, I’ll sign off here with an assurance. I will not turn into some kind of rabid posting Johnny Rambo II, occasionally spewing forth bitter, sarcastic invective. I absolutely hope I’m wrong in my fairly dour appraisal of Axion’s prospects, and I will be wishing the very best for Axion, its top management, and its remaining legacy shareholders. — But my own circumstances compel me to become less focused on Axion, and more fully focused on my challenging Lyme situation. Doing this will likely have the additional benefit of allowing me to sleep a bit better at night as well (already has).

    I hope this note doesn’t come across as too moribund. There may even be a bright side to this. Now that I’ve sold all of my shares, the pps will more than likely rebound. There’s still lots of good reasons to believe that could happen at any time, with DDG’s resume and formidable skills perhaps being the most important factor. And in spite of the risk/reward profile currently not working for me, I do believe the odds favor Axion’s eventual success.

    Not sure how much I’ll be hanging out here going forward, so perhaps this is a farewell of sorts (for the time being). Perhaps I’ll see you again down the road if DDG performs up to his salary, the pps has adjusted to the new share count, significant orders are right around the corner, and the risk/reward ratio again becomes compelling (lots of if’s). — For now, I wish everybody the best, and leave with a variation on that infamous Vulcan blessing, “May all Axionistas (past, present, and future) live long and prosper. :-)
    Aug 3 12:03 AM | 40 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 292: Dec. 27 '13: Q3 '13 Results; Sale Of PowerCube™ ESS; John Petersen Joins EPower [View instapost]
    How about another poll. I've been wondering whether this end of year selling will also be the end of -.10 pps within the first couple weeks or so of the new year. My inclination is to believe we'll be above .10 at least by January 15, so add one like to this post:

    YES, I believe pps will be above .10 by January 15.
    Dec 27 02:08 PM | 32 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 354 July 31 '14: David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available [View instapost]
    Bob Averill> — “Axion's management needs our full support at this point in time and they have mine.”
    ---
    Hi Bob, thanks so much for checking in. As you can see, there’s a lot of fear and paranoia within the shareholder ranks. Many of us long-term shareholders are very concerned at this time, especially about the uncertainty surrounding the upcoming financing. In short, I feel we need a bit of support from Axion management as much as they need ours.

    A fair amount has been written here about the lack of communication from our new CEO. I think a very effective gesture that could alleviate much of shareholders’ angst would be to hear from DDG directly. I wonder if you would be willing to suggest to him he pen a thoughtful letter to shareholders, introducing himself, setting out a realistic vision, and address (at least in part) some of the major concerns we have.

    I think such a letter could go a long way toward settling down some frayed nerves, and help us focus on the positives at a time when many are focused on the potential negatives. I think your posting here as already had that same effect. Thanks again for checking in. Much appreciated.
    Aug 1 12:41 AM | 30 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 349 July 13 '14: David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved; Definitive Reverse Split Consent Solicitation; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available [View instapost]
    My brother is an accomplished musician (hammered dulcimer) who successfully worked the craft show circuit for a number years selling CDs. One day I was at a show with him, a day when there were lots of people out and about, with most of them in a buying mood. As I talked with vendors, it seemed almost unanimous that they were having a “good” day.

    I then ran into a vendor who looked a bit glum, and upon asking him how he did, replied that he didn’t do very well. As we walked along, we came upon his booth. Prominently displayed were pictures of politicians from one of the major political parties (it was election season). It was immediately clear to me (though not to him) why he didn’t do well. He offended the political sensibilities of approx. half the people who walked by his booth.

    From this experience, I realized even more how important it is to not discuss politics, unless I’m with like-minded people, or I have an interest in “mixing things up” (which is not my nature). It seems clear that no matter what political comment is made within a disparate group of people, roughly half will agree, the other half will likely be rather offended. I’m a bit of a political junkie, and am sometimes tempted to make a little political commentary here and there. But the realization it’s going to be at least somewhat offensive to half the readers here makes me think the better of it.
    Jul 14 04:34 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 255: July 27: Two Axion Forbes Articles By Tom Konrad; John Petersen On The PIPE Mechanics And Incentives [View instapost]
    I want to take a few moments to extend a special thank you to John P. for his invaluable [and timely] contribution with his article published this past week on the PIPE financing. It seemed clear he had given the subject material a lot of thought and consideration, not only from a factual perspective, but also on how to take complex financial and contract jargon, and present it in a clear and concise manner, so as to make it as understandable as possible.

    I watched a movie once where Denzel Washington played a lawyer, and sprinkled throughout the movie, he made the comment, “Explain it to me as if I’m a six year old”. It was never in the context of “dumbing down” a message, but to have it presented it in a way that’s readily understandable to another person. I’ve since always appreciated what a skill it is to do just that.

    I also watched an interview recently that Charlie Rose did with David McCullough, a prolific and highly successful history author/writer. In that interview, he said something like, “Clear writing is about thinking clearly, and that’s why it’s so hard; and that’s why I love it!” — His comments drove home the point for me that the act of writing literally forces us to think clearly. And if that clarity can come across to readers, it allows the reader to think more clearly as well.

    These points are especially relevant for me (us?) at this time because of the two articles that were released by Tom Konrad this week. In my own estimation, TK did not pause long enough before putting out some rather provocative comments, which in turn caused a certain amount of consternation for Axion shareholders. A couple of his comments even left me with the impulse to head for the exits before the PIPE investors could do me more harm. [And I consider myself to be one of the more stalwart and loyal of Axion shareholders]. In short, some of TK’s comments left me a bit confused, a bit angry, and a bit more despondent about what a difficult situation this PIPE financing has brought us to.

    It wasn’t until after I read JP’s article that I realized my reactions to TK’s articles had mostly to do with a lack of clarity on his part on some key points. It just seemed his provocative comments were made without making the case in a methodical and thorough manner. JP’s article on the other hand, struck me as thorough, reasoned, and rational, and expressed in a way my brain could easily assimilate. This being the case even though I am in the same boat as DRich, when he opined, “I'm more than a little financially ignorant and micro-cap challenged.” — Nice line Drich! In short, whereas TK’s article left me feeling a bit edgy, JP’s article helped me to relax, A LOT!

    A key point that I took away from both TK and JP’s articles is they seem to agree that the PIPE investors would not have lent money to Axion in the first place had they not had confidence it was a strong company and worth investing in. It would not make financial sense to invest in a failing business, or to try to do anything to cause it to fail. They only want to make as much money as possible. TK seems to think that in order to do this, they may want to pressure the pps for another 3-4 months or so to maximize their profits. JP believes we may have already seen the worst, and made a persuasive case they could maximize their profits by easing off on the pressure in the near term. For me as an Axion shareholder, EITHER of these two scenarios makes it appear that a floor is in sight.

    Another thing that came out of my musings this past week (and there were a lot of them!) is that this PIPE financing has only magnified what seems to be the current dynamic of Axion being a coiled stock. Never has its pps been so battered, and never has its intrinsic value been so high. Yes, the pps could slide even further in the coming weeks or months, but when good news announcements start coming in [and I’m confident they will], then that spring will uncoil. And the pps has the potential to double, and perhaps double again, in literally the blink of an eye. There’s just no way I’m going to try to time that one, and am sitting tight. I believe the odds are overwhelmingly on our sides.

    Thanks again JP. I think you did a great job on your article, and provided a much needed boost for some of us beleaguered Axionistas.
    Jul 27 04:07 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 249: July 8: Axion Power Receives Additional Purchase Order From EPower Engine Systems To Supply PbC® Batteries And Battery Management Systems For (10) Class 8 Heavy-Duty Trucks [View instapost]
    I sat down with my wife last night to discuss what’s been happening with Axion and its pps since June 1. She’s been aware of its falling price, but has not been overly concerned because she considers it to be a long-term investment, and has put it in the “stick it in the sock drawer” category. But I wanted to fill her in on what’s been happening the past few weeks, and how I’ve come to believe the risk/reward ratio I described to her over the previous 12 months [as she gradually increased her position] has changed fairly dramatically since the completed financing on May 8.

    I highlighted three main points. 1) The financing deal that was reached in May has turned out to be far more deleterious than most everybody on this board could have imagined at the time, even to its most vociferous critics. 2) The financing company [Maxim] is now viewed by most on this board as a “vulture” financing company [similar to a loan shark]. 3) Faith in management, already fairly low to begin with, has plummeted since that time, exacerbated by the fact their investor communications are so poor.

    Regarding Maxim, I explained how they are trying to maximize their profits in whatever way they can. And that contrary to TG’s numerous assertions he was negotiating financing with entities that were in alignment with Axion’s strategic interests, that this did not turn out to be the case. I then described some of the tactics companies like Maxim often use to manipulate the pps of vulnerable companies downward so as to accumulate more shares, and how this appeared to be what’s happening at this time.

    Her first response was something like, “Well, isn’t that illegal?” [She’s can be so practical in a lot of ways]. I explained that what they were doing was likely legal, or close enough to it so as to preclude any kind of legal action that might be considered. She then asked if there was any way to get out of this toxic financing arrangement. I told her there really wasn’t, and that it looked like we’re going to have to endure having many more diluted shares being dumped on the market than we had originally anticipated. And the more shares that were issued, the more power it gave to Maxim.

    I mentioned that despite this, Axion had enough money to survive at its current levels of operations for at least another 15 months, with a likelihood extra income during this time would extend that date outwards. And hopefully, if they ever did need more financing, there would be enough positive developments to preclude ever having to consider such a similar toxic financing arrangement again. I also mentioned that it’s now widely perceived on this board there is now a greater risk to Axion surviving the most recent financing debacle, and it’s believed to be fairly doubtful they could survive another one of such magnitude.

    I then explained how many on this board felt Axion had gotten into this predicament in the first place. I primarily focused on how Axion, for some reason, doesn’t seem to know how to put its best foot forward, having stumbled badly in two major regards. 1) How they failed miserably for many years to effectively market an impressive product to many businesses that could fairly easily find innovative applications for it, if they only knew about it. And 2) How they somehow failed to convince prospective strategic investors [those whose interests were TRULY aligned with Axion’s] just how compelling Axion’s prospects are at this time.

    I mentioned how Ed Buiel, a highly respected person in the battery business, had worked for Axion for a number of years, and had long been perplexed as to why Axion couldn’t effectively market such a fabulous product. And how he eventually became discouraged to the point where he didn’t feel their sales performance was ever going to improve, and decided to sell all his shares years ago. [Ed, if you read this, I hope I’ve described your take on things at least fairly accurately].

    I also shared my own analogy of how I viewed Axion. I compared it to a seedling that has the potential to turn into a mighty oak tree. But similar to a seedling that needs adequate water at a critical time to survive, a small micro-cap company like Axion needs adequate money to survive fragile times, and everything should be done to preserve every last dollar. Which brought me to recent bonuses paid to management, which continues to rankle me [I am open to comments about whether it should or not].

    I told her my own personal beef with management was that I didn’t believe it was appropriate for them to be accepting bonuses at a time Axion was desperately trying to survive, and especially not at a time they were negotiating a financing arrangement that essentially put Axion at greater risk of survival. I know some here would say they did what they had to do to keep the doors open. Well, if they had marketed the PbC and negotiated necessary financing with even average competency, I don’t believe they would have ever found themselves in such a difficult position. — Poor grades to them for execution on both these counts, and certainly not a performance worthy of bonuses.

    I concluded our roughly 20-minute conversation by expounding a bit more on what Axion could do to get out from under the negative consequences of the toxic financing. And that it mostly had to do with positive developments happening and being announced in the near term. I mentioned the ePower announcement, the SBIR grant, BMW / NS possibilities, and more. And I told her that despite some of my grievances with management, I thought the odds were very good that some very positive things could develop soon to push the price back upwards toward .3106, and that I had no intention of selling my own shares. I explained that at this price, Maxim would likely find it advantageous to push the stock price higher, not being concerned whether pushing the stock price up or down was what it took to make themselves money.

    I hope this post doesn’t come across as overly negative. Others on this board have been critical of management performance, but I generally held to the belief that whoever was managing the company would bring their own strengths and weaknesses to bear. And I’ve felt it was only fair to be as tolerant as I could surrounding issues I didn’t have all the details on. But resorting to this latest to financing, and accepting concurrent bonuses at a time Axion was trying to survive has turned out to be just a bit too much for me. — Perhaps future performance will eventually show they deserved these bonuses. But being a fiscally conservative German, I’ve long held to the adage that one in the hand is worth two in the bush [or perhaps 5-6 in the bush]. And until you have that one in the hand, you don’t act as if you do.

    I guess in finishing up, I would say one last thing. If I had my druthers, I wish Axion management, if they’re monitoring this blog as I’ve heard they are, would show a little consideration and somehow acknowledge some of the incredibly insightful comments and valuable ideas that are posted here. And I don’t think it’s asking too much they then communicate in some way their appreciation for these suggestions. AND for the loyal Axion shareholders who post them.
    Jul 9 02:14 PM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 229: April 20: Axion Power On Panel At Energy Storage Economics 2.0 For New York City And Beyond [View instapost]
    I want to thank Mr Investor for coming back here and filling us in on his current sentiments. Without going back and reviewing all his posts, it seems he had some similar concerns to what Mercy had about a year ago. Loved the product and the prospects, but is not convinced [or willing to bet his money] that management can execute, with lack of actual sales being a top concern. I’ve been mulling this over, and remembered a post I made right after the last cc in which I transcribed some of TG’s and Chuck Trego’s comments. It starts out with an investor question:

    Okay, what can you tell us about the unusually high finished goods inventory of $1.677 million at year-end? — This is Chuck speaking. Actually that's a good question, and I appreciate you opening the comment on our inventory composition at the end of 2012 compared to the end of 2011. We have worked very hard this year not only to spend our cash wisely but also to rebalance our inventory to PREPARE IT FOR THE STRONG GROWTH that we anticipate going forward in PbC products.

    TG — We feel the success we’ve had in deploying our onsite cube into the PGM utility network, and the success of our net zero energy cube in the Washington Naval Yard, are partially responsible for the huge increase in quotation requests we’ve been receiving for projects in the U.S, and for projects in many countries outside of the U.S. Our sales force has been hard pressed to keep up with these requests, and to properly service the opportunities. As you might suspect, we have already made plans to staff up in this important segment of our company.
    .........................

    So, the inventory has been rebalanced to prepare for the strong growth anticipated for the PbC products, and they’re increasing their sales force. — Various comments from yesterday about TG reflect most here admire his skills [such as being a wise penny pincher], and what he’s accomplished thus far, but generally speaking, a poor salesman. If it’s true TG is a wise penny pincher [which I concur with], then the question for me is, “Would he be making plans to invest more heavily into the sales force if there were not some very promising prospects of this investment delivering?” I don’t think so..

    As far as whether TG is a good salesman or not, somebody at Axion apparently persuaded BMW and NS to invest millions into PbC research, which apparently continues to draw more research dollars by other OEMs. No small “sales” accomplishment in my mind. — All this indicates to me sales will likely start picking up this year, and when that happens, the pps will improve. And since I’m not smart enough to know when to get in and out and try to time it all, I’ll continue to sit tight.
    Apr 20 10:02 AM | 21 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Investing in Natural Gas: It's Time [View article]
    I have a generally favorable opinion of the Obama administration, but I do think they're missing the boat on NG. At the minimum, steps should be taken to start building the infrastructure to allow most of the trucking in this country to run on NG.

    I've heard we have 1 1/2 times the energy equivalent in NG reserves as Saudi Arabia has in oil. This indicates to me that eventually, the NG train will get rolling. And there will probably be no better time than the very near future to go on board.
    Aug 23 09:45 PM | 20 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 335: May 19 '14: Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available; Q1 '14 Filing Released;Axion Receives 4 Powercubes Order; Reverse Split Consent Solicitation Filed [View instapost]
    IIRC, APH put out an admonition in the past month or so, something to the effect, “Knock it off, you know who you are”. My first reaction to that was it’s highly unlikely they know who they are. Human beings seem to be well-designed to see other people’s blind spots, but have very limited ability to see their own. In fact, they often see their own blind spots in others.

    Given the extremely limited information we’re getting from the APH, I have no idea whether I would be considered a problem poster or not, and so I agree with Dance that the lack of clarity is disappointing. If we were given more color on reason/meaning/intent, perhaps I would know whether or not I’m a good fit for this APC. And if not, I would readily take my leave.

    Given the limitations of people often being unable to take a subtle to not-so-subtle hint, my own suggestion to APH (if I may respectfully do so) would be to call out the problem posters, whether on the APC or in private. If it isn’t done, my best guess is that lack of clarity will continue, and the problems will continue. — Although this may be more effort than you are willing to make, and understandably so.

    I hope this post doesn’t come across as adding to the problem. My intent is to try to do my part to come up with a solution, something I’m sure we would all like to see. --- I'd sure hate to miss out on all the whooping and hollering on the APC when things begin to turn in a major way, something we seem to be getting closer and closer to.
    May 22 01:33 PM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 293: Jan. 01 '14: Q3 '13 Results; Sale Of PowerCube™ ESS; John Petersen Joins EPower [View instapost]
    I believe Lee Iacocco had a resume even more impressive than TG's, but when he was offered the opportunity to turn Chrysler around, he chose a path much differenrt than TG. IIRC, he took only $1 dollar as salary, and went out and SOLD his product. He went to the airways, preaching quality, innovation and commitment. In the end, he inspired confidence at a time many people were nervous about even buying another Chrysler product.

    This may be an unfair comparison, but it's one I sometimes think about. It seems to me we need a CEO who has some of the same leadership skills that were exhibited by Lee Iacocco at Chrysler's time of crisis. Someone who's going to sacrifice for his company and its shareholders. I just don't see that kind of commitment from TG. It sure appears to me he's trying to squeeze out a little more salary and bonuses before he departs the scene. I don't believe this is character assassination. It strikes me more as a sober assessment.

    When Lee Iacocco agreed to $1 / year salary, it told me he was reaching for excellence. When TG took his full salary plus a 10% bonus, guaranteed for three years, at a time of serious vulnerability, it told me he was settling for mediocrity, or something even less. That's how it appears to this shareholder anyway.

    I do not share some of the more pessimistic comments this morning. Despite my lack of confidence in top management, I think there's a good chance things could turn around quite soon. But I do agree that something needs to happen very soon.
    Jan 2 11:22 AM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 242: June 8: Axion Power Reports First Quarter Results For 2013 [View instapost]
    "which group is doing a better job of keeping Axion stock low, NS or BMW?" ------ The fault, dear Brutus, lies not in our stars, but in ourselves...

    I'd have to say Axion senior management's lack of transparency is far and away the most important reason the pps has been so depressed. From what I can gather, Axion has never been so close to capitalizing on its unique product, but at the same time is sporting close to an all-time low market cap and pps. Lack of effective communication and the lack of trust it engenders strikes me as the primary reasons for this situation.
    Jun 8 02:22 PM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 252: July 17: Axion Power Receives Additional Purchase Order From EPower Engine Systems To Supply PbC® Batteries And Battery Management Systems For (10) Class 8 Heavy-Duty Trucks [View instapost]
    I watched a 1 1/2 hr PBS Frontline episode last night entitled "Silicon Valley". I thought it illustrated quite well why many here continue to believe in and stay invested in Axion. In short, it’s fun [and potentially highly rewarding] to be involved with a cutting edge product that has the potential to transform industries. Here’s a blurb on this episode:

    Program: American Experience
    Episode: Silicon Valley
    Led by physicist Robert Noyce, Fairchild Semiconductor began as a start-up company whose radical innovations would help make the United States a leader in both space exploration and the personal computer revolution, changing the way the world works, plays, and communicates. Noyce's invention of the microchip ultimately re-shaped the future, launching the world into the Information Age.

    http://bit.ly/18p4AyK

    This episode describes how at a time when the transistor was hardly more than a curiosity, as soon as Noyce saw the first technical reports, he knew he was looking at the future. From the 3-minute trailer... [ http://bit.ly/18p4AyL ], Noyce recalls, “The concept hit me like an atom bomb... It was one of those ideas that jolts you out of the rut, and gets you thinking in a different way.” — Noyce later went on to invent the integrated circuit and founded Intel Corp.

    As I watched this, I was often struck by similarities between the story of the evolution of the transistor, and the story of Axion's PbC battery. From the painstakingly laborious early manufacturing processes to fully automated processes. How along the way at various junctures, he encountered skeptics and critics, most of whom could not stretch their imagination to envision numerous possibilities for its usage in many different applications. He encountered various difficult financing situations along the way, and at one point only one of about 50-60 potential financiers stepped up to the plate and invested in his ideas.

    This episode also reminded me of the story I heard once about the evolution of the quartz watch. Most people think it was invented by the Japanese, but it was actually invented by the R&D department in one of the old Swiss clock and watch companies, an industry and world market the Swiss once dominated. When management first saw the watch, they considered it hardly more than a novelty, and as far as I recall, didn’t even patent it. They even openly displayed it at a trade show. A Japanese company representative saw it, and immediately saw the enormous potential, and the rest is history. It was shortly after that the mighty Swiss clock and watch industry withered, and gave way to the new upstart Japanese manufacturers.

    Which brings me back to Axion and ePower. Two tiny little companies that I think are standing at the verge of creating somewhat of a mini-revolution in the trucking industry. I love the possibilities of what may happen with BMW and NS, but the whole idea of increasing mileage on OTR trucks as much as 50% or more is pretty inspiring to me. As hard as it is for people to grasp a disruptive concept such as this [as in too good to be true], I have to believe the amount of time it takes for trucking companies and individual truckers to realize how effectively the PbC technology [in conjunction with ePower’s] can affect their bottom line will be less than it will be with other industries. The immediate economic benefits are just so compelling, and could perhaps make it necessary for competitors to quickly follow suit if they are to stay competitive.

    In the above story about the transistor, industry giants at the time [Texas Instruments, Philco, IBM, and others] were caught flat-footed by the arrival of Robert Noyce and his new ideas and inventions. But they quickly caught on, and signed license agreements with his new upstart company. — To borrow another expression from the old Cool Hand Luke movie, I believe what we’ve had at Axion is “a failure to communicate”, with potential customers, with shareholders, and with potential strategic investors. Hopefully, with new blood coming into the Sales Dept. and top management, new and creative ways can be found [AND SOON] to successfully market this amazing disruptive product and technology. And IF.... they can all begin to execute as a team, we should all end up sitting pretty, despite some of the setbacks we’ve experienced along the way.
    Jul 18 01:09 AM | 17 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 283: Nov. 14 '13: Sale Of PowerCube™ ESS; John Petersen Joins EPower [View instapost]
    3) Please talk about contingency plans that are in place in the event of a sub-.10 event, and the PIPRs demand cash in stead of shares; essentially changing Axion's status as a debt-free company.
    Nov 14 12:42 PM | 16 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 279: Oct. 29 '13: Axion & Norfolk Southern At ASME Rail Conference; John Petersen Joins EPower [View instapost]
    >Obieephyhm — “I wonder if too many have spent too much time here being judge, jury and executioner without having access to the complete picture. ......... What is the point of constantly bringing up the PIPErs?? It's done. Let it go. They aren't running the company.”
    .........................

    I appreciate the above thoughts, and many of the sentiments actually mirror some of mine I’ve had in the past about what I saw as too much Monday morning quarterbacking regarding TG. Regarding the PIPERs, and the point of bringing it up... No they aren’t directly running the company, and I’d love to let it go. But unfortunately, I believe they continue to be highly relevant. I’ve yet to see a clear and concise description of how Axion will definitively weather the possibility of the pps dropping below .10 for an extended period of time.

    And who better to be addressing this squarely than TG? But he doesn’t, and doesn’t seem to have an inclination to do so, which I often view as a lack of respect for Axion shareholders. — I have, and can give TG a certain benefit of the doubt regarding some of his earlier predictions, his lack of clear explanations on substantive issues, and for his ending up deciding he needed to do the PIPE deal. Obie and others are right, we don’t know all the details, and I’m willing to accept a certain amount of his “on the job training”.

    But here’s what we do know. The PIPE financing has been HUGELY costly. Maxim took an immediate 7.2% off the top ($720K!). Interest continues to be payable on top of the large numbers of discounted shares being issued. Massive dilution has taken place, and a number of ridiculous hooks and vulture capitalistic contract jargon has the potential to come back and haunt us in different ways.

    So..., what does TG and top management do with this precious and ULTRA-expensive capital? They give themselves signing bonuses! To me, it gives the appearance of having raided the coffers of their company at an exceptionally vulnerable time, and sends a TERRIBLE message that they are more concerned about taking care of themselves than they are Axion and its shareholders. If they had accepted stock options in lieu of a small percentage of their regular salary at that critical time, it would have sent an ENTIRELY different message, and I would have a much more favorable view of them than I currently do. — Perhaps I’m all wet regarding this whole bonus issue, so if somebody would like to offer some justification for their actions at that time, I would be open to hearing them.

    Like some of the other posters here who have expressed frustration and dismay, I really do want to believe TG, and get behind his leadership of the company. I think we all want to believe that this time will be different. But with the specter of a continuing battle between the onerous PIPE terms versus the timeliness of orders and revenues, it’s sometimes hard not to be critical about how we arrived at this juncture, and concerned about how this is going to play out.

    I talked much of this over with my wife a couple nights ago, and was somewhat surprised how cool and detached she was about things. She generally has little interest in hearing the nitty gritty of what we discuss regularly here on this board (she does like nitty gritty on good news however), and has a tendency to look further out into the future. She continues to optimistically believe (as do I) that things will eventually turn positive, and once that momentum starts, it will likely continue to build for a very long time. So I will strive to be a little more attuned to her longer-term perspectives, and will likely be more relaxed as a result. So if my posts start to come across as a little more genteel, then you can thank my wife for that!
    Oct 30 12:46 AM | 16 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 340 June 06 '14: Definitive Reverse Split Consent Solicitation; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available; Q1 '14 Filing Released;Axion Receives 4 Powercubes Order [View instapost]
    Talked to my wife this morning after we both got our notifications on the R-S vote (we have an Axion review every few weeks or so). I explained what I consider to be the two most important benefits of uplisting to the NASDAQ: 1) Institutional investors that have been prevented from investing in Axion (as an OTC stock) would now be able to invest; and 2) An uplisting would most likely lead to much better financing this fall.

    I also explained how both an R-S and capital raise more often than not lead to a decrease in pps, and that some on this board have trimmed their position in case that were to play out. I also mentioned the high number of lurkers who have yet to start a position, and who seem to be in a wait and see mode until the R-S and capital raise are resolved. I also mentioned there seems to be a clear understanding of the risk for those in these categories of the pps taking off on any number of good news events.

    I told her I wanted to give her this thorough review in case she had any interest in trimming her position pre-RS/capital raise. I was surprised by her reply, not so much because she had no interest in trimming her position, but how immediately and assertively she said “NO way”. She then gave me sort of a “peculiar” look, and somewhat uncharacteristically said something like, “I hope you’re not thinking of selling after all this time.” I admitted I was tentatively considering whether to trim my position, but doubted very much I would. She then, again uncharacteristically, urged me not to. — So, that settles it. She’s more intuitive than I am. :)
    Jun 7 12:25 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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