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Al Marshall

Al Marshall
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  • Axion Power Concentrator 358 August 14 '14: S-1 For $15MM Share Issuance; Changed Loan, IP-Secured MDA; David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO [View instapost]
    I took a quick look and didn't see any info that wasn't in the S-1. Hopefully there'll be an investor letter tomorrow morning.
    Aug 14 04:48 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 357 August 10 '14: S-1 For $15MM Share Issuance; Changed Loan, IP-Secured MDA; David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO [View instapost]
    RBrun: Thanks for the info. If a "bunch" of batteries is in the thousands then that is something that will stand out in the financial statement. If it is a few hundred then it won't because my guess is that Axion has been selling 2000+ batteries a year for the past 3 years or so.

    This is based on the non-contract revenue representing PbC and antique vehicle batteries with the latter assumed to be about $100k per quarter. That would leave about $1m/year for PbC (I didn't look at recent quarters but that was the number in the 2011-2012 timeframe).

    So, in recent years I would expect there have been at least a handful of occasions where Axion has shipped a few hundred batteries to a customer. That's all good news but in reality just a few more grains of sand on the pile. Hopefully the grain of sand you reported turns out to be the one that causes the avalanche!
    Aug 12 11:13 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 356 August 7 '14: Changed Loan, IP-Secured MDA; David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved [View instapost]
    Stefan: Yeah. My list of anticipated sales is almost exactly what it was a year ago. Bysolar representing the key exception. John, for whatever it is worth, I paid over $1 for the first Axion shares I purchased.
    Aug 8 10:16 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 356 August 7 '14: Changed Loan, IP-Secured MDA; David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved [View instapost]
    The document states that the offering will fund the company through December 31st, 2015. 1 share and 1 warrant at $.08 will cost nearly 200m shares + 200m warrants pre-reverse split. Considering we were at 120m shares before the PIPE that's a near quadrupling in 2 years (more than five x if you consider the warrants).

    It's ugly and it will put the nail in the coffin on early stage investors ever getting to break-even but the company will survive debt-free and will then have about 15 months before it has to do it all over again.

    To make this work you have to put additional money in after each new fund raise. It is likely that the stock price will quickly go to the price of the new issuance (excluding the value of the warrants) so your new money will sort of be on equal terms as the new investors (remember we aren't restricted on selling so that has value).

    Looking ahead, I can't see any way Axion could become profitable by year-end 2015, but I could imagine the company receiving some small orders from reputable customers during this period which could make the next round of financing less painful. Examples: A few megawatts of powercubes, the OTR from NS (maybe), a few dozen ePower trucks, and maybe $1m-2m in other orders. Thin gruel for sure, but progress.

    While I'm posting, I'll make a couple of other comments.

    1. I'm shocked at the lack of respect shown by members of this board to Bob Averill (if that weren't him don't you think JP would point it out?). His questions seem frustrating but I suspect there is a message there. If we attempt to address his questions, maybe he will give us some helpful guidance that will increase our overall understanding. [If anyone wants to work on this with me, please private mail me].

    2. I was very disappointed by the NS sustainability report. In 2013's report, Axion was prominently mentioned as a "partner" while in 2014 Axion basically disappeared despite the pending (and much delayed) launch of the 999. Too much exuberance in 2013 that was quashed by a senior executive writ in 2014? Maybe, but it makes me uncomfortable.
    Aug 8 04:17 PM | 14 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 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]
    SMaturin: Not sure this is the only point your analysis doesn't take into account but Jay/JP have always said that the greatest contributor to fuel savings with the ePower system is that it enables the engine to be downsized.
    Aug 7 11:22 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 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]
    JP: I'm not sure the trickling out of PIPEr shares is a show of confidence by the new money. The PIPErs have some significant leverage on their side as well and they negotiated terms.

    Everyone: I am greatly encouraged in that it seems like Axion and its new financier are close to a deal and are doing a lot of cleanup. Hopefully, the financing will be done in the next few weeks, a month or two before the company gets in real trouble.

    WIO: Thanks for posting your decision and decision-making.

    Everyone: I think we all are getting a little over stressed here. We're passive investors and thus aren't going to cause any harm if we back off a bit. Let's try to limit our posts to when we have something substantial to say.
    Aug 4 01:02 PM | 27 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 353 July 27 '14: David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available [View instapost]
    Same things happens, but it seems to me on a much bigger scale with bio-tech stocks. NWBO is the best example.
    Jul 28 05:25 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 352 July 24 '14: David DiGiacinto Appointed Chairman And CEO; Share Reverse Split And Authorized Share Reduction Approved; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available [View instapost]
    JP: I think you may be too focused on the short sale percentage given the extremely low volume. At 200,000 shares/day (putting aside the double count for now) and 30%, that's less than $10k per day. From past behavior, it would seem that the PIPErs wouldn't be bothering to trade such small amounts of stock unless they were doing it specifically to drive the stock price down (in preparation for the next financing?).

    I personally believe your original statement that the PIPErs generally ran out of stock a few months ago and think it's highly unlikely they would have hung on to a rump position given how you've described their method of operation.

    I do think your theory that low volume would reveal a favorable supply/demand imbalance which would result in a firming of the share price has been proven wrong. Now, there wasn't a ton of time between the departure of the PIPErs and the onset of concern about the next financing, but, on the other hand, the latter certainly hasn't been a surprise to any of us here on the concentrator.

    If Axion were a well known company with a reasonably well-known story, I could see the supply/demand scenario you described taking place.

    Axion remarkably (considering the value of the technology), has zero such momentum, and will go only as far as the news will take it given the additional force required to get a fixed object in motion in the first place.

    A final point. While a CFO candidate probably declined the company's offer, it very well could have been due to the change in CEO. It would seem entirely logical to me that DDG should be permitted to select his own CFO. Furthermore, since we have an interim CFO that we are familiar with, it would seem to me this should not be of great concern to us at this time.
    Jul 26 03:55 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Swine Flu, MERS, Ebola And Medical News Concentrator June 7, 2014 To August 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    Yesterday, I finished reading a new book authored by Joseph Gulfo, former CEO of Mela Sciences (NASDAQ:MELA) from 2004 through June 2013. The book, Innovation Breakdown, is a scathing indictment of the FDA and what would seem its capricious manner of fulfilling its mission.

    It is an easy read, written in a concise, narrative style. Occasionally it does get irritating as Gulfo paints himself as the good guy who never makes any mistakes while generally pointing the finger at everyone else. That discredits him to a limited degree but there seems to be little room for doubt that the FDA's actions were egregious. Also, those of us on this board can certainly empathize with his frustration with the investment community.

    His concluding recommendations on how to fix the FDA are in the form of a bullet-point list with little explanation and discussion. Some of the points would seem to be obvious and non-controversial but overall, this part of the book is very disappointing.

    Overall, I recommend the book as it does give us a pretty good picture as to what is involved in bringing an innovative product to the market.
    Jul 25 10:39 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Latest Update From Jay Bowman [View instapost]
    Stefan: Yes, I heard the same thing.

    HTL, I'm not sure its the large "sweet spot" that is the reason although that did get me thinking about something. The early discussion about start-stop was that the event would represent 1-2% of battery capacity (that seemed to be the way it was tested) which at 100,000 cycles represents 1,000 or 2000 full discharge equivalents. I found that disappointing because this require a relatively large PbC battery which of course is more expensive.

    The ePower duty cycle is much more what I'd hoped we would be able to see with auto start-stop. If the automotive start-stop events represent 5% of capacity then you might be able to use a 30H size PbC (regular sized car battery?) which could conceivably be priced to automotive in the $250 range which might get some attention.

    This is one of the key questions that I hope to be able to learn more about at the next annual meeting. It seems to me that unless ePower is beating the &**( out of the PbC that Axion has achieved (or at least confirmed through testing) dramatic improvements in service life in partial state-of-charge operations.

    In summary, proving a capability to handle larger "events" is basically the equivalent of reducing cost.

    One last technical question about this JP quote: "Last time I checked 650 volts at 150 amps is 97.5 kW, which ain't shabby for a 19 kWh battery string." Is this a 5 C rate?
    Jul 14 05:52 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Latest Update From Jay Bowman [View instapost]
    A request for some of the engineers here. I looked at the Ecoult graph John linked and am unable to understand. It is a 3MW ultrabattery installation. At one point it says the batteries are cycled over a range of 10-15% while the 12 hour table shows a smaller range with individual "events" of what appears to be 1-2%.

    It would seem to me that a PbC equivalent of this system could be much smaller and do the same work. Is there enough information here between what JP has provided about ePower's experience, the $250k per megawatt annual revenue estimate Axion provided early this year, and the information in the Ecoult material to estimate just how much smaller a PbC equivalent could be?

    Intuitively, to my non-technical mind, if the PbC can handle dozens of 10% swings in an hour while the UltraBattery is doing 1-2% swings then a 600KW PbC installation could do the work this 3MW UltraBattery systems does. So, if the PbC is priced at $750 per KwH (I know I just switched from apples to oranges) is the ultrabattery priced in the $150 range necessary to be competitive? Isn't $150 less than what AGM is currently priced?
    Jul 14 02:50 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Latest Update From Jay Bowman [View instapost]
    Tim: Nice to see you posting. I know this might be a tough question but can you roughly guess what kind of gas mileage a conventional truck would get on this course under the weight and speed conditions John described?

    Going further, what gas mileage would a conventional truck get at 62 or 68mph at 80,000lbs over this course?

    Thank you!
    Jul 13 12:22 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Swine Flu, MERS, Ebola And Medical News Concentrator June 7, 2014 To August 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    I was also much disturbed by the Pearson article on SA about NWBO and Larry Smith, whom I follow very closely.

    I continued to follow the situation throughout the day and suggest Maya that you are over-reacting to a degree as much of the data appears to be false and much of the remainder appears to be stretched.

    If you are interested in delving further into this very disturbing mess, I'd suggest reading the comments to the Pearson article.

    One poster took the trouble to look up the "fictitious" authors Pearson wrote about and what they published. Most of that activity was in 2012 with some in 2013. The information they wrote about NWBO seemed to be pretty inconsequential. That is none of it seemed to be promotional in nature.

    Larry Smith also responded to Pearson in the comments. More powerfully, check out Smith's seeking alpha bio where he discusses his sanction by the NYSE in the late 90's.

    Pearson's article also includes that he is short NWBO and that he has provided support for institutions that are short the stock. He wrote that he may trade in the stock within 72 hours of publishing the article. However, Pearson did not directly state that he is out to get NWBO so I guess that means he's honest and a good guy!

    Adam Feuerstein also posted a comment disavowing Pearson's personal attack on Smith and claiming that Pearson hasn't published anything for the street since January of this year.

    I'm going to do some of my own due diligence and I'll let you all know what I find.
    Jul 8 01:24 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 345 June 30 '14: Definitive Reverse Split Consent Solicitation; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available; Q1 '14 Filing Released;Axion Receives 4 Powercubes Order [View instapost]
    Glad the reverse split vote is behind us. For or against it, at least this uncertainty is behind us. I'd expect a slight positive effect on the stock price in the coming days.
    Jul 2 04:55 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 345 June 30 '14: Definitive Reverse Split Consent Solicitation; Q1 '1 CC Transcript & MP3 Available; Q1 '14 Filing Released;Axion Receives 4 Powercubes Order [View instapost]
    jcrjg: I agree that Axion probably shouldn't be a large position for you because you could lose all your money. In the near future that is unlikely because the company doesn't have debt. However, 40% dilution a year does add up.

    I have a very high level of confidence in Axion's technology. It is very good at moving electricity back and forth (the Bob Averill description) and that will be huge someday. Unfortunately, the applications that will use this technology haven't existed in the past. So, we're just now getting to the point where the battery has been "proven" to a sufficient extent that companies may start designing products to enable those applications.

    Hopefully, some of the grid stuff will come quickly and in enough volume to enable Axion to raise money on reasonable terms. However, it seems clear that we are years away (at least) from cash-flow break-even. So, while I think the PbC will be a big winner in time, I also think there is a very real question as to whether current shareholders will be a part of that success.

    It reminds me of the situation of a friend. He was an early investor in Pixar but ended up losing over 90% of his money as 7 subsequent rounds of financing decimated his ownership stake.

    I think the overall risk-reward is favorable, but the risk and potential rewards are both extremely high.
    Jul 1 10:48 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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