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Nicholas Zeman
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Original reporting on power, fuels, construction, agricultural and financial investments.
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  • Chancellor Group On Its Way With Pimovi Start

    As an oil and gas industrial news reporter, I'm always looking for independents that are somehow managing to find an edge in this ultra-competitive market where the BIGS are the ones who often hold the money-making assets-ships, terminals, pipelines, personnel, exploratory power, etc. Sometimes they do it with management, technology, excellent hedging and risk management skills, and other maneuvers, but rarely do you see a company tapping the resources of Silicon Valley to move into the white hot mobile technology space like the Chancellor Group.

    Remember blockbuster deals like Facebook's (NASDAQ: FB) purchase of Instagram or when Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) snatched up Youtube? Well Chancellor Group has used its capital to create subsidiary Pimovi whose seemingly golden new app is a first-person video production platform. So the question is: could a novel app that allows users to record, edit and upload video on a proprietary platform be the next Youtube or Instagram? It sounds like it could be. Will people want to follow their friends to the next JayZ concert, NBA finals or even senior prom? My guess is yes.

    It's also nice that as a penny stock, Chancellor basically gives nobodies the opportunity to get in on a promising start-up without being a deep pocketed venture capitalist.

    Diversification is attractive, but sometimes it can feel (in the wrong hands) like the desperation of clutching at straws on the descent into oblivion. You know, when that sports bar down the street that's always empty is suddenly offering an "eclectic Indian buffet" for lunch, you know it's in trouble. But Chancellor's creation of Pimovi doesn't feel like that.

    For one, Chancellor's (CHAG:OTCQB) stock is up more than 1,000 percent on the year! It was trading at 10 cents Friday, up from its 52 week low of .008. Is Pimovi one of the things that have had investors buying Chancellor? It's still too early to tell, but the share price has been climbing steadily since the creation of the subsidiary was announced.

    With new mobile phones now often being outfitted with very powerful cameras -but users only possessing the skill set to perform very basic tasks-I think an app like Pimovi, which unleashes the power of these cameras for users, could be a smash. And while it's out of Chancellor Group's area of oil and gas exploration and capital investment plays, it looks like the company was paying attention when Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) took over Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) as the Fortune 500-company with the biggest market capitalization.

    Investors should always be looking for oil and gas companies, especially start-ups and independents, who are finding ways to gain market share in energy logistics and transportation markets, but decided to weigh in on this stock which allows non-VC's a diverse play in both the hot energy and mobile tech sectors. Pulling the trigger on Chancellor Group very soon could be a genius move.

    Sep 30 10:53 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Can Origin Oil Stop The Fracking Controversy?

    Los Angeles algae tech firm Origin Oil had some big gains this summer when it named a manufacturer for its hydrofracking wastewater treatment systems. But those have evaporated since then, as investors want to see orders filled before getting in for real.

    OriginOil, Inc. (OTC/BB:OOIL), the developer of a breakthrough energy production process for cleaning up oil & gas water, announced today that it has named Clean Water Technology (NYSE:CWT) to manufacture commercial-scale equipment for its new performance-based water cleanup program.

    Many operators in the oil and gas industry are focused on reducing water costs, and the political fallout associated with its massive water usage from hydrofracking. This now notorious process uses water at high temperature to bust oil and natural gas loose from high density shale formations. The technology has revolutionized the U.S. energy supply, but is linked to environmental destruction and decimation of natural resources.

    On that note, there are certainly rewards for those companies that could alleviate the problems with wastewater currently plaguing oil and gas miners. Global Water Intelligence says the total value of the (North American) produced water market is set to grow from $5.0 billion in 2010 to $9.9 billion in 2025 - a compound annual growth rate of 4.7%. The produced water treatment equipment market, however, is set to grow from $693 million in 2010 to $2.9 billion in 2025 - a compound annual growth rate of 10.1%.

    "As an industry, we need to move toward treatment and recycling of water versus disposal," said Michael Morford, President of Nemaha Water, a disposal well operator in Oklahoma and Texas. "OriginOil's Throughput Program offers the opportunity to treat frac flowback water, while realizing significant cost and environmental benefits on site without the burden of capital outlay."

    The guess at Industrial Biopower is that this stock won't start climbing until there is news of some systems in place at actual wells. Now might be a good time to get in cheap, but be prepared to withstand some slides and wait for the price to jump. Investors seem bored with the algae hype and press releases and OOIL has been on a serious slide this year. This company has some things going for it, however, and its balance sheet keeps getting stronger. The market might be making a mistake.

    Sep 09 10:18 AM | Link | Comment!
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