Good News for Honeywell, Eaton, Nissan, Martek, Enova

by: Bill Paul

With so much financial news being reported these days, it can be tough to spy the stories that really matter – stories that suggest a big payday awaits shareholders of certain firms. When it comes to alternative energy, has found that nobody is better at spying stories that matter than Mike Millikin of the web site Green Car Congress. asked Millikin to take a second look at stories he posted over the last couple of weeks, looking for important developments and the companies that could benefit from them.

Let’s begin with a story about the Naval Air System Command fuels team announcing it plans a flight test of a jet fuel consisting of 50% biofuel. The test isn’t until next year but Millikin said it’s important that the Navy wants nearly 600,000 gallons of the stuff, enough to start making a dent in the cost of making the fuel. According to Millikin, 50-50 jet fuel blends already are scientifically ready to use; it’s just the cost that’s a problem. This story suggests that costs are about to come down, he said, which could turn out to be good news for a company very active in developing bio-based jet fuel, Honeywell International (NYSE:HON), through its UOP unit.

Two related stories that recently ran are good news for Nissan Motor Co. (OTCPK:NSANY) and Eaton Corp. (NYSE:ETN), Millikin said.

The good news for Nissan was that the Obama administration chose it for a large-scale demonstration of the feasibility of electric vehicles in the U.S. A total of up to 5,000 Nissan LEAF EVs will be deployed in five separate U.S. markets. “This (test) will tell us if a vehicle like that has a shot of making it in the U.S.,” Millikin said, adding that it could give Nissan a big advantage in the expected battle for EV market dominance.

Meanwhile, Eaton Corp.’s good news was that its technology was chosen by Uncle Sam for a test of reducing emissions from commercial vehicles. The technology in question is ARIS, short for Advanced Reagent Injector System. If it proves successful, Millikin said, Eaton stands to profit nicely.

As for Martek Biosciences Corp. (MATK), its big news was an announcement it had signed an agreement with oil giant BP (NYSE:BP) to work on the production of microbial oils for biofuel applications. “If this pans out, it’s a very big deal for Martek,” Millikin said, because it will put Martek in a major new business to go along with its core business of healthcare products.

One other company that Millikin singled out – Enova Systems Inc. (NYSEMKT:ENA-OLD) – was cited because the company announced it had delivered the first 70 pre-transmission hybrid drive systems for application in hybrid buses to First Auto Works, one of China’s largest vehicle producers. “For Enova, this a big deal,” Millikin said, emphasizing the big push underway in China for electrified transportation, which should help Enova to grow.

UPDATE — Two weeks ago we told you that Dan Scotto of HFP Capital thinks that Dynegy (Symbol DYN) could be a takeover candidate. (See Will Dynegy Become a Takeover Candidate? Will NRG or Exelon Be Its Suitor?) Last week Dynegy got a ratings downgrade from S&P, which Scotto thinks could push the firm to the brink of bankruptcy, which he thinks could make the natural gas firm an even more attractive takeover candidate, especially to a white knight.

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