Features & Opinion
Cobalt and the Battery Boom
The unfolding energy storage boom is a long way from slowing down and has grown from lithium to other battery metals such as cobalt. The demand for cobalt is projected to grow strongly for years to come and prices for the metal have more than doubled in the last two years - from US$10 to US$25 per pound or about US$55,000 per tonne, and are now at an eight year high. More
Trends in Cleantech, and Companies that Look Interesting
Thank you for the opportunity to talk about Trends in Cleantech, and Some Companies that Look Interesting. The first thing I want to do is take the long view. And on the long view I'm very positive that most trends are heading in the right direction and cleantech has a great future, including for investors. More
Keep Venture Capital Open to Retail Investors
- Submission to ASX: Updating ASX's Admission Requirements for Listed Entities.
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the ASX's proposed changes to its admission requirements. My comments and suggestions relate to the issues of: the spread test, the assets test, and the $1.5 million minimum requirement for working capital. More

Why Cleantech Stocks are Performing Again
People may think that John D. Rockefeller became the richest man in the world by investing in oil, but he wasn't just investing in oil, he was investing in the future. At the time the world was running out of whale oil and Rockefeller saw that the future was in the new oil. The President of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Stephen Heintz, told this story to the DivestInvest Conference in Sydney last month and said he is convinced that if Rockefeller were alive today, "he would be doing the same thing in the clean energy economy because he knows that's the future." More
Thank You and Goodbye Gas Grid
Our family is now off the gas grid. In March we installed an induction cooktop to replace our gas cooktop, which had been our last gas appliance. Everything in our house now runs off electricity including the oven, the solar hot water booster, the lawnmower and the barbeque. More

Video: Interview with Damien Lynch, managing director of August Investments
Eco Investor editor Victor Bivell interviews Damien Lynch, Australia's most experienced environmental investor, about environmental investment in Australia. View Here

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Core Securities
MD and Short Seller Action at Quintis
Drama unfolded at newly rebranded Quintis with the founder and managing director Frank Wilson resigning to join a possible takeover consortium only days after TFS Corporation changed its name to Quintis and a short seller hit the stock and drove the price to a three year low of 97.5 cents. More
Blackmores on Four Corners
Vitamin and mineral companies Swisse and to a lesser extent Blackmores were part of an ABC Four Corners program that was critical of complementary medicines. Although the sales of supplements are strong and growing both in Australia and overseas, the program cast doubt on the level of health benefits, if any, of many of the products. More
New Farming Methods for Tassal
Tassal said it would implement innovative fish farming techniques at Okehampton Bay in Tasmania now that the Marine Farming Planning Review Panel has assessed that the company's lease at the Bay is suitable for salmon farming. More
Four Year High for Sims Metal
There is a very strong correlation between Sims Metal Management's buy and sell prices and the prices of iron ore and coking coal, and ferrous prices on the London Metals Exchange, said Sims' managing director and chief executive officer, Galdino Claro, at the company's annual general meeting. More
Holiday Park Acquisitions for Aspen
Aspen Group's focus is on building a strong affordable accommodations business and re-establishing scale to its business, said chairman, Clive Appleton, at the annual general meeting; and in line with this the company has expanded its tourism portfolio with the acquisition of two new holidays parks. These are BIG4 Koala Shores Holiday Park and BIG4 Tween Waters Holiday Park, both in NSW. More

Tox Free Acquires Medical Waste Business
Hands up all those environmental investors who remember SteriHealth? The medical waste company was delisted in a privatization in 2014 but is now back on the radar as it has been acquired by Tox Free Solutions. In the meantime it changed its name to Daniels Health Australia. The seller is its founder, Dan Daniels. The company's value at the ASX delisting was $34.2 million and its current enterprise value is $186 million, so there has been some growth. More

Divestments and Acquisitions for Ingenia
Ingenia Communities Group has sold the majority of its Deferred Management Fee (DMF) portfolio, as has been planned, and has acquired two more lifestyle parks using the funds from its June placement. The sale involves five of the eight DMF assets and will see Ingenia retain a minority stake and management rights. The sale will release net cash of $41 million to grow Ingenia's lifestyle communities business. More
August Increases Dividend
Unlisted investment company August Investments increased its final dividend for 2015-16 to $6 per share fully franked, bringing the full year dividend to $12 per share. The equivalent 2014-15 full year dividend was $9 per share. Managing Director, Damien Lynch, said three features were noteworthy for the year: continuing high returns, increased interest from investors, and the company's return to community based investments. More

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Pre-Dividend Securities
Duxton Water Fully Invested
Duxton Water has fully committed the capital it raised in last year's IPO. At 31 March it had invested $63 million in water entitlements or 94 per cent of its portfolio. It has entered into contracts, agreed terms for contracts, or has pending offers for contracts for another $4.4 million of water entitlements. When complete, these will make its portfolio fully invested. More
New Wind Farm for Infigen
Infigen Energy is to build the 113.2 MW Bodangora wind farm near Wellington in New South Wales and has launched an underwritten capital raising of $151 million to pay for the equity component and to possibly refinance its Global Facility and Woodlawn Project Finance Facility. The institutional entitlement offer and the retail entitlement offer are at 89 cents per security. More
Downgrade for Bellamy's Australia
Eco Investor has downgraded Bellamy's Australia to a pre-dividend security as the company will not pay a dividend for the December half year. The company said its cash position was materially impacted by an increase in inventory, so that may be the reason for the lack of a dividend. It anticipates returning to positive free cash-flow by the middle of this half. More
Energy Action Downgraded to Pre-Dividend Security
Eco Investor has downgraded Energy Action to pre-dividend security as the company has suspended its interim dividend following a disappointing profit result. The company said the lack of a dividend was due to the decline in its operating net profit after tax, which fell 45 per cent to $0.8 million. But its net profit was even lower at $0.29 million. More
Infigen Returns to Profit
The takeover inquiry that helped fire Infigen Energy's share price earlier this year is no longer live, but Infigen Energy's managing director, Miles George, said the company remains open to proposals that can add value to shareholders. More

Orocobre Makes Maiden Profit
Eco Investor has upgraded Orocobre to a pre-dividend security as the company made a maiden profit in the December half year of US$7.3 million. Its loss for the December 2015 half was US$20.4 million. However, Orocobre is still a growth company and a long way from paying a dividend as it has expansion projects underway and under planning that will require capital. More

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Pre-Profit Securities
EnviroSuite Sells Consulting Business
EnviroSuite is selling its Pacific Environment Consulting practice to focus on its environmental monitoring and management services. The sale is a big move that dramatically changes EnviroSuite's business. The buyer is Environmental Resources Management (ERM), said to be the world's leading environmental and sustainability consulting group. More

Secos Targets Profitability
Biodegradable and compostable plastics maker Secos Group says it is getting closer to achieving group profitability now that two of its three business units are operating profitably. More

Lighting Efficiency to Order
Commercial and industrial lighting efficiency company Vivid Technology has been indicating it has orders coming down the pipeline and has delivered with orders totaling $300,000 for major retail shopping centres and a financially unspecified order from a ports and logistics company. It has also won an international order. More
All Time High for Clean TeQ
Investors continue to like Clean TeQ's commercialization story with the company's shares reaching an all time high of 94.5 cents on February 27. The high was despite an interim loss announced only days earlier of $8.1 million. Revenue fell to a modest $325,000 and there was a $6.4 million cost for employee expenses of which $4.7 million was share based payments. More
Two More Acquisitions for HRL
HRL Holdings has been growing its environmental laboratory services business through acquisitions and has just closed a capital raising that targeted $8.5 million to pay for two more businesses. A placement raised $2.75 million, but shareholders were cautious and an entitlement offer raised only $0.69 million. Fortunately the offer was underwritten to $5 million so the total shortfall was only $0.77 million. More

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Pre-Revenue Securites
Australian Vanadium Looking at Residential Battery Market
Australian Vanadium's battery subsidiary VSUN Energy says there is strong demand for a residential scale Vanadium Redox Flow Battery (VRB) for the Australian market, and it is undertaking a study into developing a local residential product. VSUN Energy has received over 80 requests for domestic storage devices since its start up a year ago. More
World Solar Record for Dyesol
Dyesol partner Solliance has achieved a world record for perovskite solar cell photovoltaic technology on industrially applicable roll-to-roll processes of 12.6 per cent conversion efficiency at the cell level. The partners said the results pave the way towards an accelerated market introduction of this new source of renewable energy. More

Recycling Cobalt From Lithium Batteries
Recovering cobalt from lithium ion batteries used in consumer electronic devices may be a step closer with Neometals saying that proof of scale test work at its facilities in Montreal, Canada supports the business case to accelerate the commercialization of the technology. The test work was on 100 kilograms of spent lithium ion laptop and phone batteries containing an average of 19.8 per cent cobalt. More

Next Step for BluGlass Evaluation
BluGlass and its industry partner Lumileds are moving to phase II evaluation of BluGlass' RPCVD technology for some specific LED applications following the successful delivery of the Phase I technical milestones. More

Carnegie Now A Different Company
Carnegie Clean Energy is a different company from what it was as Carnegie Wave Energy and the difference is now reflected in its share price which in late January hit an eight year high of 8.8 cents. Only three months earlier in mid September it was 2.4 cents. More


Good Timing for Pumped Hydro
I'm a political junkie but watching Question Time on TV this week nearly cured me. Given the record heat and the blackouts and load shifting in South Australia and New South Wales, I thought the debate on energy policy might be useful. Silly me. Instead I re-learned that Question Time is as superficial as ever. That the Coalition pushing slightly-cleaner-but-still-dangerously-dirty coal power is a policy dead-end from hopeful losers. More




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