Thursday, 21 August 2014

Exclusive - Plug Power “Like Phoenix Rising”

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The CEO of Plug Power, Andy Marsh, has described the company’s business transformation and has likened it to a Phoenix rising from the ashes.

Plug Power Inc, which deals in providing clean, reliable energy solutions, recently reported its financial results for the third quarter 2013.

The company continues to experience a significant increase in its bookings since it announced a $6.5m strategic funding round from partner Air Liquide in May 2013. Orders have been fueled by the investment news, coupled with an investor update on October 8,2013. On this call, CEO, Andy Marsh, discussed the company’s plans to expand into providing hydrogen, its growth in European markets, and several multi-site customer deals that were in negotiation.

Andy Marsh, Plug Power CEO, said, “We are like a Phoenix Rising. Ever since the Air Liquide investment we have been taking off.”

“But the investment doesn’t just work one way as we have invested with Air Liquide as well. The last six months (since the Air Liquide announcement) have been significant for us and we have had some great orders from North American companies.”

“We are also developing relationships with our customers where involvement with hydrogen production to help support them as well.”

The growing sales momentum clearly displays Plug Power’s movement upwards.

From January 1st - May 15th: $1m in bookings

From May 15th - October 8th: $11m in bookings

From October 8th - November 14th: $14m in bookings

In total, for 2013 to date, sales orders have totaled $26m.

“The start of 2013 was a near death experience for Plug Power,” explained Mr. Marsh, adding, “We had a very tough 2012 and had a number of quality problems which delayed the business growth by 18 months and cost us a good deal of money.”

“We went with a $15m fundraising process in February and only raised $2m and our stock dropped 75%. We didn’t lose any customers – but it scared them.”

“Air Liquide recognised the value we are creating and they called up and said ‘How can we help you get over the hump?’ Before Air Liquide we were at 15c a share – now (on this day) we are around 70c. In September we raised more cash and I have to say there was a sigh of relief.”

“We had some new members of the board elected and things started to strengthen. This is going to be a Blow-Out final quarter of 2013 for Plug Power.”

With this gain in business in mind, what else lies ahead for the company which is enjoying unprecedented growth and success?

Mr. Marsh concluded, “Plug Power, in this last quarter of 2013, will see large customers making long-term deals with us – including a significant Fortune 100 company committing to a deal that involves multiple distribution sites and simultaneous orders.”

“Profitability in the business should commence from the third quarter of 2014 from these orders. For the past 4 to 5 years we have been working hard to make our business profitable and we are sure it will be. But 2014 will see expansions in geography and products.”

“There will be deals with partners similar to the Air Liquide deal which will see us moving into Asia and increasing the deals we have with our existing customers.”

“We are also doing trials with FedEx at airports and the retail element is also expanding. We are looking to expand where our customers are and where they are hoping to move into.”

“The fiscal year 2013 started difficult – we entered with a whimper but we’ll be leaving this year really strong.”

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