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Electric truck story stocks drive market enthusiasm

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Talk about a V-shaped recovery. 

Shares of electrification startup Nikola Corp. (NASDAQ: NKLA) experienced the bounce back this week that few still predict for the nation’s economy following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Storytelling, more than products and revenue, is stoking market enthusiasm for electric trucks, including Workhorse Group (NASDAQ: WKHS). The early stage maker of electric delivery vans is attracting heady interest because of a possible windfall from startup Lordstown Motors Corp. 

Tortoise Acquisition (NYSE: SHLL), siring hybrid-electric truck maker Hyliion Inc. to public trading this quarter, is advancing at a turtle-like pace after an early hare-like dash following announcement of its reverse merger.

Nikola bounces around

Nikola expects to begin generating meaningful revenue in late 2021. That assumes a successful manufacturing launch of its battery-electric heavy-duty Tre model in a joint venture with CNH Industrial N.V. (NYSE: CNHI) subsidiary IVECO in Ulm, Germany. 

The lack of revenue, never mind profit, mattered little to investors who drove Nikola’s price to almost $100 per share in the days following its June 2 emergence as a public company in a reverse merger with special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) VectoIQ. 

The runup proved short-lived as Nikola Executive Chairman Trevor Milton sparred on Twitter with short sellers betting the price would fall. He urges investors to get on board for the long haul and embrace his vision of zero-emission trucks contributing to a cleaner planet. 

Nikola shares got a brief kick June 29 from cash deposits on the Badger, a battery-electric pickup truck with a fuel cell range extender. Nikola still needs a manufacturing partner. 

Could Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM), which recently fell behind electric car maker Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) as the world’s most valued automaker, be a candidate? Toyota makes the Mirai fuel cell sedan and is partnering with Kenworth Truck Co. to build a test fleet of 10 Class 8 fuel cell trucks. It also sells the market-leading Tacoma midsize pickup and the less-popular Tundra full-size pickup.

Diverging target prices from analysts at J.P. Morgan and Cowen initiating Nikola coverage created an opinion gap of more than $30. Early investors headed for the exits with hefty profits. 

Both analysts lauded Nikola’s long-term business plan – leasing fuel cell trucks with hydrogen fuel and maintenance to keep them on the road for seven years and one million miles. 

In setting a target of $45, J.P. Morgan said the stock, then trading around $70 a share, was fully valued. Cowen, which helped VectorIQ with its own initial public offering in 2018 and advised on the reverse merger to bring Nikola public, set an outperform target of $79 a share.

Supply and demand imbalance

Expiring lockups on investors who bought VectorIQ shares at $10 in a pre-merger private investment in public equity (PIPE) put up to 50 million Nikola shares in play along with warrants that would add 23 million new shares. The result: too many shares and too few buyers. The stock fell into the low $40s.

Sellers included longtime Nikola supporter Worthington Industries (NYSE: WOR), which disclosed on July 8 that it sold 5 million of its 19 million Nikola shares on July 6-7, reaping nearly $238 million before taxes. Current Nikola CEO Mark Russell joined the company from Worthington in February 2019.

The rebound to nearly $60 coincided with J.P. Morgan moving to an “overweight” rating from “neutral.” Analyst Paul Coster pointed to several catalysts strengthening Nikola’s prospects. Shares fell Friday along with the overall market.

“In our view, [Nikola] is currently a story-stock, but we are on board as long as the company executes to plan, and providing the stock offers a favorable risk-reward trade-off,” Coster wrote in a note to clients on Wednesday, July 8.

Workhorse keeps borrowing

Workhorse is finally building its composite body electric delivery vans – called the C-Series – in Union City, Indiana.  But with just 300 to 400 vans expected this year, investors spy the possible payday Workhorse could get if Lordstown Motors (LMC) succeeds in building electric pickups from licensed Workhorse technology. 

In addition to a 10% stake in the startup, Workhorse gets royalties on the first 200,000 Endurance pickups made by LMC, started by former Workhorse CEO Steve Burns. 

If LMC gets the $400 million it needs to retool the former General Motors’ (NYSE: GM) car plant, it plans to build 20,000 pickups in its first year. It would also be Workhorse’s contract manufacturer for the next-generation United States Postal Service (USPS) delivery vehicle. Workhorse is in the running for some or all of the $6 billion contract.

“We see the chance of winning a material USPS contract as virtually zero,” Hindenburg Research said Friday in predicting a 50% decline in Workhorse shares. It said it was shorting the shares because Workhorse’s “astronomical value” is out of synch with revenue.

Betting on a windfall

Investors, many of whom appear to be day traders, latched onto Workhorse because of the LMC deal. They posted unceasing stock-boosting messages during the online reveal of the Endurance by Burns and Vice President Mike Pence on June 25.

Workhorse has been long beset by dilution of its shares. It signed a potentially costly senior convertible note on June 30. It gets $70 million from High Trail Capital, the same hedge fund it borrowed $41 million from in November 2019. Workhorse must start repaying the note in October. 

“With this note in place, we have much greater financial flexibility to support our current and future production needs,” CEO Duane Hughes said.

The new money should allow Workhorse to build the 1,100 pending van orders from United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS) and DHL. Workhorse is still seeking a $40 million credit facility.

Hyliion on a tortoise pace

Hyliion Inc., which makes a hybrid diesel-electric powertrain for Class 8 trucks, will get the Nikola reverse merger treatment as soon as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission completes its review.

Tortoise Acquisition announced its role as the blank check company bringing Hyliion public on June 22. That set off a runup in Tortoise shares, similar to what occurred when VectoIQ announced its plans for Nikola in March. A preorder of 1,000 trucks by logistics giant Agility on June 25  drove another surge. 

Shares now traded Friday in the mid $20s. 

Of the electric truck makers, Hyliion has the fewest obstacles to market. Its natural gas-electric ERX Hypertruck hybrid powertrain goes into test production in 2021 with deliveries in 2022. 

There are 700 natural gas filling stations in the U.S., freeing Hyliion of creating a fueling infrastructure. The natural gas generator makes electricity to drive the truck and charge a small electric motor capable of 25 miles of pure electric driving. That range meets expected future bans on truck emissions in urban centers,

If Hyliion follows the Nikola public playbook, Tortoise shares could rise when the SEC approves the merger and again when the merger is complete. The symbol SHLL will switch to HYLN. 

Hyliion can swap its zero-emissions powertrain into existing heavy-duty trucks, meaning preorders like the one by Agility, which also invested in Hyliion, could follow as fleets seek to meet zero-emission quotas beginning in 2024 under the new California Clean Truck mandate.

Click for more FreightWaves articles by Alan Adler.

Related articles:

New partners Nikola Motors and IVECO target Europe with alternative propulsion truck

$70 million financing keeps Workhorse’s share surge humming

Hyliion takes reverse merger path to public trading

Source: https://www.freightwaves.com/news/electric-truck-story-stocks-drive-market-enthusiasm

Energy

New Found Intercepts 22.3 g/t Au over 41.35m and 31.2 g/t Au over 18.85m in Initial Step-Out Drilling at Keats Zone, Queensway Project, Newfoundland

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  • Holes NFGC-20-18, 19, 21, and 23 were drilled as part of a 10 m step out pattern around discovery hole NFGC-19-01 (a 3 hole x 3 hole pattern centered on NFGC-19-01) with the intention of establishing the geometry and orientation of veins making up the high-grade gold mineralizing system (Figure1).
  • Intervals from these holes displaying significant quartz veining, sulfide mineralization and visible gold and were assayed on a rush basis and returned the following results:

Interval

 

(m)

Au Grade

 

(g/t)

Targeting

Relative to

NFGC 19-01

NFGC-20-18

7.9

24.1

10 m north, 10 m above

NFGC-20-19

18.85

31.2

10 m north, same elevation

NFGC-20-23

including

including

41.35

21.25

11.35

22.3

39.8

68.6

10 m north and 10 m below

10 m north and 10 m below

10 m north and 10 m below

NFGC-20-21

18.35

15.8

10 m below

NFGC-19-01

19.0

92.9

Previously reported


The exact orientation of the veins is uncertain but believed to be steeply
dipping thus implying true widths of the high-grade zone to be in the 70%
to 80% range of reported drill lengths.

  • These intervals start at down hole depths ranging from 82.7 m to 101.7 m.
  • An additional four holes (NFGC-20-25, 28, 29 and 32, see Figure 1) have been completed as 10 m step outs from NFGC-19-01 and intervals from these holes have also been submitted for assay on a rushed basis.
  • Pending drill holes include step out drilling 50 m to the north and south of NFGC-19-01.

Greg Matheson, P.Geo., Chief Operating Officer of New Found, stated: “We are very pleased that our initial step-out drilling at Keats is demonstrating strong continuity of veining and high-grade gold mineralization.  Our 10 m step out pattern around Hole NFGC-19-01 is providing valuable information about the orientation of veining and grade distribution. Historic work and more recent drilling at Keats have demonstrated gold mineralization over at least 300 m of strike and the target remains open along strike and to depth.  Our program will continue systematic step out drilling to test this larger target area.”

Drill Collar and Interval Summaries

Hole No.

Azimuth (°)

Dip (°)

Length (m)

UTM E

UTM N

NFGC-20-18

300

-45

278

658223

5427467

NFGC-20-19

300

-45

154

658232

5427462

NFGC-20-21

300

-45

190

658236

5427449

NFGC-20-23

300

-45

185

658240

5427458

Hole No.

From (m)

To (m)

Interval
(m)

Au (g/t)

Zone

NFGC-20-18

92.0

99.9

7.9

24.1

Keats Main

Incl.

98.9

99.9

1.0

167.6

NFGC-20-19

89.65

108.5

18.85

31.2

Keats Main

Incl.

96.0

107.25

11.25

50.7

Incl.

102.0

107.25

5.25

100.6

NFGC-20-19

151.0

152.9

1.90

4.4

Keats FW

NFGC-20-21

101.65

120.0

18.35

15.8

Keats Main

Incl.

109.55

118.5

8.95

29.4

NFGC-20-23

82.65

124.0

41.35

22.3

Keats Main

Incl.

89.45

110.7

21.25

39.8

Incl.

93.65

105.0

11.35

68.6


93.65

94.0

0.35

1120


101.8

104.4

2.60

140.8

Incl.

118.85

123.4

4.55

15.2

Table 1.  Drill hole collar and interval summaries.

QA/QC

True widths of the new exploration intercepts reported in this press release have yet to be determined but are estimated to be 70% to 80% of reported core lengths. Assays are uncut, and calculated intervals are reported over a minimum length of 2 meters using a lower cutoff of 1.0 g/t Au. All HQ split core assays reported were obtained by either whole sample metallic screen/fire assay or standard 30-gram fire-assaying with ICP finish at ALS Minerals in Vancouver, British Columbia. The whole sample metallic screen assay method is selected by the geologist when samples contain coarse gold or any samples displaying gold initial fire assay values greater than 1.0 g/t Au. Drill program design, Quality Assurance/Quality Control and interpretation of results is performed by qualified persons employing a Quality Assurance/Quality Control program consistent with National Instrument 43-101 and industry best practices. Standards and blanks are included with every 20 samples for Quality Assurance/Quality Control purposes by the Company as well as the lab. Approximately 5% of sample pulps are sent to secondary laboratories for check assays.

Qualified Person

The technical content disclosed in this press release was reviewed and approved by Greg Matheson, P.Geo., Chief Operating Officer and a Qualified Person as defined under National Instrument 43-101.

About New Found Gold Corp

New Found holds a 100% interest in the Queensway Project, located 15 km west of Gander, Newfoundland, and just 18 km from Gander International Airport. The project is intersected by the Trans-Canada Highway and has logging roads crosscutting the project, high voltage electric power lines running through the project area, and easy access to a highly skilled workforce. With working capital of approximately C$75 million the Company is well financed for aggressive exploration with an initial planned drill program of 100,000 meters. New Found has a proven capital markets and mining team with major shareholders include Palisades Goldcorp (33%), Eric Sprott (18%), Novo Resources (11%), Rob McEwen (7%), other institutional ownership (8%), and management, directors and insiders (4%). Approximately 65% of the Company’s issued and outstanding shares are subject to escrow or 180-day lock up agreements.

Please see the Company’s website at www.newfoundgold.ca and the Company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.

Acknowledgments

New Found acknowledges the financial support of the Junior Exploration Assistance Program, Department of Natural Resources, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Contact

To contact the Company please visit the Company’s website, www.newfoundgold.ca and make your request through our investor inquiry form. Our management has a pledge to be in touch with any investor inquiries within 24 hours.

New Found Gold Corp.

Per: “Craig Roberts

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Forward-Looking Statement Cautions:

This press release contains certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation, relating to further the exploration and drilling on the Company’s Queensway gold project in Newfoundland.  Although the Company believes that such statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts; they are generally, but not always, identified by the words “expects,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “intends,” “estimates,” “projects,” “aims,” “potential,” “goal,” “objective,” “prospective,” and similar expressions, or that events or conditions “will,” “would,” “may,” “can,” “could” or “should” occur, or are those statements, which, by their nature, refer to future events. The Company cautions that Forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of the Company’s management on the date the statements are made and they involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Consequently, there can be no assurances that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Except to the extent required by applicable securities laws and the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange, the Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements if management’s beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other factors, should change. Factors that could cause future results to differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements include risks associated possible accidents and other risks associated with mineral exploration operations, the risk that the Company will encounter unanticipated geological factors, the possibility that the Company may not be able to secure permitting and other governmental clearances necessary to carry out the Company’s exploration plans, the risk that the Company will not be able to raise sufficient funds to carry out its business plans, and the risk of political uncertainties and regulatory or legal changes that might interfere with the Company’s business and prospects. The reader is urged to refer to the Company’s reports, publicly available through the Canadian Securities Administrators’ System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) at www.sedar.com  for a more complete discussion of such risk factors and their potential effects.

SOURCE New Found Gold Corp.

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com:443/news-releases/new-found-intercepts-22-3-gt-au-over-41-35m-and-31-2-gt-au-over-18-85m-in-initial-step-out-drilling-at-keats-zone-queensway-project-newfoundland-301160751.html

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Energy

Kalaguard® SB Sodium Benzoate Registered Under EPA FIFRA

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VANCOUVER, Wash., Oct. 27, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Emerald Kalama Chemical has completed registration for Kalaguard® SB sodium benzoate as a new active ingredient under U.S. EPA FIFRA (Fungicide Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act), making it available for use in North America for in-container control of bacteria, yeasts and molds in industrial and household products.

Kalaguard® SB is an effective, broad spectrum preservative for home care products up to pH 7. The EPA registration also covers a range of industrial applications, such as floor and leather care, coatings, adhesives, silicones, surfactants, inks and other non-ionic emulsions systems. Kalaguard SB is recommended for use in formulations at neutral and acidic pH and may be used at ambient and elevated process temperatures.

Kalaguard® SB is non-sensitizing and non-irritating to the skin, nature identical and readily biodegradable. It is listed on the EPA Safer Choice Chemical Ingredients List as “verified to be of low concern”.  Kalaguard® SB  is classified as a low-risk substance by the European Union, preferred over classical biocides to encourage the use of products with a more favorable environmental or human or animal health pro­file.

Emerald completed BPR (Biocidal Products Registration) in Europe last year, and Kalaguard® SB has already been successfully implemented in a broad range of commercial products, including household cleaners, wipes, detergents, hand dishwash liquids and laundry care products. Now that registration is complete under both BPR PT 6 and EPA FIFRA, Kalaguard® SB use can continue to expand in key regions. 

“The range of available preservatives has decreased significantly due to regulatory pressure, evolving consumer preferences and supply disruptions. At the same time, there is growing demand for eco-friendly, skin-friendly products that are still adequately protected from microbial contamination. This is especially true during a pandemic, when it’s critical to make sure products remain stable and effective throughout their life, while also minimizing adverse reaction potential due to increased use of cleaning products,” said Rosanna Stokes, business development manager for Emerald’s Consumer Specialties business in the Americas.

Stokes continued, “This registration is a culmination of a complex, data-intensive, multi-year effort. It’s a very important milestone that will enable a  new generation of home care products with robust preservation and a favorable environmental and human toxicology profile.”

SOURCE Emerald Kalama Chemical

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com:443/news-releases/kalaguard-sb-sodium-benzoate-registered-under-epa-fifra-301160749.html

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Energy

Kennebec County Community Solar Garden Reaches Project Milestone

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AUGUSTA, Maine, Oct. 27, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — SunRaise Investments, a leading New England solar developer, has reached an important milestone on its community solar project, which is now accepting applications for subscribers to participate in the solar garden. The 4.9-megawatt, 20-acre solar garden has completed early construction and is currently awaiting solar panels to be installed.

The system will provide low-cost solar energy to residents and businesses in the Central Maine Power territory who can enjoy guaranteed cost savings on their monthly electricity bill. Community solar offers anyone who pays an electricity bill the opportunity to participate in clean energy while creating local jobs and investment and supporting public health by reducing harmful air pollution. 

During the construction process, the solar garden will create nearly 150 well-paying local jobs. The system is estimated to produce 10,515,400 kilowatt-hours of clean electricity annually, equivalent to avoiding the greenhouse gas emissions from more than 1,600 passenger vehicles driven for an entire year.

“This is terrific news for Maine to see SunRaise move its project forward – Maine ratepayers have been clamoring for the ability to participate in cost effective, clean energy projects and this is an exciting time for people and communities across Maine. SunRaise has deep experience in these markets and we are glad to see them bring their knowledge to help benefit Mainers,” said Jeremy Payne, Executive Director for the Maine Renewable Energy Association.

“We’re thrilled to reach this significant milestone for our Kennebec County community solar garden. Mainers are excited about solar and want to participate in clean energy. Subscribing to a local solar garden allows them the opportunity without any upfront costs or long-term commitments. COVID has hit our economy hard in Maine and financial savings are more important now than ever. Solar can be an important part of our economic recovery, while advancing our clean energy future,” said Patrick Jackson, Vice President of Business Development at SunRaise Investments. 

During the planning process, SunRaise took into careful consideration siting concerns to ensure there were no significant environmental impacts as a result of development. The project is strategically sited on a parcel of land adjacent to a gravel quarry and set back away from the main access road.

“From a wildlife perspective, this is a thoughtfully sited project – it’s located proximate to existing development and avoids sensitive and otherwise noteworthy habitats, as well as large forested areas that are essential for wildlife to move throughout their lifecycle and as they adapt to a changing climate,” said Eliza Donoghue, Maine Audubon’s Director of Advocacy & Staff Attorney.

The Kennebec County project demonstrates the important societal, environmental, and economic benefits that community solar offers Maine, such as cost-savings, job creation, local tax revenue, land preservation, and improved air quality for local communities across the state. As the program evolves in the coming months, it will be critical that any changes made reflect these benefits to ensure a robust and equitable future for solar energy in Maine.

For more information about community solar or to subscribe to a local community solar project, visit: SunRaiseInvestments.com

About SunRaise Investments
SunRaise is a New England-based commercial and community solar energy owner, operator, and development group, specializing in partnering with municipalities, schools, and community members to finance solar energy projects that reduce customers’ electricity costs, and transition our region to a low-carbon economy.

Media contact:
Nate Watters
[email protected] 
720-628-3132

SOURCE SunRaise Investments

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com:443/news-releases/kennebec-county-community-solar-garden-reaches-project-milestone-301160750.html

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