Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Acceleware - A Company Positioning Itself To Take Advantage Of It's Tremendous Potential

Acceleware Ltd., (TSXV:AXE), has had what could be described as a very successful year, this past year. The company seized an opportunity to restructure itself, this following a dire period that caused many companies to fail. However, not only did Acceleware survive the massive downturn of the global economic recession that we are still struggling with, but Acceleware has gone from the restructuring in April, 2011 to cash flow positive by year end. Under the economic conditions that management faced, I believe it would be hard not to agree they have done an absolutely stellar job.

From the business side of things, Acceleware has worked diligently to continue to propel the company forward. They have tried to manoeuvre themselves into new markets, and into agreements with new companies, all the while maintaining the service that all their existing customers have come to expect. In 2011 Acceleware has released news that has shown the benefit of this dedicated and determined approach. If one is to go to their website and look at the news releases for the previous year, it helps to bring this into a much clearer perspective. http://acceleware.com/Press-Releases

Speaking of websites, it is reported that Acceleware is currently undertaking a major website renovation. This should be accomplished over the next month or two. There are multiple reasons for this re-working of the website. The company wants to update all the contained information for starters. This will in fact tie directly into the overall plan with initiating a marketing campaign which will bring Acceleware more directly into view for potential investors. I believe everyone would have to agree this approach will offer Acceleware the optimal benefit from the funds spent on a marketing campaign. Also of note, is the fact that management wants to have much more of the website designed so the language used is easier to read and understand. Currently the website works well for advertising to potential customers. It does however leave the average person who may be considering Acceleware as a potential investment choice struggling to understand many aspects of just what Acceleware offers from an investment standpoint. Again, I must say, this should be viewed as just another aspect of the dedication to unlock future potential shareholder value. This is of course no small undertaking, and the completion of this project is expected to be in the 1 to 2 month area, with the desire to have it done as quickly as possible, but done properly and effectively.

Acceleware is still a little ways off from the next financial reporting. My understanding is this can be expected most likely in the mid to late April timeframe. In talking with management, I was advised they are currently still going through their audit. This did not leave the door open to much discussion in this area, but I personally expect the numbers should be positive, given the increasing demand for the training sessions in both CUDA and OpenCL, not to mention the revenue that Acceleware can expect from both sales of software and the service commitments they currently have.

Recently, Acceleware has completed some hiring. This is always a good sign. The hiring that has been completed so far is expected to further enhance the ability of the company in terms of servicing the needs of potential and existing customers. According to management, they continue to look for a developer that will meet their expectations. This is a position they want to offer to someone who displays above average knowledge and skill in the specific field that the company deals with. Obviously Acceleware is continuing to prove their desire to continue the momentum they have, and to expand that momentum in a positive way. With this type of dedicated effort it is not difficult to see that Acceleware will in all likelihood begin to become much more noticed as a driving force within the super-computing circles with a focus on GPU technology. In a recent conversation with management, it was explained that Acceleware has added a couple of people to staff, but the one position they are passionate about is someone who meets a specific set of requirements as a developer. It is this type of forward thinking that will undoubtedly continue to propel Acceleware forward.

Looking at some of the recent conferences that Acceleware has attended and the immense interest garnered towards the technology they possess it will only be a matter of time before Acceleware comes to the attention of both the technological sector and investors. A prime example of this would be a report which lists Acceleware at the top of the list as an emerging company, even though Acceleware does not meet the usual requirements of a typical startup company. Here is a link to this report which I think clearly substantiates my view. http://www.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/2011-12-15/emerging_companies_ride_wave_of_gpu_computing.html What gives this report such credence in my opinion is the fact that the company which hosted this conference, Nvidia, were the ones to name Acceleware as the most promising emerging company. As is pointed out in this article, Acceleware, as well as other technological companies, have possessed very valuable technologies for quite some time now. However, it is only now with some of the recent breakthroughs and with the un-ending efforts to find markets which can utilize these technologies. This ties in with such synchronicity to the fact of who Acceleware has been hiring lately, and those they continue to look for in the future.

There are several upcoming events which hold much in the line of potential for Acceleware. Some of these events will have Acceleware as exhibitors, and others they will be presenting at as well. One event in particular that is considered to be a premiere event will be the Nvidia GPU Technology Conference. This will be held May 14-17, 2012, and is scheduled to be in San Jose, Ca, USA.    http://www.gputechconf.com/page/home.html#source=pr

http://nvidianews.nvidia.com/Releases/NVIDIA-s-2012-GPU-Technology-Conference-One-of-the-World-s-Fastest-Growing-Computational-Science-Events-Opens-for-Registration-771.aspx

Acceleware will also be in attendance at the EuCAP 2012. http://acceleware.com/events/eucap-2012
http://www.eucap2012.org/
The date for EuCAP 2012 is March 26-30, 2012. This event will be held at the Congress Center in Prague, Czech Republic.

One that is of particular interest is the EAGE '12. This is quite likely one of the most prestigious events in terms of complete coverage of the oil and gas sector. This event offers one of the widest coverages possible in terms of the companies that are involved in the exploration and production of oil and gas. http://www.eage.org/events/index.php?eventid=520&Opendivs=s3

Acceleware will also be attending the International Supercomputing Conference. This event will be held from June 17-21, 2012, and will be held in Hamburg, Germany. http://www.isc-events.com/isc12/sponsor-exhibitor-listing.html

All of these events offer excellent potential for Acceleware to bring themselves more into view of the industries and companies that have a need for the technology and services that Acceleware has to offer. Add to this the steps being taken by the company in regards to revamping the company website, and the desire to bring the investor relations portion of the website more into a  format that can be more easily understood, and then to initiate a marketing program geared towards the investment community. I find the grand sum of this to be favorable in terms of potentially starting Acceleware on changing trend. Of course I can make no guarantee, but the potential for Acceleware to begin a positive move in relation to both the share price and market cap is huge in my opinion.

If you find Acceleware as a company of interest as a choice for a possible investment into the early stages of a technological company, I strongly urge you to do your own due diligence. An excellent place to start is the company website which can be found at www.acceleware.com, and all publicly reported documents can be viewed at www.sedar.com.

For disclosure purposes, I have received no compensation of any kind for my opinions or this post. All opinions contained in this post are expressly my own. I own shares in Acceleware.





Sunday, February 26, 2012

Focus Metals prepares to gain momentum as we start into a new year

Focus Metals (TSXV:FMS)(OTCQX:FCSMF) has been a very busy company over the last year and a bit. They have remained strong through all the criticism of not having a NI43-101 compliant resource estimate and not being able to provide any proof of interest by outside entities. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec12011

http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec52011

 In hindsight the management of Focus Metals has put to rest all of these issues, and as they progress forward from here, I believe we will see them continue to provide the "proof" that this is truly going to become the go-to company of the entire graphite and graphene sector globally. Management has stated several times that they have every intent of pursuing this position. They have claimed they were in the market to buy any claims that they believe hold value to further this drive of acquiring the goal they have set for the company. To date I think it is very difficult to argue that management has done anything but a superb job. They have managed to expand the company portfolio of graphite claims by a whopping 265 claims, all of which are reported to contain favorable indications that high quality graphite is present. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/sept92011
http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2012-2/jan122012

Focus Metals started a joint venture for the research of graphene, a company known as Grafoid Inc. The purpose of Grafoid is to research graphene from a number of fronts. First, Grafoid has been researching to try and find a process that will allow the company to produce graphene at the lowest cost available, and it seems with overwhelming success. Although not much is being communicated on this issue, it seems the secrecy is more rooted in the fact that patents are being currently applied for. Another approach to the research is to attempt to discover processes and products that can be patented and licensed. With graphene being arguably the hottest product to grace virtually any research lab at the present time, it goes without saying just how much value Grafoid can potentially bring to the table. To bring this into terms that show the true impact both Focus Metals and Grafoid are having on the graphite and graphene space, I find the signing of the MOU between Grafoid and Rutgers University to hold tremendous weight. Rutgers University enjoys a reputation that states they are considered one of the most highly regarded institutions involved in the research of material science, specifically in the field of polymer and non-polymer research. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/feb232011
http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec12011
It is reported that this research is being quite positive, however, the management is not releasing any details just yet. I have been told that these details will be forthcoming in the near future.

The actual demand for graphite will continue to rise I believe, and a major driving force of this demand will undoubtedly be the advent of the lithium-ion battery to be used in the upcoming shift towards the all-electric vehicles of the future. I would venture to say that the future on this front is no longer to be called the future, but rather the present. The number of companies that are building lithium-ion battery plants in North America, or are currently considering doing so, speaks to this end. http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2010/03/lg_chem_to_build_1st_north_ame.html

http://www.nissanusa.com/leaf-electric-car/news/press-releases/nissan_progresses_construction_of_electric_vehicle_battery_plant_in_tennessee#/leaf-electric-car/news/press-releases/nissan_progresses_construction_of_electric_vehicle_battery_plant_in_tennessee

http://www.xconomy.com/detroit/2010/09/13/a123-opens-lithium-ion-battery-plant-in-michigan-wants-to-create-global-hub-for-electric-vehicles/

We also need to consider the fact that the worlds largest lithium-ion battery plant,which has started production of high-capacity lithium-ion batteries, will be another source that will require huge amounts of graphite. Although this plant is situated in Russia, it is reported that they expect to export into both the European and North American markets. http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/12/08/61812285.html

http://www.energytrend.com/node/2908
It is already a well known fact that the lithium-ion battery possesses a much higher quantity of graphite as opposed to lithium, thereby it is clear that graphite demand will only continue to grow.

While not just any graphite will suffice in the manufacturing of these batteries, Focus Metals has an abundant supply of the type of large flake graphite that will be required for this type of application. I fully expect that Focus Metals and Grafoid will both benefit immensely from the intense growth demand that will, with near certainty, develop as these battery plants begin production.

Many graphite companies are starting to emerge as of late. While it is true that their will be ample room in this sector for multiple companies to produce graphite, it should also be noted which companies are best positioned to withstand the rigors that face all industries at one point or another. In reality, there are times when prices and short-term demand trends can cause significant changes to a companies bottom line for profitability. Lac Knife is the flagship project of Focus Metals. What Lac Knife contains, in terms of the amount of graphite and the grade of this graphite, help us to see the tremendous advantage that Focus Metals has over competitors. As if that was not enough, it should be noted that, unlike many graphite deposits, the host rock is extremely soft. This all points to a cost of production figure that allows Focus Metals to truly take a comfortable lead ahead of virtually all competitors. Many of these points are discussed in the NI43-101 resource estimate which is effective as of December 5, 2011, and which was filed officially on January 18, 2012.   http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/43-101Report_Lac-Knife.pdf

The Lac Knife deposit is open in all directions, and management has stated they want to drill deeper to help further delineate the potential depth of the deposit. All drilling thus far on Lac Knife has ended in mineralization. Focus Metals decided last year to do an expanded drill program to embrace this issue. Permits were applied for but some delays were experienced which held up the progress of drilling to such a degree that drilling had to be cancelled for last year. In talking with management, I have been told we can expect drilling to begin approximately the end of April to the beginning of May. Obviously this will be conditional on the local weather. It was also brought to my attention that there are 9 additional drill targets have been identified. These are over and above the previously planned expanded drilling program. The potential of all of these additional drill targets are great, based on the outcrop samples taken. According to management, the potential is such that if these newest drill targets do in fact intersect the expected mineralization, each hole could in fact become another pit, similar to the existing pit design. Here is a map showing the locations of the newest drill targets.
http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/LacKnifeGeology_Map11x17_f1.jpg
From my experience when I toured the Lac Knife property and saw the size of some of the large outcrops at surface, I have little difficulty expecting much less than the potential for a huge addition to the resources. I can not even begin to tell everyone what the potential is for this drilling program, but to describe it in terms of monumental would be a gross understatement in my opinion.
In some of the most recent news from the company, we find that they have announced a bought deal private placement of flow-through shares. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2012-2/feb232012
The funds are intended to be used to explore and advance Focus Metals’ Lac Knife Graphite Project located in Qu├ębec.

An important issue that shareholders are waiting for word on currently, is word on an off-take agreement. While there has been no official news regarding an anouncement, it is just a matter of time before this announcement is undoubtedly made. Focus Metals CEO, Gary Economo has previously stated that the company has been actively pursuing this type of agreement, and that several companies are in possession of graphite samples that they can do testing on to ensure that the graphite will meet the necessary requirements for their specific use. I may be only speculating as to which companies may be involved in the testing of graphite from Lac Knife, but I fully expect that when this announcement is made it will not be surprising to find some of the largest consumers of graphite. I believe this since management has made no secret that they plan to move into a position of dominance in the graphite sector globally. This would indicate to me that we can expect some of the largest consumers of graphite to be numbered into our potential off-take partners.
As I mentioned previously there are a number of graphite companies cropping up recently. While I see the potential for some of these companies to progress towards production, it should be noted as to the importance of this testing process by the end-user of the graphite. Graphite is not like most other mined products, such as silver or gold etc., it is in fact very necessary for each company to test the graphite to ensure its suitability for a specific use. Focus Metals is ahead of most, if not all, competitors on this front. This will help Focus Metals to solidify their pursuit of becoming a leader in the graphite space.

Another topic that has been mentioned by management is the desire to change the company name from Focus Metals to Focus Graphite. This would help to bring attention to the core holding and value of the company. It is my understanding that this change should take place after the upcoming AGM. Considering  all of the above it would seem there should be no shortage of news as Focus Metals progresses.

As we move on to take a look at what is new on the graphene research front, I believe there are a number of potentially important findings. For instance, in an article found in Science Daily, dated Feb.22, 2012, testing has found graphene to produce an anti-corrosion coating that would appear to be superior in nature. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120222133125.htm

One university in particular has come to the attention of those looking at highly regarded facilities or institutions that rank high in a global standing for graphene research. This would be the National University of Singapore, which ranked 2nd in the world for graphene research.
 http://www.graphenecenter.org/content/glance-over-nus-research-landscape

http://www.graphenecenter.org/content/research

http://www.graphenecenter.org/content/graphene

For those who may have read every possible article regarding graphene and the myriad of potential uses, and have become dishearted with the decision that many years of research are needed to overcome one fault or another which researchers seem to continue to run into, I bring you this article. This article is from Manchester University. It contains the results from a project undertaken by a team  lead by Nobel laureates Professor Andre Geim and Professor Konstantin Novoselov. I believe that this is the type and caliber of research we can expect to see on a more consistent basis, not only from this University, but from a host of other research labs around the globe. http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-02/uom-gem013112.php

As we can see from these many links which confirm or explore the potential ahead for both graphite and graphene as research projects progress, there is beyond all doubt some very exciting times coming. I believe Focus Metals has positioned themselves superbly to gain maximum benefit from this, and I expect that as management continues to work diligently in this regard, we will continue to experience an ever-building growth that will catapult Focus Metals to the forefront of this entire graphite/graphene sector globally. I also believe we will see a growth of similar porportions, or greater for Grafoid. It has been less than 2 years since Focus Metals has started trading on the TSX Venture exchange, and the growth has been absolutely stunning to-date.

If what is presented here appeals to you as a worthwhile investment choice, I would urge you to do your own due diligence. If necessary seek the advice of a professional advisor. A great place to start in my opinion is at the company website which can be found at www.focusmetals.ca. All publicly filed reports and documentations can be found by visiting www.sedar.com and looking under Focus Metals.

For the purpose of disclosure, I wish to make known that I have received no compensation of any kind for this post or my opinions. All opinions stated herein are strictly my own. I own shares of Focus Metals.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Compliance Energy - An update on this most promising company

Compliance Energy (TSXV:CEC) is a company I have written about several times now, and it remains a company that I believe will make it to production. The company has performed testing well above and beyond what the prerequisites are for going forward, towards the environmental application process, in regards to their flagship project known as the Raven Underground Coal Project. For anyone who may not have knowledge of who Compliance Energy is, and what it is they are attempting, I will refer you to the company website which can be found at www.complianceenergy.com, and be sure to click on the link to the left side entitled "Corporate Fact Sheet - November 2011". This report has the latest NI43-101 compliant figures.

Compliance Energy has taken steps to ensure that they have left nothing untested in regards to the environmental requirements. They are currently progressing through the Environmental Application Process. This is an arduous task at best, and takes a considerable amount of time, as the government reviews all information concerning the project in its entirety. This includes of course, the environmental impact, as well as the impact it will have on the surrounding communities.  Compliance Energy has submitted the pre-application portion, with the final application being completed and ready for submission over the coming months. This final application portion will potentially be ready by mid-year, with hopes that it may be ready sooner. To allow you to try and visualize just how intensive the paperwork is, for this type of application, I will tell you it is not necessarily uncommon for the papers to stack up to nearly a meter high. For anyone to think that this is not a very in-depth process to undertake, is to be grossly mistaken.

This does tend to be a tedious time of waiting, and a time of little news. There is other news that I find quite encouraging though. North Island College (NIC) has announced that they will be receiving funding from the Employment Skills Access Program, a federal-provincial program developed to provide unemployed workers with general employment or job-specific skills so they can transition to the workforce. This funding will cover many types of employment, varying from carpentry, woodland harvesting, integrated core resource skills training, leadership and capacity building for First Nations Communities. What there is truly a need for is trained mining personnel, and the government has added this to the list. With mining contributing nearly $9B to the BC economy, and the current shortage of people who have the required training for this type of work, this is most welcome news.  http://www2.canada.com/courierislander/news/letters/story.html?id=e307d440-d8d3-4f9b-865e-472a03317fef
The shortage of skilled mining personnel is not something that is a local problem, but rather is much more widespread and its effects are felt virtually worldwide. This training will enrich many lives by allowing individuals to gain possible employment in a high income earning industry. It is reassuring to see that the government is doing their part, and offer people a means to gain the skills needed to better their lives, and the lives of their families.

Another open letter I came across recently is of particular interest. This is an open letter from the Honourable Joe Oliver, Minister of Natural Resources. http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/media-room/news-release/2012/1/3520
In this letter, the Honourable Joe Oliver makes a statement that is extremely accurate in its attempt to hit directly to the root of the problem facing many industries today. Of course it drew massive amounts of protest from virtually all environmental groups. While the environment needs to be watched over, and very carefully I might add, it is becoming increasingly difficult to get any projects approved. This letter is a very blunt statement that I believe touches to the very core of the underlying issues. While the fact is that we need to protect and be conscious stewards of our environment, it is also necessary to harvest wood, minerals, metals, oil, and gas in order for our lives to continue as we know life. Short of expecting everyone to revert back to the days of cave dwelling, how can we drive cars, live in houses, build bridges, and produce the innumerable items that we have come to view as normal living. Environmental stewardship is something that Compliance Energy holds as highly important, which is the reason they have spent millions on the amount of testing they have performed to make every possible attempt to mitigate any environmental impact.

While the Raven Project is Compliance Energy's flagship operation, the company also owns several additional properties on Vancouver Island. http://www.complianceenergy.com/index.php?id=115
Compliance Energy has received permits to drill on 2 of these properties. http://www.complianceenergy.com/index.php?id=107

http://www.complianceenergy.com/all_news/110907_CEC_Press%20Release.pdf
The company has stated that all planned drilling has been completed, with the results expected towards the end of Jan. 2012 - beginning of Feb., 2012. This timeline is approximate, and it is of course ultimately dependent upon the labs schedule. Both of these properties hold excellent potential. While some analysts consider that copper supply may not fall into a major shortfall as was previously thought, it is considered to potentially stay rather stable. Of course the next time the International Copper Study Group meets to discuss any changes to the forecast of copper going forward will be in April, 2012 in Lisbon, Portugal. There are others who have adjusted their forecasts also including Goldman-Sachs. Even with these latest adjustments, I think copper will remain strong through the long-term. http://www.commodityonline.com/news/goldman-sachs-cuts-2012-copper-forecast-by-over-5-45181-3-1.html

Copper is of course one of the products hoped to be found in both the NIC and the Camp Lake properties. However, in the case of the NIC property there is also the hope of proving up gold and silver as well, when looking at what the chip and grab samples were. In the case of the Camp Lake property there is the hope of finding molybdenum as well as copper.

All in all I believe that Compliance Energy will begin to show us that there are many avenues of value to this company as we start into 2012, and as the year progresses I think we can expect more momentum to the news we will receive. Another item of interest is the fact that Compliance Energy holds approximately 2.2 million shares of Copper Mountain Mining Corp. (TSX:CUM).

For those interested in considering Compliance Energy as  a potential investment choice, I urge everyone to do their own due diligence and seek the advice of a professional advisor. A couple of links that will be useful as a starting point in conducting this research are included here, http://www.complianceenergy.com/index.php?id=27

http://www.theravenproject.ca/index.php

For disclosure purposes I have received no compensation of any kind for this post or for my opinions. All opinions contained herein are strictly my own. I own shares of Compliance Energy.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Acceleware - This is a company with tremendous potential

Acceleware (TSXV:AXE) has a lot to celebrate as we usher in 2012. Over the last year the company has undergone some major changes, and as a result has moved into a cash-flow positive territory. I am certain this feat can be appreciated if we consider the economic environment that all business's have faced over the preceding year. To have taken the company this far in this short amount of time speaks volumes of the dedication and commitment by the entire management team, which is led by CEO, Geoff Clark. What this company can achieve over the coming year is not something I, nor anyone else, can guarantee. I do however, see virtually limitless potential, and feel that the current management team is not only well positioned, but has the vision to take advantage of all possibilities that present themselves, as well as to pursue all viable opportunities they feel would bring added value to this exciting company.

There are several ingredients required for any company to be successful. One of the things I like about Acceleware is their grasp on how important it is to align themselves with partners and customers who will be capable of aiding the management to continue to drive the company forward. The list of companies that Acceleware has, both in terms of partners and for customers, is quite impressive. While there are many examples to pick from, let's look at what the company produced working in conjunction with Paradigm Ltd., and what type of reception this product has seen. http://www.pdgm.com/getattachment/Resources-(2)/Press-Release/Paradigm-to-Highlight-Technological-Breakthroughs-/PR-2011-05-Paradigm-to-Highlight-Technological-Breakthroughs-Offered-in-the-Paradigm-2011-Release-at-EAGE-wpic.pdf.aspx

http://www.pdgm.com/getattachment/Resources-(2)/Press-Release/Fugro-Selects-Paradigm-Reverse-Time-Migration/PR-2011-08-24-Fugro-Selects-Paradigm-Reverse-Time-Migration.pdf.aspx

http://www.pdgm.com/getattachment/Resources-(2)/Press-Release/Paradigm-at-SEG/PR-2011-09-08-Paradigm-to-Feature-Key-Technological-Breakthroughs-Introduced-in-the-Paradigm-2011-Release-at-SEG.pdf.aspx
As you read through these reports I think you will begin to get a much broader understanding of just how powerful this technology is, and of course how it is being chosen by well established companies who are leaders in this sector. With this technology being released only this last year, I fully expect we will see enormous growth in its demand.

As I mentioned there are numerous companies that Acceleware has partnered with over the years. Here are a couple of links that will help to give you an understanding of just how in-depth Acceleware is, based on their business and solutions partners, who include the likes of Nvidia, Microsoft, and AMD, to name a few. http://www.acceleware.com/business-partners
http://www.acceleware.com/solution-partners


On Dec. 14-15, 2011, Acceleware attended the GTC Asia Conference in Beijing, China. This was truly a very valuable conference for Acceleware to have attended. The amount of interest was reported to be exceptionally strong, with many people and companies stopping at the Acceleware booth to express a sincere interest in all that Acceleware had to offer. While there was some interest shown by some companies towards the EM technologies, it was obviously the RTM technology that drew the most interest. Acceleware was not only well received at the conference, but was also the recipient of a very meaningful reference from Nvidia.  http://www.hpcwire.com/hpcwire/2011-12-15/emerging_companies_ride_wave_of_gpu_computing.html
I find it quite compelling when I can read articles such as this, and to see the optimism being given towards Acceleware from a giant such as Nvidia. This in combination with the sincere showing of interest from any number of potential customers carries a lot of weight in my opinion. One point that comes to mind when I try to estimate the potential for Acceleware in the Asian market, and that is they have a very valuable technology which can be brought directly into the market by some of the companies associated with Acceleware. For example, we know that Paradigm Ltd. has a very close working relationship with Acceleware, as does Tsunami. Both of these companies have branch offices in Beijing, and are well respected by the customer base they serve in that area. Aside from the Asian market, both of these companies have excellent global representation. I believe the amount of interest being afforded Acceleware in terms of their RTM technology in the Asian area, is undoubtedly connected to the fact the geologies they are currently facing are becoming increasingly more complex. This seems to hold true for most exploration projects globally, and is due in large part to the necessity of moving into off-shore settings for further oil/gas exploration targets. It is in these complex geological settings that Acceleware's RTM technology can truly show its full value. Here are a couple of links to both Paradigm and Tsunami which I think you will find helpful in getting a sense for what these companies can contribute. http://www.pdgm.com/Home.aspx
http://www.tsunamidev.com/

Acceleware can potentially expect to gain some ground in another area where off-shore exploration seems to be building rapidly, and this would be off the shores of Africa. As with many, if not most off-shore projects, the geology is complex at best. What stood out in my mind was when I learned that a significant percentage of this exploration can be traced back to Asian origins. As China continues to experience massive growth, and the future need for energy continues to grow, we are currently witnessing a surge of Chinese investment into the energy sector. This all points to significant potential for Acceleware looking forward.

I believe that Acceleware stands to profit greatly from their RTM technology, and quite likely we could see a significant rise in the amount of companies who will decide that this technology holds the key to interpreting the data they have to work with from ever-increasingly complex geological settings. There are those who will argue that fossil fuels are going the way of the dinosaur, and while long-term this may hold some degree of truth, there is no realistic way that I can foresee the transformation to a world that is free from both oil and gas in the immediate future. The fact that the Chinese are avidly investing into numerous energy projects around the world helps to substantiate this view. We are being told by virtually all energy companies that any major new discoveries will be predominately from off-shore exploration. With this in mind, it becomes much easier to see the potential for Acceleware going forward. As with any business that realizes success, there are times and events that help to lift that specific company to the next level, and in the case of Acceleware, I believe there could quite possibly be some significant gains made from their RTM technology, beginning this year and continuing.

I feel it only proper that I should add, that although I concentrated mostly on the RTM technology in this post, there was no shortage of interest shown towards Acceleware in Beijing recently, and this would have included several of the technologies Acceleware possesses. I have no knowledge of any deals that may be in the works, but I do know that this much interest from large well established companies in this region, could have a very positive outcome for Acceleware. I think we will definitely be hearing and seeing a lot from Acceleware in 2012. Aside from RTM, Acceleware also continues to enjoy growth at virtually all of their CUDA training classes offered in conjunction with Microsoft. A similar set of training courses based on OpenCL are being offered in conjunction with AMD, and these too are enjoying great success.

The fact that Acceleware has 55.95M shares outstanding (approx. 60M fully diluted), and a market cap just shy of $4M CAD, with a move into cash-flow positive ground, I truly believe this is a company that will begin to be noticed, and quite likely sooner than later. Of the 55.95M shares, Nvidia holds 8M of them, and to me that speaks loudly of their belief in Acceleware.

For anyone who finds Acceleware as a potential investment choice, I recommend that you do your own due diligence. Acceleware has a website which can be found at www.acceleware.com, and I would suggest that as a good starting point, as well as all reports which can be viewed on Sedar. I think you will find many of the press releases quite informative also, http://www.acceleware.com/Press-Releases

For disclosure purposes, I have received no compensation of any kind for this post or my opinions. All opinions contained herein are strictly my own. I own shares of Acceleware.



An Update To The World Of Graphene Research And The Potential It Holds For Focus Metals

As most people, who read the articles concerning graphite and graphene on my blog, you will be well versed on the amount of research currently being conducted on a global basis. This research seems to just keep accelerating both in terms of the amount of research projects being studied, and also the speed at which researchers are attempting to find the answers they so desperately are seeking. I have tried to keep up to date as best I can in my efforts to stay abreast of some of these projects, especially those that I view as having the potential to affect the possible demand for high quality graphite, and even more so, high quality graphene. In order for graphene to be considered for high-tech applications it is apparent that not just any graphene will suffice. High-tech applications are requiring some of the highest grades of graphene they can source. The one company that has a deposit which contains graphite that can produce graphene of this high caliber would be Focus Metals (TSXV:FMS)(OTCQX:FCSMF).

I recently found a few articles that will show just how sudden some possible breakthroughs can come. As the global pace for graphene research seems to recognize no limitations, it is almost overwhelming what these researchers are finding as they consider the results of the nearly endless research projects. The following is one such example and is an excerpt from the following report,Scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have used the capabilities of one of the world's most powerful university-based supercomputers, the Rensselaer Center for Nanotechnology Innovations (CCNI), to uncover the properties of a promising form of graphene, known as graphene nanowiggles. What they found was that graphitic nanoribbons can be segmented into several different surface structures called nanowiggles. Each of these structures produces highly different magnetic and conductive properties. The findings provide a blueprint that scientists can use to literally pick and choose a graphene nanostructure that is tuned and customized for a different task or device. The work provides an important base of knowledge on these highly useful nanomaterials. http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-01/rpi-sd010412.php

Rice University is well known for the many graphene research projects they undertake.  The Rice lab of materials scientist Pulickel Ajayan, in collaboration with colleagues in China, India, Japan and the Texas Medical Center, discovered a one-step chemical process that is markedly simpler than established techniques for making graphene quantum dots. The results were published online this month in the American Chemical Society's journal Nano Letters. The impact of this type of research is something that should not be taken lightly. This could potentially save numerous lives by allowing doctors to correctly diagnose some of the many maladies that we currently do not have the technology to diagnose in its earliest stages. The earlier a person can get a diagnosis the sooner treatment can begin, and this has been proven to be paramount in hoping for a successful treatment program. This research could also lead to a possible treatment method as well. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120112134357.htm

In recent months we have read of many research projects that are geared towards better understanding how the electrical conductivity of graphene can be useful in any number of applications. In yet another aspect of the current graphene research being conducted, we find that researchers at University of Texas Dallas have been busy studying the potential of graphene in electronics, but this more from the thermal aspect. Much of modern technology is based on silicon's use as a semiconductor material, but research recently published in the journal Nature Materials shows that graphene conducts heat about 20 times faster than silicon. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120109211557.htm

While the above information helps to lend a view to where some graphene research is heading, there is lots being pursued at Rutgers University. December 1, 2011, there was a news release issued which announced the signing of a MOU between Grafoid Inc., which is a graphene joint venture that is 40% held by Focus Metals, and Rutgers University. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec12011. As is noted in this news release,
“The graphene research and development activities undertaken to date by Dr. Chiu are heading towards a new phase, leading ultimately, we believe, to industrial applications for our graphene,” Mr. Economo said.
“In time, and through further development in conjunction with Rutgers University we see Grafoid assuming its place as an industry leader not only in industrial and infrastructural applications, but in graphene applications for military and defense, aviation and marine and in other emerging industries where demand exists,” he added. Considering the high regard that Rutgers University commands from the research community, it is not difficult to see how high the potential is for major breakthroughs to be accomplished. http://nanotubes.rutgers.edu/

In yet another research project we find graphene excellently suited as a protective optical limiter. http://www.laserfocusworld.com/articles/2012/01/dispersed-graphene-makes-excellent-protective-optical-limiter.html
Then there is this project from Manchester University and Cambridge University. Graphene, a monolayer form of carbon with properties that will likely mean great things for optics as well as electronics, will be giving high-speed optical communications a boost, if research at the Universities of Manchester and Cambridge pans out. A combination of graphene with metallic nanostructures appears to show a twentyfold enhancement in converting light to electricity when compared to graphene by itself. This could mean dramatically improved photodetectors for fiber optics, for one.
http://www.laserfocusworld.com/articles/2011/09/plasmonic-structures-and-graphene.html

The biggest question seems to be, "Just what is the potential for Focus Metals from all this?" Since Focus Metals owns 100% of the Lac Knife deposit, near Fermont, Quebec, and this deposit is now  NI 43-101 compliant. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec52011
Previous to this report being completed, on Feb. 23, 2011, Focus Metals announced that they had formed a graphene joint venture. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/feb232011. This was followed by another release in which Focus Metals announced that the joint venture had been incorporated, and was now called Grafoid Inc. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/sept92011
Then on Dec.1 came the news that Grafoid Inc. had signed a MOU with none other than Rutgers University, a very highly regarded facility. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec12011.

These are only some of the highlights of what management of Focus Metals has accomplished in the past year, but I believe they are indicative about how the potential of Focus Metals just keeps building. With the tens of billions of dollars being spent to fund an almost infinite amount of graphene research globally, and with some researchers, as well as companies applying for numerous patents, it is not that difficult to see that Focus Metals has positioned themselves extremely well for the impending rise in anticipated demand for both graphite and graphene. Does Focus Metals have any competitors? That would depend on what a person wants to use for the definition of competitors. From the aspect of whether there are additional companies who will be attempting to sell graphite and or graphene, yes, there will be competitors. From the aspect of, can any other companies boast of a world class deposit such as Lac Knife, which holds some of the highest grade graphite known at this time, no. It is common knowledge that company CEO, Gary Economo, has been in various talks with a number of companies, and the basis for these talks is to establish one or more off-take agreement(s). I would expect this decision could be made in the near future, but keep in mind that it is an arduous task for companies interested in the graphite to run many complex and sophisticated tests on the graphite, to ensure its suitability. Graphite is very different from most any other mine in this aspect. Gold is gold, and silver is silver, however this holds no bearing on how graphite is sold. Companies who may be interested in buying graphite will need to make certain that the graphite will meet any number of prerequisites. The fact that Lac Knife holds such an unusually high grade of graphite can only be considered a blessing of the largest kind, since this puts Focus Metals well in front of most, if not all other graphite explorers and producers. Not only does the NI43-101 report state how high the quality is, but we have this excerpt from Professor Nosker.
On behalf of AMIPP (Advanced Materials via Immiscible Polymer Processing), Professor Nosker said a huge opportunity is waiting to be opened by the cooperative venture.
“I am very pleased that we have an opportunity to spearhead the exploration for the applications from the very high quality graphite received from the Lac Knife project in Canada,” he said.
“This material, formed together in an igneous rock formation millions of years ago, has extreme high electrical conductivity relating to the perfection of the graphite crystals formed there.
“There are many engineering applications for these materials just waiting to be discovered,” Prof. Nosker added.

When I read all that companies like Samsung, Nokia, and IBM, just to name a few, are investing into the research of graphene, it becomes clear in my mind that graphite and graphene are both headed for a much higher demand as we move closer and closer to the breakthroughs that will help graphene live up to the expectations that the world has bestowed upon it. This will most certainly help Focus Metals in my opinion. I believe we will see an increase in the demand of graphite, although I would not expect that immediately. Graphene demand will continue to grow I expect, and I can easily see graphene demand growing many fold as these research projects begin to produce usable ways to incorporate graphene into many of the products we use on a daily basis. I firmly believe graphene will be the next item to revolutionize the world, and Focus Metals is the company I see best positioned to take advantage of this.

For anyone interested in considering Focus Metals as an investment choice, I highly recommend that you do your own due diligence, and seek the advice of a professional advisor. Focus Metals has a website which can be found at www.focusmetals.ca.

For disclosure purposes I have received no compensation of any kind for this posting or for my opinions. All opinions herein are strictly my own. I own shares of Focus Metals

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Focus Metals - The potential just keeps building

As 2011 winds down and we look forward to the ringing in of another year, I would like to look at what could potentially help investors to realize additional value from Focus Metals (TSXV:FMS)(OTCQX:FCSMF). The company has recently released their NI43-101 resource estimate, which outlines a resource very much in-line with what was expected from the historical data. There is of course, the issue of off-take agreements to be determined yet, although there is lots happening in that regard according to CEO, Gary Economo. It is now widely known in the research community, as well as the industrial community, that to utilize graphite/graphene for a specific project, it is of paramount importance that a proper amount of testing be completed in order to ensure the graphite/graphene will be appropriate according to the customers specifications. Obviously this leads to extended wait times, as this testing is completed, and the decisions are then made as to whether the graphite and or graphene meet the prerequisites of any potential off-take partners. With several comments being made in connection to the high quality of the graphite and graphene available from Focus Metals' Lac Knife deposit, we can now see that Focus Metals is definitely poised to reach out and take possession of the position they have striven to reach, that of a globally dominant supplier of the highest quality graphite and graphene. I have made reference to the potential of Focus Metals many times since I first started to cover the company with posts in my blog, and as the company continues to progress, that potential only seems to grow. I have had people ask me what the effect on Focus Metals might be if the price was to drop somewhat, to which my main reply has been, Focus Metals will be in as positive a position as possible. Considering that the cost of producing this graphite and graphene will be amongst the lowest in the world, and with the highest quality product, it is with ease that I see Focus Metals continuing their progress uninterrupted. This is of course, if there is ever any downward pressure on prices. In the event that there are some immediate breakthroughs in research and the supply side of the equation gets outstripped by demand, the potential I will attempt to show here could be dwarfed.

I believe graphene stands to quite possibly dwarf graphite in financial terms for Focus Metals looking forward, but I found the following to be quite interesting, and I thought it would help to show the true depth of the potential uses for graphite as well as graphene.
There seems to be a renewed interest in nuclear power, following the crisis in Japan earlier this year. It is true that nuclear power has competition in some parts of the world, which may be more economically feasible, such as the advent of shale gas in North America, but this cannot be said of the entire world. For instance, both China and India, are in desperate need of a much cleaner method of producing power. There are many other countries that fall into this category, but in the case of these two countries, the growing population coupled with the growing economy will soon leave little to no choice. http://world-nuclear.org/info/inf104.html

 Many concerns of course, still abound over the safety of nuclear power, but there are alternate options which are available now that involve some of the latest state-of-the-art technology.  As these uniquely different technologies continue to be tested, some have shown considerable promise. One such reactor is discussed in this article, under the heading HTR-10, which is approximately 3/4 of the way down the page, although the entire article is quite interesting, http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/default.aspx?id=26187&terms=graphite%20pebble%20bed.
It comes as little surprise that SGL Group, which is arguably one of, if not the, world's largest carbon company, would be firmly rooted into such a technology, concerning the use of graphite.
http://www.sglgroup.com/export/sites/sglcarbon/_common/downloads/industries/energy/Products_Services_for_Nuclear_Power_Plant_Technology_e.pdf
There are a myriad of other uses that graphite is being considered for presently, many of which I will try to cover in the future, however, graphene seems to be at the centre of most every scientist and researcher on the planet, so I would like to switch our view more to this very exciting space.

Graphene research has become a rather dominating factor on a global basis, with virtually every country in the world becoming involved in one way or another. In the EU for instance, there is an organization that has been formed called Graphene Flagship. Here is a link that will explain how this organization works, (there are 2 videos, one is an introduction to graphene, the other is an introduction to the Graphene Flagship), http://www.graphene-flagship.eu/GF/Videos.php.
As we can see this will have a profound effect at enabling graphene research to progress at a much faster pace, as opposed to all research being segregated. One example of this, that I believe brings home just how this can be beneficial, is the case of Nokia and their efforts to bring to life a mobile phone called the "Morph" into our everyday lives.   http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/what-is-graphene-and-why-is-nokia-touting-it-as-the-supermaterial-of-the-future-2297476.html
This project is not considered to be just another research project, but is something that Nokia seems to view as a project that must be pursued until completion. It is with ease that we can see just how deep the determination is, and how broad the commitment is from so many sources to bring graphene to the forefront of our technological advances.

In yet another fascinating field of research, we find that there has been considerable progress in the research of single molecule nanomagnets enabling novel graphene spintronics devices. Although there are reportedly some issues that require more research, there are no fundamental problems foreseen. http://www.nanowerk.com/spotlight/spotid=21982.php

Recently we have seen an abundance of research to determine the viability of graphene to replace silicon in the manufacturing of computer chips. IBM announced this summer that they have built a computer chip made entirely with graphene. While this research has not provided us with the technology to say we can replace the silicon chip with a graphene chip today, it is reportedly becoming more certain that this will indeed be the case, and this is expected in the short to mid-term apparently. http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/36135.wss

When we think about graphene it is common for us to think predominately in terms of high-tech electronics. This is no doubt due to the strides being made in this research, but there are so many other potential uses for graphene. Some of these are much less discussed, and yet the potential is almost beyond comprehension if their was to be a breakthrough in some of this research. I am speaking of graphene being researched for medical uses. For instance there are currently about 15 million people suffering from Alzheimer's Disease worldwide, and this figure is expected to grow by 4 fold by 2050. The anguish that comes not only to those who are diagnosed with this most wretched of diseases, but also to those who care for them, is something that most if not all of us can appreciate. I do not wish to try and downplay the seriousness of this, but rather to bring to light just how valuable this type of breakthrough would be. http://www.nanowerk.com/spotlight/spotid=23726.php
In yet another fascinating research project we find that there is considerable potential for graphene to be used in the diagnosis of malaria. Malaria is among the most deadly infectious diseases on the planet, killing untold numbers annually. It goes without saying this is a disease that man needs to conquer, and sooner is much preferred to later. The scientists who are performing this research bring not only hope to this issue, but also afford us a view as to the actual potential. http://www.nanowerk.com/spotlight/spotid=23534.php

Now let's take a look at some research that is currently being done in the field of batteries. For quite some time people have thought that the Lithium-ion battery would potentially be the battery of choice as the entire world begins to look at the possibilities of moving from internal combustion to all-electric vehicles. This did indeed appear to be the case, but researchers kept coming up against the problem of how far a vehicle could run per charge, and the results were not favorable. Now research has found a battery that could potentially hold all the attributes required for the impending revolution towards electric vehicles. Instead of a lithium-ion battery, researchers are now leaning towards a lithium-air battery. The Li/O2 couple is especially attractive because it has the potential for the highest specific energy among all the known electrochemical couples. What does this all mean in plain terms? A lithium-ion battery is capable of reaching distances in excess of 500 km per charge, and this definitely helps researchers see the potential this technology could hold. http://www.nanowerk.com/spotlight/spotid=23258.php

There is obviously an almost infinite amount of research on possible uses for graphene at present. One thing that stands out prominently in my mind, is the need for not just graphene for the research being completed, but the need for high-quality graphene. This will apply to not only the research but also to any actual applications. From an investment viewpoint, this prompts the question of who stands to gain the most from all of this need for high-quality graphene. As one considers all the options for sourcing graphene that meets the requirements, and keeping cost in mind also, I find Focus Metals to be most aptly positioned. Grafoid Inc., which is a graphene joint venture in which Focus Metals holds 40%, has very recently announced a signing of a MOU with Rutgers University. The agreement was signed by Mr. Economo as President of Grafoid Inc., and Professor Thomas Nosker, Principal Investigator for Rutgers University’s Advanced Polymer Materials School of Engineering. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec12011
Not only is Rutgers University one of the most highly regarded advanced materials research center's that works with industry to commercialize new technologies, and commits to providing the research and inter-disciplinary laboratory facilities, but Professor Nosker is quoted as saying, “I am very pleased that we have an opportunity to spearhead the exploration for the applications from the very high quality graphite received from the Lac Knife project in Canada.”

All things considered, I am firmly entrenched in my opinion that Focus Metals will undoubtedly reach their goal of becoming the "go-to" company for graphite and graphene products that are far and above the quality available from virtually all other sources, and this in turn will allow them to realize the value that such a global dominant supplier will display. I also believe that we will continue to see progress, which may or may not be quite as we would think appropriate, that will be the result of a management team that has not only the best interests of Focus Metals at heart, but ultimately, also the shareholders interest. When management tends to keep very quiet on some issues, I have learned this can often be construed as acting in our best interests. For example, in the research I did to follow up on much of what I have written about in this post, I found many companies to be very silent and not that forthcoming. The reasons given are invariably the same, from some of the smallest to some of the largest companies, and the main reason stated is quite simply, "To protect our proprietary knowledge." I will admit, this can be frustrating, but after meeting with several of the management team, and from the experience I have gained thus far as a shareholder, I have come to a point where I trust management to unlock much additional value as we go through this next year, and I hope for many years to come. The potential here is that large in my opinion.

As I always point out to anyone who finds Focus Metals to be a company of interest for an investment choice, please do your own due diligence. There are many places where one can look for information, and I would encourage everyone to go to the company website for starters. This can be found at www.focusmetals.ca.

For disclosure purposes, I have received no compensation of any kind for this post or my opinions. All opinions herein are strictly my own. I own shares of Focus Metals.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Focus Metals releases 43-101 resource estimate and begins to show its true potential

For some people, Focus Metals (TSXV:FMS)(OTCQX:FCSMF) has been quite a ride so far. The company has had an extremely busy time since they first listed in 2010, first climbing like a rocket, then falling victim to a series of delays that were completely out of the control of the company, and now comes the long-awaited 43-101 compliancy report.There were some who refused to see the potential, others who at first believed and then let fear cloud there judgment, and of course there were those who believed strongly enough in the management and the project that we believe this is only the beginning.

For anyone who is not holding a position, or who has not been following Focus Metals, there was a news release, dated December 5, 2011,  which contained the 43-101 compliant resource estimate. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec52011
Previous to this, all reference to the resource estimate was based on historical data, which was very close to the current resource estimate. Focus Metals management had stated in an earlier news release that the company had been told by Roche that it appeared there would be little change from the historical numbers to the more modern 43-101 standard. Now that we see this is indeed the case, it allows one to begin to realize just how huge the potential for Focus Metals is.

 Prior to this news release,  Gary Economo, Focus Metals CEO, spoke at the Industrial Minerals Roundtable in Amsterdam on December 01, 2011.
http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/presentation-and-speeches/dec12011


 There are many points made by Mr. Economo in the presentation, , but one that stands out in my mind, is how quickly he addressed the importance of SGL Carbon SE,  the world's largest graphite technology supplier. This This importance is brought into realistic terms  with Volkswagen's recent move to acquire an 8.1% stake in SGL,  and also with BMWs $100 million venture  in United States. As SGL states, “the carbon age has begun.”  If the carbon age has begun, so to has the graphene technology revolution. This falls in-line with my earlier postings, in which, I stated my expectations that SGL stands out in my opinion as a possible candidate for a potential off-take agreement. While this is only my opinion, it is with relative ease that one can see how they fit the requirements that Mr. Economo stipulated, just a few days later, at the first, Industrial Minerals Graphite Conference. This was held in London, UK on Dec. 6th and 7th. "The off-take partners we seek will have a strong marketing presence, product research and development facilities and a forward-looking vision to provide Focus Metals with a dual link to the vast global market for graphite, and over time, for our graphene." This is an excerpt from Gary's presentation on Dec. 6, 2011, and here is a link to the presentation in it's entirety,  http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/presentation-and-speeches/dec62011
This entire presentation clearly presents Focus Metals in a much more dominant role, not only because of the world class graphite deposit it owns at Lac Knife, but equally, if not more importantly because of the cost of production. While some people would view the fact that graphite could possibly face some pricing instability, from a short to mid term basis, as a negative, this is in fact what allows Focus Metals to stand ahead of any competitors. This low cost of production added to the fact that Focus Metals' Lac Knife deposit has now been confirmed to hold the world's best natural flake graphite, which in turn, is capable of producing the highest grade graphene, positions Focus Metals in a very unique position. The fact that Focus Metals has already started its search for strategic properties which hold potentially appropriate graphite deposits, and in fact has recently purchased some 200 claims, only adds to this unique position. In his conclusion to his presentation, Mr Economo stated a very provocative thought,  
"Simon Moores, in a thoughtful and reasoned lead editorial in Industrial Minerals September publication of Critical Materials for Green Energy aptly put it this way: “whoever holds the technology cards will lead the pack.”
Focus Metals is committed to being that leader."

One thing I have long noticed with Focus Metals, is the company's desire to find the ultimate amount of value they possibly can, and their graphene joint venture appears to be an entity that could potentially bring enormous value to the table. This joint venture, known as, Grafoid Inc., has just signed a MOU with Rutgers University AMIPP Advanced Polymer Center to jointly develop graphene technology applications related to both polymer and non-polymer applications. http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/press-releases/2011-2/dec12011
Under the terms of the MOU, Rutgers University, an advanced materials research center that works with industry to commercialize new technologies, commits to providing the research and inter-disciplinary laboratory facilities.
Grafoid Inc. commits to providing human resources, graphene materials from Focus Metals' Lac Knife graphite resource, and graphene expertise for research and development purposes.
The agreement was signed by Mr. Economo as President of Grafoid Inc., and Professor Thomas Nosker, Principal Investigator for Rutgers University's Advanced Polymer Materials School of Engineering.
Some people seem to miss just why Grafoid may hold this huge potential capability, to bring enormous value to both, the companies and the shareholders. Well, it is actually quite simplistic in nature. Here is an excerpt from Gary Economo's presentation on Dec. 7, 2011, at the Industrial Minerals Graphite Conference, which helps to shed some light on this topic,
"Dr. Chiu
The first was the quality of our graphite; the second was the ease of extraction of graphene from the ore and the purity of structure of that graphene.
To us, quality is everything and our quality graphite produces quality graphene.
More importantly, the graphene produced in the lab was electrically conductive, unlike vapor chemical deposition.
And those factors contributed in part, to our development of a scalable model for mass producing graphene in single and multiple layers using a simple, environmentally friendly process."
"Our raw graphite ore is superior to the refined lab graphite used by the scientific community for its graphene research."
Here is the link to the entire presentation, http://www.focusmetals.ca/english/news/presentation-and-speeches/dec72011
The above presentation by Mr. Economo will provide the reader with a full understanding of just what has been meant by the Focus Metals vision of reaching their mine-to-market goal, which they have mentioned many times since their inception. The only real change to this vision has been the fact that is has grown more encompassing than was initially viewed.

With all that has transpired, over the last approximately year and a half, and specifically over the last week or so, it is with full expectations that I see Focus Metals and Grafoid Inc. becoming the driving force of graphite/graphene supply outside of China. The value that will be attached to such a position remains to be seen, but it is my opinion it will be very great.

For those who would like to know more about Focus Metals, or those who would like to start some due diligence on this company, the company website can be found at www.focusmetals.ca , and this is an excellent place to start in my opinion.

For disclosure purposes I have received no compensation of any kind for this post. All views aside from quotes are my own. I do own shares in Focus Metals.