VANCOUVER, British Columbia, May 14, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The advantages of low-cost, clean forms of energy are increasingly moving from the margins to the mainstream of public awareness in countries around the world, especially developing nations with fast-growing economies, rising numbers of middle class consumers and traditional power supplies that are unreliable or heavy polluters or both.
The decision by Warren Buffett's utility company to order about $1 billion worth of wind turbines is an example of the growing interest in renewable energy, which is now a competitive alternative to power from fossil fuels. Wind power is within 5.5 percent of the cost of electricity from coal, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co., a unit of Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc., announced an order for 1,050 megawatts of Siemens AG, wind turbines; the industry's largest order to date for land-based gear.
Brazil is a prime CleanTech opportunity. According to a 2013 statistical profile from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, per capita GDP grew nearly 31 per cent between 2005 and 2010, from $8,603 to $11,239. Exports more than doubled during the same period and imports nearly tripled.
Vancouver-based Green Hygienics Holdings Inc. (OTCQB:GRYN) has targeted Brazil as a potentially large and lucrative market for its clean technology solutions. "We don't go into a market and push a product," says president and chief executive officer Dave Ashby, who has spent a good deal of his career working in the Canadian oil patch and in the early 1980s co-founded what was, at the time, the largest pipeline X-ray company in Canada. "We identify a market that has a strong, existing demand for power and we provide clean, affordable solutions."
Green Hygienics was launched in January 2013 by a group of successful investors intent on building a diverse and profitable company to take advantage of growing public acceptance of clean technology as a solution to myriad environmental problems.
Economic growth and higher personal incomes are usually accompanied by rising expectations, in this case demand for air conditioners and refrigerators, which poses challenges for Brazil's sometimes unreliable electrical generating system. Brazilians received an unpleasant reminder of the system's shortcomings on February 4 of this year when a blackout left six million people in 11 of the country's 27 states without power for between 38 minutes and two hours.
Along with economic growth, climate appears to be playing havoc with the system. Brazil's record temperatures in January and a prolonged dry spell left reservoirs at the country's hydroelectric generating stations at 40 per cent of capacity, down from 80 per cent two years earlier.
Ashby and his partners, including Don Hicks, a member of the advisory board and another oil patch veteran who has managed pipeline projects worth $20 million to $2 billion, have developed a business model based on creating three revenue streams--the acquisition of intellectual property assets and licenses, a wholesale division to sell clean energy products and a third division to invest in or operate clean energy projects.
At the moment, none of the three lines are generating revenues, but the company is starting from a financially sound basis. It has no long-term debt, no preferred shares or warrants outstanding, less than 12 million shares outstanding and a float of less than two million shares. It is pursuing a listing on a Canadian Stock Exchange and it has a number of promising ventures in the works that should begin generating revenues and cash flow in the near term.
Green Hygienics has further narrowed its business development efforts to Ceara, Brazil's fastest-growing state and one that bills itself as the country's "Sustainable Energy State." The company is set to open one and possibly two CleanTech Wholesale Distribution Centres in Fortaleza, a city of three million people and the largest in Ceara. These centres will carry a number of products such as LED lighting, solar panels, wind turbines etc.
The company will secure licensing and distribution rights for each product in the territory that it distributes at the centers. Ashby noted, "Consider what these licenses and intellectual properties can be worth down the road. For example, the company has signed an agreement with Aartha U.S.A. Inc for the commercialization of a patented vanadium redox flow battery that would provide an electrical storage solution for wind and solar farms. The patents are licensed by the US Department of Energy and have the potential to change the landscape entirely within the field of energy storage and could translate into tremendous value for the company.
The wind power potential in the northeastern, coastal state is immense. Thanks to the confluence of two jet streams, winds blow in off the Atlantic and right across the state 70 per cent of the time, whereas the wind rarely blows more than 35 per cent of the time in the windiest places in Canada. The business model for wind projects here is vastly improved.
Earlier this year, Green Hygienics acquired 12 new, two megawatt wind turbines at a considerable discount to market value with the support of one of its principal shareholders. They could be sold at a considerable profit that would result in a one-time injection of revenue or alternately, the company could on its own or through joint venture build out a 24 Megawatt Wind Farm, which would generate significant cash flow.
At this point, Green Hygienics is building out a portfolio of assets in a field with huge potential for explosive growth in the near future. "People want to go green," says Ashby. "Companies in Canada, the U.S. and elsewhere are going to face carbon taxes. The planet in general has a shortage of power and there are particular regions where they have more acute shortages. Solar panels and wind turbines have both become far more efficient and dropped as much as 80 per cent in price. The cost per kilowatt hour for this new breed of clean technology has come down immensely and--in the case of wind--made it competitive with conventional power sources."
Green Hygienics trades at $0.38 with a market cap of $4 million.
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Green Hygienics Holdings Inc. (OTCQB: GRYN) www.greenhygienicsholdings.com Toll Free 1 855 922 2368