The electric grid is probably the most important piece of infrastructure we have.
At base, it’s a network that connects nearly 10,000 power producing units covering well over a half million miles of power transmission lines across the United States.
Every piece of that puzzle is critical to maintaining daily life – powering how every one of us does everything we do every single day everywhere. We take it for granted. But a crisis in this domain of infrastructure would be catastrophic, and we would soon realize just how much we take for granted if it were to falter on anything like a sustained basis.
But our demands on this system continue to grow.
As we move toward even greater reliance – with growing numbers of electric vehicles on the road and more “smart” systems penetrating every aspect of our homes, vehicles, and commercial structures – this dependency is only going to grow in the years ahead.
That’s why investors should be looking for ways to gain exposure to new innovators in the power grid space that could be poised to shape the story over coming years. With that in mind, we take a look below at some of the most interesting stocks moving this story forward right now.
Eaton Corp. PLC (NYSE:ETN) is a power management company that provides energy-efficient solutions for electrical, hydraulic, and mechanical power. It operates through its Electrical Americas and Electrical Global, Hydraulics, Aerospace, Vehicle, and eMobility segments.
The Electrical Americas and Electrical Global segment engages in sales contracts for electrical components, industrial components, power distribution and assemblies, residential products, single and three phase power quality, wiring devices, circuit protection, utility power distribution, power reliability equipment, and service. The Hydraulics segment includes hydraulics components, systems, and services for industrial and mobile equipment. The Aerospace segment is produces aerospace fuel, hydraulics, and pneumatic systems for commercial and military use. The Vehicle segment engages in designing, manufacturing, marketing, and supply of drivetrain and powertrain systems and critical components that reduce emissions and improve fuel economy, stability, performance and safety of cars, light trucks, and commercial vehicles. The eMobility segment designs, manufactures, markets, and supplies electrical and electronic components and systems that improve the power management and performance of both on-road and off-road vehicles.
Eaton Corp. PLC (NYSE:ETN) recently announced that Kurt McMaken has been named senior vice president, operations finance and finance transformation. In this role, McMaken will lead the Global Operations and Transformation organization. This organization includes the company’s financial planning and analysis and operations finance teams and has responsibility for the development of finance technology enhancements. McMaken will report to Tom Okray, Eaton’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, and will be a member of the senior leadership team.
Since joining Eaton in 2001, McMaken has held a number of senior leadership roles in the company including senior vice president, corporate development, and treasury; vice president, finance, Electrical, for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA); corporate president, EMEA; and most recently senior vice president, finance and planning, Electrical Sector.
And the stock has been acting well over recent days, up something like 3% in that time. Over the past month, shares of the stock have suffered from clear selling pressure, dropping by roughly -7%.
Eaton Corp. PLC (NYSE:ETN) managed to rope in revenues totaling $4.8B in overall sales during the company’s most recently reported quarterly financial data — a figure that represents a rate of top line growth of 2.4%, as compared to year-ago data in comparable terms. In addition, the company is battling some balance sheet hurdles, with cash levels struggling to keep up with current liabilities ($568M against $7.2B, respectively).
Viking Energy Group Inc. (OTC US:VKIN) is an interesting stock. The company – a majority-owned subsidiary of Camber Energy Inc (NYSE American:CEI) – is a growing oil and gas producer. But it also has exposure to the carbon capture theme through Camber’s recent Exclusive Intellectual Property License Agreement with ESG Clean Energy involving a deal for ESG’s patent rights and know-how related to stationary electric power generation, including methods to utilize heat and capture carbon dioxide.
Now VKIN is moving headlong into the power grid marketplace with its most recent announcement.
Viking Energy Group Inc. (OTC US:VKIN) just put out news this week that it has acquired a 51% interest in two entities that own the intellectual property rights to fully developed, patent pending, ready-for-market proprietary Electric Transmission and Distribution Open Conductor Detection Systems.
According to the company’s release, the purchase price for the interests acquired by Viking is up to $21,000,000, with $5,000,000 payable in shares of Viking on closing (i.e. $250,000 in common stock and $4,750,000 in preferred stock) and the balance payable upon certain sales thresholds to be achieved.
The company noted that the systems are designed to detect a break in a transmission line, distribution line, or coupling failure, and to immediately terminate the power to the line before it reaches the ground. The technology will dramatically increase public safety and reduce the risk of causing an incendiary event, and is designed to be integral component within a much-needed, worldwide grid hardening and stability initiative by electric utilities to improve resiliency and reliability of existing infrastructure.
Viking Energy Group Inc. (OTC US:VKIN) President and Chief Executive Officer James A. Doris further commented, “This technology is extremely important. It truly is difficult to put a monetary value on a solution that can sense a broken power line and cut the electricity flowing through the line before the wire hits the ground. Arcing and sparking energized power lines are hazardous, and difficult to detect using traditional concepts. Unfortunately, people in places like California, Western Canada, Australia and other parts of the world are fully aware of what can happen when a downed, energized power line makes contact with the ground. The damage caused by these wildfires has been catastrophic. We have already begun discussions with major utilities in California and global equipment manufacturers for deployment. Our solution can be quickly and cost-effectively deployed in high-risk areas first, then utilized more broadly by all utility companies to help reach their grid hardening goals.”
CleanSpark Inc. (Nasdaq:CLSK) offers advanced energy software and control technology that enables a plug-and-play enterprise solution to modern energy challenges.
Its services consist of intelligent energy monitoring and controls, Microgrid design and engineering, Microgrid consulting services, and turn-key Microgrid implementation services. The company’s software allows energy users to obtain resiliency and economic optimization.
CleanSpark Inc. (Nasdaq:CLSK) recently announced financial results for the three months ended December 31, 2021. “December 16th marked our one-year anniversary of sustainable bitcoin mining and since then we have brought the Company to record revenues and profit,” said Zach Bradford, CleanSpark’s Chief Executive Officer. “As of the date of this release, we have 20,900 machines in operation with a total hashrate exceeding 2.1 EH/s and producing approximately 10 bitcoin per day.
“Given our success with bitcoin mining,” Bradford continued, “CleanSpark is considering strategic alternatives for our legacy energy business. Focusing our efforts on our bitcoin mining segment allows the Company to capitalize on the tremendous opportunity bitcoin presents. We look forward to sharing our corporate vision on our first quarter earnings call and discussing the strategic pillars we believe are crucial to our long-term success.”
And the stock has been acting well over recent days, up something like 36% in that time. Shares of the stock have powered higher over the past month, rallying roughly 37% in that time on strong overall action.
CleanSpark Inc. (Nasdaq:CLSK) roped in revenues totaling $41.2M in its most recently reported quarterly data, driving massive y/y growth of more than 1,700%. The company also has a strong balance sheet, with cash levels exceeding current liabilities ($36.2M against $22.5M).
Other key names in the power grid space include Woodward Inc. (Nasdaq:WWD), National Grid PLC ADR (NYSE:NGG), IES Holdings Inc. (Nasdaq:IESC), Capstone Green Energy Corp. (Nasdaq:CGRN), and Ocean Power Technologies Inc. (NYSE American:OPTT).
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