To capitalize on the growing demand for amorphous alloys and composites, and also keep investors abreast of developments, Liquidmetal Technologies (OTC: LQMT) announced the collaboration with Liolios Group to lead an investor relations and financial communications program. The news provided the much-needed boost for the stock price, which was trading near its 52-week low.
The California-based Liquidmetal Technologies is the first producer of amorphous alloys in a commercially viable bulk form. Amorphous alloys have the ability to retain a random structure when they solidify. Two years before, in the month of August, Apple signed a worldwide exclusive licensing agreement with Liquidmetal for the use of technology in consumer electronics. The one-time $20 million contract propelled the stock to $1.76 from $0.23 per share in less than a month. With no major developments in the field of amorphous alloy technology, the shares of Liquidmetal slid back to around the $0.20 level.
Earlier in the month of April 2012, there were rumors that Apple was looking into the possibility of using Liquidmetal’s amorphous alloy in the next version of iPhone. The buzz saw the share price of Liquidmetal touch a high of $0.59 on May 1, 2012. A report on the same day, published by Seeking Alpha, questioned the logic behind the appreciation in the share price when Liquidmetal was already paid the one-time licensing fee with no ongoing royalties.
A day later, Seeking Alpha published another report that highlighted Liquidmetal’s troubled past. The report also pointed out that Liquidmetal has a convoluted capital structure and is virtually insolvent. In contrast to the two earlier reports, Seeking Alpha published an article on May 10, 2012, favoring Liquidmetal’s disruptive technology. However, the damage had already been done. On May 21, 2012, two weeks after Seeking Alpha’s tarnishing report, the share price had dropped to $0.21.
On June 18, 2012, Apple and Liquidmetal agreed to extend the licensing agreement for an additional two years, dating the agreement to February 5, 2014. The terms of the extension were not provided in detail. The news brought some respite to the falling share prices of Liquidmetal. The share price once again touched $0.36 on June 20, and on July 2, Liquidmetal completed a private placement of $12 million in Senior Convertible Notes. On August 30, 2012, the company opted to make its first monthly installment payment under the Senior Convertible Notes in shares of the company’s common stock. In this regard, Liquidmetal issued just over 5 million shares to the five holders of the notes. The news of Liquidmetal issuing shares to compensate the $1.24 million monthly installment payment due on October 1, 2012, triggered a sell-off, resulting in a decline in the share price to $0.14 on October 2, 2012.
The market received today’s announcement of a partnership with Liolios Group on a positive note. The share price rose to a high of $0.18 in the first two hours of trading on a volume of over 1.35 million shares.
Commenting on the partnership, Tom Steipp, President and CEO of Liquidmetal Technologies, stated, “We have reached a pivotal stage in the commercialization of our transformative Liquidmetal technology.”
Steipp added, “We’ve established a portfolio of more than 50 patents that support Liquidmetal as the only commercially viable bulk amorphous alloy in today’s marketplace. Given these exciting milestones, we believe it’s time to engage a team of experienced investor relations professionals to help us effectively communicate our developing story to the investment community and help us navigate the capital markets.”
Liquidmetal Technologies ended the day at $0.17 per share, up $0.0155, or just under 10%, on a volume of 1.89 million shares.
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