This morning, Crystal Research's CEO Jeff Kraws was invited to participate in a roundtable discussion to analyze how investors should be reacting to President Obama's State of the Union address. The segment was hosted by Thomson Reuters' Rhonda Schaffler and also featured David Joy, Chief Market Strategist of Ameriprise Financial, and Craig Irwin, Senior Vice President at Wedbush Securities.
Mr. Kraws spoke specifically about effects on the healthcare industry, while Wedbush's Irwin and Ameriprise's Joy covered energy, cleantech, and technology impacts.
Kraws' key takeaway was to look to innovators in the healthcare industry for future value, chiefly those companies that are trimming costs and becoming more efficient in order to invest more heavily in their R&D. These companies seek to create future growth, and are in line with objectives for reducing overall healthcare costs by providing the medicines and products that keep people healthier. His recommendations range from stalwart drugmakers like Pfizer and Bristol-Myers to smaller, innovative firms like Unilife or MetaStat and generic manufacturers like Teva.
In the energy and cleantech sectors, innovation will also be key going forward. Irwin described several stocks to look at for value in these sectors, including Bridgelux, Cree, and Johnson Controls. Each of these firms--in addition to 60 other growing companies--is profiled in our December 2012 report, Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: Investing in Green Infrastructure. The report offers a detailed look at the U.S. infrastructure industry and how developments from advanced lighting technologies and deployment of a smart power grid to 3D printing are changing the face of our built environment and creating new investment opportunities.
View the entire Reuters' segment below (~25 minutes):
**This 80-page report examines a future for U.S. infrastructure as it relates to advancements in green building being driven by nanoscience investment. Click here to read.
**According to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the market for green building could range from $120 billion to $145 billion by 2015. Innovative nanotech companies, such as those highlighted in this report, are likely to prove essential to growth in the built environment going forward.
**The greatest environmental impact of nanotechnology on infrastructure in the near term will likely occur in the areas of energy savings and resource conservation.
About the Research
Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: Investing in Green Infrastructure
As extraordinary advances take place in the field of nanoscience today, researchers are able to individually manipulate minute pieces of material smaller than atoms, yielding the ability to study the world at an ever smaller and smaller scale. The outcomes of this research have been revolutionary. But these micro-sized innovations not only enable smaller and smaller products, they also can be used to create products that perform better than before. By engineering materials at the nanoparticle level, scientists have been able to create new products that offer vast improvements in efficiency, strength, weight, heat transfer, and so on.
Specifically for the built environment, nanoscience has set the stage for a host of innovations. The most commonly employed materials in modern construction to date have been concrete, steel, glass, and timber. As an enabling technology, nanotechnology allows for the development of these materials with enhanced and/or completely new properties, such as stronger, lighter-weight steel, waterproof concrete, or electrochromic glass that changes tint in response to outside temperature and light. One of the more recent developments has been 3D printing, an advanced form of manufacturing that rarely produces any waste material.
Though not every nanotechnology-enabled product can be considered a sustainable product, nanoparticle research has greatly contributed to the introduction of building materials that offer environmental improvements, such as the conservation of raw materials, energy, and water, combined with a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and elimination of hazardous waste. Occasionally, these benefits are achieved in the use of the product itself, such as using better insulation in the building envelope, which in turn reduces the energy required to heat or cool the building. As another example, nanostructured paints can be applied in thinner coats, which has the potential to reduce emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) by as much as 65% (Source: the Institute of Technology Assessment of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, March 2012). Alternatively, benefits may occur during production of nanomaterials, such as by reducing the amount of CO2 that is emitted during manufacturing as a result of replacing environmentally damaging ingredients and chemicals with new substances.
This 80-page report details nine major market sectors related to green infrastructure, providing readers with useful information regarding market sizes, trends, opportunities, key developments, and M&A activity, as well as profiles 64 nanotech companies actively involved in these sectors.
About Our Nanotechnology Coverage
This report, Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: Investing in Green Infrastructure (December 2012), is the second edition of Crystal Research Associates’ and Livingston Securities’ Nanotechnology and the Built Environment series. The first report, Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: The Transition to Green Infrastructure, was published on November 17, 2011, and is available here.
Crystal Research Associates' August 2012 nanotechnology update is now available here. This report is part of our ongoing coverage to our initial comprehensive industry review, Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: The Transition to Green Infrastructure, published November 2011 and available at www.crystalra.com.
Each month, we release a nanotechnology update that details key recent news releases and important industry events or scientific research developments. These are made publicly available on our site for investors and others interested in the burgeoning nanotech space approximately one month after publication, or alternatively, feel free to contact Livingston Securities, LLC for exclusive access at time of publication.
The August 2012 report include key corporate developments on…
Aqua America Inc. (WTR-NYSE) ▪ Bruker Corporation (BRKR-NASDAQ) ▪ Cabot Corp (CBT-NYSE) ▪ Calgon Carbon Corporation (CCC-NYSE) ▪ Clean Harbors, Inc. (CLH-NYSE) ▪ Cree, Inc. (CREE-NASDAQ) ▪ EnerNOC, Inc. (ENOC-NASDAQ) ▪ EnerSys (ENS-NYSE) ▪ Equinix, Inc. (EQIX-NASDAQ) ▪ Fluor Corporation (FLR-NYSE) ▪ Harris & Harris Group, Inc. (TINY-NASDAQ) ▪ Itron, Inc. (ITRI-NASDAQ) ▪ Pall Corp. (PLL-NYSE) ▪ Sherwin-Williams Company (SHW-NYSE) ▪ Universal Display Corporation (PANL-NASDAQ) ▪ and more.
EU Commission Finds Existing Regulatory Framework to be Sufficient for Governing Nanomaterials
The EU Commission issued a report last week determining that nanotechnology is covered under the 2007 REACH chemicals regulatory framework, which was established to govern the safe use of chemicals (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation, and restriction of CHemical substances). As such, the Commission plans to modify parts of the REACH legislation to include nanomaterials, as part of its assumption that the current legislative framework already covers, in large part, the risks posed by new nanomaterial developments. However, officials have noted the lack of comprehensive information that exists for the risks of nanotechnology and the need for case-by-case analysis. The European Chemical Industry Council (CEFIC) has stated its approval of the Commission’s decision, believing that current regulations already ensure that nanomaterials are safely produced and used by companies and consumers—particularly as “nano” is only an indication of size not property, thus chemical regulations adequately cover these developments.
Regardless, not all European parties are satisfied by the Commission’s view of nanotechnology regulation. The Greens in the European Parliament, as well as some consumer groups, do not believe that nanomaterials are comparable to normal chemical substances, and viewed this decision as a “lack of progress in improving transparency on nanomaterials and products.” Consequently, some European countries are implementing national registers for nanomaterials.
Read greater details here.
View all of Crystal Research's ongoing nanotechnology coverage here.
Last week in Boston, the NanoBusiness Commercialization Association (NanoBCA), a national nonprofit trade association for nanotechnology-enabled business, held a NanoBusiness conference where the association announced the "Top Nanotech Innovators of 2012," highlighting companies that create novel and potentially disruptive technologies in the nanotech sector. NanoBCA recognized 20 large corporations as well as 20 emerging enterprises. The Figure below highlights NanoBCA's view of the top nanotechnology innovators for 2012 and specifies the area(s) for which the company was recognized.
The firms listed below were announced in the Nanotechnology Commercialization session of the 11th Annual NanoBusiness Conference and Nanomanufacturing Summit—an annual gathering of nanotechnology innovators, startups, researchers, government leaders, and investors—held September 4-6, 2012, in Boston, Massachusetts. The NanoBusiness conference was hosted by NanoBCA and included a Nanomanufacturing Summit organized by the National Nanomanufacturing Network.
The Two Largest Nanotech Hubs in the U.S.: Boston and North Carolina
Between North Carolina's booming nanotech sector (>40 nanotechnology companies focused on just biotechnology developments alone) and the advanced research centers at Duke, the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State, Wake Forest, and other regional universities, the state has become the second strongest hub for nanotech research and business behind Boston.
As evidence of this, nine nanotechnology companies from North Carolina were prominently featured at the 11th Annual NanoBusiness Conference in Boston. The delegation was coordinated by the Center of Innovation for Nanobiotechnology (COIN), a nonprofit that aims to foster growth of North Carolina nanotech firms as well as the commercialization of their technologies. Delegate members included Xanofi, Inc., NeuroNano Pharma, NanoForge Corp., RTI International, Liquidia Technologies, Inc., NanoTechLabs, Inc., Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, LLP, and Summers Thompson Lowry, Inc.
Continued coverage of nanotechnology developments is available here.
Our July 2012 update to the November 2011 industry overview Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: The Transition to Green Infrastructure is now available at www.crystalra.com. This report contains...
Key corporate developments on…
Cabot Corp. (CBT-NYSE) ▪ Calgon Carbon Corporation (CCC-NYSE) ▪ Codexis, Inc. (CDXS-NASDAQ) ▪ CREE Inc. (CREE-NASDAQ) ▪ Elevance Renewable Sciences, Inc. ▪ EnerNOC, Inc. (ENOC-NASDAQ) ▪ IBM Corp. (IBM-NYSE) ▪ Itron, Inc. (ITRI-NASDAQ) ▪ NanoMech, Inc. ▪ Novaled AG ▪ Universal Display Corp. (PANL-NASDAQ)
And key sector developments on…
Advanced Materials and 3D Printing ▪ Building-integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) ▪ Construction ▪ Displays ▪ Paints/Coatings ▪ Smart Grids ▪ Water Desalination
Click here to download this latest issue.
The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) recently reported that over two billion square feet of existing commercial projects are now LEED-certified across 130 countries and 50,000 projects, including most notably the commercial interior for Google in Mumbai, the Vestas Technology Center in Lem, Denmark, as well as the Ernst and Young Plaza in Los Angeles, California, among others.
An additional seven billion square feet of commercial space is currently pending in the LEED approval process, which certifies roughly two million square feet daily on average. In the residential sector, approximately 23,000 U.S. homes are LEED certified and an additional 86,000 homes are pending certification. In total, the USGBC estimates that the LEED program contributes $554 billion annually to the U.S. economy and has supported nearly eight million U.S. jobs.
As LEED certification picks up steam, "green building" products and technologies are also being increasingly developed and adopted.
Wal-Mart Continues Effort to Become Fully Reliant on Renewable Energy Resources
As part of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s (WMT-NYSE) goal of becoming 100% powered by renewable energy, the retail giant recently unveiled its 100th store to rely on solar panels to generate power in San Diego, California. The company seeks to expand renewable energy to 75% of stores in California (roughly 130 stores) by the end of 2013. Wal-Mart partner, SolarCity, is responsible for the installation, management, and maintenance of solar panels on this site as well as for up to 100 other stores. Wal-Mart estimates that its efforts across California could ultimately produce up to 70 million kilowatt (kW) hours of renewable energy annually, reducing the company’s carbon dioxide emissions while supplying 10% to 30% of each facility’s electricity requirements. Additionally, the planning and installation of each site’s solar panel project typically require nearly 50 contract positions, creating jobs for the local community. To date, the company’s California efforts have resulted in 3,000 contract construction jobs, in addition to the more than 1,200 employees hired by SolarCity to accommodate the company’s projects since 2010.
A New Type of Solar Cell May Fuel Electricity-Generating Windows
Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) have designed a visibly transparent polymer solar cell (PSC), overcoming obstacles of previous "solar window" efforts such as limited transparency and efficiency. These researchers favored polymer-based solar cells over competing monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin film technologies due to the flexible properties, low cost of production, and broad potential application of the polymer-designed cells. The new PSC, detailed in the ACS Nano journal, could ultimately support the development of windows that generate electricity while offering clear views in addition to use in other applications, such as portable electronics components. Composed of plastic-like materials, UCLA’s PSCs are lightweight, flexible, 70% transparent, and employ infrared light (versus visible light) to generate energy. To date, 4% power conversion efficiency has been achieved for this technology.
This is just one sample of many developments in process today that seek to make renewable energies feasible, efficient, and desirable to manufacturers and consumers alike. For more information about this space, please visit our Nanotechnology library of related research.
Amid a depressed global economic environment, investments in cleantech were estimated to total $1.6 billion in the second quarter 2012, down from $1.9 billion in the first quarter 2012and $2.1 billion in the comparable year-ago period (second quarter 2011). Factors driving down investment include global economic uncertainties as well as political opposition to government subsidies in areas such as solar and wind power and electric vehicle development. A depressed U.S. IPO market is further hampering greentech funding efforts.
However, there are areas that continue to see innovation and investment, specifically including initiatives focused on resource management and efficiency, such as water conservation and agriculture developments. As consolidated by Jeff St. John of Greentech Media, Inc., the table to the right summarizes some of the cleantech firms that were able to raise significant venture capital funds during the quarter.
In addition to the above firms, privately held Elevance Renewable Sciences, Inc. raised $104 million through a Series E financing in July 2012 to continue development of its global biochemical plants. Elevance uses Nobel Prize-winning technology to create specialty chemicals for use in personal care products, detergents, fuels, lubricants, and other applications. The company reports that its chemicals are created from renewable feedstocks, such as palm, soybean, rapeseed, and other plant oils supplied by agribusiness giant Cargill, Inc. among other sources. On July 10, 2012, the company announced the raise of $104 million in Series E financing from Malaysia’s Lacustrine Ltd via Genting Genomics Ltd (a wholly owned subsidiary of Genting Berhad [GEBHY-OTC]) and France’s Total Energy Ventures International. Prior to this financing, Elevance had raised nearly $200 million since 2007. Last year, Elevance sought a $100 million IPO according to S-1 filings, although this has not yet occurred.
For greater details on key transactions/recent news from nanotechnology-driven companies pioneering more efficient resource uses, we invite you to read our "Nanotechnology" series of bimonthly updates. Freely available on our website, these updates are designed to introduce you to market sectors including...
Advanced Materials and 3D Printing ▪ Building-integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) ▪ Construction ▪ Displays ▪ Energy-Efficient Buildings ▪ Lighting/LEDs ▪ Paints/Coatings ▪ Smart Grids ▪ Water Desalination/Water Treatments and Technologies ▪ and more
As researchers have recently emphasized, governments have a significant role and responsibility for providing long-term support for renewable energy, smart grid, and other future “sustainable city” initiatives. The price of renewable energies and associated technologies are too high to appeal to investors without government support. Mechanisms such as incentives, feed‐in‐tariffs, tax‐breaks, rebates, and other financial instruments are critical.
With that in mind, we have released a 12-page report that expands upon several U.S. policies expected to further market adoption of sustainable, nanotechnology-driven technologies. The report, Continuing Coverage of Nanotechnology and the Built Environment (available here), is the latest update to our base report, Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: The Transition to Green Infrastructure. This update is part of a series of “continuing coverage” reports from Crystal Research Associates that detail innovations in nanotechnology and their impact on our infrastructure, building, and construction markets.
Included in the report are discussions of the following, among other topics:
U.S. building code changes may open opportunities for building‐integrated photovoltaics (BIPV).
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is emphasizing industrial energy assessments for manufacturing facilities, and industrial assessment centers at universities—to date, such assessments have helped save over 530 trillion British Thermal Units (BTUs) of energy (enough to meet the needs of 5.5 million homes) and have helped manufacturers save more than $5.6 billion in energy costs.
The DOE is now pitching a long‐term vision for the U.S. electricity system to state regulators, with emphasis on three central themes: (1) a seamless system from generation to end use; (2) support of clean energy; (3) a system to empower consumers by providing more choices. Under this vision, the DOE hopes to easily integrate any form of energy generation or storage into the main infrastructure as well as make it easy for outsiders to offer new products, services, and markets.
President Obama’s 2013 energy budget request targets efficiency and renewable energy investment.
President Obama announces funding for alternative fuel technologies that is designed to capitalize on the nearly 100‐year supply of American natural gas. The DOE is also supporting development of transportation fuels from algae, and is currently backing more than 30 algae‐based biofuels projects. Algae‐derived biofuels have the potential to replace up to 17% of the U.S.’s imported oil for transportation.
In addition to the policy news, all of our nanotechnology updates provide readers with highlights and pertinent trends from the key sectors benefitting from advanced technologies and green investment.
The March 2012 update also includes sector developments from…
Cement/Concrete ▪ Display Technologies ▪ Lighting/Organic Light‐emitting Diodes (OLEDs) ▪ Nanomaterials ▪ Smart Grid Networks ▪ Water Treatment ▪ Windows
A March 2012 report from RNCOS (an industry research firm) forecasts the global nanotechnology market to reach $26 billion by the end of 2014—representing a CAGR of roughly 19%—driven by expansion of nanomaterials, nanofilms, and nanodevices in all sectors of the economy, including throughout the built environment.
At present, the U.S. remains the largest market for nanotechnology, although many other nations (Brazil, India, and China included) are making sizable investments in R&D for this field. In less than a decade (since the 21st Century Nanotechnology R&D Act was signed into law on December 3, 2003), the U.S. has spent $24 billion on nanotech R&D.
In this fast-paced industry, there is a constant news flow of corporate developments, policy implications, investments, and (most intriguing) the exciting new products that are being commercialized by manufacturers who can harness the power of nanotechnoloy. Accordingly, there have been number of sector and corporate developments since the release of our base report, Nanotechnology and the Built Environment: The Transition to Green Infrastructure (published November 2011).
We recently published an updated report highlighting many of the innovations in this field over the past couple months. A link to this update, and a synopsis of its content, is provided below. We look forward to continuing to keep our readers informed of opportunities, risks, and trends in the nanotech markets.
CONTINUING COVERAGE OF NANOTECHNOLOGY AND THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT
Key sector developments on…
Concrete/Brick ▪ Data and Other Communications Infrastructure ▪ Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) ▪ Insulation ▪ Lighting, Organic Light-emitting Diodes (OLED), and Displays ▪ Smart Paints, Coatings, and Materials ▪ Solar/Building-Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) ▪ Structural Steel ▪ Water Treatment ▪ Windows
Company developments from…
A. Schulman, Inc. (SHLM-NASDAQ) ▪ Abakan Inc. (ABKI.PK-OTC) ▪ BASF SE (BASFY-OTC) ▪ Cabot Corp. (CBT-NYSE) ▪ Calgon Carbon Corporation (CCC-NYSE) ▪ Honeywell International Inc. (HON-NYSE) ▪ Johnson Controls, Inc. (JCI-NYSE) ▪ Kraft Foods Inc. (KFT-NYSE) ▪ MiaSolé ▪ Siemens AG (SI-NYSE) ▪ and more…