VIASPACE CEO and Board Chairman Give Initial 2014 Shareholder Update
WALNUT, Calif., Jan. 6, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- VIASPACE Inc. (OTCQB: VSPC) CEO, Dr. Carl Kukkonen and Chairman of the Board, Dr. Kevin Schewe, today provided an update on recent company technical and business activities.
Dr. Kukkonen reported, "VIASPACE has been very busy since the last CEO update on November 4, 2012. I will give a summary of our recent business activities.
- I spent time in Nicaragua working on the 12 MW Giant King Grass power plant project with AGRICORP. I met with senior management, our agriculture team, government officials and local power plant and grid experts. The financial model is complete, as is the summary business plan. We have also decided to embark on a parallel animal feed project with AGRICORP as well. The Giant King Grass is growing well and the propagation field planted at the end of May is ready for harvest and further propagation which will focus on animal feed.
- Two potential customers from Costa Rica and Guatemala flew to Nicaragua to meet with me. Another potential customer from Panama also contacted me. All three have signed nondisclosure agreements.
- I met with development banks in Washington, DC and received strong support for the project. We expect to get 70% of the project financing from an international development bank.
- The Giant King Grass is growing very well in South Africa, and the project is moving toward the next stage.
- We traveled to Washington, DC with a new partner for a Giant King Grass project in Pakistan to meet with investors. The partner has signed a nondisclosure agreement and is proceeding with a contract. We expect to be able to make an announcement on this soon.
- VIASPACE Director, Mr. Khurram Irshad, a Pakistani American, has traveled to Pakistan twice and is working on another opportunity in Pakistan.
- A potential customer in the Caribbean has requested a test of Giant King Grass for a biofuels project. VIASPACE harvested 3,000 pounds of Giant King Grass from our California nursery, and the US biofuels company on the East Coast picked up the Giant King Grass on December 30, 2013. Test results should be available in 6 to 8 weeks.
- I went to the University of California Davis and met with their forage expert to review Giant King Grass as an animal feed and received significant recommendations. One suggestion was to double check the results of our forage analysis. VIASPACE has previously utilized near infrared analysis (NIR) from the Dairy One Forage Laboratory in Ithaca, New York. UC Davis recommended a comparison of the NIR data with a full wet chemistry analysis, and also recommended a second laboratory, Cumberland Valley Analytical Services, which tested the same sample using both NIR and wet chemistry. Using both laboratories and both methods produced the same results and confirmed that Giant King Grass is an excellent animal feed.
- Our VIASPACE partner in the Arizona animal feed project, Maricopa Bio Crops, came to California where we held technical and business meetings and met with a mechanical harvesting expert in the Central Valley. This project is moving forward efficiently to our mutual satisfaction and 2014 should prove to be a productive year with our partnership.
- The Giant King Grass in Hawaii successfully completed its 12 month quarantine on December 20, 2013. VIASPACE is in discussions with potential Hawaiian partners. The Hawaii Department of Agriculture has allowed Giant King Grass to remain in their facility until our partnership status is finalized and the location has been determined.
- VIASPACE has been invited to make a presentation on the Nicaragua 12 MW Power Plant project at the International Biomass Conference to be held in Orlando Florida March 24-26, 2014.
- VIASPACE held a Board of Directors meeting on December 23, 2013."
Kukkonen concluded, "I believe that 2014 will be a very important and successful year for VIASPACE."
VIASPACE Chairman of the Board, Dr. Kevin Schewe, reported on recent business and technical activities, "At our December 23 Board of Directors meeting, the Board unanimously voted to increase the number of authorized shares by 20%. These are authorized shares and none of these shares have been issued. We have been very judicious with issuing limited additional shares; however, the number of issued shares was getting close to the number of authorized shares. The Board plans to minimize dilution consistent with operating the company, but needs the flexibility of additional authorized shares for continued growth, financing and partnerships."
Dr. Schewe continued, "Since October of 2012, when I became Chairman of the Board, I have loaned VIASPACE a total of $342,000 in the form of Senior Convertible Loans. As per our five-year, one million dollar loan agreement, I am able to convert these loans into common shares which I have immediately done after making the loans. I have made the immediate conversion with two motivations in mind. First, by converting to common shares, I have intentionally minimized additional debt on VIASPACE's books. Secondly, I personally believe that our share price is undervalued by the market and that my conversions to common shares will make a handsome return on investment in the future. I know of no better way to show and convey my confidence in the future of the Company."
Dr. Schewe concluded, "I now hold 152,500,472 VIASPACE common shares and have become the company's second largest common shareholder. As Chairman of the Board, I think and act on behalf of all common shareholders. I believe that 2014 will be a pivotal year for VIASPACE in both the green energy market and the animal feed market. We are a budding global company with aspirations to greatness and a terrific pipeline of projects to propel us in that direction, several of which are very close to reaching fruition. I am pushing our company, CEO and Board of Directors to make 2014 our breakout year for generating revenues with the goal to grow revenues year by year from here forward."
About VIASPACE Inc.
VIASPACE grows renewable Giant KingTM Grass as a low-carbon fuel for clean electricity generation; for environmentally friendly energy pellets; and as a feedstock for bio-methane production and for green cellulosic biofuels, biochemicals and biomaterials. Giant King Grass is a proprietary, high yield, dedicated biomass clean energy crop. Giant King Grass when it is cut frequently at 4 to 5 feet tall is also excellent animal feed. For more information, please go to www.VIASPACE.com or contact Dr. Jan Vandersande, Director of Communications, at 800-517-8050 or IR@VIASPACE.com.
Safe Harbor Statement
Information in this news release includes forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements relate to future events or future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Such factors include, without limitation, risks outlined in our periodic filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2012, and other factors over which VIASPACE has little or no control.
SOURCE VIASPACE Inc.
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