The future prospects of Bloom are fully intact and unchanged (over 30% growth p. a.) and allow for a very positive outlook: for 2022, over 1.1 billion USD turnover, cash flow positive, gross profit margin of 24% and on the way to the profit zone with strongly increasing backlog of orders and new complementary fields of activity (e.g. electrolysis). The first quarter, with a turnover of 201 million USD and a stated loss of 78.4 million USD (contains 26.3 million USD stock-based compensation), or minus 0.44 USD per share (GAAP), was disappointing at first glance. Large material deliveries to key customer SK ecoplant in South Korea was one reason for it.
The company has now been in the fuel cell business for more than 40 years, with founder Geoffrey Ballard initially relying on lithium batteries before favouring fuel cells and moving the company in that direction. Technologically, the Canadians have always been at the forefront, optimising and positioning themselves and investing massively (over US$ 1 billion) in research and development. This will now pay off step by step.
As the then market leader, Ballard Power (Nasdaq: BLDP) determined soon after taking up its fuel cell activities that there was no way it could compete in the transportation sector. The upfront investment that such a move required was just too great. A decision was made to outsource these activities to AFCC, a Daimler-Ford joint venture
In early July, the first Model 3 cars finally left Tesla’s factory, an occasion that resulted in great enthusiasm among analysts and shareholders alike. Initial production was limited to 30 units – 20 for employees and 10 for test drives. Custom-made versions, maybe? It doesn’t look like actual series production, but the event was an effective PR tool to launch the new mass-produced electric vehicle.
In the future, high-temperature fuel cells should pave the way for new energy solutions in emerging countries. At least, this is the plan of several Indian investors who founded mPower in November 2015. Trusting in the SOFC know-how of Fraunhofer’s IKTS and the interconnects by Plansee, they want nothing less than to set out from Dresden and revolutionize the energy world.