March 15th, 2022 | 13:19 CET
BASF, Almonty Industries, Bayer - These stocks are providing the momentum
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"[...] While tungsten has always played an important role in the chip industry, it is now being added to batteries for e-cars. [...]" Lewis Black, CEO, Almonty Industries
Born in Bielefeld, she studied German, English and psychology. The emergence of the Internet in the early '90s led her from university to training in graphic design and marketing communications. After years of agency work in corporate branding, she switched to publishing and learned her editorial craft at Hubert Burda Media.
BASF share - Faster charging times with new battery technology
The European Union continues to tighten its sanctions against Putin's bellicose power games. BASF is working flat out on renewable energies to avert the looming raw materials crisis. With around 10,000 employees in research & development and expenditures in this area of around EUR 2.1 million, BASF is the innovation leader in the chemical industry.
How would you use the fifteen minutes it takes to charge your electric car for the next 600km? This quarter of an hour sounds utopian given the 14 hours that are usual in some places, during which the electric vehicle sucks on the in-house power supply. In order to realize this dream of rapid electric refueling, the right battery is needed in addition to fast-charging stations.
With its innovations in battery materials, BASF aims to double the range of mid-size cars from 300 to 600km on a single charge by 2025. BASF is working on so-called air-solid batteries. It will use solid electrodes and a solid electrolyte rather than the liquid or polymer gel electrolytes found in lithium-ion or lithium-polymer batteries. Air-solid batteries promise longer life, faster charging times and greater safety in use. As a result, the 15-minute charging dream of the new Tesla will also soon become a habit.
BASF shares have seen another share buyback in recent days. From March 7, 2022, up to and including March 11, 2022, a total of 1,033,997 shares were purchased as part of BASF SE's share buyback program. The Board of Executive Directors had decided on the program in January 2022. Accordingly, BASF SE will buy back its own shares in the period from January 11, 2022, to December 31, 2023.
Almonty - Supplier for innovative battery technologies
Due to their unique physical and chemical properties, tungsten nanoparticles are widely used as a substitute for cobalt in lithium-ion batteries. Tungsten has the potential to become a valuable material supplier to the renewable energy world. Tungsten is derived from the Swedish term "heavy stone." In our linguistic usage, the element is called "Wolfram", which in turn explains the chemical symbol W with which it is listed in the periodic table.
The core business of Almonty Industries Inc. is the mining, processing and shipping of tungsten concentrate from its mines in Spain, Portugal and South Korea. The mine in South Korea, in particular, is a strategically smart move to be able to use supplies outside of China for the world market. It took nine months of challenging and creative negotiations before Almonty was finally awarded the contract. Both the Corona pandemic and the armed conflict with Russia put the global economy in a fragile position. Supply chains are already disrupted. Especially in the semiconductor industry, where tungsten is also used, delays are occurring, so the electric car industry, for example, is suffering severe losses in its production.
Almonty CEO Lewis Black sees very limited opportunities to remedy this in the short term. "This is a global problem and therefore requires global coordination, which is almost impossible to achieve while taking national interests into account," he tells the trade magazine IPP&T.
At the second International Investment Forum in February, Lewis reiterated, "I think our German investors really understand how important tungsten is to the global economy, especially in these new technology, metals and technology sectors, like batteries for electric vehicles and semiconductors. They don't want to have a project that blows up in their face. So they scrutinized us very, very rigorously before our German IPO. And I think the German investor knows just how strict the regulatory authority is for the German market."
With one of the largest tungsten resources in South Korea, Almonty is excellently positioned to stand up to the current conflict generators and deepen trade partnerships for industries worldwide that are investing in innovative technologies to drive the energy transition. Extensive research on Almonty can be found here.
Bayer - Sale of pest control business
Bayer AG has completed the sale of its pest control business "Environmental Science Professional". The business will go to the private equity firm Cinven for approximately EUR 2.4 billion. Cinven manages capital on behalf of more than 200 investors worldwide and typically invests in its portfolio companies for four to five years.
Environmental Science Professional is a global provider of solutions to control pests, diseases and weeds in non-agricultural settings. The business unit employed approximately 800 people in 2021, supporting operations and sales in more than 100 countries. It is headquartered in Cary, North Carolina, USA. Bayer had announced its decision to divest the business in February 2021.
Rodrigo Santos, a member of the Board of Management of Bayer AG and head of the Crop Science Division, emphasizes that the sale will allow Bayer to focus more on the Crop Science business from now on. The Leverkusen-based company already began restructuring its portfolio in 2019. It divested its animal health business for EUR 6.85 million.
The current transaction is expected to be completed in the second half of this year. The net proceeds are to reduce Bayer's net financial debt. This was also the reason in 2019, as the debt had increased due to the Monsanto acquisition. Bayer shares posted a slight price increase. The glyphosate scandal is not yet over.
A conglomerate like BASF, with 11 business units in 6 segments, invests heavily in research and development, especially in battery technologies. However, the group faces the challenges of digitalization and is in the midst of a turnaround. The stock should be watched. Materials for the production of semiconductors, batteries and electric vehicles, on the other hand, are in hot demand and the share of Almonty Industries, which is listed on the German market, are therefore worth a deeper look. Those who want to support the Leverkusen-based company in the face of its mammoth Monsanto task should also put this company on their watch list.
Conflict of interest
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