On January 15 of this year I wrote:
“I believe 2014 will see a return to some consideration of fundamentals in 3D printing stocks, and those that don’t have the fundamentals to support their current valuations will strongly underperform.”
As everyone is now well aware, 3D printing stocks as a group have had a very rough year. If you were to combine the market capitalizations of 3D Systems (DDD), Stratasys (SSYS), ExOne (XONE), voxeljet (VJET), Arcam AB (AMAVF) and Organovo (ONVO) into one number and track it, you’d see how dramatically these companies have shrunk in size this year. The Printing Stock Index does exactly that…and it’s down about 50% this year. Materialise is down 20% from the IPO price and nearly 40% from its highs.
One 3D printing stock…and only one is up 50% over the last 4 months, and that company is Graphene 3D Lab Inc. (tickers GGG.V and GPHBF). As the chart below demonstrates, shares in Graphene 3D Lab have outperformed much larger peers DDD, SSYS, XONE, VJET since trading began on August 11 and I called it “The Best 3D Printing Stock to Buy Now.“
One can argue that shares in Graphene 3D Lab are also down over 50% from the highs, and they’d be absolutely right of course. Shares were hit hard along with all 3D printing stocks during the November-December period.
Graphene 3D Lab in 2015
Looking ahead, I believe (strongly) that Graphene 3D Lab will have a very solid year in 2015 and that shares will ultimately trade to new highs.
Because in Q1 2015, Graphene 3D Lab will be making the transition from a speculative R&D microcap company with no revenue history to commercializing graphene-enhanced filaments for use in many existing 3D printers according to the timeline in this investor presentation.
As Graphene 3D Lab advances to revenue production, it will attract a new group of investors who are less speculative…investors who will only invest in companies that generate revenue. That pool of investors is much larger by far than the company’s current investor base.
How much exposure Graphene 3D Lab will get to this larger pool of investors when they announce the availability of graphene-enhanced filaments for use in “existing”/ “present-day FDM printers” is anybody’s guess…but I suspect it will be a lot.
In addition to filament sales, Graphene 3D Lab may soon recognize revenues from 3D printer sales via the planned purchase of Boots Industries (web site). This acquisition could also expedite Graphene 3D Lab’s intention to launch a 3D printer “with the capability of printing functional and electronic devices.”
Launch a 3D printer “with the capability of printing functional and electronic devices”
To some, this may look like an overly ambitious statement from such a small company.
To me, given the jump Graphene 3D Lab has in graphene R&D, I think this goal is entirely feasible.
The CEO (Dr. Daniel Stolyarov) and COO (Dr. Elena Polyakova) are pioneers in graphene nanocomposites. In 2009 they launched Graphene Supermarket, a commercially successful supplier of Electrically Conductive Granulated Graphene, 3D Graphene Foams and other graphene-related products with over 7,000 customers globally. Their customer list includes NASA, Ford Motor Co., Honda, GE, Apple, Xerox, Samsung, Bosch, LG, Harvard University, IBM, MIT, Caltech, Yale, Princeton and Stanford Universities. Keep in mind that graphene was first isolated in 2004 and Drs. Stolyarov and Polyakova launched Graphene Supermarket a year before the 2010 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded for the discovery of graphene.
Few people in the world have as much experience in graphene nanocomposites as the management of Graphene 3D Lab, and as a nanocomposite engineered for use in 3D printing, perhaps none have more R&D experience. I believe development of a 3D printer “with the capability of printing functional and electronic devices” is within reach of Graphene 3D Lab.
The video below features the CEO of Graphene 3D Lab in an overview of the company’s research, including the development of a 3D printed battery.
The bottom line
As Graphene 3D Lab moves from “research and development” to “revenue and distribution” of graphene-enhanced filaments for 3D printing, I expect the company will attract a much larger pool of investors in both 3D printing stocks and graphene-related stocks.
Whether you’re an existing shareholder or new to Graphene 3D Lab, I think this is a great time to average into a position. The well-documented “January effect” in small and microcap stocks and the Q1 launch of graphene-enhanced filaments for existing 3D printers should send shares higher again.
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Disclosure: I am long shares of Graphene 3D Lab. See additional disclosure in 8/11/14 article.
Disclaimer: Opinions expressed are my own and should not be considered investment advice nor an invitation to buy or sell shares of any company mentioned on this site. Investors should perform their own due diligence and consult with a Registered Investment Advisor prior to making any investment decision. See sidebar for full disclaimer.