APT dealt in to the main game

02/12/2003 - 21:00

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LOCAL nanotechnology developer Advanced Powder Technologies has started a multi-million-dollar equity raising with plans for Australian Stock Exchange listing firmly on the agenda.

LOCAL nanotechnology developer Advanced Powder Technologies has started a multi-million-dollar equity raising with plans for Australian Stock Exchange listing firmly on the agenda.

The clear zinc producer made headlines recently after it supplied Perth supermodel Megan Gale with ingredients for her Invisible Zinc product, but that deal is only one of many the company has signed in the past six months.

Advanced Powder Technologies has shipped 2.5 tonnes of its Alusion cosmetic product overseas, and a product trial with Bondall of the NanoZ wood protector is expected to produce results in the new year.

These recent, and imminent, contracts have required Advanced Powder Technologies to move into larger premises and have positioned the company to expand significantly in coming years, according to APT business development manager Brian Innes.

“We’ve proved that this is scalable and we’re now going after the big slice of pie, which is why we are capital raising now,” Mr Innes said.

“There are a lot of people out there in the biotech industry looking at pipe dreams that are 10 years away and we’re showing that it’s here and now for us, and we’re now moving on to other product developments.

“We intend to build a facility in Rockingham. It is in the design and engineering phase at the moment and we intend to move the whole operation into it in 18 months to two years.

“We have a facility in Welshpool and we’re about to take over a site in Carlisle, which will double our floor space.”

He said the company had two equity raising strategies operating.

 “One is to raise $10 million with $5 million in equity and the other strategy is for a smaller portion, about $2 million and go public,” Mr Innes said.

“The $10 million would give us three to four years and then we could look at going public. We’d pump more into R&D and keep some work we’re doing now, rather than spinning it off.

“The $10 million strategy was something we were keen on six months ago when the idea of listing wasn’t so attractive. Now people are saying the hands are coming out of the pockets and the stock market is a better place to go.”

Advanced Powder Technologies was spun-out of the University of Western Australia in 1997 and has matured from a product developer to manufacturer, according to Mr Innes.

“We can go into a hundred different markets, the hardest part for us is working out which is the most profitable,” Mr Innes said.

The company produces three branded nanoproducts – ZinClear, Alusion and NanoZ – with each attracting interest, according to Mr Innes.

ZinClear is a clear-based zinc and was APT’s first branded product. It is currently being utilised by several sunscreen manufacturers.

Alusion was designed for the cosmetic industry and the company has signed distributors in Europe, Japan and the US.

“The contract we’ve signed with the US distributor is for $110,000 and they are quite confident that they will move that,” Mr Innes said.

“Deals have been signed with Avon and Revlon.”.

The third product, NanoZ, has been targeted at the timber industry as a transparent UV protector for wood.

“We’re in a semi-product development stage at the moment [with Bondall] and after Christmas it will be launched,” Mr Innes said.

“The initial trial is only $5,000 but it will become a good deal for us.”

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