Business

Pyrogenesis green-lit to trade on the NASDAQ exchange

Shares in the Canadian metal powder producer and plasma torch specialist PyroGenesis have begun trading on the NASDAQ stock exchange for the first time. 

Having had its listing application cleared by the federal governing Depository Trust Company (DTC), Pyrogenesis started trading common shares under the ticker “PYR” on Thursday morning. While the firm also intends to continue listing its stock on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX), the move could now help boost brand awareness among its potential clients, as well as its appeal to future investors. 

In anticipation of the company’s NASDAQ listing, its shares have risen steadily over the course of the week, increasing from $8.13 (CAD) to $9.72 (CAD). Since going live though, Pyrogenesis’ stock has remained fairly stable, initially jumping to $10.65 (CAD) before settling at around the $10.20 (CAD) mark. 

“We are proud to have qualified as a NASDAQ member and we look forward to trading on this prestigious platform,” said Peter Pascali, CEO of PyroGenesis. “We expect that this will not only further increase PyroGenesis’ visibility within the financial community, but also increase awareness of our product offerings amongst potential clients.”

“This is an exciting milestone for the company, and one that we have been considering and working towards for quite some time.”

Pyrogenesis CEO Peter Pascali (pictured) believes that the firm’s NASDAQ listing will improve its visibility to potential clients. Photo via Pyrogenesis.

Gaining NASDAQ approval 

Pyrogenesis’ NASDAQ application has been over three months in the making, with the company submitting its formal bid to the SEC back in January 2021. Since then, the firm has passed the necessary regulatory checks, including DTC eligibility which is needed to ensure the seamless electronic trading of shares, paving the way for its final approval. 

The company initially set out to gain admittance to the exchange by the end of Q1 2021, and having achieved this, it now intends to hold a Virtual Investor Summit from March 23rd-25th 2021. During the conference, Pyrogenesis is set to connect microcap firms with investors, but it could also provide a significant networking opportunity for the company itself. 

Elsewhere, following its arrival on the NASDAQ, the firm has announced sweeping changes, including its immediate delisting from the OTCQB venture market. The company has also reshuffled its board, with CFO Michael Blank resigning as a Director, in order to maintain a clear division between the firm’s leadership team and Board of Directors. 

In a series of other changes, the board has effectively appointed Ben Naccarato as Blank’s replacement, and set up two new committees to manage its affairs. Since completing the shake-up, Pyrogenesis has emphasized that its financial position remains unchanged, and that unlike similar NASDAQ listings, the move hasn’t required a reverse stock split. 

Pyrogenesis' metal alloy powder.
Pyrogenesis has made significant progress with the commercialization of its metal alloy powders in recent years. Photo via Pyrogenesis.

Pyrogenesis on the rise?

Having begun trading back in 1991, it’s no coincidence that Pyrogenesis has only recently applied for listing on the NASDAQ exchange. Over the past three years, the company has started to rapidly commercialize its patented Plasma Atomization Process, which can be used to create 3D printing-compatible fine metal powders. 

The firm’s accelerated growth strategy has yielded significant R&D developments, including the elimination of tungsten from its materials and the launch of its ‘NexGen’ Plasma Atomization System. What’s more, the company’s advances have also been reflected within its financial results, and it predicted revenue growth of up to 367% during Q4 2020. 

Alongside its Q4 results, the firm’s board also announced its intention to buy back five million shares, stating that they didn’t “reflect the underlying value of the company, specifically its growth opportunities.” Although Pyrogenesis may not choose to take full advantage of the scheme, the move reflects the company’s confidence that its NASDAQ listing will yield share price rises in future. 

On a similar note, Pyrogenesis recently revealed that the European Patent Office has granted it a patent for a “Plasma Apparatus for the Production of High Quality Powders at High Capacity.” The move could well prove to be a significant advance, but it’s more than likely to be a timed attempt by the firm, to drive interest in its newly-listed shares. 

However, while new stock listings sometimes capture the imagination of investors, they can also take time to take-off. For instance, during Desktop Metal’s first day as a public firm following its high-profile IPO, the company’s shares fell by 24%. As a result, it remains unclear whether Pyrogenesis’ recent revenue growth will translate into investor interest, but its shares could well fluctuate in the months ahead. 

3D printing’s IPO trend 

While Pyrogenesis has been publicly-traded since 2011, an increasing number of 3D printing firms are now following suit, often in an attempt to cash in on potential investor goodwill. 

Just last month, metal and carbon fiber 3D printer manufacturer Markforged announced its plans to go public via a merger with the blank cheque company one. Due to be completed by the summer of 2021, the deal will see the establishment of a newly-combined $2.1 billion company, with an estimated $425 million in capital. 

In a similar move, California-based aerospace firm Rocket Lab has revealed its intention to merge with blank check company Vector Acquisition Corporation, going public as a joint $4.1 billion firm. Once finalized in Q2 2021, the consolidated business is set to be listed on the NASDAQ, with a $750 million warchest for its expansion.

Outside the U.S, companies like large-format 3D printing specialist Massivit3D have opted to go public via the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE), raising $50 million in the process. When the deal went through, it valued the firm at around $200 million, and the company is confident it can continue generating TASE interest in future. 

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Featured image shows an SEM image of PyroGenesis’ powders. Image via PyroGenesis.

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