Versarien expects demand for graphene to deliver ‘significant future revenues’

Francesca Morgan
Vox Newswire
08:53, 12th May 2022

Versarien (VRS Follow | VRS) has told investors that it is seeing increased interest from global companies in signing development agreements that may, in time, lead to “significant future revenues.”

The advanced engineering materials group released its interim results for the twelve months to 31 March 2022 in which it reported revenues from continuing operations up 34% to £7.63m from £5.69m in FY21. Graphene revenues were up 170% to £1.89m, up from £0.7m in FY21.

Loss before tax from continuing operations lowered to £5.14m from £8.08m in the previous year while Versarien had cash of £3.10 million as at 31 March 2022, up from £2.36m in 2021.

The company’s relocation to a new dedicated graphene production facility in Longhope, Gloucestershire over the period enabled the business to significantly expand capacity.

The Spanish graphene manufacturing assets which were transferred to Versarien’s facility Longhope are now in process of commissioning to provide up to an additional 100 tonne powder capacity per annum while Versarien said it has the equipment to scale up graphene ink production capacity by an additional 12,000 litres per annum delivered and commissioned.

In 2021, Versarien signed several collaborations with some high-profile global retailers. In particular, it signed a commercial agreement with Superdry to produce graphene enhanced garments, and it said discussions are now ongoing with multiple other garment suppliers.

On the funding side, Versarien received backing from the South Korea-based GrapheneLab Co. Ltd with a strategic investment of £1.93m, along with royalty and trademark agreements.

Post-period, it continues to receive increasing interest from global companies. On Tuesday, it announced that the global sportswear brand Umbro is to integrate the Graphene-Wear™ technology into its Elite Pro-Training Kit range, initially for the 2023 spring/summer collection.

South American-based GoToGym, a research and development company, are also planning to  launch an active-wear range incorporating Versarien’s Graphene-WearTM technology.

Commenting on this morning’s results Neill Ricketts, CEO of Versarien, told investors that the period “has seen the financial benefits of the DSTL contract focussed on understanding the benefits that graphene-loaded materials may bring to defence applications with Group revenues from continuing operations up 34% and reported losses significantly reduced.”

“Alongside the expansion of our production facilities in Longhope we continue to progress the applications in which graphene can be used with a view to launching new graphene enhanced products over the coming months. This is a natural follow on from the successful finalisation of the DSTL contract and the near completion of the GSCALE development projects,” he said.

“In parallel, customer testing continues to prove successful and we are seeing increased interest from global companies in signing development agreements that may, in time, lead to significant future revenues whilst at the same time we are looking to expand our global footprint and enter into agreements with the right strategic partners for the business, in part helped by having passed the  accreditation of the Graphene Council,” Ricketts commented.

Today, the company reported that its trading performance in the current period has started “satisfactorily” with order books at the mature businesses showing signs of improvement.

Versarien continues to make good progress in the US market, adding new customers, signing new NDAs, entering into new projects, and selling samples, even securing its first order for sample material from NASA where its graphene will be investigated for space-craft coating.

It further acknowledged that its primary focus remains “on the opportunities we see in the construction and textile/leisure sectors where the potential graphene markets are significant and within which we are moving towards commercial product sales at the fastest rate.”

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Since founding the company in 2010, Versarien’s leadership team have since established the business as one of the world’s leading developers of commercial uses of graphene.

Versarien has grown rapidly since then, listing on the London Stock Exchange in 2013. The Gloucestershire-based firm has also since emerged as a European player in Silicon Valley.

Versarien’s latest agreement forms part of its ongoing efforts to establish joint ventures/ technology licensing agreements to global players as it seeks to drive worldwide sales.

With Umbro dressing more than 120 football teams globally, players from teams such as West Ham United, Werder Bremen as well as England’s rugby union squad will train in a kit that incorporates technology from Versarien starting from next year as part of this latest project.

Versarien has collaborated with Umbro since 2018, and building on other projects with the retailer, the company said detailed that this is the first to lead to products being launched.

“We’re attracting really big companies who have big aspirations to get this technology into their products. So we can develop great ideas, and then licence them to global companies who have the cash to scale quickly,” CEO Ricketts told Forbes in an interview last month.

Consumers and investors alike can expect to see Versarien’s Graphene-Wear™ technology integrated into Umrbo’s Elite Pro-Training Kit range in their 2023 spring/summer collection.

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