Since I last wrote about Versarien (VRS) in November last year the stock had fallen around 20% - until it ripped 20p on news that it had completed the US-based Graphene Council’s “Verified graphene producer” programme, to give a market cap of £187 million. That is a lot of hope value for an enterprise which seems to do little more than announce vague MOUs with various named, and more often unnamed, entities. Doubtless it will be of no concern to Neil Rickett’s cult followers, but the recent appointment of Patrick Abbott as “Vice President North American Operations at the Houston facility once established” certainly should raise some eyebrows among the saner of Versarien’s investors....
Last time I checked the company already had a US facility in Palo Alto, California, but perhaps it is overrun with graphene orders (from Tesla perhaps?) and a second office is needed to cope with demand. Patrick Abbott is, along with Ricketts and many others, a member of the advisory board of the National Graphene Association and his cringing biography on that organisation’s website is interesting for both what it includes and omits. Here is an example of the sort of rubbish that it includes:
“Patrick birthed (Yes birthed! it seems that in Texas “birth” is a verb) Global Marketing Empire Solutions, a disruptive technology consulting company, with a passion for training, developing and leading teams. Patrick executed a heightened sense of energy and enthusiasm to GMES exponentially growing marketing and sales teams within each division. Upon the sale of the highly valued business, Patrick joined XG Sciences”.
If Abbott did sell this “highly valued business” it seems odd that its website still shows him as Chairman and driving force behind it and that its new owners are nowhere to be seen. More interesting is what his self-laudatory bio leaves out. This is that he is due in Harris County Court number 174 on 4th June before judge Hazel Jones on a felony indictment concerning the theft of some $200,000 from 3 individuals and deemed serious enough for him to post a $20,000 bail and surrender his passport. I am all for innocent until proven guilty etc., but still question the wisdom of this appointment which at the very least should have been accompanied by disclosure of the pending case to investors. The shares in my view are worth a fraction of their current price despite the falls from the ridiculous levels reached last year.
Filed under: Versarien, Audioboom, Bearcast, mini bond lender, Future Renewables Eco, Kier, Atlantic Carbon, Tern
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