For Thursday, October 2nd
SRDG, MEDP, GRAN, EFJI, AAII, LPTN
Our Stocks to Watch tomorrow include Southridge Enterprises Inc. (OTCBB: SRDG), MedSpas of America Inc. (OTC: MEDP), Bank of Granite Corp. (Nasdaq: GRAN), EF Johnson Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq: EFJI), Alabama Aircraft Industries Inc. (Nasdaq: AAII) and Lpath Inc. (OTCBB: LPTN).
SOUTHRIDGE ETHANOL INCORPORATED (OTCBB: SRDG)
"Up 42.86% on Wednesday"
Southridge Ethanol, Inc. is a renewable energy company with a mission to become the ethanol producer of choice in the southeastern region of the United States. The company is focusing its efforts in an area which offers abundant supplies of corn, superior transportation infrastructure and expedited permitting processes. The Company is actively acquiring and developing ethanol production facilities with a planned capacity of 60 million gallons per year and anticipates start-up of the first phase of these operations in 2007. Southridge Ethanol is headquartered in Dallas, TX.
September 29 - Southridge Signs $35 Million Ethanol Sales Agreement
Southridge Enterprises, Inc. (OTCBB: SRDG) (the "Company") announced that it has entered into an ethanol sales agreement with Hong Kong based Jinsung Ho Trading Group (JHTG) for the supply of 15 million gallons of ethanol per year. Deliveries are expected to begin in October 2008. The ethanol is being sourced from Petrozilian Energia SA (PES) from Brazil.
Over the last several quarters the company completed several similar ethanol sale transactions with European based buyers. However, this new transaction with JHTG is a direct result of our increased exposure from the Company's market awareness program in the Asian Pacific Rim. The Company expects this to be the second of many purchases to come from that region.
Dallas-based Southridge is developing ethanol plants in El Salvador and Brazil.
MEDSPAS OF AMERICA (OTC: MEDP)
"Up 77.78% on Wednesday"
Medspas of America operates in a niche sector of the $72 Billion anti-aging market through two distribution channels, those being: (a) Internet retailing of a proprietary brand of cosmeceuticals; and (b) a small high-end chain of skin care boutiques and medspas to be developed over the next five years. The market is driven, primarily by 44 million female baby boomers who are living longer with unprecedented disposable income and want to look and feel better. 12,000 Americans turn 50 every day (1 every 8 seconds) and this will continue for the next 20 years.
October 1 -
MedSpas Updates Company Information on Pink Sheets
MedSpas of America Inc. (OTC: MEDP) (www.medspasofamerica.com) announced that the company has updated its current company information on www.pinksheets.com including current share structure.
Over the past several weeks, there has been some shareholder misunderstanding regarding the shares structure of the company. We are happy to provide all our shareholders with current information so as of today's date, the common stock outstanding for the company is 822,758,982 shares with 81,949,806 free trading shares in the float and certificate form.
BANK OF GRANITE CORPORATION (NASDAQ: GRAN)
"Up 59.66% on Wednesday"
Bank of Granite Corporation operates as the holding company for Bank of Granite that provides commercial banking services primarily to individuals and business customers in North Carolina. The company?s deposit products include interest-bearing and non-interest-bearing demand deposits, savings accounts, NOW accounts, money market accounts, time deposits, and certificates of deposit. It offers real estate construction loans; real estate mortgage loans; commercial, financial, and agricultural loans; and consumer loans. The company, through its other subsidiary, Granite Mortgage, Inc., originates, retains, and sells mortgage loan products, such as fixed-rate and adjustable-rate government and conventional loans for constructing, purchasing, and refinancing owner-occupied properties. It also provides treasury and administration services. As of December 31, 2007, Bank of Granite Corporation operated 22 branches in Burke, Caldwell, Catawba, Forsyth, Iredell, Mecklenburg, Watauga, and Wilkes counties. The company was founded in 1906 and is headquartered in Granite Falls, North Carolina.
September 23 -
Bank of Granite Corporation Splits Stock, Announces Cost Reduction Measures, and Suspends Cash Dividend
Bank of Granite Corporation (Nasdaq: GRAN) (the "Company") announced that its Board of Directors approved a 5-for-4 stock split that will be effected by issuing one additional share of its common stock for each four shares held by shareholders of record on October 17, 2008. The additional shares are expected to be distributed on or about October 31, 2008. In lieu of issuing fractional shares, cash will be paid based on the split-adjusted closing price on the October 17, 2008 record date.
The Board of Directors further announced a suspension of the Company's cash dividend in an effort to preserve capital. The cash dividend suspension will preserve approximately $2 million of capital per quarter.
The Board of Directors also announced the Company's plans, subject to regulatory approval, to combine its banking and mortgage subsidiaries, Bank of Granite and Granite Mortgage, Inc. The combination is expected to increase capital in the Bank subsidiary and provide improved funding options for the mortgage operations. The Company is also anticipating expense reductions of $1.5 million for 2009, as a result of the combination of subsidiaries, a reduction in headcount and a stringent operating expense reduction plan.
"We are taking a number of significant steps to fortify our balance sheet and improve the quality and composition of our capital base," said Scott Anderson, president and CEO of the Company. "We recognize that our dividend payments are important to our shareholders," Anderson continued. "The decision to suspend the dividend was difficult, but we are confident it is the right step to take in light of our expected levels of earnings over the near-term and the benefits of building capital at a higher pace during this part of the current credit and economic cycle. While we cannot predict when the economy will improve, we expect that, as conditions normalize and our credit costs decline, our future earnings generation levels would permit resumption of dividend payments."
The additional shares of stock are expected to be distributed on approximately 15,455,000 shares of common stock outstanding to an estimated 5,700 stockholders. The common stock trades on The NASDAQ Global Select Market(SM) under the symbol "GRAN." Bank of Granite Corporation is the parent company of Bank of Granite and Granite Mortgage. Bank of Granite operates 22 full-service banking offices in eight North Carolina counties — Burke, Caldwell, Catawba, Forsyth, Iredell, Mecklenburg, Watauga, and Wilkes — and a loan production office in Guilford County. Granite Mortgage, a mortgage banking company headquartered in Winston-Salem, originates home mortgages in Fayetteville, Greensboro/High Point, and Salisbury, North Carolina, in addition to Bank of Granite's markets.
EF JOHNSON TECHNOLOGIES INCORPORATED (NASDAQ: EFJI)
"Up 48.00% on Wednesday"
Headquartered in Irving, Texas, EF Johnson Technologies, Inc. focuses on innovating, developing and marketing the highest quality secure communications solutions to organizations whose mission is to protect and save lives. The Company's customers include first responders in public safety and public service, the federal government, and industrial organizations. The Company's products are marketed under the EFJohnson, 3e Technologies International, and Transcrypt International names.
October 1 -
EF Johnson Technologies, Inc. Receives $3.8 Million Order from a DoD Customer
Company to develop an advanced security and encryption solution
EF Johnson Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: EFJI) announced that it has received an order valued at $3.8 million from a US Department of Defense (DoD) customer. The order calls for the company to develop an advanced security and encryption solution.
"EFJohnson Technologies has vast experience in developing secure, reliable wireless solutions for the Department of Defense," said Michael Jalbert, president and chief executive officer of EF Johnson Technologies, Inc. "Our wireless LAN solutions provide highly secure capabilities in support of critical missions."
ALABAMA AIRCRAFT INDUSTRIES INCORPORATED (NASDAQ: AAII)
"Up 40.61% on Wednesday"
Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc. provides aircraft maintenance and modification services in the United States. The company offers aircraft maintenance and modification services for the government and military customers focusing on providing programmed depot maintenance (PDM) on large transport aircraft. It also provides repair, maintenance, and modification services to its customers. The company principal services performed under military contracts include PDMs, systems integration of component upgrades, and modification of fixed wing aircraft. In addition, it designs and manufactures a range of proprietary aerospace products, including various space systems, such as guidance control systems and launch vehicles; aircraft cargo-handling systems; and precision parts and components for aircraft. The company was founded in 1983. It was formerly known as Pemco Aviation Group, Inc. and changed its name to Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc. in 2007. Alabama Aircraft Industries is based in Birmingham, Alabama.
October 1 -
Alabama Aircraft Announces Win on KC-135 Litigation
Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc. (Nasdaq: AAII) announced that its subsidiary, AAII - Birmingham has won its case filed on June 26, 2008 in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims against the United States Air Force and The Boeing Company which challenged the Air Force’s selection of Boeing for a $1.1 billion contract to perform PDM services on KC-135 aircraft. The Court set aside the Solicitation and enjoined the Air Force from proceeding with the award to Boeing requiring that “The Air Force must resolicit the procurement and take the necessary steps in a new solicitation to address explicitly the role of an ever-aging KC-135 fleet on the PDM to be performed.”
Ron Aramini, President and Chief Executive Officer of Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc. said, “We could not be more pleased that the Court has given this matter a thorough and fair hearing, as we have requested from the beginning. The deficiencies in the award obviously have been recognized and finally addressed, with the potential to restore integrity to the procurement process for the KC-135 PDM. We look forward to working with the United States Air Force and participating in the new KC-135 competition.”
Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc. (AAII), with executive offices in Birmingham, Alabama, and facilities in Alabama, and California, performs maintenance and modification of aircraft for the U.S. Government. The company also provides aircraft parts and support and engineering services and full service overhaul and repair for a wide range of aircraft. AAII also develops and manufactures rocket vehicles and control systems, and precision components for the aviation industry.
LPATH INCORPORATED (OTCBB: LPTN)
"Up 30.21% on Wednesday"
Lpath, Inc., headquartered in San Diego, California, is the category leader in bioactive-lipid-targeted therapeutics, an emerging field of medical science whereby bioactive signaling lipids are targeted for treating important human diseases. ASONEP™ is an antibody against S1P that is presently in Phase 1 clinical trials for the treatment of cancer and also holds promise against multiple sclerosis and various other disorders. A second product candidate, iSONEP™ (the ocular formulation of the S1P antibody), has demonstrated superior results in various preclinical AMD and retinopathy models and has received FDA authorization to begin Phase 1 clinical trials. Lpath's third product candidate, Lpathomab™, is an antibody against LPA, a key bioactive lipid that has been long recognized as a valid disease target (fibrosis, cancer, neuropathic pain). The company's unique ability to generate novel antibodies against bioactive lipids is based on its ImmuneY2™ drug-discovery engine, which the company is leveraging to add to its pipeline.
October 1 -
Category Leader Lpath on Track to Meeting Key 2008 Goals
Lpath, Inc. (OTCBB: LPTN), the category leader in bioactive-lipids-based therapeutics, reported it is meeting key 2008 business goals and objectives management set out earlier this year. These include:
A. 2008 Goals Related to ASONEP(TM) Drug Development Program for Cancer:
1. Initiate and execute Phase 1 clinical program: The company met this
objective when it initiated Phase 1 trial in April of 2008. ASONEP was well tolerated at 1 mg of drug per kg of body weight
("1 mg/kg"), so the company recently escalated to the 3 mg/kg dose
level. Given continued acceptable tolerance, the company will
escalate to dose levels of 10 mg/kg, 17 mg/kg, and 24 mg/kg.
2. Determine Phase 2 efficacy trial protocol: Lpath has evaluated various evidence-based hypotheses regarding anti-cancer efficacy in order to determine the Phase 2 protocols that will enhance the likelihood for success. Management has become increasingly enthusiastic about the relationship between the S1P signaling pathway (which ASONEP inhibits) and drug resistance that often thwarts the progress of cancer patients.
B. 2008 Goals Related to iSONEP(TM) Drug Development Program for Ocular Indications:
1. Submit an Investigational New Drug application (IND) to the FDA for
the use of iSONEP in Wet-AMD patients: Lpath submitted this IND in
April 2008 and the FDA gave approval to begin testing iSONEP in May.
2. Initiate and execute iSONEP Phase 1 clinical program: Lpath plans to
initiate the iSONEP Phase 1 trial within a few weeks.
3. Initiate studies outlined in the NIH grant: The company recently
initiated a key efficacy study in AMD funded by a Phase II grant
from the National Institutes of Health.
C. 2008 Goals Related to Lpathomab(TM) Drug Development Program:
1. Identify lead (humanized) candidate: In the first quarter of 2008, Lpath chose its "lead" humanized variant of the anti-LPA antibody
("Lpathomab"), which is now undergoing cell-line development (see
2. Evaluate various models of fibrosis, cancer, and neuropathic pain to
determine lead systemic indication: The company has demonstrated
compelling efficacy using the murine version of Lpathomab in the
prevention of pulmonary fibrosis and in various cancer models.
Confirmatory studies are ongoing with the humanized antibody.
3. Evaluate various mechanisms of action in the eye to determine a lead
ocular indication: Even though Lpath has demonstrated Lpathomab's
anti-angiogenic activity in animal models of Wet AMD, the company
has put on hold further efforts to assess Lpathomab as an ocular
drug candidate, primarily because its ocular mechanisms of action
are largely overlapping with iSONEP's.
4. Begin cell-line development of Lpathomab: In April, 2008, Lpath
initiated cell-line development, a key step towards larger-scale
manufacturing of the antibody.
5. Complete IND-enabling studies to support one or more IND
applications in 2009: Lpath is on-track to begin various
IND-enabling studies later this year and into next year, and
therefore still expects to file an IND application in 2009.
D. 2008 Goals Related to Leveraging Lpath's Overall Value:
1. Leverage the value of ASONEP by confirming efficacy in animal models
of human multiple sclerosis: Lpath's collaborator, Dr. Howard Weiner
of Harvard Medical School, who demonstrated excellent results with
ASONEP in an acute EAE preclinical model of multiple sclerosis,
recently initiated an intervention study of remitting-relapsing
multiple sclerosis in mice.
2. Leverage the value of iSONEP by confirming efficacy in specific
models of diabetes- and glaucoma-related diseases: These studies
will be started soon.
3. Leverage Lpath's ImmuneY2(TM) drug-discovery engine by generating
additional monoclonal antibodies against novel bioactive-lipid
targets: The company has chosen three additional bioactive-lipid
targets and expects to generate several new antibody candidates by
Lpath continues to make progress with its other important 2008 goals and objectives related to corporate governance, infrastructure building, and business development — all designed to support the company's growth and success.
"Lpath continues an excellent record of achieving its stated goals and hitting major milestones," said Scott R. Pancoast, Lpath president and CEO. "While a difficult funding environment led to a delay in the closing of our most recent financing, which, in turn, postponed the initiation of our iSONEP Phase 1 and a few other important projects, we are on target with a substantial part of our 2008 plan."