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A123 Systems IPO

Electric Vehicle Battery Company Surges on Debut

Written by Brian Hicks
Posted September 24, 2009

Editor's Note: Rare Earth Metals (REEs) are nothing short of crucial to the way we live. In fact without them, some of our most important modern technologies could never exist: rechargeable batteries, electric motors, photo optics, and solar cells, just to name a few.

They are so pivotal to modern circuitry that industry insiders came up with a nickname for REEs: 'technology metals.' And on January 1st, Denmark will relinquish its sovereign hold over Greenland's mineral rights, making Greenland's $273 billion rare earth resources private property. To learn about the single company in control of all of it, read the following new report.

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A123 Systems, Inc., a Massachusetts company that makes cells and systems for lithium-ion battery-powered electric vehicles, made its market debut on Thursday, September 24.

A123 Systems' IPO price of $13.50 had already been adjusted upward in September based on heavy interest in the EV battery sector, and the new stock rose to $17 per share by the NASDAQ market's morning open.

From there, it was off to the races. The newly minted ticker symbol NASDAQ:AONE gained 46% by midday.

The company received just over 10% of the total federal stimulus package money allotted to electric vehicle projects, and EV optimism at the White House is taking hold in equity markets. "The government is feeding the whole food chain for electric vehicles," Kaufman Brothers analyst Theodore O'Neill told Bloomberg.

Executives are also putting their money on EV advances—Duke Energy Corp. (NYSE:DUK) and FPL Group, Inc. (NYSE:FPL) just announced a $600 million investment in their electric car fleets.

They're not just talking about a few token EVs, either. Duke and FPL both want to overhaul their entire stock of vehicles to make them electric or plug-in electric (with backup hybrid batteries) by 2020. That likely won't mean retrofitting; it will mean new car and truck purchases, adding up to millions for companies like A123 Systems that develop the modules to keep a growing number of clean company fleets up and running. Of course, car companies that adopt leading EV systems will benefit as well.

You can read more about how battery and energy storage systems are evolving, and where you can invest, in this Energy and Capital archive article: Energy Storage Companies: Who's Leading the Charge?

-Sam Hopkins

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