Going to the pot: Affinity still suspended as it tries to scrape together some cash
Health & Biotech
Health & Biotech
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Cannabis-algae nutraceuticals company Affinity Energy (ASX:AEB) was in its 41st day of suspension from the ASX on Wednesday as it tries to raise money.
Affinity, which changed its named from Algae.Tec last year, had just $10,259 left to spend at the end of December.
Yet it expected to splurge $1.7 million in this quarter alone, mostly on staff, corporate and admin costs.
In February Affinity was hoping to raise $5m from investors in order to fund its latest cannabis venture, this time in Malta.
Affinity shares closed at 0.9c on Wednesday evening.
The company began almost a decade ago as a hopeful algae-energy startup, commercialising a technology that promised to turn algae into biofuel.
Unfortunately, more recent research showed the basic premise didn’t work: the more algae you have, the more the individual organisms shade each other from the light they need to grow – defeating attempts to scale up.
Affinity switched into nutraceuticals, which took some time to get off the ground but which now appears to be providing some income: $90,222 in the December quarter, compared to $3800 in the prior period.
The switch into nutraceuticals began in 2014, and was supposed to start making substantive revenue in January 2018.
The company is still surviving off capital raises and Australian R&D tax rebates, such as the $2.4m grant it received in the December quarter.
It has big plans for cannabis, which are also taking a very long time to get off the ground.
Affinity is still waiting on Australian cannabis licenses 15 months after applying, stalling a series of deals made in anticipation of setting up an Australian cannabis operation. And it’s gone quiet on the Uruguayan venture, a 25 per cent stake in a cannabis grower there which it had once proposed spinning off.
In December 2017, it was hoping for a $10m crop from Uruguay by June last year.
But while it appears Australia and Uruguay are lagging, the next big thing is Malta.
In 2019, Affinity reckons a growing facility in that country should start generating cash sometime between July and December.
Stockhead is seeking comment from Affinity.