Company Under Severe Financial Stress Suddenly Succumbs to a Fire

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MCCARRAN, Nev., Dec. 02, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) “The cause of the fire is presently unknown and the Company is working with the local authorities and other parties to investigate the origin of ignition and root cause. The flames at one point reached the upper roofline of the AquaRefinery area and damaged the roof. The fire and related intense heat and smoke caused significant damage to a material amount of equipment in the AquaRefinery area, including all 16 AquaRefining modules, control wiring and other supporting infrastructure. In addition, approximately 1,600 gallons of AquaRefining concentrate was released within the plant due to a tank succumbing to intense heat. That concentrate, along with thousands of gallons of water deployed to extinguish the fire, resulted in approximately 1 inch of liquid to spread throughout the entire plant and reached the in-plant operational offices”. Read more

Management is Currently Reviewing Available Insurance Coverage for Plant/Equipment Damage and Business Interruption Losses in Effort to Fund Recovery

From ‘10-Q’ for 9/30/19

We are subject to restrictive debt covenants that may limit our ability to run our business, finance our capital needs and pursue business opportunities and activities. As of the date of this report, we are indebted to Green Bank for approximately $9.4 million ($8.7 million net of issuance costs), which is secured by liens on substantially all of our assets. The credit agreement governing such indebtedness contains covenants that limit our ability to take certain actions. These covenants could limit our ability to finance our future operations and capital needs and our ability to pursue business opportunities and activities that may be in our interest. If we breach any of these covenants, the debt holder could declare a default under the credit agreement, in which case all of the indebtedness may then become immediately due and payable. If the debt under the credit agreement is accelerated, we may not have, or be able to obtain, sufficient funds to make these accelerated payments. In addition, since all of the indebtedness to Green Bank is secured by substantially all of our assets, a default under the credit facility could enable the debt holder to foreclose on its security interest and attempt to seize our assets. The affirmative and negative debt covenants could materially adversely impact our ability to operate and finance our business. In addition, our default under any of these covenants could subject us to accelerated debt payments or foreclosure proceedings that could threaten our ability to continue as a going concern.

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Additionally, we were not in compliance with the minimum debt service coverage ratio covenant on our loan from Green Bank as of the fiscal quarter ends between March 31, 2017, and September 30, 2019. We received a waiver for the minimum debt service coverage ratio covenant for those periods. While we expect to continue to receive waivers from Green Bank for non-compliance with such covenant, there is no guarantee that we will receive such waivers. If Green Bank determines not to grant us a waiver for non-compliance in the future, we would be in default of the loan and Green Bank would be able to accelerate the payment of all amounts under the loan.
In the event of the acceleration of the Green Bank loan, we will need additional financing to satisfy our obligations under the loan, which additional financing may not be available on reasonable terms or at all. As noted above, as of the date of this report, we are indebted to Green Bank for approximately $9.4 million ($8.7 million net of issuance costs). The credit agreement governing such indebtedness contain various affirmative and negative covenants and if we breach any of these covenants, the debt holder could declare a default under the credit agreement, in which case all of the indebtedness may then become immediately due and payable. If the debt under the credit agreement is accelerated, we may not have sufficient funds to make the accelerated payments, in which case we would be required to seek additional funds through various financing sources, most likely through the sale of our equity or debt securities. However, there can be no assurance that such funds will be available on commercially reasonable terms, if at all. Further, any sale of our equity or equity-linked securities will result in additional dilution to our stockholders.
Our outstanding debt may make it difficult for us obtain additional financing using our future operating cash flow. We currently owe approximately $9.4 million to Green Bank as of the date of this report. Such indebtedness could limit our ability to borrow additional funds to fund operations or expansion or increase the cost of any such borrowing, or both. Our inability to conduct additional debt financing could:

limit our flexibility in developing our business operations and planning for, or reacting to, changes in our business;
increase our vulnerability to, and reduce our flexibility to respond to, general adverse economic and industry conditions; and
place us at a competitive disadvantage as compared to our competitors that are not as highly leveraged.

Any of these or other consequences or events could have a material adverse effect on our ability to finance our business and our operations.Our business model is new and has not been proven by us or anyone else. We are engaged in the business of producing recycled lead through a novel and unproven technology. While the production of recycled lead is an established business, to date all recycled lead has been produced by way of traditional smelting processes. To our knowledge, no one has successfully produced recycled lead in commercial quantities other than by way of smelting. In addition, our lead recycling production line at TRIC is the first-of-its-kind and neither we nor anyone else has ever successfully built a production line that commercially recycles LABs without smelting. While we have commenced limited lead recycling operations at our TRIC facility, through September 30, 2019 all of our revenues have been derived primarily from the sale of lead compounds and plastics and the sale of lead bullion and AquaRefined lead. In April 2018, we commenced the limited production of cast lead bullion (mixture of lead purchased to prime the kettles and AquaRefined lead from our AquaRefining process), and in June 2018 we commenced the sale of AquaRefined lead in the form of two tonne blocks. In addition to the general risks associated with a novel and unproven technology, our business model is subject to a number of related risks, including:

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