Ilika plc (LON:IKA) Chief Financial Officer Steve Boydell caught up with DirectorsTalk for an exclusive interview to discuss their final results, the importance of China, their ‘Goliath’ programme and more details on the placing and open offer.
Q1: You’ve released your results this morning and we can see that revenues have doubled, indicating the increasing commercial momentum. What measures are you taking to ensure this growth is sustained?
A1: We’ve deployed a team of four business development directors globally; in the US, China, Japan and here in Europe and close management of them is expected to sustain our growth this year and beyond.
Q2: I note that you’ve named three Stereax development programmes which look to be an exciting indicator or commercial traction; two are for industrial applications and one for medical. Does this split reflect the broader expressions in the interest Ilika has in technology?
A2: Industrial and medical are the two most important near-term sectors for us but more than half of the evaluations of our technology are actually with medical device companies.
Q3: One of your programmes is with Titan Wind in China, will this be an important jurisdiction, do you think?
A3: Very much so, yes. As I mentioned before, we have a business development director in China and one of our technical directors is just about to accompany him on a tour of potential partners there.
China have a large installed asset base that can benefit from industrial automation powered by our Stereax technology. There’s also significant interest in accessing our larger format battery technology to underpin China’s 5-year plan.
Q3: How do you intend to protect Ilika’s IP in China?
A3: That’s a good question. By careful screening of potential partners ensuring that they have a track record in international collaborations in which they respect patents.
Q4: You’ve just mentioned large format batteries, and I think they’re code named ‘Goliath’, has this become important part of your road map since January?
A4: Yes, we’ve had a lot of inbound interest and we’ve recently received significant offers of support from Innovate UK and are now putting together contracts in place with project partners.
Q5: You also announced today that you’ve completed a placing and initiated an open offer, what can you tell us about that?
A5: So, the placing is to ensure that Ilika have sufficient funds to invest in the capital equipment required for the ‘Goliath’ programme and to provide enough working capital for our other ongoing programmes. I would encourage retail investors to watch the video we’ve made in support of the open offer and I hope that they’ll choose to support the company through this exciting period of our development.