SeeThruEquity Issues Update on Stevia First Corp. (OTCQB: STVF) Highlighting Development of New Manufacturing Technology
NEW YORK, NY / CRWEPRESSRELEASE / August 12, 2015 / SeeThruEquity, a leading independent equity research and corporate access firm focused on small-cap and micro-cap public companies, today announced it has issued an update on Stevia First Corporation (OTCQB:STVF).
Based in Yuba Valley, CA, Stevia First Corporation (OTCQB:STVF, “Stevia First”) is an innovative ag-biotech company addressing the global diabetes and obesity epidemics with mass market food and nutrition products. The company has initially focused on commercializing its proprietary process for the industrial scale production of stevia, an all-natural zero-calorie sweetener that is gaining traction in the food and beverage industry, as seen with its use in commercially successful products such as Truvia(R) and Vitamin Water Zero. Since our initiation of the company in February, Stevia First has continued to make progress toward its goal of becoming the premier stevia producer in North America. With the recent capital raise of $1.5mn announced in May and potential GRAS status for Reb A produced using its proprietary enzyme enhancement process in which a stevia enzyme is used to convert low-grade stevia extract into high purity Reb A products, Stevia First appears well positioned for growth in FY16E and beyond. We see the company as a compelling speculative growth story with an innovative approach to producing a high purity stevia – a high potency, zero calorie natural sweetener with the potential to disrupt the $58Bn global market for sweeteners.
The report is available here: STVF Update Note. SeeThruEquity is an approved equity research contributor on Thomson First Call, Capital IQ, FactSet, and Zack’s. The report will be available on these platforms. The firm also contributes its estimates to Thomson Estimates, the leading estimates platform on Wall Street.
Highlights from the update note are as follows:
Innovative new technology expands opportunity
On July 22, 2015, Stevia First unveiled what we see as a potentially transformative new technology for the combined processing of sugarcane and stevia leaf. Following a two-year collaboration targeting sales and expansion efforts into Mexico and Latin American markets, Stevia First has developed new intellectual property for a method of co-processing sugarcane and stevia leaf extract. Through strategic partnerships that leverage existing sugar industry equipment, the technology has the potential to drastically reduce the amount of capital equipment investment required for traditional stevia leaf processing.
We see the development as holding significant potential for Stevia First, as the sugar industry is a natural ally against high fructose corn syrup with the resources required to meet productions demands required by beverage companies. Indeed, the new technology produces stevia-sugar syrups wit the potential to reduce calories by as much as 80%, providing sugar producers with a healthier advantage compared to high fructose corn syrup. Moreover, the new process leverages the equipment standardization that has taken place within the sugar processing industry, and can also be used for sugar processing alone, lowering the risk for strategic partners in the sugar industry. We expect Stevia to begin commercialization of the new process in Brazil, which is the largest sugarcane producer in the world responsible for 50% of the world’s sugarcane exports.
Positioned to benefit from a large and growing market
Stevia is one of the fastest-growing areas of the $58.3Bn global sweetener market, and the World Health Organization estimates that stevia could eventually replace 20% to 30% of all dietary sweeteners. We see Stevia First as well positioned to benefit from this growth opportunity, as the company has developed a proprietary has developed a proprietary process for producing stevia with the potential to increase yield per leaf by up to 3x traditional methods. The company has struck a key partnership with Qualipride, one of the largest stevia producers in the world, which secures supply and positions Stevia First to develop the first stevia production facility in the United States.
Maintain price target of 1.04
We are maintaining our price target for Stevia First. If achieved, the price target suggests potential upside of 477.8% from the recent price of $0.18.
Please review important disclosures on our website at www.seethruequity.com.
About Stevia First Corp.
Stevia First Corp. is an agricultural biotechnology company that has developed expertise for the production of stevia using fermentation and for improvement of traditional stevia farming and processing methods. The Company is also applying breakthrough technologies in software and the life sciences to develop product applications far beyond stevia and the food and beverage industry. www.steviafirst.com
SeeThruEquity is an equity research and corporate access firm focused on companies with less than $1 billion in market capitalization. The research is not paid for and is unbiased. The company does not conduct any investment banking or commission based business. SeeThruEquity is approved to contribute its research to Thomson One Analytics (First Call), Capital IQ, FactSet, Zacks, and distribute its research to its database of opt-in investors. The company also contributes its estimates to Thomson Estimates, the leading estimates platform on Wall Street.
For more information visit www.seethruequity.com.