FuelRod

FuelRod

Growth Stage

The Swappable Power

The Swappable Power

Overview

Raised this Round: Raised: $534,590

Total Commitments ($USD)

Platform

StartEngine

Start Date

01/31/2024

Close Date

04/29/2024

Min. Goal
$9,998
Max. Goal
$1,234,999
Min. Investment

$398

Security Type

Equity - Common

Series

Seed

SEC Filing Type

RegCF    Open SEC Filing

Price Per Share

$3.26

Pre-Money Valuation

$48,005,163

Year Founded

2016

Industry

Energy, Power, & Natural Resources

Tech Sector

Cleantech

Distribution Model

B2B2C

Margin

Medium

Capital Intensity

Low

Location

Del Mar, California

Business Type

Growth

FuelRod, with a valuation of $48.01 million, is raising funds on StartEngine. It is an innovative mobile charging service with a patented network of kiosks. FuelRod is a convenient and reusable portable charging system available at strategically located kiosks where depleted or damaged FuelRods can be swapped for fresh units. The business has significant partnerships and has placements at destinations like theme parks, airports, college campuses, hospitals, and convention centers. Chi Yau and Joe Yeagley founded FuelRod in July 2016. The current crowdfunding campaign has a minimum target of $9,998.42 and a maximum target of $1.23 million. The campaign proceeds will be used for research and development, sales and marketing, operations and infrastructure, and geographic expansion.

Summary Profit and Loss Statement

FY 2022 FY 2021

Revenue

$13,522,238

$6,786,807

COGS

$7,469,907

$4,007,279

Tax

$0

$0

 

 

Net Income

$1,257,984

$321,267

Summary Balance Sheet

FY 2022 FY 2021

Cash

$1,065,132

$380,804

Accounts Receivable

$16,479

$8,578

Total Assets

$2,848,592

$1,538,670

Short-Term Debt

$3,492,177

$3,435,161

Long-Term Debt

$956,445

$1,536,689

Total Liabilities

$4,448,622

$4,971,850

Financials as of: 01/31/2024
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Analyst Report

Synopsis

As our reliance on mobile devices grows, so does the need for convenient, on-the-go charging solutions. FuelRod by Tricopian, Inc. addresses this need with an innovative mobile charging service that offers a patented network of kiosks for portable power. These kiosks are strategically placed in high-traffic areas such as theme parks, airports, college campuses, hospitals, and convention centers. This lets consumers swap depleted or damaged FuelRods for fresh, fully charged units. This service provides a convenient and eco-friendly alternative to purchasing disposable chargers, reducing waste and offering a sustainable solution to a common modern-day problem.

With over $52 million in lifetime revenue, 11 patents, and more than 6 million swaps completed, FuelRod has established itself as a significant player in the Global Portable Charger (Power Bank) Market. Significant partnerships and placements within iconic destinations support the company's successful track record, demonstrating its market reach and scalability. The business model is transactional, leveraging both B2B and B2C distribution channels to maximize its presence and consumer accessibility.

FuelRod is currently in a profitable growth stage, showcasing its ability to generate revenue and sustain its business operations. The company seeks funds to further invest in research and development, sales and marketing, operations and infrastructure, and geographic expansion, aiming to solidify and expand its market position. 

Next Section: Price

Price

FuelRod is offering common equity at a pre-money valuation of $48.01 million. With an annual revenue of $15 million and a revenue multiple of 3.2x, FuelRod's valuation seems reasonable within the Energy, Power, & Natural Resources industry, especially considering the company's profitability and growth trajectory. The price per share is set at $3.26, allowing investors to participate at a price point that reflects the current financial performance and the potential for future growth.

Next Section: Market

Market

The global portable battery market, which FuelRod operates within, is vast and competitive,  with a value of $14.15 billion and a projected growth rate of 8.68%. This market is driven by the ubiquitous use of smartphones and tablets, which, due to increased functionality, place significant stress on their batteries. Demand for portable charging solutions is directly tied to these devices' proliferation and their integral role in modern culture. The market is characterized by intense competition and continuous innovation, with major players investing heavily in research and development to enhance product lines and strategic initiatives like mergers, acquisitions, and collaborations to solidify market presence.

Furthermore, FuelRod's operational model, which involves B2B2C distribution and transactional revenue, aligns well with the market's direction. Their ability to forge significant partnerships and achieve placements within iconic destinations underscores their business's scalability and market reach.

Next Section: Team

Team

FuelRod is led by a seasoned team with expertise in deep power systems and the battery industry. Co-founder and CEO Chi Yau brings over 20 years of experience to the company, having held senior leadership positions in various companies, from startups to major corporations with a global presence. Yau's career began at AT&T Bell Laboratories, where he ascended to executive roles at AT&T Lucent Technologies. He is a seasoned battery industry expert with Electrical and Computer Engineering degrees from the University of Texas at Austin.

Co-founder and COO Joe Yeagley complements the leadership with his 36 years of experience in the power systems battery industry. Yeagley began his career at Liebert Corporation and joined Exide Electronics of Eaton Corporation, rising to executive roles. In 2016, he ventured into San Diego startups and co-founded FuelRod. He holds a B.S. from Miami University and has completed executive programs at Babson College and Cranfield University.

Chief Financial Officer Brian Gore is an innovative finance leader with vast experience in platform development, forecasting, customer acquisition, and team leadership. Gore is skilled in driving institutional effectiveness and focuses on staff training and mentoring to foster a collaborative and efficient work environment.

Next Section: Differentiation

Differentiation

FuelRod differentiates itself in the global portable battery market with its patented mobile charging service and network of kiosks. The company's model allows for convenience and sustainability by enabling users to swap depleted or damaged FuelRods for fully charged units at various strategic locations. This service is particularly appealing in high-traffic areas such as airports, theme parks, college campuses, hospitals, and convention centers, where the need for on-the-go charging is significant.

The presence of over 500 SwapBox kiosks across 50 US airports and 30 theme parks underscores FuelRod's commitment to accessibility and user convenience. This widespread placement and significant partnerships within these venues showcases FuelRod's scalability and market reach. Additionally, the company's 11 patents provide a competitive edge by protecting its unique service offering and potentially hindering the entry of new competitors into the space.

While competitors like MobileQubes, Chargebar, ChargeFuz, and PowerPod also operate in the portable charging market, FuelRod's extensive kiosk network and the ability to instantly swap a depleted charger for a fully charged one are distinct services that set it apart. The company's profitability and over $52M in lifetime revenue indicate a strong market fit and customer adoption. Moreover, being backed by venture capital and having completed over 6 million swaps, FuelRod demonstrates a proven track record of success and customer satisfaction.

In conclusion, FuelRod's innovative approach to portable charging solutions, its strategic partnerships, extensive kiosk network, and intellectual property portfolio, position it favorably within a moderately competitive landscape. The low differentiation in quality and price compared to established solutions may present challenges. Still, the convenience factor and strategic placements of its kiosks provide a compelling value proposition for on-the-go consumers.

Next Section: Performance

Performance

With its innovative mobile charging service, FuelRod has demonstrated a strong market presence in the energy, power, and natural resources industries. The company has established a significant footprint with over 500 SwapBox kiosks across 50 US airports and 30 theme parks, including high-profile locations like Disneyland Park, Walt Disney Resort, and several major airports like San Diego and Oakland. These placements underscore FuelRod's scalability and reach within the global portable battery market.

Financially, FuelRod has shown robust performance with $15 million in annual revenue, reflecting a 10.9% growth rate. The company's ability to maintain profitability over two fiscal years, alongside its operational growth, speaks to the effectiveness of its business model and the appeal of its product offering. With over 6 million swaps completed and $52 million+ in lifetime revenue, FuelRod’s financial health is further evidenced by its cash reserves, which stood at $1.07 million at the end of 2022. FuelRod generated $15 million in revenues in the last 12 months, a small increase compared to its 2022 revenues.

The company's intellectual property portfolio, consisting of 11 patents, provides a competitive edge and enhances its valuation. FuelRod's strategic partnerships and customer base, including major names like Disneyland Park and several airports, have driven its growth and market penetration.

With a valuation of $48.01 million, FuelRod is positioned for further expansion. The company's ongoing crowdfunding campaign, with a target of up to $1.23 million, aims to fund research and development, sales and marketing, operations and infrastructure, and geographic expansion. This capital injection is expected to bolster FuelRod's growth trajectory and enhance its position in a moderately competitive landscape.

Next Section: Risk

Risk

FuelRod faces multiple risks that could affect its growth and market position as it seeks to expand its mobile charging service.

The company operates in a moderately competitive landscape with direct competitors like MobileQubes, Chargebar, ChargeFuz, and PowerPod. These competitors could pose a significant risk to FuelRod's market share, especially in highly sought-after locations such as airports and theme parks. Managing these partnerships and maintaining a presence in these prime locations is crucial for the company's success.

Furthermore, FuelRod's business model, which includes a network of kiosks for swapping depleted units for charged ones, requires substantial capital for manufacturing and maintaining kiosks and inventory. While the company has shown profitability and revenue growth, the need for a long time to scale production and sales can be a significant risk if the market evolves or if consumer preferences shift away from physical charging solutions to more advanced technologies.

The company's reliance on a transactional revenue model also presents a risk, as it depends on continuous consumer engagement and repeated transactions. Any negative consumer behavior or changes in market trends could directly impact FuelRod's revenue streams.

Lastly, while the company has patents that may offer some protection, the high barriers to entry in the energy space do not guarantee market dominance. FuelRod will need to continuously innovate and defend its intellectual property to maintain its position in the market.

Next Section: Bullish Outlook

Bullish Outlook

FuelRod's patented mobile charging service is poised to capitalize on the growing demand for on-the-go energy solutions in an increasingly connected world. With over $52 million in lifetime revenue, a 10.90% annual revenue growth rate, and current annual revenue of $15 million, FuelRod's financial health is robust, reflecting a proven business model that is already profitable. The net income of over $1.2 million for the most recent fiscal year-end underscores their ability to manage costs and scale operations effectively.

The company's strategic placement of kiosks in high-traffic areas like theme parks, airports, college campuses, hospitals, and convention centers illustrates its success in identifying and targeting pivotal market segments. These placements enhance the visibility of the FuelRod brand and ensure a steady stream of users, evidenced by the completion of over 6 million swaps to date.

With a valuation of $48.01 million and a revenue-to-valuation multiple of 3.2x, FuelRod has demonstrated significant scalability, bolstered by substantial partnerships that extend its reach and market penetration. The business model, combining B2B2C distribution, creates diversified revenue streams and a wider customer base. The company's 11 patents give it a competitive edge, protecting its unique technology and facilitating future innovations in the portable charging space.

Additionally, the global portable battery market presents a high growth potential for FuelRod as mobile device usage surges and the need for convenient charging solutions becomes more pronounced. FuelRod's successful raise of $2 million in prior rounds and venture capital support signal strong investor confidence in their growth trajectory and leadership, helmed by founders Chi Yau and Joe Yeagley.

Next Section: Bearish Outlook

Bearish Outlook

While the FuelRod boasts significant partnerships and placements, the portable battery market is rapidly evolving with frequent technological advancements. This may lead to a shorter lifecycle for FuelRod's products and require continuous R&D investment to stay relevant.

While FuelRod holds patents that could protect its technology, the company must keep innovating to fend off competition from established players like MobileQubes, Chargebar, ChargeFuz, and PowerPod. These competitors may have more resources to invest in R&D and marketing, enabling them to capture a larger market share. Furthermore, as the adoption of portable power solutions grows, new competitors may enter the market, increasing competitive pressures.

Investors must also consider the capital intensity of maintaining a network of kiosks, especially as FuelRod looks to expand geographically. While the capital intensity level is noted as low, expansion efforts could significantly increase costs. Should the company fail to manage these costs effectively, it could erode profitability and challenge the sustainability of its business model.

Lastly, with the adoption of wireless charging technology and advancements in built-in battery life for mobile devices, FuelRod's swap-and-go business model may face obsolescence risks in the long term.

Next Section: Executive Summary

Executive Summary

FuelRod, operated by Tricopian, Inc., has established itself as an innovative player in the portable battery market with its patented network of kiosks for mobile charging. FuelRod offers a convenient and reusable portable charging system deployed across a vast network of over 500 SwapBox kiosks in strategic venues such as theme parks, airports, college campuses, hospitals, and convention centers. The company has demonstrated its market reach and scalability with significant partnerships and placements in iconic destinations like Disneyland Park, San Diego Airport, and Walt Disney Resort.

The company has achieved a notable market presence with $52M+ in lifetime revenue, 11 patents, and over 6 million swaps completed, positioning itself well within the Global Portable Charger (Power Bank) Market. The industry is experiencing growth as the demand for portable charging solutions for smartphones and other electronic devices increases, driven by the rising use of these devices and the need for continuous power supply. Major players in the market are investing heavily in R&D to expand their product lines, indicating a high growth potential.

FuelRod is profitable, with an annual revenue growth of 10.90% between 2022 and 2023, to reach $15 million in the last 12 months,  and a net income of $1,257,984 in 2022. The company's business model has been validated by its ability to attract venture capital backing, although specific VC investors have not been disclosed. The company's crowdfunding campaign on StartEngine, with a pre-money valuation of $48.01 million, aims to raise funds for research and development, sales and marketing, operations and infrastructure, and geographic expansion.

While the market potential is high, FuelRod operates in a moderately competitive landscape with high barriers to entry. The company's proprietary technology and established network of kiosks provide a competitive edge, but it must continue to innovate and expand its reach to maintain and grow its market share. The use of proceeds from the current crowdfunding round is expected to support these efforts and drive further growth.

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FuelRod on StartEngine 2024
Platform: StartEngine
Security Type: Equity - Common
Valuation: $48,005,163
Price per Share: $3.26

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