BPH Energy continues to make progress on multiple fronts: gas, medical and hydrogen

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By Colin Hay - 
BPH Energy ASX gas medical hydrogen 2023

BPH Energy (ASX: BPH) has continued to display its vast diversity with a successful September quarter where it advanced developments with its investments in biotechnology and resources.

The company is commercialising a portfolio of Australian biomedical technologies emerging from collaborative research by leading universities, medical institutes and hospitals, has investments in a clean hydrogen specialist business and a 36% stake in unlisted oil and gas exploration company Advent Energy.

In releasing its September quarterly, BPH highlighted the differences it can make with its proposed technology and energy developments.

Growing interest in clean hydrogen technologies

During the quarter BPH expanded its interest in US-headquartered hydrogen technology company Clean Hydrogen Technologies Corporation.

In August the company lifted its stake in the green energy fuel developer with a further approximately $390,000 investment to take its holdings in the US company to 17.5%.

The company and its 36.1% (direct interest) investee company Advent Energy initially entered into a binding term sheet with Clean Hydrogen under which the purchasers agreed to subscribe for 10% of the total issued share capital of the New York-headquartered energy business.

In April 2023 the purchasers were granted the right to acquire an additional 10%.

The purchasers have made approximately $780,000 in payments after requests from Clean Hydrogen with unsecured loan agreements in March and April.

The April loan agreement provided for the processing of a further unsecured loan of approximately $780,000 to be made to the borrower.

A further amount of around $390,000 has now been advanced to Clean Hydrogen to enable BPH and Advent to move to a 17.5% interest in Clean Hydrogen under a term sheet agreement.

Clean Hydrogen is using its investments to design, build, produce and test a reactor that can produce a minimum of 3.2kgs and as high as 15kgs of hydrogen per hour and to submit at least 2 new patents in an agreed geography, relevant to the production of hydrogen from proprietary technology.

Capital raising success

In early September the company received binding commitments to raise $1.9 million to help fund its various development activities.

The company reported that it intended to use the funds for further investment in Clean Hydrogen technology ($0.2 million); funding for exploration and development of oil and gas investments ($1.5 million); and support of its Cortical Dynamics investee firm ($0.1 million).

Everblu Capital Corporate and 62 Capital Limited acted as joint lead managers for the placement.

Advancing hydrocarbon developments

The new funding is helping support BPH’s investee firm Advent Energy progress work at its oil and gas projects across Australia.

On the east coast, Advent Energy, where BPH holds a 35.8% direct interest, is collaborating with its PEP-11 licence joint venture partner, Bounty Oil and Gas (ASX: BUY).

The holder of an 85% interest in PEP-11, Advent Energy has welcomed the recent gazettal of the area around the permit as an official offshore wind energy development location.

The JV is also progressing applications for the variation and suspension of oil and gas exploration work program conditions and related extension of the PEP-11 licence.

The JV is also investigating the availability to contract a mobile offshore drilling unit to drill the proposed Seablue-1 well on the Baleen prospect in the permit.

Discussions have commenced with drilling contractors and other operators who have recently contracted rigs for work in the Australian offshore beginning in the first half of 2024.

Located near the energy hungry Sydney market, PEP-11 is considered one of the largest undeveloped oil and gas prospects in the east coast.

Cortical Dynamics

BPH also has an investment interest in Australian-based medical device neurotechnology company Cortical Dynamics.

Cortical continues to progress its industry leading electrical activity brain function monitor Brain Anaesthesia Response Monitor (BARM) technology.

BARM is being developed to better detect the effect of anaesthetic agents on brain activity under a general operation, aiding anaesthetists in keeping patients optimally anaesthetised, and complemented by CORDYAN (cortical dynamics analytics), a proprietary deep learning system/App focusing on anaesthesiology.

In September Cortical achieved a key milestone when it secured US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance for a BARM system. FDA approval is a necessary precursor for sales of BARM to commence in the US.

The BARM “plug and play” version 1 was also approved as compatible by Philips with its IntelliView operating room monitors earlier this year.

Cortical is working on an enhanced version of BARM with its partner AIT (the Austrian Institute of Technology) based in Vienna which will include upgrades to the software, hardware and firmware.