Shares of hydrogen fuel cell company Ballard Power Systems Inc. (BLDP -1.10%) jumped as much as 21.3% in trading Monday after the company released high-level fourth quarter guidance and responded to a short-seller's report last week. Shares were pretty stable throughout the day and were 18.4% higher as of 12:45 p.m. EST.
Management said that fiscal 2017 revenue will be about $120 million, adjusted EBITDA would be positive, and cash on hand would be around $60 million. To put those numbers into perspective, analysts were expecting $112.6 million in revenue and a loss of $0.04 per share on an adjusted basis (no EBITDA estimate is given).
Ballard also responded to short-seller Spruce Point Capital Management's assertion that its Chinese operations were smaller than management was letting on. They said a joint venture in China has produced 1,145 fuel cell stacks since September and 558 in December, while fuel cell bus demonstration lines in China have traveled 240,000 kilometers to date.
Shares are nearly back to where they were in the middle of last week, which is to say management's response stopped the bleeding from the short-seller's report. But Ballard needs to do more than be breakeven on an EBITDA level to be a great investment long-term. The company has to prove that joint ventures will generate revenue and cash flow long-term, which is what will keep me out of the stock today.