Ocean Power Technologies, Inc. (OPTT)

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Ocean Power Technologies, Inc. (OPTT)

F4Q09 Earnings Call

July 14, 2009 10:00 am ET


Mark R. Draper – Chief Executive Officer

Charles F. Dunleavy – Chief Financial Officer



Good day everyone and welcome to Ocean Power Technologies fiscal year 2009 audio webcast. Today's conference is being recorded and webcast. At this time for opening remarks I would like to turn the call over to the Chief Financial Officer of Ocean Power Technologies, Mr. Charles Dunleavy.

Charles F. Dunleavy

Good morning and welcome to Ocean Power Technologies audio Web cast for the fiscal year ended April 30, 2009. Today we issued our year-end earnings press release and we will be filing our annual report on Form 10-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission today. Our public filings can be viewed on the SEC Web site at sec.gov or you may go to our Web site, oceanpowertechnologies.com. I will be joined on today's webcast by Mark Draper, our Chief Executive Officer.

During the course of this conference call management may make projections or other forward-looking statements regarding future events or financial performance of the company within the meaning of the Safe Harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. As indicated in the slide, these forward-looking statements are subject to numerous assumptions made by management regarding future circumstances over which the company may have little or no control, and involve risks and uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from any future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. We refer you to the company's Form 10-K and other recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a description of these and other risk factors.

I'll now turn the call over the Mark Draper, our Chief Executive Officer.

Mark R. Draper

Thanks to everyone who has joined us today for the Web cast. Fiscal year 2009 has been a pivotal year for OPT. We saw strengthening of our leadership team. In addition, we made significant progress in the development of the PB150 PowerBuoy and also achieved major milestones on a number of key projects, including the deployment of several PowerBuoys. Our contract order backlog increased over the prior year. We advanced our relationships with existing partners and established new relationships in our global market.

I would now like to discuss some of these operational successes.

This year has seen of our leadership team with several key senior appointments. Effective February 1, 2009, I was appointed Chief Executive Officer of OPT in succession to Dr. George Taylor. Dr. Taylor will continue as executive chairman, providing OPT with strategic guidance and focus on business development opportunities.

Seymour Preston, previously OPT’s Chairman and Non-Executive Director, was appointed Vice Chairman of the company and Lead Independent Director. In this capacity he will preside at all meetings of the board of directors and the stockholders.

Other key appointments included key appointments included Dr. Philip Hart, who is recognized internationally for his expertise in marine technology, as our Chief Technology Officer. I will discuss Phil's background later.

Victor Chatigny was appointed Non-Executive Director. Victor served over many years in a senior managing capacity at Measurement Specialties, Inc., a publicly-held company specializing in the design and manufacture of advanced technology-based sensors.

In June 2009, Angus Norman was appointed Chief Executive of our wholly-owned wick, England. Angus joined us from EDF Energy where he held the position of Managing Director of Sustainable Solutions and brings more than a decade of leadership experience in the energy and renewable energy generation sector.

For my part, I had held the position of Chief Operating Officer of OPT since June 2007, as well as Chief Executive and Director of OPT, Ltd., our European subsidiary, since September 2004. During this time I have been closely involved in the development of our PB150 PowerBuoy and in expanding operations in Europe and North America.

Prior to joining OPT I undertook a broad range of senior managerial and engineering roles at Powergen PLC, a major UK energy utility, including responsibility for nine major power stations, a combined heat and power business, the technology division and the company’s renewable energy business, where I played a key role in establishing and managing the growth of Powergen's renewable generation activities, including on-shore and off-shore wind farms.

In addition, we have strengthened our technical capability through the hiring of qualified personnel in the manufacturing, deployment, and engineering functions. As of April 30, 2009, OPT had 57 employees, an increase of 10 over the year.

OPT is delighted to welcome our new team members, who bring with them a wealth of expertise garnered from diverse experience in the ocean industry, engineering, and energy and renewable power generation, which will prove invaluable as the company moves to the next stage of growth.

The strengthening of the company can be seen in the business development successes that were achieved over the year. We strengthened our relationship with existing partners, in particular the U.S. Navy and Lockheed Martin, and established strong foundations with new ones, such as with Leighton Contractors and Griffin Energy in Australia.

We received several awards of additional funding, including the receipt of $2.0 million from the U.S. Department of Energy in support of our wave power project in Reedsport, Oregon, which is the first award for the building of ocean wave energy systems by the DOE.

Our contract order backlog as of April 30, 2009, increased to $7.5 million compared with $5.5 million at the end of fiscal year 2008.

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