Revenues at Ottawa clean-tech firm Clearford fall 15% in Q3

Toronto subsidiary remains a bright spot as Ottawa firm continues to tout turnaround plan


Ottawa clean-tech firm Clearford Water Systems (TSX-V:CLI) recorded leaner financial results in its third quarter, posting lower revenues, expenses and a smaller loss on Thursday.

As in its previous quarter, Clearford – which designs and sells sewage treatment and water purification systems – said the declining revenues can be traced back to the winding down of payments from a now-completed project in Colombia.

The local firm said its third-quarter revenues fell 15 per cent year-over-year to $910,697. However, lower expenses – including a decline in sales and marketing outlays, as well as a reduction in salaries, consulting fees and international travel costs – meant the company recorded a net loss of $1.11 million in the three months ended Sept. 30, an improvement on the loss of $1.42 million during the same period a year earlier.

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Nearly 95 per cent of Clearford’s third-quarter revenue came from its Toronto-based UV Pure subsidiary, in which the Ottawa company owns a 90.8 per cent stake. UV Pure, which develops ultraviolet systems to purify potable water, grey water and wastewater, actually recorded higher revenues and gross margins in the third quarter.

The next generation of UV Pure systems is scheduled to start shipping early in the new year, which Clearford president and CEO Kevin Loiselle predicted will lead to market share gains.

Turnaround plan

Clearford currently has 17 full-time Ottawa employees. The company has incurred “significant” losses since its debut on the TSX Venture exchange in the early 2000s and has yet to post a profit. This means it’s reliant on equity and debt financing to fund operations.

In June, Clearford released a turnaround plan that includes ending its reliance on subcontractors by acquiring companies capable of bringing its wastewater treatment operations and services in-house.

In a statement Thursday, Mr. Loiselle said the firm’s focus remains on executing this new business plan.

“The company continues to work towards adding the necessary pieces it requires to execute on its strategy to become a full water and wastewater service provider,” Mr. Loiselle said.

Clearford’s stock price remained unchanged at 13 cents per share on Thursday.

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