At 1:58PM today, the following article, ran under the guise of being an “Exclusive” and sourced with material that has been in the public domain for two entire years, made its rounds on social media. The title was like a dream come true for Energous shareholders who have been desperately holding onto the Apple partnership narrative despite wireless charging and Energous being conspicuously absent from Apple’s most recent iPhone reveal:
The article then goes on a lengthy diatribe devoid of direct evidence, citing an analyst and what appears to be a little known esoteric portion of a prospectus that VentureBeat touts as hidden language. The article suggests that the whole world has missed a line that’s been in a prospectus for over two years – a line that claims WATT’s products are “expected” to “undergo Apple compliance testing”.
The article then takes a giant leap of faith – again, devoid of evidence – and assumes that Apple compliance testing means that the product has been tested by Apple. The prospectus says nothing of the sort. Of course, what it really means is that the product is being made to some type of in-house Apple compliance standards that WATT may have gotten a hold of. Or, perhaps, they are just making it up. Who knows?
The only thing for sure is that it in no way means what VentureBeat alleges it to mean. Try not to read the following within 30 minutes of eating a meal:
The conclusion here is obvious: the article’s title is 100% incorrect when it claims that this is proof of Energous having a partnership with Apple.
But it didn’t matter, because after the headline was released Energous shares had already spiked upwards of 7%. Can you see where the article was released at 1:58PM?
Then, the bilge was picked up as fact by other outlets, like 9to5 Mac.
First, I took to Twitter at 2:24PM to debunk the article in its entirety, sending a tweet to its author and asking him to take it down. He did not.
Then, my friend Keubiko discovered that only Energous seems to use the term “Apple Compliance Testing”. Is it made up?
Then, the analyst cited in the article, Lou Basenese, also stated on Twitter that this line in the prospectus does not guarantee a partnership.
Here’s Lou in the article:
Here’s him confirming the Apple compliance language has been in the company’s filings forever and that isn’t indicative of a deal being done, despite his bullish view on the company:
The article was still not taken down after this.
Finally, hours later Energous themselves responded to the author of the article debunking the entire article with the following statement:
“Not indicative of specific partners”. Still, the article remains up as of 7:55PM EST.
The entire premise of the article has been proven to be false.
Not only that, this in no way constitutes an “exclusive” and was based on publicly available information that has been in SEC filings for 2 years. I think that the author of this VentureBeat article has gotten played in a big way and if I were him, I would question the sources that gave me this information. I would probably also be interested in their trading records.
The fact of the matter is that Energous’ product has an incredibly large uphill battle in front of it and if you want to read about why the product could very likely be worth close to nothing, you should read Keubiko’s in-depth analysis from 2014. The analysis is still extremely pertinent and offers the company the scrutiny that it truly deserves.