Who Is the Best MicroCap CEO of 2012?

Ian Cassel Blog, Question & Answer 10 Comments

Investing successfully in the microcap space is all about betting on the right jockey. I don’t care how great a product/service or the asset a company has in the ground, the truth is the CEO has to monetize it.  I’ve seen a lot of great products and projects fail because the wrong decisions were made. Not only does a CEO need to make the right business decisions, he/she has to make those decisions while keeping shareholders in mind. Last month I wrote a piece called, 8 Habits Of Highly Effective MicroCap CEO’s. Looking back at several companies we’ve been following on MicroCapClub I have a few CEO’s in mind that have excelled in 2012. As much as I would love to say it’s not all about stock performance, when great CEO’s execute they create significant shareholder returns.

In the comments section below please share who you believe is the best microcap CEO of 2012 and why. 

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About the MicroCap Expert Author

Ian Cassel

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Ian is a full-time microcap investor and founder of MicroCapClub, the MicroCap Leadership Summit, and co-founder of the Intelligent Fanatics Project. Ian started investing as a teenager and learned from losing his money over and over again. Today he is a full-time private investor that supports himself and his family by investing in microcaps. Microcap companies are the smallest public companies that exist, representing 48% of all public companies in North America. Berkshire Hathaway, Wal-Mart, Amgen, Netflix, and many others started as small microcap companies. Ian’s belief is the key to outsized returns is finding great companies early because all great companies started as small companies.

Comments 10

  1. Post
    Author

    Ben Cowart CEO of Vertex Energy (VTNR): After months and months of investors questioning waiting and questioning a potential Vertex Holdings acqusition, Ben got the deal closed and on very favorable terms to shareholders. Institutions are now starting to find the company given the combined earnings power should be 50c+ for FY 2013. The stock is up 150% since August 2012.

  2. I can’t say that it’s easy to arrive at a CEO among the companies I follow. I’ll go with Thomas Braun of Verisante(VRS.V or VRSEF). Braun has steered through 2012 by accomplishing almost all of what he aimed to accomplish, albeit pushing the commercialization of the company’s flagship product into January of 2013. Still though, the company has kept their burn very low, they’ve won numerous awards, have renewed old agreements and initiated new ones, and Braun is the reason for it. While the company has yet to be recognized for their product or what they have achieved prior to commercialization, I think that this technology wouldn’t be anywhere near the marketplace were it not for Thomas Braun’s work.

    I could have gone with the CEO of a company who’s stock went up 100% but as with any good microcap, there’s a lot of groundwork that needs to be put in place for a company to be successful and I think Braun has done that to a very good extent.

  3. Post
    Author

    I’ll throw John Saunders of Where Food Comes From (WFCF) into the ring too because of his execution and he is one of the only CEO’s that I talk to regularly that has never lied to me or even come close to blowing smoke up my backside.

  4. Ian you beat me to the punch. My #1 selection is Ben from VTNR. He has done everything that he said he was going to do. It’s great to see h execute and finally start to see the stock getting noticed.

    I’ll go with Clark Hickock from AXST. He is the definition of the type of guy you want behind the wheel. He was promoted to CEO in March of 2008 while the company was forced to deliver shareholders a significant turnaround or they probably wouldn’t still be doing business. He didn’t dilute a single share during the toughest times. At the end of 2010 he had about 100k in the bank. At the end of 2011 he had 1 million with a strong backlog. He is launching new products this year and continuing to clean up the balance sheet. Look at the chart….one of the prettiest I’ve ever seen. Fortunately I was able to meet with him and the CFO Pat Gray when I was at LD micro earlier this month. I’m confident they are doing all the right things.

  5. Bob Watson of Streamline Health Solutions. He turned an IT company that was living in a closed ecosphere around. He opened up the company systems to work with other key health care IT systems. He completed some niche acquisitions to add new open ended product lines. And now he has a wide open field to grow into.

  6. Microcap Club Members,
    Any CEO that steered its company through the economic and financial and political shoals of the past few years probably deserves a gold star, but three that come to mind as especially energetic and inventive are Joe Flynn of Auxilio, Warren Kruger of Graystone Logistics and
    Franklin Crail of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory.
    John Gay

  7. Three names:

    1. Clark Hickock / Patrick Gray (AXST)

    2. Bryan Martin (CEO of EGHT)

    All of these men had a game plan to execute, worked hard, and accomplished what they set out to do.

    The stock prices also appreciated in value.

    For full disclosure purposes, we own shares.

    Sincerely,

    Chris Lahiji

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