Caldwell Investments PLC
27 July 2007
RELEASED ON BEHALF OF:
VIRIDAS PLC (FORMERLY CALDWELL INVESTMENTS PLC) (AIM: CDW)
27 JULY, 2007
VIRIDAS PLC OUTLINES ITS PLANS
AT AGM FOR BIODIESEL CROPS
• Fertile Sites Selected In Brazil For Mechanical Planting
Of First 200,000 Trees
• Planned Target of 100,000,000 Trees Over Seven-Year
• Interim Placing Raises £450,000 Before Major Financing In
Announcing completion at the AGM today of an interim placing of shares at 12.5p
to raise £450,000, Mr. Stanley Wootliff, chairman of Caldwell Investments - now
to be known as VIRIDAS PLC - said the money would be used to create Viridas
Brasil Agronegocios Ltda. and the planting of 200,000 jatropha trees as an early
commitment to starting a biodiesel project in Brazil. He introduced the new
chief executive officer Mr. Fernando Lunardini, 37, a former McKinsey associate
partner, who joined the company last month.
Mr. Lunardini told shareholders: 'We have now put in place a team of experts for
our much bigger transformational plan which, subject to funding, would aim at
planting 100,000,000 jatropha trees on 35sq kms of land within the next seven
years. Part of today's placement will be used for completion of options over
further prime land identified. A major fund raising is planned for the autumn
He added that the company would be unique in being in charge of every aspect of
production from developing the most productive variety of jatropha oilseed and
plant, choosing the most fertile sites, to managing the planting, the picking
and crushing operation.
'It will also be one of the pioneers of mechanical planting of jatropha from
seed. Our small trial carried out in January of germinating 1,000 jatropha
trees was very successful and confirmed fertile conditions such as to allow us
to sow the seed mechanically rather than planting saplings - giving substantial
'Our policy is to go for fertile and flat land suitable for machine planting.
Better land and better irrigation gives better oil yields' he said.
'Positive interest has been received from potential investors and customers in
Europe, Brazil and America where keenness to participate had been expressed.
'We are now looking at this project with ever increasing confidence following
the encouragement from all parties with whom we have had discussions.'
All resolutions before the annual general meeting were passed.
NOTE TO EDITORS
Jatropha, which is grown for its seed oil, has a higher yield per hectare than
corn and soya and with the gradual build up of oil sand production in North
America is seen as contributing to the security of energy supply. BP said
recently it regarded jatropha as a key feedstock. Anticipated regulatory led
demand for biodiesel generally is put at approximately 11m tonnes a year from
The jatropha tree itself starts to give a yield of oilseed after one year and
reaches maturity after four years. It is robust and hardy and has a lifespan
of 30-50 years
PHOTOGRAPHS OF NEW CEO AND CHAIRMAN AVAILABLE FROM COLPR
STANLEY WOOTLIFF, Executive Chairman, Viridas Plc , 0113 2350632
JOHN GREENHALGH/RON MARSHMAN, City of London PR Limited, 020 7628 5518
http://www.caldwellinvestmentsplc.com/ Caldwell Share Price
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