Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
9 Months Ended
Sep. 30, 2015
Accounting Policies [Abstract]  
Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

1.        Summary of Significant Accounting Policies




Aqua Metals, Inc. (the “Company”) was incorporated in Delaware on June 20, 2014 and commenced operations on June 20, 2014 (inception). On January 27, 2015, the Company formed two wholly-owned subsidiaries, Aqua Metals Reno, Inc. and Aqua Metals Operations, Inc. (“Subsidiaries”), both incorporated in Delaware. The Subsidiaries have had limited transactions to date and are included in the consolidated financial statements dated September 30, 2015. The Company has developed an innovative process for recycling lead acid batteries. The Company intends to manufacture the equipment it has developed, and will also operate lead acid battery recycling facilities. On July 31, 2015, the Company listed its common shares on the NASDAQ stock market. See Note 9, Stockholder’s Equity, for more detail on the initial public offering.


Use of estimates


The preparation of the consolidated financial statements requires management of the Company to make a number of estimates and assumptions relating to the reported amount of assets and liabilities and the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the consolidated financial statements, and the reported amounts of expenses during the period. Significant items subject to such estimates and assumptions include the carrying amount and valuation of long-lived assets, the valuation of conversion features of convertible debt, and the determination of the fair value of stock warrants issued. Actual results could differ from those estimates.


Basis of Presentation


The accompanying unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“U.S. GAAP”) for interim financial information and with the instructions to Article 10 of Regulation S-X. Accordingly, they do not include all of the information and footnotes required by such accounting principles for complete financial statements. In the opinion of management, all adjustments (which include normal recurring adjustments) considered necessary to present fairly each of the balance sheet as of September 30, 2015, the statements of operations for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2015 and for the three months ended September 30, 2014, and for the period from June 20, 2014 (inception) to September 30, 2014 and the statements of cash flows for the nine months ended September 30, 2015 and June 20, 2014 (inception) to September 30, 2014 as applicable have been made. The condensed consolidated balance sheet as of December 31, 2014 has been derived from our audited financial statements as of such date, but does not include all disclosures required by U.S. GAAP. The accompanying unaudited condensed consolidated financial statements should be read in conjunction with our audited consolidated financial statements for the period ended December 31, 2014, which are included on Form S-1 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on July 30, 2015.


The condensed consolidated financial statements include the accounts of our wholly-owned subsidiaries. All inter-company balances and transactions have been eliminated.


The results of operations for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2015 are not necessarily indicative of results that may be expected for the year ended December 31, 2015.


Cash and cash equivalents


The Company considers all highly liquid instruments with original or remaining maturities of 90 days or less at the date of purchase to be cash equivalents. The Company maintains its cash balances in large financial institutions. Periodically, such balances may be in excess of federally insured limits.


Inventory - raw materials


The Company values inventory using the First in First out method.



Property and equipment, net


Property and equipment are stated at cost net of accumulated depreciation. Depreciation on property and equipment is calculated on the straight-line basis over the estimated useful lives of the assets. Leasehold improvements are depreciated over the shorter of the life of the asset or the remaining term of the lease.


Intangible and other long-lived assets


The intangible asset consists of a patent application contributed to the Company by five founding stockholders. The useful life of the asset has been determined to be ten years and the asset is being amortized over the estimated ten year life. The Company periodically evaluates its intangible and other long-lived assets for indications that the carrying amount of an asset may not be recoverable. In reviewing for impairment, the Company compares the carrying value of such assets to the estimated undiscounted future cash flows expected from the use of the assets and their eventual disposition. When the estimated undiscounted future cash flows are less than their carrying amount, an impairment loss is recognized equal to the difference between the assets’ fair value and their carrying value. In addition to the recoverability assessment, the Company routinely reviews the remaining estimated lives of its long-lived assets. Any reduction in the useful life assumption will result in increased depreciation and amortization expense in the period when such determination is made, as well as in subsequent periods. The Company performed a qualitative assessment of the intangible assets as of September 30, 2015 and determined it was more likely than not that the fair exceeded the carry value, and therefore, no impairment was recorded. The Company determined that the estimated life of the intellectual property properly reflected the current remaining economic life of the asset.


Research and development


Research and development expenditures are expensed as incurred.


Income taxes


The Company accounts for income taxes in accordance with the liability method of accounting for income taxes. Under the liability method, deferred assets and liabilities are recognized based upon anticipated future tax consequences attributable to differences between financial statement carrying amounts of assets and liabilities and their respective tax bases. The provision for income taxes is comprised of the current tax liability and the changes in deferred tax assets and liabilities. The Company establishes a valuation allowance to the extent that it is more likely than not that deferred tax assets will not be recoverable against future taxable income.


The Company recognizes the effect of uncertain income tax positions only if those positions are more likely than not of being sustained. Recognized income tax positions are measured at the largest amount that is greater than 50% likely of being realized. Changes in recognition or measurement are reflected in the period in which the change in judgment occurs.


Convertible instruments


The Company accounts for hybrid contracts that feature conversion options in accordance with Accounting Standards Codification 815 “Derivative and Hedging Activities,” (“ASC 815”) and ASC 480 “Distinguishing Liabilities from Equity” (“ASC 480”), which require companies to bifurcate conversion options from their host instruments and account for them as free standing derivative financial instruments according to certain criteria. The criteria includes circumstances in which (i) the economic characteristics and risks of the embedded derivative instrument are not clearly and closely related to the economic characteristics and risks of the host contract, (ii) the hybrid instrument that embodies both the embedded derivative’s instrument and the host contract is not re-measured at fair value under otherwise applicable generally accepted accounting principles with changes in fair value reported in earnings as they occur and (iii) a separate instrument with the same terms as the embedded derivative instrument would be considered a derivative instrument. The Company accounts for convertible instruments which have been determined to be free standing derivative financial instruments (when the Company has determined that the embedded conversion options should be bifurcated from their host instruments) in accordance with ASC 815. Under ASC 815, a portion of the proceeds received upon the issuance of the hybrid contract are allocated to the fair value of the derivative. The derivative is subsequently marked to market each reporting date based on current fair value, with the changes in fair value reported in condensed consolidated statements of operations.


Fair value measurements


The carrying amounts of cash and cash equivalents, prepaid expenses, accounts payable and accrued expenses approximate fair value due to the short-term nature of these instruments.


Fair value is defined as an exit price, representing the amount that would be received upon the sale of an asset or payment to transfer a liability in an orderly transaction between market participants.


Fair value is a market-based measurement that is determined based on assumptions that market participants would use in pricing an asset or liability. A three-tier far value hierarchy is used to prioritize the inputs in measuring fair value as follows:


Level 1. Quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities.


Level 2. Quoted prices for similar assets and liabilities in active markets, quoted prices for identical or similar assets or liabilities in markets that are not active, or other inputs that are observable, either directly or indirectly.


Level 3. Significant unobservable inputs that cannot be corroborated by market data.


The asset or liability’s fair value measurement within the fair value hierarchy is based upon the lowest level of any input that is significant to the fair value measurement. The following table provides a summary of the liabilities that are measured at fair value on a recurring basis at December 31, 2014, consisting of certain Financing Warrants and the conversion feature of the Company’s Convertible Notes, both of which are more fully described in Note 6:


    Total     Level 1     Level 2     Level 3  
Derivative liabilities                                
Conversion feature   $ 1,108,955     $     $     $ 1,108,955  
Financing Warrants     275,827                   275,827  
Total   $ 1,384,782     $     $     $ 1,384,782  


On August 5, 2015 all outstanding Convertible Notes were converted into common shares of the Company. Also on August 5, 2015, the variable exercise price of the Financing Warrants was fixed. Accordingly, all derivative liabilities have been reclassified into equity. See Note 9 for details.



Stock-based compensation


The Company recognizes compensation expense for stock-based compensation in accordance with ASC Topic No. 718. For employee stock-based awards, the Company calculates the fair value of the award on the date of grant using the Black-Scholes-Merton method for stock options; the expense is recognized over the service period for awards to vest.


The estimation of stock-based awards that will ultimately vest requires judgement and to the extent actual results or updated estimates differ from the original estimates, such amounts are recorded as a cumulative adjustment in the period estimates are revised. The Company considers many factors when estimating expected forfeitures, including types of awards, employee class and historical experience.



Net loss per share


Basic earnings per share, which excludes dilution, is computed by dividing net loss available to common stockholders by the weighted average number of common shares outstanding for the period. Diluted earnings per share reflects the potential dilution of securities that could be exercised or converted into common shares, and is computed by dividing net loss available to common stockholders by the weighted average of common shares outstanding plus the dilutive potential common shares. Diluted earnings per share exclude the impact of convertible notes and warrants to purchase common stock, as the effect would be anti-dilutive. During a loss period, the assumed exercise of in-the-money stock warrants and other potentially diluted instruments has an anti-dilutive effect and, therefore, these instruments are excluded from the computation of dilutive earnings per share.


Potentially dilutive securities in the table below have been excluded from the computation of diluted net loss per share because the effect of their inclusion would have been anti-dilutive.


    For the Three Months
September 30,
    For the Nine
September 30,
    For the Period
June 20, 2014
September 30,
Consulting Warrants to purchase common stock     436,364       436,364        
Options to purchase common stock     596,253       376,040        
Financing, IPO and O-A Warrants to purchase common stock     712,977       384,504        
Total potential dilutive securities     1,745,594       1,196,908        


Recent accounting pronouncements


In April 2015, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) issued Accounting Standard Update (“ASU”) 2015-03, Simplifying the Presentation of Debt Issuance Costs. Debt issuance costs are specified incremental costs other than those paid to the lender that are directly attributable to issuing a debt (i.e., third party costs). Prior to the adoption of this standard, debt issuance costs were required to be presented in the balance sheet as a deferred charge (i.e., an asset). This presentation differed from the presentation for a debt discount, which is a direct adjustment to the carrying value of the debt (i.e., a contra liability). This new standard requires that all costs incurred to issue debt be presented in the balance sheet as a direct deduction from the carrying value of the debt. This new standard does not affect the recognition and measurement of debt issuance costs. ASU 2015-03 will be effective for us in the first quarter of fiscal 2016 with early adoption permitted. We do not expect the adoption of this accounting standard to have a material impact on our condensed consolidated financial statements.


In May, 2014 the FASB issued ASU 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers. The FASB issued 2014-09 to clarify the principles for recognizing revenue and to develop a common revenue standard for GAAP and International Financial Reporting Standards. The standard outlines a single comprehensive model for entities to use in accounting for revenue arising from contracts with customers and superseded the most current revenue recognition guidance. In July 2015 the FASB delayed the effective date of this standard by one year. This guidance is effective for fiscal years and interim periods within those years beginning after December 15, 2017, which is effective for us as of the first quarter of our fiscal year ending December 31, 2018. We are currently evaluating the impact that the implementation of this standard will have on our condensed consolidated financial statements.


There were no other recent accounting pronouncements or changes in accounting pronouncements during the nine months ended September 30, 2015 that are of significance or potential significance to the Company.