Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)


9 Months Ended
Sep. 30, 2020
Accounting Policies [Abstract]  



Description of Business


Global Clean Energy Holdings, Inc., a Delaware corporation, and its wholly owned subsidiaries (collectively, the “Company”, “we”, “us” or “our”) is a U.S.-based integrated agricultural-energy biofuels company that holds assets across feedstocks and plant genetics, agronomics, cultivation, and regulatory approvals, commercialization, and downstream biorefining and storage. The Company is focused on the development and refining of non-food based bio-feedstocks and has a proprietary investment in camelina sativa (“Camelina”), a fast growing, low input and ultra-low carbon intensity crop used as a feedstock for renewable fuels. The Company holds its Camelina assets (including all related intellectual property related rights and approvals) and operates its Camelina business through a subsidiary, Sustainable Oils Inc., a Delaware corporation.


In 2018 and 2019 the Company pursued the acquisition of a crude oil refinery in Bakersfield, California with the objective of retrofitting it to produce renewable diesel from Camelina and other non-food feedstocks. On May 7, 2020 the Company completed the acquisition of the targeted refinery (the “Bakersfield Biorefinery”). The retrofitting of the refinery is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2022. The Company has entered into a product offtake agreement with a major oil company for the majority of the renewable diesel to be produced at the Bakersfield Biorefinery. See Note B which describes the offtake agreement in more detail.


Basis of Presentation


The accompanying condensed and consolidated balance sheet of the Company at December 31, 2019, has been derived from audited condensed and consolidated financial statements, but does not include all disclosures required by accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“U.S. GAAP”). The accompanying unaudited condensed and consolidated financial statements as of September 30, 2020 and for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2020 and 2019, have been prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP for interim financial information and with the instructions to Form 10-Q and Article 8 of Regulation S-X. Accordingly, they do not include all of the information and footnotes required by U.S. GAAP for complete financial statements, and should be read in conjunction with the audited condensed and consolidated financial statements and related notes to the financial statements included in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2019 as filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). In the opinion of the Company’s management, all material adjustments (consisting of normal recurring adjustments) considered necessary for a fair presentation have been made to the unaudited condensed and consolidated financial statements. The unaudited condensed and consolidated financial statements include all material adjustments (consisting of all normal accruals) necessary to make the condensed and consolidated financial statements not misleading as required by Regulation S-X Rule 10-01. Operating results for the nine months ended September 30, 2020 are not necessarily indicative of the results that may be expected for the year ended December 31, 2020 or any future periods.


The accompanying condensed consolidated financial statements include the accounts of Global Clean Energy Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries. All intercompany accounts and transactions have been eliminated in consolidation.


Restricted Cash


In accordance with the Company’s senior credit agreement (see Note E - Debt), the Company is required to advance the calculated interest expense on its borrowings at the time of such borrowings to the estimated commercial operational date of the Bakersfield Biorefinery. This interest is deposited into a designated account and the appropriate amount is paid to the lender at the end of each quarter. Additionally, the construction funds are deposited into its own designated account and deposited from that designated account into the Bakersfield Renewable Fuel, LLC account only upon approval by the lender. These two accounts are restricted and not directly accessible by the Company for general use, although these funds are assets of the Company.


Property and Equipment


Property and equipment are stated at cost. Depreciation of office equipment is computed using the straight-line method over estimated useful lives of 3 to 5 years. Refinery assets and buildings are depreciated using the straight-line method over estimated useful lives of 10 to 25 years, however, the refinery will not begin to be depreciated until its retrofitting has been completed and it’s ready for operations. Normal maintenance and repair items are charged to operating costs and are expensed as incurred. The cost and accumulated depreciation of property and equipment sold or otherwise retired are removed from the accounts and gain or loss on disposition is reflected in the statement of operations. Interest on borrowings related to the retrofitting of the Bakersfield Biorefinery is being capitalized, which will continue until the refinery is available for use. During the nine months ended September 30, 2020, $5.5 million of interest has been capitalized, and is included in property and equipment, net on the accompanying September 30, 2020 balance sheet.


Long-Lived Assets


In accordance with U.S. GAAP for the impairment or disposal of long-lived assets, the carrying values of intangible assets and other long-lived assets are reviewed on a regular basis for the existence of facts or circumstances that may suggest impairment. The Company recognizes impairment when the aggregate of the expected undiscounted future cash flows is less than the carrying amount of the asset. Impairment losses, if any, are measured as the excess of the carrying amount of the asset over its estimated fair value.


Pre-Acquisition Costs


We began capitalizing pre-acquisition costs once we determined that the acquisition of the Bakersfield Biorefinery project was probable, which was in April of 2019 when the product offtake agreement was signed. We capitalized those costs directly identifiable with the specific property and those costs that would be capitalized if the property were already acquired. Upon the acquisition of the Bakersfield Biorefinery, these capitalized pre-acquisition costs, which totaled $3.2 million, were reclassified to property and equipment.


For the full year of 2019 and for the year 2020 up to and including the acquisition date of May 7, 2020, we capitalized $2.6 million and $0.6 million of these costs, respectively. As of May 7, 2020, we allocated our accumulated pre-acquisition costs of $3.2 million to the acquired Bakersfield Biorefinery. See Note C - Property and Equipment, included herein.


Debt Issuance Costs


During 2018, we signed a letter of intent to acquire our Bakersfield Refinery. The acquisition of the refinery and the related $365 million of financing to fund the retrofit closed in May 2020. In connection with financing the refinery, we incurred $0.5 million of debt issuance costs in 2019 and $4.2 million of debt issuance costs in the second quarter of 2020 related to acquisition of the Bakersfield Biorefinery. Debt issuance costs are amortized over the term of the loan as interest: however, as such interest relates to retrofitting of the refinery, these costs will be capitalized as part of the refinery until the refinery is placed in service. The amortization of the debt issuance costs that are not capitalized is recorded as interest expense. At December 31, 2019, certain unamortized debt issuance costs are presented on the balance sheet as deferred costs. However, upon the closing of the Bakersfield biorefinery acquisition and as of June 30, 2020, these costs are classified as a direct deduction from the carrying amount of the debt liability of the financing to the extent that we borrow on the credit agreements. See Note J in Subsequent Events for more detail on the financing.


Derecognition of Liabilities

The Company reviews its liabilities, including but not limited to, accounts payable, notes payable, accrued expenses, accrued liabilities and other legal obligations for a determination of the legal enforcement or settlement of these obligations. Upon conclusive evidence that an obligation may be extinguished, has expired, is discharged, is cancelled or otherwise no longer legally exists, then the Company will derecognize the respective liability on its balance sheet.

Asset Retirement Obligations

The Company recognizes liabilities which represent the fair value of a legal obligation to perform asset retirement activities, including those that are conditional on a future event, when the amount can be reasonably estimated. If a reasonable estimate cannot be made at the time the liability is incurred, we record the liability when sufficient information is available to estimate the liability’s fair value. We have asset retirement obligations with respect to our Bakersfield Biorefinery due to various legal obligations to clean and/or dispose of these assets at the time they are retired. However, the majority of these assets can be used for extended and indeterminate periods of time provided that they are properly maintained and/or upgraded. It is our practice and intent to continue to maintain these assets and make improvements based on technological advances. A portion of these obligations relate to the required cleanout of the pipeline and terminal tanks. In order to determine the fair value of the obligations management must make certain estimates and assumptions including, among other things, projected cash flows, a credit-adjusted risk-free rate and an assessment of market conditions that could significantly impact the estimated fair value of the asset retirement obligations. We believe the estimates selected, in each instance, represent our best estimate of future outcomes, but the actual outcomes could differ from the estimates selected. See Note I for environmental liabilities, which are accounted for separately from asset retirement obligations.

Advances to Contractors

Upon the acquisition of the Bakersfield Biorefinery, the Company advanced $20.1 million to its primary engineering, procurement and construction contractor. These funds are credited against future invoices in accordance with an agreed schedule. As of September 30, 2020, the funds advance has been reduced to $16.0 million.

Income Taxes


The Company utilizes the liability method of accounting for income taxes. Under the liability method, deferred tax assets and liabilities are determined based on differences between financial reporting and tax basis of assets and liabilities and the carryforward of operating losses and tax credits, and are measured using the enacted tax rates and laws that will be in effect when the differences are expected to reverse. A valuation allowance against deferred tax assets is recorded when it is more likely than not that such tax benefits will not be realized. Assets and liabilities are established for uncertain tax positions taken or positions expected to be taken in income tax returns when such positions are judged to not meet the “more-likely-than-not” threshold based on the technical merits of the positions. Estimated interest and penalties related to uncertain tax positions are included as a component of general and administrative expense.


Revenue Recognition


The Company recognizes revenue in accordance with ASC 606 using the following five-step model: (1) identify the contract with the customer, (2) identify the performance obligations in the contract, (3) determine the transaction price, (4) allocate the transaction price to the performance obligations in the contract, and (5) recognize revenue. The Company did not recognize any revenues during the quarters ended September 30, 2020 and 2019. Based upon the Company’s Product Offtake Agreement (see Note B), the Company expects to recognize revenue from the sale of biofuel beginning in 2022.


Research and Development


Research and development costs are charged to operating expenses when incurred.


Fair Value Measurements and Fair Value of Financial Instruments


As of September 30, 2020 and December 31, 2019, the carrying amounts of the Company’s financial instruments that are not reported at fair value in the accompanying consolidated balance sheets, including cash and cash equivalents, accounts receivable, accounts payable, and accrued liabilities approximate their fair value due to their short-term nature. The Company’s derivative liability related to its derivative forward contract is reported at fair value.


U.S. GAAP specifies a hierarchy of valuation techniques based on whether the inputs to those valuation techniques are observable or unobservable. Observable inputs reflect market data obtained from independent sources, while unobservable inputs reflect the Company's market assumptions. These two types of inputs have created the following fair-value hierarchy:


Level 1— Quoted prices for identical instruments in active markets;


Level 2— Quoted prices for similar instruments in active markets, quoted prices for identical or similar instruments in markets that are not active, and model-derived valuations in which all significant inputs and significant value drivers are observable in active markets; and


Level 3— Valuations derived from valuation techniques in which one or more significant inputs or significant value drivers are unobservable.


At December 31, 2019, the Company had a derivative liability of $24.8 million related to a forward contract that also included a call option. The notional amount of the forward contract related to gallons of the commodity, Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel. Under the terms of the contract the Company was obligated to pay the equivalent of the notional amount multiplied by the market price of Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel at the settlement dates; however, the call option of the contract capped the market price of Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel.


In March of 2020 the Company settled the derivative contract by agreeing to a payment of $5.5 million due on April 30, 2020 and six equal payments beginning in October of 2021 totaling $17.6 million. The Company recognized $5.5 million of income from the decrease in fair value on the derivative contract from January 1, 2020 through March 19, 2020, and also recognized a gain of $512,000 on the derecognition of the derivative contract. The derivative forward contract was amended again in April 2020. Under the amendment, the contract was replaced with a fixed payment obligation, whereby the Company agreed to pay the counterparty a total of $24.8 million, which included a payment of $4.5 million that the Company paid in June 2020, and six equal installment payments beginning in 2022 totaling $20.3 million.


The fair value of the derivative forward contract is primarily based upon the notional amount and the forward strip market prices of Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel, and is reduced by the fair value of the call option. The forward strip market prices are observable. However, to determine the fair value of the call option, Company used the Black’s 76 option pricing model. As a result, the contract as a whole is included in the Level 3 of the fair value hierarchy.


The derivative liability discussed herein was derecognized in the first quarter of 2020, and the Company had no derivative liabilities in the second or third quarters ending June 30, 2020 and September 30, 2020, respectively. The following presents changes in the derivative liability through September 30, 2020:


    Nine Months Ended   Nine Months Ended
    September 30, 2020   September 30, 2019
Beginning Balance   $ 24,767,000     $ 11,917,000  
Conversion to note payable     (19,291,000 )        
Change in fair value recognized in earnings     (5,476,000 )     2,213,000  
 Ending Balance   $ —       $ 14,130,000  




Management uses estimates and assumptions in preparing financial statements. Those estimates and assumptions affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities, the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities, and reported revenues and expenses. Significant estimates used in preparing these financial statements include a) valuation of common stock, warrants, and stock options, b) those assumed in determining the value of the derivative transactions, c) estimated useful lives of equipment and intangible assets, d) the estimated costs to remediate or clean-up the refinery site, and the inflation rate, discount rate and timing of payments to calculate the asset retirement obligations and environmental liabilities, and e) the allocation of the acquisition price of the Bakersfield Biorefinery to the various assets acquired. It is at least reasonably possible that the significant estimates used will change within the next year.


Income/Loss per Common Share


Income/Loss per share amounts are computed by dividing income or loss applicable to the common stockholders of the Company by the weighted-average number of common shares outstanding during each period. Diluted income or loss per share amounts are computed assuming the issuance of common stock for potentially dilutive common stock equivalents. The number of dilutive warrants and options is computed using the treasury stock method, whereby the dilutive effect is reduced by the number of treasury shares the Company could purchase with the proceeds from exercises of warrants and options.


The following table presents: 1) instruments that were dilutive for the quarter ended September 30, 2019 were included in the diluted earnings per share, and 2) instruments that were anti-dilutive for the quarter ended September 30, 2020 and the nine months ended September 30, 2020 and 2019 were excluded from diluted earnings per share as they would have been antidilutive:


    Three Months Ended September 30, 2020   Three Months Ended September 30, 2019   Nine Months Ended September 30, 2020   Nine Months Ended September 30, 2019
Convertible notes and accrued interest     102,141,642       97,510,202       102,141,642       97,510,202  
Convertible preferred stock - Series B     11,818,181       11,818,181       11,818,181       11,818,181  
Compensation-based stock options and warrants     193,177,143       193,177,143       193,177,143       196,027,315  


Stock Based Compensation


The Company recognizes compensation expenses for stock-based awards expected to vest on a straight-line basis over the requisite service period of the award based on their grant date fair value. However, in the case of awards with accelerated vesting, the amount of compensation expense recognized at any date will be based upon the portion of the award that is vested at that date. The Company estimates the fair value of stock options using a Black-Scholes option pricing model which requires management to make estimates for certain assumptions regarding risk-free interest rate, expected life of options, expected volatility of stock and expected dividend yield of stock.


Subsequent Events


The Company has evaluated subsequent events through the date these condensed consolidated financial statements were available to be issued. See Note J to these condensed consolidated financial statements for a description of events occurring subsequent to September 30, 2020.