So after we posted the item immediately below we realized we hadn’t even mentioned the target of ShareSleuth’s first article (and Cuban’s short selling)—Xethanol Corp. Here’s Chris Carey’s lead.
Xethanol Corp. bills itself as a biotechnology-driven ethanol company that can turn wood chips, corn stalks and paper sludge into cheap alternative fuel.
But a Sharesleuth.com investigation found no evidence that Xethanol has produced significant quantities of ethanol from those raw materials.
It’s not too surprising that there are scammers in the ethanol industry. As often pointed out by Tim Carney, the younger brother of DealBreaker editor John Carney and author of The Big Ripoff, the whole ethanol industry is something of a rip-off, profiting (when it does) from government mandates and subsidies. It sounds to us like this might have been part of the plan for Xethanol—to pump up its bottom line with government hand-outs. Chris Carey doesn’t focus on this angle but we’re assigning Tim to look into the matter further.
A further note: our neglecting to even mention the subject of ShareSleuth’s article in the intial piece may reflect poorly on our substantive focus. Or maybe it reflects the unusual structure of ShareSleuth—it’s easy to get distracted from the stories when you want to skip to the end to see how Mark Cuban made money on the story! We’re sure we’re not the only ones interested in how Mark Cuban is getting even wealthier!
So maybe this issue—distraction—is the major problem with ShareSleuth, rather than all those other high-sounding ideas like integrity and credibility.
Xethanol Corp. [Sharesleuth.com]