The traditional perspective of the entrepreneur is a decidedly anti-environmental one. Doing something for the environment inevitably means hurting the bottom line for businesses. However, it doesn’t have to be one or the other. There’s plenty of ways to help the planet and make plenty of cash in the process, especially as industries around the world start looking for greener, more-efficient ways to operate.
Now, a savvy investor has any number of ways directing their capital that will benefit companies focused on environmentally responsible products without sacrificing any of the big returns they’re hoping for. And the Small-Cap Stars from Equities.com is no stranger to green companies with big returns. Our fundamental analysis of small-cap companies provides a clear methodology for identifying those stocks that are positioned to succeed based on an examination of other successful firms in their industry. And, so far, these companies have provided returns in excess of 35 percent in 2013.
So here’s a look at three small-cap industrial goods companies that are building products that help businesses operate in a more environmentally-friendly fashion.
CECO Environmental Corporation (CECE)
Market cap: $402.373 million
YTD return: 63.53 percent
CECO is a producer of air pollution control technology, producing products that reduce and eliminate toxic emissions from industrial processes. The company was already having a solid year through the first three quarters, up almost 35 percent. However, it kicked into another gear into another gear in October after a solid Q3 earnings report, and it’s up almost 20 percent just since the start of September.
US Ecology, Inc. (ECOL)
Market cap: $697.454 million
YTD return: 56.51 percent
US Ecology is in the business of cleaning things up. Through its subsidiaries, they provide hazardous, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB), radioactive, and non-hazardous industrial waste management and recycling services for a variety of commercial and government entities that can include medical and academic institutions, electric utilities, refineries and chemical production facilities, manufacturers, and steel mills. The company saw a more-than 13 percent spike on October 29 after releasing a major earnings beat.
Fuel Tech, Inc. (FTEK)
Market cap: $135.629 million
YTD return: 34.46 percent
Fuel Tech provides air pollution reduction and boiler optimization solutions for industrial and utility companies, operating in the Air Pollution Control (APC) segment and Fuel Chem technology segment. Their fuel chem technology improves the efficiency and reliability by controlling slagging, fouling, and corrosion through the addition of chemicals to fuel. Their APC segment reduces the emission of mono-nitrogen oxide emissions in flue gas from incinerators, boilers, furnaces, and other stationary combustion units. It was the APC unit's major impovement that helped the company produce the excellent Q3 earnings that sparked an 18 percent gain on November 12.