History and Development of the Company
Tantech Bamboo was established in October 2002 under the trading name “Lishui Zhonglin High Tech Co., Ltd.” by its incumbent owner. Following the establishment of the Forasen Green Energy Group, later renamed Forasen Group Ltd. (“Forasen Group”), in May 2003, 60% of THL’s shares were acquired by the Forasen Group. A second subsidiary, Tantech Charcoal, was acquired in September 2006 to manage the Forasen Group’s export business. In September 2008 a third subsidiary, Tantech Energy, was established to research and develop bamboo charcoals application as a carbon component for EDLCs. On December 14, 2017, the Company entered into a sale agreement and related agreements to transfer its EDLC carbon business (including intellectual property rights and equipment) to Zhejiang Apeikesi Energy Co., Ltd. (the “Buyer”), a PRC start-up company controlled by Dr. Zaihua Chen, the Company’s then Chief Technology Officer (the “CTO”). Following the renaming of the Forasen Group to its current name, 95% of Tantech Bamboo’s shares were acquired by USCNHK, a Hong Kong registered company, in December 2010. In May and December 2016, Tantech Holdings (Lishui) Co., Ltd., formerly Zhejiang Tantech Bamboo Technology Co., Ltd., a USCNHK’s wholly owned subsidiary, acquired 100% of Tantech Bamboo’s shares from USCNHK and five individuals.
Below is a brief timeline of key dates in our Company’s history since its formation.
1. September 2001: Tantech Charcoal is established.
2. October 2002: Tantech Bamboo is established as “Lishui Zhonglin High Tech Co., Ltd.” with registered capital of RMB 3.15 million.
3. April 2003: Lishui Forasen Green Industry Group (the former name of Forasen Group Ltd (“Forasen Group”)) was established.
May 2003: Forasen Group acquires 60% of Tantech Bamboo.
4. December 2005: (1) Tantech Bamboo reorganizes its structure (a) from a limited company to a shareholder company and (b) to increase registered capital to RMB 21 million, resulting in a decrease of Forasen Group’s interest to 41.24%; (2) Tantech Bamboo is renamed “Zhejiang Tantech Bamboo Technology Co., Ltd.”; (3) Zhengyu Wang becomes legal representative of Tantech Bamboo.
5. September 2006: Tantech Bamboo acquires Tantech Charcoal by transferring shares from Forasen Group and natural shareholders to Tantech Bamboo. As a subsidiary, Tantech Charcoal’s business scope is exporting Forasen Group’s products to a multitude of countries worldwide.
6. September 2007: Forasen Group’s interest in Tantech Bamboo increases to 44.25%.
7. January 2008: Tantech Bamboo increases its registered capital to RMB 27 million, decreasing Forasen Group’s interest to 34.41%.
8. July 2008 through April 2009: Several shareholders of Tantech Bamboo transfer their interests to Forasen Group, increasing its interest in Tantech Bamboo to 51.45%.
9. July 2008 through April 2009: Several shareholders of Tantech Bamboo transfer their interests to Forasen Group, increasing its interest in Tantech Bamboo to 51.45%.
10. September 2008: Tantech Energy is established and operates as subsidiary of Tantech Bamboo.
11. October 2008: USCNHK is established as “Raymond & O/B Raysucess Co., Limited”.
12. October 2009: Forasen Group is renamed “Forasen Group”.
13. November 2010: THL is established as “Sinoport Enterprises Limited.”
14. December 2010: (1) USCNHK is renamed “USCNHK Group Limited”; (2) Tantech Bamboo increases its registered capital to RMB 80 million, increasing Forasen Group’s interest to 95%; (3) Forasen Group transfers all of its interest in Tantech Bamboo to USCNHK.
15. April 2013: THL is renamed “Tantech Holdings Ltd.”
16. March 2015: THL completed an initial public offering of its common shares and listing on the NASDAQ Capital Market.
17. April 2016: USCNHK established a new subsidiary as “Zhejiang Tantech Bamboo Technology Co., Ltd.”
18. May 2016: USCNHK transferred 95% of Tantech Bamboo’s shares it owned to Zhejiang Tantech Bamboo Technology Co., Ltd.
19. December 2016: Zhejiang Tantech Bamboo Technology Co., Ltd acquired the remaining 5% of Tantech Bamboo’s shares.
20. May 2017: Zhejiang Tantech Bamboo Technology Co., Ltd changes its name to Lishui Tantech Energy Technology Co., Ltd, which in turn changed its name in July 2017 to Tantech Holdings (Lishui) Co., Ltd.
21. On July 12, 2017, the Company acquired a 70% equity interest of Suzhou E-Motors. The 70% equity interest comprises a 19% equity interest owned directly through Hangzhou Jixi Investment Management Co., Ltd (“Jixi”) and a 51% equity interest owned through a series of contractual agreement with the owners of Hanzhou Wangbo Investment Management Co., Ltd (“Wangbo”). Jixi is 100% owned by Shanghai Jiamu Investment Management Co., Ltd (“Jiamu”), which is, in turn, wholly owned by Euroasia International Capital (“Euroasia”), a 100% owned subsidiary of the Company. These agreements include a Technical Consultation and Services Agreement, a Business Cooperation Agreement, an Equity Pledge Agreement, a Share Disposal Agreement and a Voting Rights Proxy Agreement (collectively “VIE Agreements”). Pursuant to the VIE Agreements, Jiamu has the exclusive right to provide Wangbo consulting services related to business operations including technical and management consulting services. The VIE Agreements obligate Jiamu to absorb a majority of the risk of loss from Wangbo’s activities and entitle Jiamu to receive a majority of their residual returns. In essence, Jiamu has gained effective control over Wangbo. Therefore, the Company believes that Wangbo should be considered as a Variable Interest Entity (“VIE”). Euroasia is incorporated in Hong Kong, PRC. Jiamu is incorporated in Shanghai, PRC. Both Jixi and Wangbo are incorporated in Hanzhou, PRC. Euroasia also has a wholly owned subsidiary, Euroasia New Energy Automotive (Jiangsu) Co., Ltd (“Euroasia New Energy”). They are all investment holding companies with no significant business activities. On December 14, 2017, the Company entered into a sale agreement and related agreements to transfer its EDLC carbon business (including intellectual property rights and equipment) to Zhejiang Apeikesi Energy Co., Ltd., a PRC start-up company controlled by Dr. Zaihua Chen, our former Chief Technology Officer. On January 10, 2018, the Company signed a share purchase agreement (the “Agreement”) with Shanghai Shicai Minerals Co., Ltd. (“Shanghai Shicai”) to acquire all of the shares of Lishui Xincai Industrial Co., Ltd. (“Lishui XinCai”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Shanghai Shicai, at a price of approximately $18.2 million (or RMB 120 million). Lishui Xincai owns 18% of the equity interests in Libo Haokun Stone Co., Ltd. (“Libo Haokun”). Following the completion of the acquisition, the Company will indirectly hold a 18% stake in Libo Haokun.