Aemetis closes $35.5 million phase I EB-5 program

By Aemetis Inc. | September 04, 2020

Aemetis Inc., an advanced renewable fuels and biochemicals company, today announced the closing of its $35.5 million Phase I EB-5 Program, which was funded by 71 foreign investors.

The EB-5 Program is a U.S. government program authorized by the Immigration and Naturalization Act designed to provide employment-based visa preferences for immigrant investors who deploy capital into U.S.-based projects that provide jobs for American workers.  Aemetis closed its Phase I EB-5 Program with the issuance of 71 subordinated convertible promissory notes, raising $35.5 million of low interest investment funds used to create both direct and indirect jobs at its high grade alcohol and fuel ethanol plant in Keyes, California.

“The Aemetis plant EB-5 project is an excellent example of sound immigration policy that generated $35.5 million of new investment to create high quality manufacturing jobs in the Central Valley of California,” stated Eric McAfee, chairman and CEO of Aemetis, Inc.  “100 percentof the investors in our Phase I EB-5 funding have been fully vetted by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and granted approval to receive conditional permanent residency, which could allow them become citizens after completing the remaining steps in the EB-5 process.”

On Nov. 21, 2019, the EB-5 Program minimum investment increased from $500,000 to $900,000 per investor.  Aemetis has launched the Phase II EB-5 offering with plans to issue $50.0 million in additional EB-5 notes, and received an approved Project Exemplar from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, demonstrating that about 2,000 jobs are expected to be created by Aemetis, allowing 200 investors the opportunity to participate the offering (10 jobs per investor).

Eight investors in the Phase II EB-5 offering have received National Interest Expedite approval, which is granted to EB-5 projects that have strategic importance to the United States.  The NIE approval allows investors to benefit from an approximately three-month application review process instead of the regular multi-year review process.

The Phase I EB-5 offering provided Aemetis with a 3 percent interest rate, subordinated funding instrument that matures four years from the date of funding, while providing automatic extensions for one year periods beyond the original note term while investor immigration approvals are pending.  $35.0 million of the Phase I EB-5 offering proceeds were received during prior quarters and used to repay Third Eye Capital senior debt bridge funding.