An Eco-friendly toothbrush: for the mouth and wallet
DISCOVER THE ONE STOCK THIS YEAR THAT COULD RISE 500% OR MORE!” screamed the headline in “World of Investment (circulation 2,500,000)” which arrived unsolicited in Rocky’s mail.
No it’s not Citibank (up 462% from the March low).
Rather, it’s an unprofitable penny stock called United Treatment (symbol=UTRM) that claims a patent for a “revolutionary” toothbrush … which requires no water or toothpaste. The company shamelessly trumpets: “A toothbrush that needs no water will not only change the way we brush our teeth, it will illuminate minds with the knowledge that water is our most precious natural resource.”
Ignoring the fact that the stock promoters killed countless trees to mail 2,500,000 brochures, could it be that Liquid Squeeze Brush may be the better mousetrap that Al Gore has been waiting for?
“This new tooth brush has three primary advantages over existing and traditional toothbrushes:
1) Liquid SqueezeBrush is a self-contained brushing appliance holding “liquid” dentrifice, in its squeezable and refillable handle.
2) Water and toothpaste are no longer required to brush, allowing the user to brush virtually anywhere, at anytime.
3) Liquid SqueezeBrush requires no water to brush. Up to seven gallons of water run down the sink while brushing if the faucet is left running. Liquid Squeezebrush is a self-contained, use anywhere, water conserving toothbrush.”
Rocky was just a tad bit skeptical:
1) The average person spends about 30 seconds brushing their teeth — which means that the company’s seven gallon estimate implies a 14 gallon per minute flow rate. That’s a fire hose. Not a bathroom sink.
2) Already, people who publically deploy toothpicks are annoying and unsanitary. Rocky dreads a new wave of people on planes and subways who brush (and floss) while listening to their Ipods.
3) Forgetting about merits of the product, there are no merits to the stock. UTRM (which had a 52-week high of $8.00 on 1/28/09 and a 52-week low of $0.15 just five days later), was formerly known as HP Capital Corp until it filed for Bankruptcy. Before that it was known as Araldica Wineries. Management may have swigged a bit too much Strawberry Ripple, as ownership of the Squeezebrush patent is reportedly in dispute too.
4) A Google Search of Edward Tracy (the supposed chairman of UTRM, “United Treatment Centers”) disconcertingly returns a link to a Methadone Maintenance Center. And no mention of his being the “next” Steve Jobs.
The brochure concludes: “You’ll be kicking yourself for missing out on a potential 500% profit. This new industry product is just too difficult to predict how large and how fast it will grow. But rest assured, it WILL grow! UTRM is a fantastic investment now. It could easily soar to $2, $5, $10, $20 or more in a very short timeframe.”
Rocky never provides investment advice. But he’d sooner invest in no-flush toilet paper than in UTRM. (Which probably means the stock really will go up 10,0000% tomorrow.)