Outlook For VeraSun Not Too Bright

Troubled US ethanol manufacturer VeraSun has said that it has stopped taking deliveries of corn into an unspecified number of it's US operations whilst it seeks additional financing.

The company is the largest publicly traded ethanol manufacturer in the US, and has has 16 ethanol plants strung across the Midwest.

That didn't stop it filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last month, and announcing last week a net quarterly loss for the period ended Sept 30th of $476.1 million versus net income of $7.8 million in the year-ago quarter.

By way of graphically illustrating that turnover isn't necessarily the key to making money, the company reported net sales of $1.08 billion, up from $221.9 million a year earlier. It also said it had $9.2 million in cash on hand as of Sept. 30, down from nearly $111 million just one year ago.

Relative to its loss, the firm said in filings with the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) that it was "currently evaluating various courses of action to address the operational and liquidity issues the company is facing."

The figures make rival Pacific Ethanol's loss for the same quarter of "just" $54.9 million look positively glowing!

VeraSun is said to be seeking permission to void existing corn contracts tied to at least two of the company's plants.