The Hottest Startups of the 2020s

When we think of startups, we tend to think of dynamic, cutting-edge businesses. New software and alternative energy sources are the kind of thing that comes to mind.

What we don’t tend to think of are industrial chemicals firms producing inert gases.

Yet helium startup activity has grown wildly over the last few months — and there’s reason to believe that the boom is just getting started.

Why Helium Is In Such Demand — And Such Short Supply

Before we talk about the investment potential of helium startups, we should probably review why the second-most-abundant substance in the universe has become such a prized commodity recently.

Helium is valued for its chemical nonreactivity and its powerful coolant effects, and is used for a variety of applications in radiology, computer manufacturing, and scientific research. But despite being present in vast quantities in stars and on the moon — which is why it’s sometimes referred to as “star gas” — it’s actually quite difficult to find here on Earth. 
Small amounts of helium are sometimes extracted as a byproduct of natural gas drilling, but most deposits instantly dissipate into the atmosphere as soon as they’re uncovered or the helium is concentrated enough to make it worth recovering.

The U.S. government has been selling off the National Helium Reserve since the 1990s, and only recently realized that the country is at risk of running out of the stuff. 
Credit: European Physical Journal Plus 
As of now, we’re closer to the high-demand scenario in the graph above than the low-demand scenario — and that means the U.S. could exhaust its helium supplies by the end of the decade unless new reserves are found or new producers come online.

The Helium Startup Boom

Fortunately, new producers are indeed coming online — partially because large gas firms like Linde (NYSE: LIN) and Air Products (NYSE: APD) readily admit that they can’t meet the demand on their own.

Back in 2019, those two gas giants debuted an initiative to offer smaller producers a suite of natural gas processing equipment including what they describe as economical helium processing units.

The U.S. government has also juiced helium startup activities by offering to sell off parts of its helium infrastructure — such as the Cliffside Gas Field storage cavern in Potter County, Texas — to private companies.

There are currently some 30 small companies engaged in helium exploration and production around the world. Most have acquired exploration leases — largely in the U.S. and Canada — and a few are even starting to produce the gas.
How to Invest in Helium Startups

Unfortunately, for the time being, the vast majority of these helium startups are privately-held. Some, like Helium One (OTC: HLOGF), trade over the counter, but they tend to suffer from illiquidity issues, which make them impractical investments for most people. 
There are, however, a few publicly-traded diamonds in the rough in the helium startup space...

Like this tiny company that's sitting on the world’s biggest new discovery of “Star Gas.”

Call it like you see it, 

Nick Hodge
Editor, Daily Profit Cycle

Nick Hodge is the co-owner and publisher of Daily Profit Cycle and Resource Stock Digest. He's also the founder of Hodge Family Office, the umbrella organization for his three premium services: Foundational ProfitsFamily Office Advantage, and Hodge Family Office . He specializes in private placements and speculations in early stage ventures, and has raised tens of millions of dollars of investment capital for resource, energy, cannabis, and medical technology companies. Co-author of two best-selling investment books, including Energy Investing for Dummies, his insights have been shared on news programs and in magazines and newspapers around the world.
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