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SDE in talks to sell half of wave unit to China, Israeli firms

SDE Energy, a Tel Aviv-based maker of technology that uses the power of the waves to generate electricity, is talking about selling half of its business to a Chinese car maker and an Israeli medical company.

SDE expects to conclude talks with the two “major” companies in about two months, said Shmuel Ovadia, its chief executive officer and owner. The Chinese car manufacturer wants to use SDE’s technology to power its factory and the medical company has “excess money” and wants to invest in clean energy, he said without naming the companies.

“We believe the bigger companies than ours will do a better job dealing with all the projects,” Ovadia said by e- mail. “We would like to sell 50 percent of the company and to continue to give our consultation and management skills, although are open for different suggestions.”

SDE is worth about $10 million, Ovadia said. If an acquisition doesn’t happen, SDE plans to raise more money and would like to secure as much as $100 million, Ovadia said. SDE has 11 working models of its device, one in China and the remainder in Israel, he said.

Wave energy has the potential to meet as much as 13 percent of current world electricity consumption, according to the website of the European Ocean Energy Association. No utility- scale projects are working now because the technology remains experimental.

Energy from the waves currently costs about $445 a megawatt-hour, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance data. This compares to about $78 a megawatt-hour for coal-fired power.

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