Top Graphene Stocks for 2024: Ranked by Pure-Play Focus

The graphene industry stands at the cusp of a potential revolution in materials science. Often hailed as a “wonder material,” graphene boasts some extraordinary properties. For example, despite being just one atom thick, graphene is about 200 times stronger than steel by weight. It’s the strongest material ever tested. It also has excellent conductivity, flexibility, transparency… the list goes on and on. Graphene has the potential to revolutionize many industries, but the technology is still in its infancy. This guide explores the top graphene stocks, ranked by their level of focus on graphene.

Note: We make every effort to keep our information accurate and up-to-date. However, technology markets do move fast and company situations can change rapidly. Please use this guide as an introduction to the graphene landscape; but ultimately, do your own due diligence before taking action.

Tier 1: Pure-Play Graphene Stocks

The companies in this tier represent the core of the graphene industry. These pure-play graphene stocks offer investors the most direct exposure to the graphene market. These firms are entirely focused on developing, producing, and commercializing graphene and graphene-based products. While they may carry higher risk due to their singular focus, they also offer the potential for significant returns if graphene technology takes off as many experts predict. Investors looking for undiluted exposure to the graphene revolution should pay close attention to these stocks.

Applied Graphene Materials (AGM.L)

Applied Graphene Materials (AGM.L) is a prime example of a pure-play graphene stock. Founded in 2010 as a spin-off from Durham University, AGM is a leading innovator of graphene nanoplatelet dispersions. These are essentially very thin, multi-layer flakes of graphene. While not as thin as single-layer graphene, they retain many of graphene’s extraordinary properties… while being much easier and more cost-effective to produce in large quantities.

In other words, AGM is bridging the gap between the promising properties of graphene and its practical use in real-world products. They’re essentially creating a “ready-to-use” form of graphene that industries can more easily adopt. This is important because “raw” graphene is hard to use into existing manufacturing processes. 

In essence, AGM works closely with customers to develop tailored graphene solutions for specific applications. This is a double-edged sword. While it gives AGM’s products a clearer path to commercialization, it also relies on the customers’ adoption of graphene. So far, that has been slower than many initially predicted, and this is reflected in the company’s relatively weak financials.

Multi-layered nanoplatelets make it easier to work with graphene.

First Graphene (FGR.AX)

First Graphene (FGR.AX) is another pure-play graphene stock, but with a different approach from AGM. Based in Australia, First Graphene specializes in the large-scale production of high-quality graphene powder. Their key differentiator is their proprietary electrochemical exfoliation process. Basically, it allows them to produce graphene from raw graphite efficiently and at scale.

First Graphene aims to address one of the major hurdles in graphene commercialization: consistent, large-scale production. The company can produce up to 100 tonnes of graphene per year, making them one of the world’s largest graphene manufacturers. This scale is crucial for industries considering graphene adoption, as it ensures a reliable supply chain.

For investors, First Graphene represents a bet on the scalability of graphene production. But like AGM, First Graphene faces the challenge of market adoption. While they’ve solved the production problem, convincing industries to incorporate graphene into their products remains a hurdle. Their financial performance reflects this, with revenues growing but profitability still a challenge.

Directa Plus (DCTA.L)

Directa Plus (DCTA.L) is another pure-play graphene company with a unique approach. Headquartered in Italy, Directa Plus uses a proprietary plasma super expansion technology for producing graphene nanoplatelets. This allows them to create graphene with specific, tailored properties for various market needs.

The company’s key focus is on producing G+ graphene, which they describe as non-toxic and high-performance. They’ve found traction in textiles (sportswear and workwear), the environmental sector (oil spill clean-up and water treatment), and even the automotive sector (better tires). This diversification across industries provides multiple avenues for growth.

For investors, Directa Plus offers exposure to a graphene company with a growing list of commercial applications. As regulatory scrutiny of nanomaterials increases, their emphasis on safety and environmental friendliness could also give Directa a leg up.

Graphene Manufacturing Group (GMG.V)

Graphene Manufacturing Group (GMG.V) is Canadian-listed, with operations based in Australia. GMG stands out in the graphene market due to its unique production method. Unlike many competitors who use graphite as a starting material, GMG produces graphene directly from natural gas through a proprietary plasma process. This approach offers several advantages: it’s more environmentally friendly, scalable, and can produce high-quality graphene at a lower cost.

The company’s primary focus is on energy storage applications, particularly graphene aluminum-ion batteries. GMG claims their batteries can charge up to 60 times faster than lithium-ion equivalents, which could be a game-changer in the electric vehicle and consumer electronics markets. GMG is also developing graphene coatings for energy savings in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.

Financially, GMG is pre-revenue, with their value proposition based on the potential of their technology. So for investors, GMG represents a more speculative play in the graphene space. Their focus on high-impact applications like energy storage could offer significant upside if successful. But investors should be prepared for a longer-term horizon and higher volatility with this stock.

Haydale Graphene Industries (HAYD.L)

Haydale Graphene Industries (HAYD.L) is a UK-based graphene and advanced materials company. Haydale’s unique selling proposition lies in its patented plasma functionalization technology, HDPlas®. This process allows them to modify the surface of graphene and other nanomaterials, enhancing their properties and making them easier to disperse in various host materials. This addresses a key challenge in graphene adoption: ensuring the material bonds effectively with the matrix it’s being added to.

The company’s approach is notably versatile. Rather than focusing on a single application or industry, Haydale has positioned itself as a solutions provider across multiple sectors. They work with composites, inks, coatings, and functional materials, targeting industries ranging from aerospace to biomedical. For example, they’ve developed graphene-based conductive inks that can be used in anti-counterfeiting and smart packaging.

For investors, Haydale offers exposure to a company with a broad graphene portfolio and a key enabling technology. The diverse application base could provide multiple paths to growth. However, the company still faces the challenge of converting its technological advantages into sustainable commercial success across these various sectors.

Major graphene applications. Credit: ECS Journal

Tier 2: Significant Graphene Focus

This tier includes graphene stocks that, while not pure plays, have a substantial focus on graphene technology. These companies typically have broader operations or product lines but have made significant investments in graphene research, development, and commercialization. They offer a balance between graphene exposure and business diversification, potentially providing a more stable investment profile. For investors seeking graphene opportunities with somewhat mitigated risk, these stocks present an interesting middle ground.

Versarien plc (VRS.L)

Versarien (VRS.L)‘s key strength lies in its 2D materials technology portfolio, particularly its Nanene graphene nanoplatelets. The company stands out for its vertically integrated approach, controlling the entire value chain from graphene production to application development. Versarien has made significant strides in incorporating graphene into textiles, creating enhanced sportswear and protective equipment. Their collaboration with major brands and their focus on practical, consumer-facing applications gives them a more tangible route to market than many pure research-focused graphene companies. This consumer products angle, combined with their involvement in construction and aerospace sectors, positions Versarien as a company bridging the gap between graphene’s potential and real-world products.

G6 Materials (GGG.V)

G6 Materials (GGG.V) differentiates itself through its focus on graphene-enhanced composites and materials for specific, high-value applications. Their unique selling proposition is their expertise in developing practical, commercial products rather than just raw graphene. G6 has found success in areas like air purification, where their graphene-enhanced air filters have gained traction, especially in light of increased health consciousness. They’ve also made inroads in the marine industry with graphene-enhanced epoxies and resins for boat repair. This targeted approach to solving specific industry problems with graphene-enhanced solutions gives G6 a clearer path to revenue generation and potentially faster market adoption than companies focused solely on graphene production.

NanoXplore Inc. (GRA.TO)

NanoXplore Inc. (GRA.TO)‘s standout feature is its position as North America’s largest graphene producer, with a current annual production capacity of 4,000 tons. Their proprietary production process allows them to produce high-quality graphene powder at industrial scale and competitive prices. What sets NanoXplore apart is their strategic focus on the automotive and transportation sectors, where they’re working to integrate graphene into various components to enhance performance and reduce weight. Their acquisition of a significant stake in VoltaXplore, a joint venture developing graphene-enhanced lithium-ion battery technology for electric vehicles, further cements their position in this high-potential market. This combination of large-scale production capability and targeted industry focus gives NanoXplore a unique position in the graphene market.

Zentek (ZEN.V)

Zentek (ZEN.V)‘s unique selling proposition is its focus on developing and commercializing graphene-based nanotechnologies for health and environmental applications. Their standout product is ZenGUARD™, a graphene-based coating with antimicrobial properties, which gained significant attention for its potential use in personal protective equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic. Beyond this, Zentek is also developing graphene-based solutions for water treatment and HVAC systems. What makes Zentek particularly interesting is their emphasis on intellectual property development and protection, with a growing portfolio of patents across various applications. This IP-focused approach, combined with their targeting of pressing global issues like healthcare and environmental protection, positions Zentek as a company with significant potential for long-term value creation in the graphene space.

Tier 3: Graphene as Part of Broader Portfolio

The graphene stocks in this tier represent companies that have incorporated graphene into their business model, but as part of a much broader portfolio. These firms are often well-established in related industries and have expanded into graphene as a potential growth area. While their exposure to graphene might be limited compared to the other tiers, these stocks can offer a way to invest in graphene’s potential while benefiting from the stability of more established business lines. They might appeal to more conservative investors looking to dip their toes into the graphene market.

Graftech International (EAF)

Graftech International (EAF) is a bit different from the other companies we’ve discussed. They’re not primarily a graphene company, but rather a long-established manufacturer of graphite electrodes, which are essential for steel production in electric arc furnaces. However, they’re included in this list because they have the potential to pivot towards graphene production. Their expertise in working with graphite could give them an advantage if they decide to expand into graphene. For now, though, their connection to the graphene market is more about future potential than current focus. Investors looking at Graftech should consider it more as a play on the steel industry, with a possible upside in graphene down the line.

CVD Equipment Corporation (CVV)

CVD Equipment Corporation (CVV) is a company that makes the machines used to produce advanced materials, including graphene. They don’t produce graphene themselves, but they provide the tools that other companies use to make it. This puts them in an interesting position in the graphene market. Instead of betting on one particular application of graphene, they benefit from the overall growth of the industry. As more companies start producing graphene, the demand for CVD’s equipment could increase. However, their business is broader than just graphene – they also make equipment for producing other advanced materials. For investors, CVD offers exposure to the graphene industry, but with the added stability of a more diversified business model.

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