10-K 1 cdxc10k_dec302017.htm ANNUAL REPORT Form 10-K
 
 
 

UNITED STATES SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
 
FORM 10-K
 
 [X] ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934.
 
For the fiscal year ended December 30, 2017
or
 
[ ] TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934.
For the transition period from to
 
Commission file number 001-37752
 
CHROMADEX CORPORATION
(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its Charter)
 
Delaware
 
26-2940963
(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation)
 
(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
 
 
 
10005 Muirlands Blvd. Suite G, Irvine, California 
 
92618 
(Address of Principal Executive Offices) 
 
(Zip Code) 
 
Registrant's telephone number, including area code (949) 419-0288
 
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
 
 Title of each class
 
 Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered
 Common Stock, $0.001 par value
 
 The NASDAQ Capital Market
 
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: None.
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes  [ ]  No [X ]
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes  [ ] No [X]
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the Registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes  [X] No [ ]
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files). Yes [X] No [ ]
 
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant's knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. [ ]
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company. See the definitions of “accelerated filer,” “large accelerated filer,” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
 
Large accelerated filer [ ] Accelerated filer [X] Non-accelerated filer [ ] (Do not check if smaller reporting company)
Smaller reporting company [ ] Emerging growth company [ ]
 
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financing accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ☐
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). Yes [ ] No [X]
 
As of June 30, 2017, the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter, the aggregate market value of the registrant’s common stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant was approximately $144.8 million, based on the closing price of the registrant’s common stock on the NASDAQ Capital Market on June 30, 2017.
 
Number of shares of common stock of the registrant outstanding as of March 8, 2018: 54,836,076.
 
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
 
Portions of the Registrant’s proxy statement (the “Proxy Statement”) to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) pursuant to Regulation 14A in connection with the registrant’s 2018 Annual Meeting of Stockholders, which will be filed subsequent to the date hereof, are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Form 10K. Such Proxy Statement will be filed with the SEC not later than 120 days following the end of the registrant’s fiscal year ended December 30, 2017.
 

 
 
 
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PART I
 
CAUTIONARY NOTICE REGARDING FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
 
This Annual Report on Form 10-K (the “Form 10-K”) contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which are subject to the safe harbor created by those sections.
 
We may, in some cases, use words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “will,” “would” or the negative of these terms, and similar expressions that convey uncertainty of future events or outcomes to identify these forward-looking statements. Any statements contained herein that are not statements of historical facts may be deemed to be forward-looking statements and are based upon our current expectations, beliefs, estimates and projections, and various assumptions, many of which, by their nature, are inherently uncertain and beyond our control. Such statements, include, but are not limited to, statements contained in this Form 10-K relating to our business, business strategy, products and services we may offer in the future, the outcome and impact of litigation, the timing and results of future regulatory filings, the timing and results of future clinical trials, our ability to collect from major customers, sales and marketing strategy and capital outlook. Forward-looking statements are based on our current expectations and assumptions regarding our business, the economy and other future conditions. Because forward looking statements relate to the future, they are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict. Our actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. They are neither statement of historical fact nor guarantees of assurance of future performance. We caution you therefore against relying on any of these forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward looking statements include, but are not limited to, a decline in general economic conditions nationally and internationally; decreased demand for our products and services; market acceptance of our products; the ability to protect our intellectual property rights; impact of any litigation or infringement actions brought against us; competition from other providers and products; risks in product development; inability to raise capital to fund continuing operations; changes in government regulation; the ability to complete customer transactions and capital raising transactions, and other factors (including the risks contained in Item 1A of this Form 10-K under the heading “Risk Factors”) relating to our industry, our operations and results of operations and any businesses that may be acquired by us. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should the underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may differ significantly from those anticipated, believed, estimated, expected, intended or planned.
 
Factors or events that could cause our actual results to differ may emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for us to predict all of them, nor can we assess the impact of all factors on our business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements we may make. Given these uncertainties, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements. Except as required by applicable law, we undertake no obligation to and do not intend to update any of the forward-looking statements to conform these statements to actual results.
 
 
 Item 1.
Business
 
Unless otherwise indicated or the context otherwise requires, references to the “Company”, “ChromaDex”, “we”, “us” and “our” refer to ChromaDex Corporation and its consolidated subsidiaries.
 
Company Overview
 
ChromaDex is a science-based integrated nutraceutical company devoted to pioneering technologies that improve the way people age. ChromaDex engages with and supports many of the world's leading research institutions and scientists that are diligently working to understand the full potential of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide ("NAD") and its impact on human health.
 
NAD is an essential coenzyme and a key regulator of cellular metabolism. Best known for its role in cellular adenosine triphosphate ("ATP") production, NAD is now thought to play an important role in healthy aging. Many cellular functions related to health and healthy aging are sensitive to levels of locally available NAD and this represents an active area of research in the field of NAD.
 
NAD levels are not constant, and in humans, NAD levels have been shown to decline by more than 50% from young adulthood to middle age. NAD continues to decline as humans grow older. There are other causes of reduced NAD levels such as over-nutrition, alcohol consumption and a number of disease states. NAD may also be increased, including through calorie restriction and exercise. Healthy aging, mitochondria and NAD continue to be areas of focus in the research community. In 2017, there were over 150 studies on NAD.
 
In 2013, ChromaDex commercialized NIAGEN® nicotinamide riboside ("NR"), a novel form of vitamin B3. Data from numerous animal studies, and confirmed in human clinical trials, show that NR is a highly efficient NAD precursor that significantly raises NAD levels. NIAGEN is safe for human consumption with no adverse side effects. NIAGEN® has twice been successfully reviewed under FDA's new dietary ingredient (“NDI”) notification program, and has also been successfully notified to the FDA as generally recognized as safe (“GRAS”). Animal studies of NIAGEN® have demonstrated a variety of outcomes ranging from increased NAD levels, increased cellular metabolism and energy production to improvements in insulin sensitivity. NIAGEN® is the trade name for our proprietary ingredient NR, and protected by patents to which we are the exclusive licensee.
 
ChromaDex is the world leader in the emerging NAD space. ChromaDex has over 140 partnerships with leading universities and research institutions around the world including the National Institutes of Health, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Scripps Research Institute and the Mayo Clinic. Other relationships are currently being developed.
 
Our scientific advisory board is led by Chairman Dr. Roger Kornberg, Nobel Laureate Stanford Professor, Dr. Charles Brenner, one of the world’s recognized experts in NAD and inventor of nicotinamide riboside, Dr. Rudi Tanzi, the co-chair of the department of neurology at Harvard Medical School and one of the world’s leading experts in food and nutrition, Dr. Bruce German, Chairman of food, nutrition and health at the University of California, Davis, Dr. Robert Beudeker, Vice President of Innovation, who leads the innovation program for human nutrition and health at DSM, and Dr. Matthew Roberts, Chief Technical and Quality Officer at Pharmavite, who has over 25 years of success at Abbott, Nestle and Nature's Bounty Co.
 
STRATEGIC SHIFT TO GLOBAL CONSUMER PRODUCT COMPANY
 
The acquisition in March 2017 of Healthspan Research LLC, a company that sold our TRU NIAGEN® product direct to consumers, marked our strategic shift from an ingredient and testing company to a global, consumer focused nutraceutical company. ChromaDex made the strategic decision to commercialize TRU NIAGEN® as a consumer brand, launching the consumer product in 2017.
 
 
In connection with our strategic decision to grow our global consumer brand, we have reduced the number of active NIAGEN® ingredient supply agreements. As expected, our ingredients segment net sales decreased 34% in 2017, from $16.8 million in 2016 to $11.1 million, which loss was offset by $5.5 million in net sales of TRU NIAGEN®.
 
We believe the global market size for TRU NIAGEN® is substantial. According to Orbis Research, Global Anti-Aging Market Research Report and Forecast 2017-2022, June 19, 2017, over $250 billion was spent on the business of youth worldwide in 2016 on looking, acting and feeling younger, which included skin care, cosmetic surgery, hair restoration, fitness, vitamins and supplements. According to the same report from Orbis Research, the worldwide anti-aging market is expected to grow at a compounded average growth rate ("CAGR") of 5.8% through 2021 to about $330 billion.
 
We began the international expansion of our TRU NIAGEN® brand with the launch in Hong Kong and Macau with our strategic partner, Customer G, in the third quarter of 2017, followed by the launch in Singapore in the first quarter of 2018. We will continue to focus on obtaining additional regulatory approvals required to expand our marketing and distribution of our TRU NIAGEN® brand in new strategic international markets.
 
INGREDIENTS AND CORE STANDARDS AND CONTRACT SERVICES BUSINESS SEGMENTS
 
Through our ingredients business segment, we will continue to sell NIAGEN® in ingredient form to our remaining customers that we have supply contracts with. We will also continue to develop and commercialize proprietary ingredients other than NIAGEN®.
 
We are a leading provider of research and quality-control products and services to the natural products industry. Through our core standards and contract services segment, customers worldwide in the dietary supplement, food and beverage, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries use our products, which are small quantities of highly-characterized, research-grade, plant-based materials, to ensure the quality of their raw materials and finished products. We have conducted this core standards and contract services business since 1999.
 
We believe there is a growing need at both the manufacturing and government regulatory levels for reference standards to ensure that products that contain plants, plant extracts and naturally occurring compounds distributed to consumers are safe. We further believe that this need is driven by the perception at the consumer level regarding a lack of adequate quality controls related to certain functional food or dietary supplement based products, as well as increased effort on the part of the Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) to assure Good Manufacturing Practices (“GMP”).
 
Our core standards and contract service business segment provides us with the opportunity to become aware of the results from research and screening activities performed on thousands of potential natural product candidates through our relationships with various universities and research institutions. By selecting the most promising ingredients leveraged from this market-based screening model, which is grounded by primary research performed through leading universities and institutions, followed by selective investments in further research and development, new proprietary ingredients can be identified and brought to various markets with a much lower investment cost and an increased chance of success.  Through our regulatory consulting operations, we also provide our clients in the food, supplement and pharmaceutical industries with effective scientific solutions to manage their potential health and regulatory risks.
 
 
On January 5, 2017, we opened a 10,000 square foot research and development laboratory in Longmont, Colorado. The new laboratory will support the discovery and development of molecules and compounds that add to our proprietary ingredient portfolio, while also allowing for the research service offerings.
 
For the fiscal years ended December 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016, our revenues from continuing operations were approximately $21.2 million, $21.7 million and $17.9 million, respectively. The following table summarizes the Company’s total sales for each of the business segments in the last 3 years. Please refer to Item 8 Financial Statements and Supplementary Data of this Annual Report on Form 10-K for additional financial information for each of the business segments.
 
Fiscal Years
Ingredients
Segment
Consumer
Products
Segment
Core Standards and Contract Services Segment
Total
2017
$11.1 million
$5.5 million
$4.6 million
$21.2 million
2016
$16.8 million
    -
$4.9 million
$21.7 million
2015
$12.5 million
    -
$5.4 million
$17.9 million
 
Company Background
 
On May 21, 2008, Cody Resources, Inc., a Nevada corporation and a public company, (“Cody”) entered into an Agreement and Plan of Merger (the “Merger Agreement”), by and among Cody, CDI Acquisition, Inc., a California corporation and wholly-owned subsidiary of Cody (“Acquisition Sub”), and ChromaDex, Inc. (the “Merger”). Subsequent to the signing of the Merger Agreement, Cody merged with and into a Delaware corporation. On June 20, 2008, Cody amended its articles of incorporation to change its name to ChromaDex Corporation. ChromaDex Corporation was traded on the Over the Counter market under the symbol "CDXC." On April 25, 2016, ChromaDex Corporation became listed on the NASDAQ under the symbol "CDXC."
 
ChromaDex, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of ChromaDex Corporation, was originally formed as a California corporation on February 19, 2000. On April 23, 2003, ChromaDex Inc. acquired the research and development group of a competing natural product company, Napro Biotherapeutics, located in Boulder, Colorado. The assets acquired in this transaction were placed in a newly-formed, wholly-owned subsidiary of ChromaDex Inc. named ChromaDex Analytics, Inc., a Nevada corporation.
 
On December 3, 2012, ChromaDex, Inc. acquired Spherix Consulting Inc., a scientific and regulatory consulting company located in the greater Washington D.C. area and Spherix became a wholly-owned subsidiary of ChromaDex, Inc. On December 31, 2016, Spherix Consulting, Inc. merged into ChromaDex, Inc. and subsequently was dissolved. On March 12, 2017, ChromaDex Corporation acquired Healthspan Research LLC, a consumer product company offering TRU NIAGEN® branded products. This marked the strategic shift to become a fully integrated nutraceutical Company. On September 5, 2017, the Company completed the sale of its operating assets that were used with the Company's quality verification program testing and analytical chemistry business for food and food related products to Covance Laboratories Inc.
 
Business Market
 
According to Orbis Research, Global Anti-Aging Market Research Report and Forecast 2017-2022, June 19, 2017, over $250 billion was spent on the business of youth worldwide in 2016 on looking, acting and feeling younger, which included skin care, cosmetic surgery, hair restoration, fitness, vitamins and supplements. According to the same report from Orbis Research, the worldwide anti-aging market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.8% through 2021 to about $330 billion. According to the data from Euromonitor International, the worldwide market for vitamins and supplements was approximately $91 billion in 2016, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.7% to about $127 billion in 2022.
 
 
 
Business Model
 
CONSUMER PRODUCTS SEGMENT
 
Our business model is to sell TRU NIAGEN® to consumers worldwide. As a world leader in the emerging NAD space and the science of aging, we will continue to seek to discover and enhance patented technology and evolve our branded TRU NIAGEN® products to improve health by safely raising NAD levels. The TRU NIAGEN® brand is built on scientific evidence, trust and the direct impact to our consumers aging better. The best way to be trusted as a brand is to be trustworthy as a company.
 
We intend to capture the worldwide NAD-related healthy aging market by entering into new international markets. We will utilize our proprietary ecommerce platforms, and the ecommerce and brick and mortar platforms of strategic regional and local partners. Our United States ("U.S.") based business will continue to support our global operations, including:
 
Corporate development and strategy
 
Research and development activities
 
Science
 
Global premium brand management and brand guidelines
 
Multi-platform global marketing campaigns and know-how
 
Build and evolve propriety ecommerce platform and data analytics
 
Global manufacturing and supply chain operations
 
We expect to continue to supply our international operations with finished products manufactured in the U.S, and to continue to provide all our marketing materials and know-how to our international strategic partners.
 
INGREDIENTS SEGMENT
 
We will also continue to identify, acquire, reduce-to-practice, and commercialize other innovative new proprietary ingredients and technologies, with an initial industry focus on the dietary supplement, food, beverage, skin care and pharmaceutical markets. We have an experienced team that is highly capable of advancing products through development into commercialization with the required regulatory approval, safety, toxicology, clinical trials, supply chain management, manufacturing, and ultimately either directly selling the products or licensing to third parties. Our clinical trials will potentially reinforce the health benefits that may be associated with our proprietary ingredients, improve the quality or specificity of FDA approved claim we can make with respect to these health benefits, and lead us toward pharmaceutical applications for our proprietary ingredients.
 
 
 
CORE STANDARDS AND CONTRACT SERVICES SEGMENT
 
We have taken advantage of both supply chain needs and regulatory requirements such as the GMPs for dietary supplements to build our core standards and contract services segment. We believe that we create value throughout the supply chain of the pharmaceutical, dietary supplements, functional foods and personal care markets.
 
In addition, through regulatory consulting operations, we provide product regulatory approval and scientific advisory services to our clients in the food, supplement and pharmaceutical industries with effective solutions to manage potential health and regulatory risks.
 
We will continue to expand our core standards and contract services business and, more importantly, capitalize on additional opportunities in product development and commercialization of various kinds of intellectual property that we have largely discovered and acquired through the sales process associated with this segment.
 
Overview of our Products and Services
 
Current products and services provided are as follows:
 
CONSUMER PRODUCTS
 
TRU NIAGEN® branded dietary supplements. We currently offer our NIAGEN® nicotinamide riboside through our TRU NIAGEN® finished bottles. We will continue to build our TRU NIAGEN® as a global brand and offer TRU NIAGEN® to consumers worldwide. We are conducting additional clinical trials to validate the health benefits associated with NIAGEN® and TRU NIAGEN®.
 
INGREDIENTS
 
Nicotinamide riboside NIAGEN®. We will continue to sell NIAGEN® in ingredient form to three remaining customers that we have supply contracts with.
 
Pterostilbene pTeroPure®. Pterostilbene is a polyphenol and a powerful antioxidant that shows promise in a range of health-related fields. We have exclusive in-licensed patents and patents pending related to the use of pterostilbene for a number of these benefits, and have filed additional patents related to supplementary benefits, such as a patent jointly filed with University of California at Irvine related to its effects on non-melanoma skin cancer. We have successfully conducted a clinical trial, together with the University of Mississippi, related to its blood pressure lowering effects.
 
 
 
Pterostilbene and caffeine co-crystal PURENERGY®. We are working to validate the benefits of the co-crystal ingredient comprised of caffeine and pterostilbene. The first human study of this ingredient demonstrated that it delivers 30 percent more caffeine, stays in the blood stream longer, and is absorbed more slowly than ordinary caffeine. With this ingredient, formulators of energy products may have the ability to reduce the total amount of caffeine in their products by as much as 50% without sacrificing consumers’ expectations from such products.
 
Anthocyanin AnthOrigin™. We plan to develop an extraction process to concentrate the anthocyanins in Suntava® Purple Corn which will be used to produce a concentrated anthocyanin ingredient. We will utilize the expertise of a toll manufacturer to produce the commercial ingredient. We believe there is a ready market for cost-effective concentrated anthocyanins having application in dietary supplements, sports nutrition, food and beverage and skin care.
 
Spirulina Extract Immulina™. IMMULINA™ is a spirulina extract and the predominant active compounds are Braun-type lipoproteins which are useful for improving human immune function. These lipoproteins are present at much greater levels than those found within commonly used immune enhancing botanicals such as Echinacea and ginseng.
 
CORE STANDARDS AND CONTRACT SERVICES
 
Supply of reference standards, materials & kits. We supply a wide range of products necessary to conduct quality control of raw materials and consumer products. Reference standards and materials and the kits created from them are used for research and quality control in the dietary supplements, cosmetics, food and beverages, and pharmaceutical industries.
 
Supply of fine chemicals and phytochemicals. As demand for new natural products and phytochemicals increases, we can scale up and supply our core products in the gram to kilogram scale for companies that require these products for research and new product development.
 
Consulting services. We provide a comprehensive range of consulting services in the areas of regulatory support, new ingredient or product development, risk management and litigation support. We provide and offer product regulatory approval and scientific advisory services.
 
Process development. Developing cost effective and efficient processes for manufacturing natural products can be very difficult and time consuming. We assist customers in creating processes for cost-effective manufacturing of natural products, using “green chemistry.”
 
Phytochemical libraries. We intend to continue investing in the development of natural product based libraries by continuing to create these libraries internally as well as through product licensing.
 
Sales and Marketing Strategy
 
For our consumer products segment, we employ a variety of strategies to drive sales and consumer awareness of TRU NIAGEN®, including social media and internet advertising, managing websites, influencers, paid search, distribution of research publications and press releases.
 
For our ingredients segment and core standards and contract services segment, our strategy is based on a direct, technically-oriented model. We recruit and hire sales and marketing staff with appropriate commercial and scientific backgrounds. Our sales staff performs sales duties by using combinations of telemarketing, e-mail, tradeshows and customer visits. The inside sales portion of the organization also has customer service responsibilities. All sales and marking staff are compensated based on salary and performance-based bonus. Our regulatory consulting operations, generates scientific and regulatory consulting revenue from an existing well-established list of Fortune 1000 customers and referrals.
 
 
USA and Canada:
 
For our consumer products segment, we are distributing our TRU NIAGEN® products direct to consumers through our propriety ecommerce platform TRUNIAGEN.com, Amazon Prime and Amazon marketplace. Currently and for the near-term, we do not plan to sell TRU NIAGEN® to brick and mortar retailers in the US and Canada.
 
For our ingredients segment and core standards and contract services segment, we intend to continue to use a direct marketing approach in the U.S. and Canada to promote our products and services.
 
International:
 
For our consumer products segment, we will be utilizing strategic partners on a regional or local country basis to expand our distribution of TRU NIAGEN® products. Our strategic partnerships could include brick and mortar and/or ecommerce channels. We also are evaluating strategic joint ventures to rapidly expand our distribution in regions like Asia. We began our international expansion of TRU NIAGEN® products with the successful launch in Hong Kong and Macau with our strategic partner, Customer G, in the third quarter of 2017, followed by the launch in Singapore in the first quarter of 2018.
 
For our ingredients segment, most of our customers are based currently in U.S. We are looking to expand into international markets through our international business partners.
 
For our core standards contract services segment, we use international distributors to market and sell to several foreign countries or markets. The use of distributors in some international markets has proven to be more effective than direct sales.
For our regulatory consulting operations, we engage on consulting projects for customers all over the world, including Europe, South America, and Asia. Consulting revenues are generated from an existing well-established list of Fortune 1000 customers and referrals.
 
Government Regulation
 
Some of our operations are subject to regulation by various United States federal agencies and similar state and international agencies, including the FDA, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”), the Department of Commerce, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Agriculture and other state and international agencies. These regulators govern a wide variety of production activities, from design and development to labeling, manufacturing, handling, selling and distributing of products. From time to time, federal, state and international legislation is enacted that may have the effect of materially increasing the cost of doing business or limiting or expanding our permissible activities. We cannot predict whether or when potential legislation or regulations will be enacted, and, if enacted, the effect of such legislation, regulation, implementation, or any implemented regulations or supervisory policies would have on our financial condition or results of operations. In addition, the outcome of any litigation, investigations or enforcement actions initiated by state or federal authorities could result in changes to our operations being necessary and in increased compliance costs.
 
U.S. FDA Regulation
 
In the United States dietary supplements and food are subject to FDA regulations. For example, the FDA’s final rule on GMPs for dietary supplements published in June 2007 requires companies to evaluate products for identity, strength, purity and composition. These regulations in some cases, particularly for new ingredients, require a notification that must be submitted to the FDA along with evidence of safety. In addition, depending on the type of product, whether a dietary supplement, cosmetic, food, or pharmaceutical, the FDA, under the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, or (the "FDCA"), can regulate:
 
product testing;
 
ingredient testing;
 
 
documentation process, batch records, specifications;
 
product labeling;
 
product manufacturing and storage;
 
NDI status;
 
health claims, advertising and promotion; and
 
product sales and distribution.
 
The FDCA has been amended several times with respect to dietary supplements, most notably by the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (“DSHEA”). DSHEA established a new framework for governing the composition and labeling of dietary supplements. Generally, under DSHEA, dietary ingredients that were marketed in the United States before October 15, 1994 may be used in dietary supplements without notifying the FDA. However, and NDI (a dietary ingredient that was not marketed in the United States before October 15, 1994) is subject to NDI notification that must be submitted to the FDA unless the ingredient has previously been “present in the food supply as an article used for food” without being “chemically altered.” An NDI notification must provide the FDA with evidence of a “history of use or other evidence of safety” establishing that the use of the dietary ingredient “will reasonably be expected to be safe.” An NDI notification must be submitted to the FDA at least 75 days before the initial marketing of the NDI. There can be no assurance that the FDA will accept the evidence of safety for any NDIs that we may want to commercialize, and the FDA’s refusal to accept such evidence could prevent the marketing of such dietary ingredients. The FDA is in the process of developing guidance for the industry that will aim to clarify the FDA’s interpretation of the NDI notification requirements, and this guidance may raise new and significant regulatory barriers for NDIs.
 
For any new ingredient developed by us to be used in conventional food or beverage products in the United States, the product either must be approved by the FDA as a food additive pursuant to a food additive petition ("FAP") or be generally recognized as safe ("GRAS"). The FDA does not have to approve a company’s determination that an ingredient is GRAS. However, a company can notify the FDA of its determination. There can be no assurance that the FDA will approve any FAP for any ingredient that we may want to commercialize, or agree with our determination that an ingredient is GRAS, either of which could prevent the marketing of such ingredient.
 
U.S. Advertising Regulations
 
In addition to FDA regulations, the FTC regulates the advertising of dietary supplements, foods, cosmetics, and over-the-counter ("OTC"), drugs. In recent years, the FTC has instituted numerous enforcement actions against dietary supplement companies for failure to adequately substantiate claims made in advertising or for the use of false or misleading advertising claims. These enforcement actions have often resulted in consent decrees and the payment of civil penalties, restitution, or both, by the companies involved. We may be subject to regulation under various state and local laws that include provisions governing, among other things, the formulation, manufacturing, packaging, labeling, advertising and distribution of dietary supplements, foods, cosmetics and OTC drugs.
 
In addition, The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus reviews national advertising for truthfulness and accuracy. The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus uses a form of alternative dispute resolution, working closely with in-house counsel, marketing executives, research and development departments and outside consultants to decide whether claims have been substantiated.
 
International Regulations
 
Our international sales for the consumer products segment and ingredients segment are subject to foreign government regulations, which vary substantially from country to country. The time required to obtain approval by a foreign country may be longer or shorter than that required for FDA approval, and the requirements may differ. In addition, the export by us of certain of our products that have not yet been cleared or approved for domestic distribution may be subject to FDA export restrictions. We may be unable to obtain on a timely basis, if at all, any foreign government or United States export approvals necessary for the marketing of our products abroad.
 
 
Regulation in Europe is exercised primarily through the European Union, which regulates the combined market of each of its member states. Other countries, such as Switzerland, have voluntarily adopted laws and regulations that mirror those of the European Union with respect to dietary ingredients.
 
Major Customers
 
Major customers who accounted for more than 10% of the Company’s total sales from continuing operations were as follows:
 
 
 
  Years Ended  
 
Major Customers
 
2017
 
 
2016
 
 
2015
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Customer G - Related Party
  19.4%
  * 
  * 
Customer D
  10.2%
  11.0%
  * 
Customer C
  * 
  23.9%
  * 
Customer B
  * 
  * 
  13.6%
 
    
    
    
* Represents less than 10%.
    
    
    
 
Generally, we do not depend upon a single customer, or a few customers, and the loss of any one or more would not have a material adverse effect on the Company. However, due to the volume of consumer products and ingredients we are selling in relation to the overall Company’s sales, we do expect that a few of our customers at times may account for more than 10% of the Company’s sales.
 
Competitive Business Conditions
 
For our consumer products segment, we are in direct competition with some of our former and current ingredients segment customers that use NIAGEN® in the products. We will face reduced competition in the near term as we have reduced the number of NIAGEN® ingredient supply agreements to three as of March 2018.
 
For our ingredients segment, we face little direct competition as the ingredients we offer, such as NIAGEN® and pTeroPure® are backed by intellectual properties exclusively licensed to us. We, however, face strong indirect competition from other ingredient suppliers who may supply alternative ingredients that may have similar characteristics compared to the ingredients we offer. Below is a list of some of the competitors for our ingredients segment.
 
Ingredients Business Segment Competitors
 
Royal DSM (the Netherlands)
 
Glanbia plc (Ireland)
 
BASF (Germany)
 
Lonza Group Ltd (Switzerland)
 
Sabinsa Corporation (India/USA)
 
 
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For the core standards and contract services segment, we face competition within the standardization and quality testing niche of the natural products market. Below is a current list of certain competitors. These competitors have already developed reference standards or contract services or are currently taking steps to develop botanical standards or contract services. Of the competitors listed, some currently sell fine chemicals, which, by default, are sometimes used as reference standards, and others are closely aligned with our market niche to reduce any barriers to entry if these companies wish to compete.
 
Core Standards and Contract Services Segment Competitors
 
Sigma-Aldrich (USA)
 
Phytolab (Germany)
 
US Pharmacopoeia (USA)
 
Extrasynthese (France)
 
For regulatory consulting operations, there are numerous competitors, including some that are much larger companies with more resources. The success in winning and retaining clients is heavily dependent on the efforts and reputation of our consultants. We believe the barriers to entry areas of our consulting expertise are low.
 
Patents, Trademarks, Licenses, Franchises, Concessions, Royalty Agreements or Labor Contracts, Including Duration
 
We currently protect our intellectual property through patents, trademarks, designs and copyrights on our products and services. Our business strategy is to use the intellectual property harnessed from our core standards and contract services segment as the basis for providing new proprietary ingredients to our customers. Our strategy is to develop these proprietary ingredients on our own as well as to license our intellectual property to companies who will commercialize it. We anticipate that the net result will be a long-term flow of intellectual property milestone and royalty payments to us.
 
The following table sets forth our existing patents and those to which we have licensed rights:
 
 
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Patent Number
 
Title
 
Filing Date
 
Issued Date
 
Expires
 
Licensor
 
6,852,342
Compounds for altering food intake in humans
3/26/2002
2/8/2005
2/12/2022
Co-owned by Avoca, Inc. and ChromaDex
7,205,284
Potent immunostimulants from microalgae
7/10/2001
4/17/2007
3/9/2022
Licensed from University of Mississippi
7,776,326
Methods and compositions for treating neuropathies
6/3/2005
8/17/2010
6/3/2025
Licensed from Washington University
7,846,452
Potent immunostimulatory extracts from microalgae
7/28/2005
10/7/2010
7/28/2025
Licensed from University of Mississippi
8,106,184
Nicotinyl Riboside Compositions and Methods of Use
11/17/2006
1/31/2012
11/17/2026
Licensed from Cornell University
8,114,626
Yeast strain and method for using the same to produce Nicotinamide Riboside
3/26/2009
2/14/2012
3/26/2029
Licensed from Dartmouth College
8,133,917
Pterostilbene as an agonist for the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha isoform
10/25/2010
3/13/2012
10/25/2030
Licensed from the University of Mississippi and U.S. Department of Agriculture
8,197,807
Nicotinamide Riboside Kinase compositions and Methods for using the same
11/20/2007
6/12/2012
11/20/2027
Licensed from Dartmouth College
8,227,510
Combine use of pterostilbene and quercetin to produce cancer treatment medicaments
7/19/2005
7/24/2012
7/19/2025
Licensed from Green Molecular S.L.
8,252,845
Pterostilbene as an agonist for the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha isoform
2/1/2012
8/28/2012
2/1/2032
Licensed from the University of Mississippi and U.S. Department of Agriculture
8,318,807
Pterostilbene Caffeine Co-Crystal Forms
7/30/2010
11/27/2012
7/30/2030
Licensed from Laurus Labs Private Limited
8,383,086
Nicotinamide Riboside Kinase compositions and Methods for using the same
4/12/2012
2/26/2013
4/12/2032
Licensed from Dartmouth College
8,399,712
Pterostilbene cocrystals
7/30/2010
3/19/2013
7/30/2020
Licensed from Laurus Labs Private Limited
8,524,782
Key intermediate for the preparation of Stilbenes, solid forms of Pterostilbene, and methods for making the same
6/1/2009
9/3/2013
6/1/2029
Licensed from Laurus Labs Private Limited
8,809,400
Method to Ameliorate Oxidative Stress and Improve Working Memory Via Pterostilbene Administration
6/10/2008
8/19/2014
6/10/2028
Licensed from the University of Mississippi and U.S. Department of Agriculture
8,841,350
Method for treating non-melanoma skin cancer by inducing UDP-Glucuronosyltransferase activity using pterostilbene
5/8/2012
9/22/2014
5/8/2032
Co-owned by ChromaDex and University of California
8,945,653
Extracted whole kernels and improved processed and processable corn produced thereby
5/23/2011
2/3/2015
5/23/2031
Licensed from Suntava, LLC
9,028,887
Method improve spatial memory via pterostilbene administration
5/22/2014
5/12/2015
5/22/2034
Licensed from the University of Mississippi and U.S. Department of Agriculture
9,439,875
Anxiolytic effect of pterostilbene
5/11/2011
9/13/2016
5/11/2031
Licensed from the University of Mississippi and U.S. Department of Agriculture
 
Manufacturing
 
We currently utilize third-party manufacturers to produce and supply the dietary supplements, ingredients, products, and services. Following the receipt of products or product components from third-party manufacturers, we currently inspect products, as needed. We expect to reserve the right to inspect and ensure conformance of each product and product component to our specifications. We will also consider manufacturing certain products or product components internally, if our capacity permits, when demand or quality requirements make it appropriate to do so.
 
 
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We intend to work with manufacturing companies that can meet the standards imposed by the FDA, the International Organization for Standardization and the quality standards that we will require for our own internal policies and procedures. We expect to monitor and manage supplier performance through a corrective action program developed by us. We believe these manufacturing relationships can minimize our capital investment, help control costs, and allow us to compete with larger volume manufacturers of dietary supplements, phytochemicals and ingredients.
 
Sources and Availability of Raw Materials
 
For all three business segments, we believe that we have identified reliable sources and suppliers of ingredients, chemicals, phytochemicals and reference materials that will provide products in compliance with our guidelines.
 
Research and Development
 
We have completed the first human clinical trial on our proprietary ingredient NR and the results demonstrated that a single dose of NR resulted in statistically significant increases in the co-enzyme NAD+ in healthy human volunteers. In addition, NR was also found to be safe as no adverse events were observed. In 2015, NR was recognized by the FDA as a “New Dietary Ingredient.” NR was also “Generally Recognized as Safe” by an independent panel of expert toxicologists and in August 2016, the FDA issued a GRAS No Objection Letter.
 
We are currently completing a second human clinical trial on NR which evaluated the effect of repeated doses of NIAGEN® on NAD+ metabolite concentrations in blood, urine and muscle in healthy adults. This study evaluated the impacts of three dose levels of NIAGEN® compared to a placebo. One quarter of subjects received the low dose of NIAGEN® (100 mg), one quarter received the moderate dose of NIAGEN® (300 mg), one quarter received the higher dose of NIAGEN® (1,000 mg) and one quarter received the placebo. Preliminary results show that NAD levels rose in response to the dose of NIAGEN® and the elevated blood NAD levels were sustained throughout the 8-week treatment period.
 
We have also been working closely with the National Institute of Health under a collaborative agreement on a therapeutic indication for NR as a treatment of Cockayne Syndrome, a rare pediatric orphan disease.
 
Through our research and development laboratory in Longmont, Colorado, we intend to manufacture at a process scale for products that we are planning to take to market as well as explore cost saving processes for existing products.
 
We plan to utilize our expertise in natural products to license and develop new intellectual property that can be sold to clients in our target industries.
 
Research and development costs for the fiscal years ended December 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016 were approximately $4.0 million, $2.5 million and $0.9 million, respectively. Please refer to Item 8 Financial Statements and Supplementary Data of this Annual Report on Form 10-K for research and development costs for each of the business segments for the last three fiscal years.
 
Environmental Compliance
 
We will incur significant expense in complying with GMPs and safe handling and disposal of materials used in our research and manufacturing activities. We do not anticipate incurring additional material expense to comply with federal, state and local environmental laws and regulations.
 
 
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Working Capital
 
The Company’s working capital at the end of years 2017 and 2016 was approximately $7.4 million and $7.8 million, respectively. The Company measures working capital by adding trade receivables and inventories, and subtracting accounts payable. Most of the working capital is consumed by our consumer products segment and ingredients segment as the operations require a large amount of inventory to be on hand. As the consumer products segment and ingredients segment grow, more working capital will likely be needed to support the operations.
 
Backlog Orders
 
For our consumer products segment where we ship products internationally to a distributor, we may have a backlog from time to time as the production of TRU NIAGEN® finished bottles require up to three months lead time by our third-party contract manufacturers. As of December 30, 2017, we did not have any backlog orders from the distributor as all orders received have been shipped. For products that are directly shipped to consumers, we have minimal backlog orders as we carry inventory on hand to ship upon the receipt of order.
 
For our ingredients segment, we also have minimal backlog orders as we carry inventory on hand for most of the products we offer and we ship upon the receipt of customer’s order.
 
For our core standards and contract services segment, we normally have a small backlog of orders for reference standards. These orders amount to approximately $25,000 or less. Because we list over 1,800 phytochemicals and 400 botanical reference materials in our catalog, we may not always have the items in stock at the time of customers’ orders. These backlog orders are normally fulfilled within 2 to 3 months.
 
Facilities
 
For information on our facilities, see “Properties” in Item 2 of this Form 10-K.
 
Employees
 
As of December 30, 2017, ChromaDex (including Healthspan Research LLC and ChromaDex Analytics, Inc.) had 74 employees, 71 of whom were full-time and three of whom were part-time. We consider our relationships with our employees to be satisfactory. None of our employees is covered by a collective bargaining agreement.
 
Financial Information about Geographic Areas
 
Please refer to Item 8 Financial Statements and Supplementary Data of this Annual Report on Form 10-K for financial information about geographic areas.
 
Available Information
 
Our Internet website address is www.chromadex.com. We make available free of charge on our website our Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, as soon as reasonably practical after we file such material with, or furnish it to, the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC. This information is also available in print to any shareholder who requests it, with any such requests addressed to ChromaDex Corporation, 10005 Muirlands Blvd. Ste G, Irvine, CA 92618. Certain of these documents may also be obtained by calling the SEC at 1-800-SEC-0330. The SEC also maintains an Internet website that contains reports, and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC at www.sec.gov. We also make available free of charge on our website our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics, and the Charters of our Audit Committee, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, and Compensation Committee of our Board of Directors.
 
 
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 Item 1A.
Risk Factors
 
Investing in our common stock involves a high degree of risk. Current investors and potential investors should consider carefully the risks and uncertainties described below together with all other information contained in this Form 10-K before making investment decisions with respect to our common stock. If any of the following risks occurs, our business, financial condition, results of operations and our future growth prospects would be materially and adversely affected. Under these circumstances, the trading price and value of our common stock could decline, resulting in a loss of all or part of your investment. The risks and uncertainties described in this Form 10-K are not the only ones facing our Company. Additional risks and uncertainties of which we are not presently aware, or that we currently consider immaterial, may also affect our business operations.
 
Risks Related to our Company and our Business
 
We have a history of operating losses, may need additional financing to meet our future long-term capital requirements and may be unable to raise sufficient capital on favorable terms or at all.
 
We have a history of losses and may continue to incur operating and net losses for the foreseeable future. We incurred net losses of approximately $11.4 million, $2.9 million and $2.8 million for the years ended December 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016, respectively. As of December 30, 2017, our accumulated deficit was approximately $56.6 million. We have not achieved profitability on an annual basis. We may not be able to reach a level of revenue to continue to achieve and sustain profitability. If our revenues grow slower than anticipated, or if operating expenses exceed expectations, then we may not be able to achieve and sustain profitability in the near future or at all, which may depress our stock price.
 
As of December 30, 2017, our cash and cash equivalents totaled approximately $45.4 million. While we anticipate that our current cash, cash equivalents and cash to be generated from operations will be sufficient to meet our projected operating plans into 2019, we may require additional funds, either through additional equity or debt financings or collaborative agreements or from other sources. We have no commitments to obtain such additional financing, and we may not be able to obtain any such additional financing on terms favorable to us, or at all. If adequate financing is not available, the Company will further delay, postpone or terminate product and service expansion and curtail certain selling, general and administrative operations. The inability to raise additional financing may have a material adverse effect on the future performance of the Company.
 
Our capital requirements will depend on many factors.
 
Our capital requirements will depend on many factors, including: 
 
the revenues generated by sales of our products;
 
the costs associated with expanding our sales and marketing efforts, including efforts to hire independent agents and sales representatives and obtain required regulatory approvals and clearances;
 
the expenses we incur in developing and commercializing our products, including the cost of obtaining and maintaining regulatory approvals; and
 
unanticipated general and administrative expenses, including expenses involved with our ongoing litigation with Elysium.
 
 
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Because of these factors, we may seek to raise additional capital prior to March 2019 both to meet our projected operating plans after March 2019 and to fund our longer term strategic objectives. Additional capital may come from public and private equity or debt offerings, borrowings under lines of credit or other sources. These additional funds may not be available on favorable terms, or at all. There can be no assurance we will be successful in raising these additional funds. Furthermore, if we issue equity or debt securities to raise additional funds, our existing stockholders may experience dilution and the new equity or debt securities we issue may have rights, preferences and privileges senior to those of our existing stockholders. In addition, if we raise additional funds through collaboration, licensing or other similar arrangements, it may be necessary to relinquish valuable rights to our products or proprietary technologies, or grant licenses on terms that are not favorable to us. If we cannot raise funds on acceptable terms, we may not be able to develop or enhance our products, obtain the required regulatory clearances or approvals, execute our business plan, take advantage of future opportunities, or respond to competitive pressures or unanticipated customer requirements. Any of these events could adversely affect our ability to achieve our development and commercialization goals, which could have a material and adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition.
 
We are currently engaged in substantial and complex litigation with Elysium Health, Inc. and Elysium Health LLC (“Elysium”), the outcome of which could materially harm our business and financial results.
 
We are currently engaged in litigation with Elysium, a customer that represented 19% of our net sales for the year ended December 31, 2016. Elysium has made no purchases from us since August 9, 2016. The litigation includes multiple complaints and counterclaims by us and Elysium in venues in California and New York, as well as a petition by Elysium with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for inter partes review of one patent to which we are the exclusive licensee. For further details on this litigation, please refer to Part I, Item 3 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
 
The litigation is substantial and complex, and it has and could continue to cause us to incur significant costs, as well as distract our management over an extended period. The litigation may substantially disrupt our business and we cannot assure you that we will be able to resolve the litigation on terms favorable to us. If we are unsuccessful in resolving the litigation on favorable terms to us, we may be forced to pay compensatory and punitive damages and restitution for any royalty payments that we received from Elysium, which payments could materially harm our business, or be subject to other remedies, including injunctive relief. Further, if we are unsuccessful in resolving the Patent Claim on favorable terms, or if the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office invalidates the patent subject to the inter partes review, we may lose the competitive advantage that is provided by the subject intellectual property rights, which would have a material adverse effect on our business. In addition, Elysium has not paid us approximately $2.7 million for previous purchase orders. We may not collect the full amount owed to us by Elysium, and as a result, we may have to write off a large portion of that amount as uncollectible expense. We cannot predict the outcome of our litigation with Elysium, which could have any of the results described above or other results that could materially harm our business.
 
Interruptions in our relationships or declines in our business with major customers could materially ham our business and financial results.
 
Two of our customers accounted for approximately 30% of our sales during the year ended December 30, 2017. Any interruption in our relationship or decline in our business with these customers or other customers upon whom we become highly dependent could cause harm to our business. Factors that could influence our relationship with our customers upon whom we may become highly dependent include:
 
our ability to maintain our products at prices that are competitive with those of our competitors;
 
our ability to maintain quality levels for our products sufficient to meet the expectations of our customers;
 
our ability to produce, ship and deliver a sufficient quantity of our products in a timely manner to meet the needs of our customers;
 
 
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our ability to continue to develop and launch new products that our customers feel meet their needs and requirements, with respect to cost, timeliness, features, performance and other factors;
 
our ability to provide timely, responsive and accurate customer support to our customers; and
 
the ability of our customers to effectively deliver, market and increase sales of their own products based on ours.
 
In an effort to promote and better market our consumer products, we have made a strategic decision to not ship NIAGEN® to certain ingredient segment customers, which could potentially harm our overall sales.
 
By developing and selling TRU NIAGEN®, our own consumer standalone NIAGEN® supplement product, we are in direct competition with some of our current ingredients segment customers that use NIAGEN® in the products that are sold to consumers. In an effort to promote and better market our consumer product, we have made a strategic decision not to ship NIAGEN® to certain ingredients segment customers, which will have a negative effect on our ingredient segment sales. For example, sales for our ingredients segment for the year ended December 30, 2017 decreased 34% compared to the year ended December 31, 2016. Additionally, as our own consumer product becomes more prominent and widely adopted by consumers, the competition with our consumer product could potentially further harm the sales of our ingredients segment business, and our sales of NIAGEN® for our ingredients segment may further decrease. The sales of our consumer product may not outweigh the decrease in sales of our ingredients segment, which would lead to an overall decrease in our sales. Sales for our ingredients segment represented approximately 53% of the Company’s revenue for 2017, and sales of NIAGEN® accounted for approximately 70% of our ingredient segment’s total sales in 2017, or 37% of our overall revenue, so any harm to our NIAGEN® ingredient sales, if not compensated for by sales of our consumer product, may materially and negatively affect our business.
 
Our future success largely depends on sales of our TRU NIAGEN® product.
 
In connection with our strategic shift from an ingredient and testing company to a consumer focused company, we expect to generate a significant percentage of our future revenue from sales of our TRU NIAGEN® product. As a result, the market acceptance of TRU NIAGEN® is critical to our continued success, and if we are unable to expand market acceptance of TRU NIAGEN®, our business, results of operations, financial condition, liquidity and growth prospects would be adversely affected.
 
Decline in the state of the global economy and financial market conditions could adversely affect our ability to conduct business and our results of operations.
 
Global economic and financial market conditions, including disruptions in the credit markets and the impact of the global economic deterioration may materially impact our customers and other parties with whom we do business. These conditions could negatively affect our future sales of our ingredient lines as many consumers consider the purchase of nutritional products discretionary. Decline in general economic and financial market conditions could materially adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. Specifically, the impact of these volatile and negative conditions may include decreased demand for our products and services, a decrease in our ability to accurately forecast future product trends and demand, and a negative impact on our ability to timely collect receivables from our customers. The foregoing economic conditions may lead to increased levels of bankruptcies, restructurings and liquidations for our customers, scaling back of research and development expenditures, delays in planned projects and shifts in business strategies for many of our customers. Such events could, in turn, adversely affect our business through loss of sales.
 
 
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We may need to increase the size of our organization, and we can provide no assurance that we will successfully expand operations or manage growth effectively.
 
Our significant increase in the scope and the scale of our product launches, including the hiring of additional personnel, has resulted in significantly higher operating expenses. As a result, we anticipate that our operating expenses will continue to increase. Expansion of our operations may also cause a significant demand on our management, finances and other resources. Our ability to manage the anticipated future growth, should it occur, will depend upon a significant expansion of our accounting and other internal management systems and the implementation and subsequent improvement of a variety of systems, procedures and controls. There can be no assurance that significant problems in these areas will not occur. Any failure to expand these areas and implement and improve such systems, procedures and controls in an efficient manner at a pace consistent with our business could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. There can be no assurance that our attempts to expand our marketing, sales, manufacturing and customer support efforts will be successful or will result in additional sales or profitability in any future period. As a result of the expansion of our operations and the anticipated increase in our operating expenses, as well as the difficulty in forecasting revenue levels, we expect to continue to experience significant fluctuations in our results of operations.
 
Changes in our business strategy, including entering the consumer product market, or restructuring of our businesses may increase our costs or otherwise affect the profitability of our businesses.
 
As changes in our business environment occur we may adjust our business strategies to meet these changes or we may otherwise decide to restructure our operations or businesses or assets. In addition, external events including changing technology, changing consumer patterns and changes in macroeconomic conditions may impair the value of our assets. When these changes or events occur, we may incur costs to change our business strategy and may need to write down the value of assets. In any of these events, our costs may increase, we may have significant charges associated with the write-down of assets or returns on new investments may be lower than prior to the change in strategy or restructuring. For example, if we are not successful in developing our consumer product business, our sales may decrease and our costs may increase.
 
The success of  our consumer product and ingredient business is linked to the size and growth rate of the vitamin, mineral and dietary supplement market and an adverse change in the size or growth rate of that market could have a material adverse effect on us.
 
An adverse change in the size or growth rate of the vitamin, mineral and dietary supplement market could have a material adverse effect on our business. Underlying market conditions are subject to change based on economic conditions, consumer preferences and other factors that are beyond our control, including media attention and scientific research, which may be positive or negative.
 
Our future growth and profitability of our consumer product business will depend in large part upon the effectiveness and efficiency of our marketing efforts and our ability to select effective markets and media in which to advertise.
 
Our consumer products business success depends on our ability to attract and retain customers, which significantly depends on our marketing practices. Our future growth and profitability will depend in large part upon the effectiveness and efficiency of our marketing efforts, including our ability to:
 
create greater awareness of our brand;
 
identify the most effective and efficient levels of spending in each market, media and specific media vehicle;
 
determine the appropriate creative messages and media mix for advertising, marketing and promotional expenditures;
 
 
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effectively manage marketing costs (including creative and media) to maintain acceptable customer acquisition costs;
 
acquire cost-effective television advertising;
 
select the most effective markets, media and specific media vehicles in which to advertise; and
 
convert consumer inquiries into actual orders.
 
Unfavorable publicity or consumer perception of our products and any similar products distributed by other companies could have a material adverse effect on our business.
 
We believe the nutritional supplement market is highly dependent upon consumer perception regarding the safety, efficacy and quality of nutritional supplements generally, as well as of products distributed specifically by us. Consumer perception of our products can be significantly influenced by scientific research or findings, regulatory investigations, litigation, national media attention and other publicity regarding the consumption of nutritional supplements. We cannot assure you that future scientific research, findings, regulatory proceedings, litigation, media attention or other favorable research findings or publicity will be favorable to the nutritional supplement market or any product, or consistent with earlier publicity. Future research reports, findings, regulatory proceedings, litigation, media attention or other publicity that are perceived as less favorable than, or that question, such earlier research reports, findings or publicity could have a material adverse effect on the demand for our products and consequently on our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.
 
Our dependence upon consumer perceptions means that adverse scientific research reports, findings, regulatory proceedings, litigation, media attention or other publicity, if accurate or with merit, could have a material adverse effect on the demand for our products, the availability and pricing of our ingredients, and our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows. Further, adverse public reports or other media attention regarding the safety, efficacy and quality of nutritional supplements in general, or our products specifically, or associating the consumption of nutritional supplements with illness, could have such a material adverse effect.  Any such adverse public reports or other media attention could arise even if the adverse effects associated with such products resulted from consumers’ failure to consume such products appropriately or as directed and the content of such public reports and other media attention may be beyond our control.
 
We may incur material product liability claims, which could increase our costs and adversely affect our reputation, revenues and operating income.
 
As a consumer product and ingredient supplier we market and manufacture products designed for human and animal consumption, we are subject to product liability claims if the use of our products is alleged to have resulted in injury. Our products consist of vitamins, minerals, herbs and other ingredients that are classified as foods, dietary supplements, or natural health products, and, in most cases, are not necessarily subject to pre-market regulatory approval in the United States. Some of our products contain innovative ingredients that do not have long histories of human consumption. Previously unknown adverse reactions resulting from human consumption of these ingredients could occur. In addition, the products we sell are produced by third-party manufacturers. As a marketer of products manufactured by third parties, we also may be liable for various product liability claims for products we do not manufacture. We may, in the future, be subject to various product liability claims, including, among others, that our products include inadequate instructions for use or inadequate warnings concerning possible side effects and interactions with other substances. A product liability claim against us could result in increased costs and could adversely affect our reputation with our customers, which, in turn, could have a materially adverse effect on our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.
 
 
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We acquire a significant amount of key ingredients for our products from foreign suppliers, and may be negatively affected by the risks associated with international trade and importation issues.
 
We acquire a significant amount of key ingredients for a number of our products from suppliers outside of the United States, particularly India and China.  Accordingly, the acquisition of these ingredients is subject to the risks generally associated with importing raw materials, including, among other factors, delays in shipments, changes in economic and political conditions, quality assurance, nonconformity to specifications or laws and regulations, tariffs, trade disputes and foreign currency fluctuations.  While we have a supplier certification program and audit and inspect our suppliers’ facilities as necessary both in the United States and internationally, we cannot assure you that raw materials received from suppliers outside of the United States will conform to all specifications, laws and regulations.  There have in the past been quality and safety issues in our industry with certain items imported from overseas.  We may incur additional expenses and experience shipment delays due to preventative measures adopted by the Indian and U.S. governments, our suppliers and our company.
 
The insurance industry has become more selective in offering some types of coverage and we may not be able to obtain insurance coverage in the future.
 
The insurance industry has become more selective in offering some types of insurance, such as product liability, product recall, property and directors’ and officers’ liability insurance. Our current insurance program is consistent with both our past level of coverage and our risk management policies. However, we cannot assure you that we will be able to obtain comparable insurance coverage on favorable terms, or at all, in the future.  Certain of our customers as well as prospective customers require that we maintain minimum levels of coverage for our products. Lack of coverage or coverage below these minimum required levels could cause these customers to materially change business terms or to cease doing business with us entirely.
 
If we experience product recalls, we may incur significant and unexpected costs, and our business reputation could be adversely affected.
 
We may be exposed to product recalls and adverse public relations if our products are alleged to be mislabeled or cause injury or illness, or if we are alleged to have violated governmental regulations. A product recall could result in substantial and unexpected expenditures, which would reduce operating profit and cash flow. In addition, a product recall may require significant management attention. Product recalls may hurt the value of our brands and lead to decreased demand for our products. Product recalls also may lead to increased scrutiny by federal, state or international regulatory agencies of our operations and increased litigation and could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.
 
We depend on key personnel, the loss of any of which could negatively affect our business.
 
We depend greatly on Frank L. Jaksch Jr., Robert N. Fried, Kevin M. Farr, Mark J. Friedman and Troy A. Rhonemus, who are our Chief Executive Officer, President and Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer, General Counsel and Executive Vice President, respectively. We also depend greatly on other key employees, including key scientific and marketing personnel. In general, only highly qualified and trained scientists have the necessary skills to develop our products and provide our services. Only marketing personnel with specific experience and knowledge in health care are able to effectively market our products.  In addition, some of our manufacturing, quality control, safety and compliance, information technology, sales and e-commerce related positions are highly technical as well. We face intense competition for these professionals from our competitors, customers, marketing partners and other companies throughout the industries in which we compete. Our success will depend, in part, upon our ability to attract and retain additional skilled personnel, which will require substantial additional funds. There can be no assurance that we will be able to find and attract additional qualified employees or retain any such personnel. Our inability to hire qualified personnel, the loss of services of our key personnel, or the loss of services of executive officers or key employees that may be hired in the future may have a material and adverse effect on our business.
 
 
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Our operating results may fluctuate significantly as a result of a variety of factors, many of which are outside of our control.
 
We are subject to the following factors, among others, that may negatively affect our operating results:
 
the announcement or introduction of new products by our competitors;
 
our ability to upgrade and develop our systems and infrastructure to accommodate growth;
 
the decision by significant customers to reduce purchases;
 
disputes and litigation with competitors;
 
our ability to attract and retain key personnel in a timely and cost-effective manner;
 
technical difficulties;
 
the amount and timing of operating costs and capital expenditures relating to the expansion of our business, operations and infrastructure;
 
regulation by federal, state or local governments; and
 
general economic conditions as well as economic conditions specific to the healthcare industry.
 
As a result of our limited operating history and the nature of the markets in which we compete, it is extremely difficult for us to make accurate forecasts. We have based our current and future expense levels largely on our investment plans and estimates of future events although certain of our expense levels are, to a large extent, fixed. Assuming our products reach the market, we may be unable to adjust spending in a timely manner to compensate for any unexpected revenue shortfall. Accordingly, any significant shortfall in revenues relative to our planned expenditures would have an immediate adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition. Further, as a strategic response to changes in the competitive environment, we may from time to time make certain pricing, service or marketing decisions that could have a material and adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition. Due to the foregoing factors, our revenues and operating results are and will remain difficult to forecast.
 
We face significant competition, including changes in pricing.
 
The markets for our products and services are both competitive and price sensitive. Many of our competitors have significant financial, operations, sales and marketing resources and experience in research and development. Competitors could develop new technologies that compete with our products and services or even render our products obsolete. If a competitor develops superior technology or cost-effective alternatives to our products and services, our business could be seriously harmed.
 
The markets for some of our products are also subject to specific competitive risks because these markets are highly price competitive. Our competitors have competed in the past by lowering prices on certain products. If they do so again, we may be forced to respond by lowering our prices. This would reduce sales revenues and increase losses. Failure to anticipate and respond to price competition may also impact sales and aggravate losses.
 
We believe that customers in our markets display a significant amount of loyalty to their supplier of a particular product. To the extent we are not the first to develop, offer and/or supply new products, customers may buy from our competitors or make materials themselves, causing our competitive position to suffer.
 
Many of our competitors are larger and have greater financial and other resources than we do.
 
Our products compete and will compete with other similar products produced by our competitors. These competitive products could be marketed by well-established, successful companies that possess greater financial, marketing, distributional, personnel and other resources than we possess. Using these resources, these companies can implement extensive advertising and promotional campaigns, both generally and in response to specific marketing efforts by competitors, and enter into new markets more rapidly to introduce new products. In certain instances, competitors with greater financial resources also may be able to enter a market in direct competition with us, offering attractive marketing tools to encourage the sale of products that compete with our products or present cost features that consumers may find attractive.
 
 
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We may never develop any additional products to commercialize.
 
We have invested a substantial amount of our time and resources in developing various new products. Commercialization of these products will require additional development, clinical evaluation, regulatory approval, significant marketing efforts and substantial additional investment before they can provide us with any revenue. Despite our efforts, these products may not become commercially successful products for a number of reasons, including but not limited to:
 
we may not be able to obtain regulatory approvals for our products, or the approved indication may be narrower than we seek;
 
our products may not prove to be safe and effective in clinical trials;
 
we may experience delays in our development program;
 
any products that are approved may not be accepted in the marketplace;
 
we may not have adequate financial or other resources to complete the development or to commence the commercialization of our products or will not have adequate financial or other resources to achieve significant commercialization of our products;
 
we may not be able to manufacture any of our products in commercial quantities or at an acceptable cost;
 
rapid technological change may make our products obsolete;
 
we may be unable to effectively protect our intellectual property rights or we may become subject to claims that our activities have infringed the intellectual property rights of others; and
 
we may be unable to obtain or defend patent rights for our products.
 
We may not be able to partner with others for technological capabilities and new products and services.
 
Our ability to remain competitive may depend, in part, on our ability to continue to seek partners that can offer technological improvements and improve existing products and services that are offered to our customers. We are committed to attempting to keep pace with technological change, to stay abreast of technology changes and to look for partners that will develop new products and services for our customer base. We cannot assure prospective investors that we will be successful in finding partners or be able to continue to incorporate new developments in technology, to improve existing products and services, or to develop successful new products and services, nor can we be certain that newly developed products and services will perform satisfactorily or be widely accepted in the marketplace or that the costs involved in these efforts will not be substantial.
 
If we fail to maintain adequate quality standards for our products and services, our business may be adversely affected and our reputation harmed.
 
Dietary supplement, nutraceutical, food and beverage, functional food, analytical laboratories, pharmaceutical and cosmetic customers are often subject to rigorous quality standards to obtain and maintain regulatory approval of their products and the manufacturing processes that generate them. A failure to maintain, or, in some instances, upgrade our quality standards to meet our customers’ needs, could cause damage to our reputation and potentially substantial sales losses.
 
 
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Our ability to protect our intellectual property and proprietary technology through patents and other means is uncertain and may be inadequate, which would have a material and adverse effect on us.
 
Our success depends significantly on our ability to protect our proprietary rights to the technologies used in our products. We rely on patent protection, as well as a combination of copyright, trade secret and trademark laws and nondisclosure, confidentiality and other contractual restrictions to protect our proprietary technology, including our licensed technology. However, these legal means afford only limited protection and may not adequately protect our rights or permit us to gain or keep any competitive advantage. For example, our pending United States and foreign patent applications may not issue as patents in a form that will be advantageous to us or may issue and be subsequently successfully challenged by others and invalidated. In addition, our pending patent applications include claims to material aspects of our products and procedures that are not currently protected by issued patents. Both the patent application process and the process of managing patent disputes can be time consuming and expensive. Competitors may be able to design around our patents or develop products which provide outcomes which are comparable or even superior to ours. Steps that we have taken to protect our intellectual property and proprietary technology, including entering into confidentiality agreements and intellectual property assignment agreements with some of our officers, employees, consultants and advisors, may not provide us with meaningful protection for our trade secrets or other proprietary information in the event of unauthorized use or disclosure or other breaches of the agreements. Furthermore, the laws of foreign countries may not protect our intellectual property rights to the same extent as do the laws of the United States.
 
In the event a competitor infringes our licensed or pending patent or other intellectual property rights, enforcing those rights may be costly, uncertain, difficult and time consuming. Even if successful, litigation to enforce our intellectual property rights or to defend our patents against challenge could be expensive and time consuming and could divert our management’s attention. As further described in Part I, Item 3 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, we are currently involved in patent litigation, as Elysium is claiming that we misused certain patent rights, and has filed a petition with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for inter partes review of two patents to which we are the exclusive licensee. The U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board denied institution of an inter partes review for one patent, but granted institution on an inter partes review as to certain claims for the other patent. If we are unsuccessful in resolving the patent misuse claim on favorable terms, or if the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office invalidates the patent still subject to the inter partes review, we may lose the competitive advantage that is provided by the subject intellectual property rights, which could have a material adverse effect on our business. We may not have sufficient resources to enforce our intellectual property rights or to defend our patents rights against a challenge. The failure to obtain patents and/or protect our intellectual property rights could have a material and adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition.
 
Our patents and licenses may be subject to challenge on validity grounds, and our patent applications may be rejected.
 
We rely on our patents, patent applications, licenses and other intellectual property rights to give us a competitive advantage. Whether a patent is valid, or whether a patent application should be granted, is a complex matter of science and law, and therefore we cannot be certain that, if challenged, our patents, patent applications and/or other intellectual property rights would be upheld. If one or more of those patents, patent applications, licenses and other intellectual property rights are invalidated, rejected or found unenforceable, that could reduce or eliminate any competitive advantage we might otherwise have had. For example, as further described in Part I, Item 3 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, we are currently involved in patent litigation, as Elysium is claiming that we misused certain patent rights, and has filed a petition with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for inter partes review of two patents to which we are the exclusive licensee. The U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board denied institution of an inter partes review for one patent, but granted institution on an inter partes review as to certain claims for the other patent. If we are unsuccessful in resolving the patent misuse claim on favorable terms, or if the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office invalidates the patent subject to the inter partes review, we may lose the competitive advantage that is provided by the subject intellectual property rights, which could have a material adverse effect on our business.
 
We may become subject to claims of infringement or misappropriation of the intellectual property rights of others, which could prohibit us from developing our products, require us to obtain licenses from third parties or to develop non-infringing alternatives and subject us to substantial monetary damages.
 
Third parties could, in the future, assert infringement or misappropriation claims against us with respect to products we develop. Whether a product infringes a patent or misappropriates other intellectual property involves complex legal and factual issues, the determination of which is often uncertain. Therefore, we cannot be certain that we have not infringed the intellectual property rights of others. There may be third-party patents or patent applications with claims to materials, formulations, methods of manufacture or methods for use related to the use or manufacture of our products, and our potential competitors may assert that some aspect of our product infringes their patents. Because patent applications may take years to issue, there also may be applications now pending of which we are unaware that may later result in issued patents upon which our products could infringe. There also may be existing patents or pending patent applications of which we are unaware upon which our products may inadvertently infringe.
 
 
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Any infringement or misappropriation claim could cause us to incur significant costs, place significant strain on our financial resources, divert management’s attention from our business and harm our reputation. If the relevant patents in such claim were upheld as valid and enforceable and we were found to infringe them, we could be prohibited from manufacturing or selling any product that is found to infringe unless we could obtain licenses to use the technology covered by the patent or are able to design around the patent. We may be unable to obtain such a license on terms acceptable to us, if at all, and we may not be able to redesign our products to avoid infringement, which could materially impact our revenue. A court could also order us to pay compensatory damages for such infringement, plus prejudgment interest and could, in addition, treble the compensatory damages and award attorney fees. These damages could be substantial and could harm our reputation, business, financial condition and operating results. A court also could enter orders that temporarily, preliminarily or permanently enjoin us and our customers from making, using, or selling products, and could enter an order mandating that we undertake certain remedial activities. Depending on the nature of the relief ordered by the court, we could become liable for additional damages to third parties.
 
The prosecution and enforcement of patents licensed to us by third parties are not within our control. Without these technologies, our products may not be successful and our business would be harmed if the patents were infringed on or misappropriated without action by such third parties.
 
We have obtained licenses from third parties for patents and patent application rights related to the products we are developing, allowing us to use intellectual property rights owned by or licensed to these third parties. We do not control the maintenance, prosecution, enforcement or strategy for many of these patents or patent application rights and as such are dependent in part on the owners of the intellectual property rights to maintain their viability. If any third party licensor is unable to successfully maintain, prosecute or enforce the licensed patents and/or patent application rights related to our products, we may become subject to infringement or misappropriate claims or lose our competitive advantage. Without access to these technologies or suitable design-around or alternative technology options, our ability to conduct our business could be impaired significantly. As further described in Part I, Item 3 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, Elysium has filed a petition with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for inter partes review of two patents to which we are the exclusive licensee. The U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board denied institution of an inter partes review for one patent, but granted institution on an inter partes review as to certain claims for the other patent. Pursuant to the exclusive license agreement with the Trustees of Dartmouth College (“Dartmouth”), Dartmouth controls all future preparation, filing, prosecution and maintenance of the patent subject to such inter partes review.
 
We may be subject to damages resulting from claims that we, our employees, or our independent contractors have wrongfully used or disclosed alleged trade secrets of others.
 
Some of our employees were previously employed at other dietary supplement, nutraceutical, food and beverage, functional food, analytical laboratories, pharmaceutical and cosmetic companies. We may also hire additional employees who are currently employed at other such companies, including our competitors. Additionally, consultants or other independent agents with which we may contract may be or have been in a contractual arrangement with one or more of our competitors. We may be subject to claims that these employees or independent contractors have used or disclosed such other party’s trade secrets or other proprietary information. Litigation may be necessary to defend against these claims. Even if we are successful in defending against these claims, litigation could result in substantial costs and be a distraction to our management. If we fail to defend such claims, in addition to paying monetary damages, we may lose valuable intellectual property rights or personnel. A loss of key personnel or their work product could hamper or prevent our ability to market existing or new products, which could severely harm our business.
 
 
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Litigation may harm our business.
 
Substantial, complex or extended litigation could cause us to incur significant costs and distract our management. For example, lawsuits by employees, stockholders, collaborators, distributors, customers, competitors or others could be very costly and substantially disrupt our business. Disputes from time to time with such companies, organizations or individuals are not uncommon, and we cannot assure you that we will always be able to resolve such disputes or on terms favorable to us. As further described in Part I, Item 3 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K, we are currently involved in substantial and complex litigation with Elysium. Unexpected results could cause us to have financial exposure in these matters in excess of recorded reserves and insurance coverage, requiring us to provide additional reserves to address these liabilities, therefore impacting profits.
 
Our sales and results of operations for our core standards and contract services segment depend on our customers’ research and development efforts and their ability to obtain funding for these efforts.
 
Our core standards and contract services segment customers include researchers at pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, chemical and related companies, academic institutions, government laboratories and private foundations. Fluctuations in the research and development budgets of these researchers and their organizations could have a significant effect on the demand for our products. Our customers determine their research and development budgets based on several factors, including the need to develop new products, the availability of governmental and other funding, competition and the general availability of resources. As we continue to expand our international operations, we expect research and development spending levels in markets outside of the United States will become increasingly important to us.
 
Research and development budgets fluctuate due to changes in available resources, spending priorities, general economic conditions, institutional and governmental budgetary limitations and mergers of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Our business could be harmed by any significant decrease in life science and high technology research and development expenditures by our customers. In particular, a small portion of our sales has been to researchers whose funding is dependent on grants from government agencies such as the United States National Institute of Health, the National Science Foundation, the National Cancer Institute and similar agencies or organizations. Government funding of research and development is subject to the political process, which is often unpredictable. Other departments, such as Homeland Security or Defense, or general efforts to reduce the United States federal budget deficit could be viewed by the government as a higher priority. Any shift away from funding of life science and high technology research and development or delays surrounding the approval of governmental budget proposals may cause our customers to delay or forego purchases of our products and services, which could seriously damage our business.
 
Some of our customers receive funds from approved grants at a particular time of year, many times set by government budget cycles. In the past, such grants have been frozen for extended periods or have otherwise become unavailable to various institutions without notice. The timing of the receipt of grant funds may affect the timing of purchase decisions by our customers and, as a result, cause fluctuations in our sales and operating results.
 
Demand for our products and services are subject to the commercial success of our customers’ products, which may vary for reasons outside our control.
 
Even if we are successful in securing utilization of our products in a customer’s manufacturing process, sales of many of our products and services remain dependent on the timing and volume of the customer’s production, over which we have no control. The demand for our products depends on regulatory approvals and frequently depends on the commercial success of the customer’s supported product. Regulatory processes are complex, lengthy, expensive, and can often take years to complete.
 
We may bear financial risk if we under-price our contracts or overrun cost estimates.
 
In cases where our contracts are structured as fixed price or fee-for-service with a cap, we bear the financial risk if we initially under-price our contracts or otherwise overrun our cost estimates. Such underpricing or significant cost overruns could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.
 
 
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We rely on single or a limited number of third-party suppliers for the raw materials required to produce our products.
 
Our dependence on a limited number of third-party suppliers or on a single supplier, and the challenges we may face in obtaining adequate supplies of raw materials, involve several risks, including limited control over pricing, availability, quality and delivery schedules. We cannot be certain that our current suppliers will continue to provide us with the quantities of these raw materials that we require or satisfy our anticipated specifications and quality requirements. Any supply interruption in limited or sole sourced raw materials could materially harm our ability to manufacture our products until a new source of supply, if any, could be identified and qualified. Although we believe there are other suppliers of these raw materials, we may be unable to find a sufficient alternative supply channel in a reasonable time or on commercially reasonable terms. Any performance failure on the part of our suppliers could delay the development and commercialization of our products, or interrupt production of then existing products that are already marketed, which would have a material adverse effect on our business.
 
We may not be successful in acquiring complementary businesses or products on favorable terms.
 
As part of our business strategy, we intend to consider acquisitions of similar or complementary businesses or products. No assurance can be given that we will be successful in identifying attractive acquisition candidates or completing acquisitions on favorable terms. In addition, any future acquisitions will be accompanied by the risks commonly associated with acquisitions. These risks include potential exposure to unknown liabilities of acquired companies or to acquisition costs and expenses, the difficulty and expense of integrating the operations and personnel of the acquired companies, the potential disruption to the business of the combined company and potential diversion of our management's time and attention, the impairment of relationships with and the possible loss of key employees and clients as a result of the changes in management, the incurrence of amortization expenses and write-downs and dilution to the shareholders of the combined company if the acquisition is made for stock of the combined company. In addition, successful completion of an acquisition may depend on consents from third parties, including regulatory authorities and private parties, which consents are beyond our control. There can be no assurance that products, technologies or businesses of acquired companies will be effectively assimilated into the business or product offerings of the combined company or will have a positive effect on the combined company's revenues or earnings. Further, the combined company may incur significant expense to complete acquisitions and to support the acquired products and businesses. Any such acquisitions may be funded with cash, debt or equity, which could have the effect of diluting or otherwise adversely affecting the holdings or the rights of our existing stockholders.
 
If we experience a significant disruption in our information technology systems or if we fail to implement new systems and software successfully, our business could be adversely affected.
 
We depend on information systems throughout our company to control our manufacturing processes, process orders, manage inventory, process and bill shipments and collect cash from our customers, respond to customer inquiries, contribute to our overall internal control processes, maintain records of our property, plant and equipment, and record and pay amounts due vendors and other creditors. If we were to experience a prolonged disruption in our information systems that involve interactions with customers and suppliers, it could result in the loss of sales and customers and/or increased costs, which could adversely affect our overall business operation.
 
Our cash flows and capital resources may be insufficient to make required payments on future indebtedness.
 
On November 4, 2016, we entered into entered into a business financing agreement (the “Financing Agreement”) with Western Alliance Bank (“Western Alliance”), to establish a formula based revolving credit line pursuant to which the Company may borrow an aggregate principal amount of up to $5,000,000, subject to the terms and conditions of the Financing Agreement. The interest rate will be calculated at a floating rate per month equal to (a) the greater of (i) 3.50% per year or (ii) the Prime Rate published in the Money Rates section of the Western Edition of The Wall Street Journal, or such other rate of interest publicly announced by Lender as its Prime Rate, plus (b) 2.50 percentage points. Any borrowings, interest or other fees or obligations that the Company owes Western Alliance pursuant to the Financing Agreement (the “Obligations”) will be become due and payable on November 4, 2018.
 
 
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As of December 30, 2017, and March 14, 2018, we did not have any indebtedness under the Financing Agreement. However, we may incur indebtedness in the future and such indebtedness could have important consequences to you. For example, it could:
 
make it difficult for us to satisfy our other debt obligations;
 
make us more vulnerable to general adverse economic and industry conditions;
 
limit our ability to obtain additional financing for working capital, capital expenditures, acquisitions and other general corporate requirements;
 
expose us to interest rate fluctuations because the interest rate on the debt under the Financing Agreement is variable;
 
require us to dedicate a portion of our cash flow from operations to payments on our debt, thereby reducing the availability of our cash flow for operations and other purposes;
 
limit our flexibility in planning for, or reacting to, changes in our business and the industry in which we operate; and
 
place us at a competitive disadvantage compared to competitors that may have proportionately less debt and greater financial resources.
 
In addition, our ability to make payments or refinance our obligations depends on our successful financial and operating performance, cash flows and capital resources, which in turn depend upon prevailing economic conditions and certain financial, business and other factors, many of which are beyond our control. These factors include, among others:
 
economic and demand factors affecting our industry;
 
pricing pressures;
 
increased operating costs;
 
competitive conditions; and
 
other operating difficulties.
 
If our cash flows and capital resources are insufficient to fund our debt service obligations, we may be forced to reduce or delay capital expenditures, sell material assets or operations, obtain additional capital or restructure our debt. In the event that we are required to dispose of material assets or operations to meet our debt service and other obligations, the value realized on such assets or operations will depend on market conditions and the availability of buyers. Accordingly, any such sale may not, among other things, be for a sufficient dollar amount. Our obligations pursuant to the Financing Agreement are secured by a security interest in all of our assets, exclusive of intellectual property. The foregoing encumbrances may limit our ability to dispose of material assets or operations. We also may not be able to restructure our indebtedness on favorable economic terms, if at all.
 
We may incur additional indebtedness in the future. Our incurrence of additional indebtedness would intensify the risks described above.
   
 
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The Financing Agreement contains various covenants limiting the discretion of our management in operating our business.
 
The Financing Agreement contains various restrictive covenants that limit our management's discretion in operating our business. These instruments limit our ability to, among other things:
 
incur additional debt;
 
grant liens on assets;
 
make investments, including capital expenditures;
 
sell or acquire assets outside the ordinary course of business; and
 
make fundamental business changes.
 
If we fail to comply with the restrictions in the Financing Agreement, a default may allow the creditors under the relevant instruments to accelerate the related debt and to exercise their remedies under these agreements, which will typically include the right to declare the principal amount of that debt, together with accrued and unpaid interest and other related amounts, immediately due and payable, to exercise any remedies the creditors may have to foreclose on assets that are subject to liens securing that debt and to terminate any commitments they had made to supply further funds.
 
If we are unable to maintain sales, marketing and distribution capabilities or maintain arrangements with third parties to sell, market and distribute our products, our business may be harmed.
 
To achieve commercial success for our products, we must sell our product lines and/or technologies at favorable prices. In addition to being expensive, maintaining such a sales force is time-consuming. Qualified direct sales personnel with experience in the natural products industry are in high demand, and there can be no assurance that we will be able to hire or retain an effective direct sales team. Similarly, qualified independent sales representatives both within and outside the United States are in high demand, and we may not be able to build an effective network for the distribution of our product through such representatives. There can be no assurance that we will be able to enter into contracts with representatives on terms acceptable to us. Furthermore, there can be no assurance that we will be able to build an alternate distribution framework should we attempt to do so.
 
We may also need to contract with third parties in order to market our products. To the extent that we enter into arrangements with third parties to perform marketing and distribution services, our product revenue could be lower and our costs higher than if we directly marketed our products. Furthermore, to the extent that we enter into co-promotion or other marketing and sales arrangements with other companies, any revenue received will depend on the skills and efforts of others, and we do not know whether these efforts will be successful. If we are unable to establish and maintain adequate sales, marketing and distribution capabilities, independently or with others, we will not be able to generate product revenue, and may not become profitable.
 
Risks Related to Regulatory Approval of Our Products and Other Government Regulations
 
We are subject to regulation by various federal, state and foreign agencies that require us to comply with a wide variety of regulations, including those regarding the manufacture of products, advertising and product label claims, the distribution of our products and environmental matters. Failure to comply with these regulations could subject us to fines, penalties and additional costs.
 
Some of our operations are subject to regulation by various United States federal agencies and similar state and international agencies, including the Department of Commerce, the FDA, the FTC, the Department of Transportation and the Department of Agriculture. These regulations govern a wide variety of product activities, from design and development to labeling, manufacturing, handling, sales and distribution of products. If we fail to comply with any of these regulations, we may be subject to fines or penalties, have to recall products and/or cease their manufacture and distribution, which would increase our costs and reduce our sales.
 
 
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We are also subject to various federal, state, local and international laws and regulations that govern the handling, transportation, manufacture, use and sale of substances that are or could be classified as toxic or hazardous substances. Some risk of environmental damage is inherent in our operations and the products we manufacture, sell, or distribute. Any failure by us to comply with the applicable government regulations could also result in product recalls or impositions of fines and restrictions on our ability to carry on with or expand in a portion or possibly all of our operations. If we fail to comply with any or all of these regulations, we may be subject to fines or penalties, have to recall products and/or cease their manufacture and distribution, which would increase our costs and reduce our sales.
 
Government regulations of our customer’s business are extensive and are constantly changing. Changes in these regulations can significantly affect customer demand for our products and services.
 
The process by which our customers’ industries are regulated is controlled by government agencies and depending on the market segment can be very expensive, time consuming, and uncertain. Changes in regulations or the enforcement practices of current regulations could have a negative impact on our customers and, in turn, our business. At this time, it is unknown how the FDA will interpret and to what extent it will enforce GMPs, regulations that will likely affect many of our customers. These uncertainties may have a material impact on our results of operations, as lack of enforcement or an interpretation of the regulations that lessens the burden of compliance for the dietary supplement marketplace may cause a reduced demand for our products and services.
 
Changes in government regulation or in practices relating to the pharmaceutical, dietary supplement, food and cosmetic industry could decrease the need for the services we provide.
 
Governmental agencies throughout the world, including in the United States, strictly regulate the pharmaceutical, dietary supplement, food and cosmetic industries. Our business involves helping pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies navigate the regulatory drug approval process. Changes in regulation, such as a relaxation in regulatory requirements or the introduction of simplified drug approval procedures, or an increase in regulatory requirements that we have difficulty satisfying or that make our services less competitive, could eliminate or substantially reduce the demand for our services. Also, if the government makes efforts to contain drug costs and pharmaceutical and biotechnology company profits from new drugs, our customers may spend less, or reduce their spending on research and development. If health insurers were to change their practices with respect to reimbursements for pharmaceutical products, our customers may spend less, or reduce their spending on research and development.
 
If we should in the future become required to obtain regulatory approval to market and sell our goods we will not be able to generate any revenues until such approval is received.
 
The pharmaceutical industry is subject to stringent regulation by a wide range of authorities. While we believe that, given our present business, we are not currently required to obtain regulatory approval to market our goods because, among other things, we do not (i) produce or market any clinical devices or other products, or (ii) sell any medical products or services to the customer, we cannot predict whether regulatory clearance will be required in the future and, if so, whether such clearance will at such time be obtained for any products that we are developing or may attempt to develop. Should such regulatory approval in the future be required, our goods may be suspended or may not be able to be marketed and sold in the United States until we have completed the regulatory clearance process as and if implemented by the FDA. Satisfaction of regulatory requirements typically takes many years, is dependent upon the type, complexity and novelty of the product or service and would require the expenditure of substantial resources.
 
If regulatory clearance of a good that we propose to propose to market and sell is granted, this clearance may be limited to those particular states and conditions for which the good is demonstrated to be safe and effective, which would limit our ability to generate revenue. We cannot ensure that any good that we develop will meet all of the applicable regulatory requirements needed to receive marketing clearance. Failure to obtain regulatory approval will prevent commercialization of our goods where such clearance is necessary. There can be no assurance that we will obtain regulatory approval of our proposed goods that may require it.
 
 
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Risks Related to the Securities Markets and Ownership of our Equity Securities
 
The market price of our common stock may be volatile and adversely affected by several factors.
 
The market price of our common stock could fluctuate significantly in response to various factors and events, including, but not limited to:
 
● 
our ability to integrate operations, technology, products and services;
 
● 
our ability to execute our business plan;
 
● 
our operating results are below expectations;
 
● 
our issuance of additional securities, including debt or equity or a combination thereof,;
 
● 
announcements of technological innovations or new products by us or our competitors;
 
● 
acceptance of and demand for our products by consumers;
 
● 
media coverage regarding our industry or us;
 
● 
litigation;
 
● 
disputes with or our inability to collect from significant customers;
 
● 
loss of any strategic relationship;
 
● 
industry developments, including, without limitation, changes in healthcare policies or practices;
 
● 
economic and other external factors;
 
● 
reductions in purchases from our large customers;
 
● 
period-to-period fluctuations in our financial results; and
 
● 
whether an active trading market in our common stock develops and is maintained.
 
In addition, the securities markets have from time to time experienced significant price and volume fluctuations that are unrelated to the operating performance of particular companies. These market fluctuations may also materially and adversely affect the market price of our common stock.
 
Our shares of common stock may be thinly traded, so you may be unable to sell at or near ask prices or at all.
 
We cannot predict the extent to which an active public market for our common stock will develop or be sustained. This situation may be attributable to a number of factors, including the fact that we are a small company that is relatively unknown to stock analysts, stock brokers, institutional investors and others in the investment community who generate or influence sales volume, and that even if we came to the attention of such persons, they tend to be risk averse and would be reluctant to follow an unproven company such as ours or purchase or recommend the purchase of our shares until such time as we have become more seasoned and viable. As a consequence, there may be periods of several days or weeks when trading activity in our shares is minimal or non-existent, as compared to a seasoned issuer which has a large and steady volume of trading activity that will generally support continuous sales without an adverse effect on share price. We cannot assure you that a broader or more active public trading market for our common stock will develop or be sustained, or that current trading levels will be sustained or not diminish.
 
 
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We have not paid cash dividends in the past and do not expect to pay cash dividends in the foreseeable future. Any return on investment may be limited to the value of our common stock.
 
We have never paid cash dividends on our capital stock and do not anticipate paying cash dividends on our capital stock in the foreseeable future. The payment of dividends on our capital stock will depend on our earnings, financial condition and other business and economic factors affecting us at such time as the board of directors may consider relevant. If we do not pay dividends, our common stock may be less valuable because a return on your investment will only occur if the common stock price appreciates.
 
The recently passed comprehensive tax reform bill could adversely affect our business and financial condition.
 
On December 22, 2017, President Trump signed into law new legislation that significantly revises the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended.  The newly enacted federal income tax law, among other things, contains significant changes to corporate taxation, including reduction of the corporate tax rate from a top marginal rate of 35% to a flat rate of 21%, limitation of the tax deduction for interest expense to 30% of adjusted earnings (except for certain small businesses), limitation of the deduction for net operating losses to 80% of current year taxable income and elimination of net operating loss carrybacks, one time taxation of offshore earnings at reduced rates regardless of whether they are repatriated, elimination of U.S. tax on foreign earnings (subject to certain important exceptions), immediate deductions for certain new investments instead of deductions for depreciation expense over time, and modifying or repealing many business deductions and credits (including reducing the business tax credit for certain clinical testing expenses incurred in the testing of certain drugs for rare diseases or conditions).  Notwithstanding the reduction in the corporate income tax rate, the overall impact of the new federal tax law is uncertain and our business and financial condition could be adversely affected.  In addition, it is unknown if and to what extent various states will conform to the newly enacted federal tax law.  The impact of this tax reform on holders of our common stock is likewise uncertain and could be adverse.  We urge our stockholders to consult with their legal and tax advisors with respect to this legislation and the potential tax consequences of investing in or holding our common stock.
 
Stockholders may experience significant dilution if future equity offerings are used to fund operations or acquire complementary businesses.
 
If future operations or acquisitions are financed through the issuance of additional equity securities, stockholders could experience significant dilution. Securities issued in connection with future financing activities or potential acquisitions may have rights and preferences senior to the rights and preferences of our common stock. In addition, the issuance of shares of our common stock upon the exercise of outstanding options or warrants may result in dilution to our stockholders.
 
We may become involved in securities class action litigation that could divert management’s attention and harm our business.
 
The stock market in general, and the stocks of early stage companies in particular, have experienced extreme price and volume fluctuations. These fluctuations have often been unrelated or disproportionate to the operating performance of the companies involved. If these fluctuations occur in the future, the market price of our shares could fall regardless of our operating performance. In the past, following periods of volatility in the market price of a particular company’s securities, securities class action litigation has often been brought against that company. If the market price or volume of our shares suffers extreme fluctuations, then we may become involved in this type of litigation, which would be expensive and divert management’s attention and resources from managing our business.
 
As a public company, we may also from time to time make forward-looking statements about future operating results and provide some financial guidance to the public markets. Projections may not be made in a timely manner or we might fail to reach expected performance levels and could materially affect the price of our shares. Any failure to meet published forward-looking statements that adversely affect the stock price could result in losses to investors, stockholder lawsuits or other litigation, sanctions or restrictions issued by the SEC.
 
 
-31-
 
We have a significant number of outstanding options and warrants, and future sales of these shares could adversely affect the market price of our common stock.
 
As of December 30, 2017, we had outstanding options exercisable for an aggregate of 6,534,167 shares of common stock at a weighted average exercise price of $3.59 per share and outstanding warrants exercisable for an aggregate of 470,444 shares of common stock at a weighted average exercise price of $4.15 per share. The holders may sell many of these shares in the public markets from time to time, without limitations on the timing, amount or method of sale. As and when our stock price rises, if at all, more outstanding options and warrants will be in-the-money and the holders may exercise their options and warrants and sell a large number of shares. This could cause the market price of our common stock to decline.
 
 Item 1B.
Unresolved Staff Comments
 
None.
 
 Item 2.
Properties
    
As of December 30, 2017, we lease approximately 15,000 square feet of office space in Irvine, California with 2 years remaining on the lease, approximately 10,000 square feet of space for research and development laboratory in Longmont, Colorado with 7 years remaining on the lease, approximately 4,500 square feet of office space in Los Angeles, California with 4 years remaining on the lease and approximately 2,300 square feet of office space in Rockville, Maryland with 3 years remaining on the lease. The below table illustrates the use of each property by our business segments.
 
Business Segment
Property Used
Ingredients
All properties
Consumer Products
All properties
Core Standards and Contract Services
Irvine, CA, Longmont, CO and Rockville, MD
 
We also rent an apartment with approximately 1,000 square feet in Foothill Ranch, California, and an apartment with less than 1,100 square feet in Longmont, Colorado. We use the apartments to accommodate our traveling employees to each of our California and Colorado locations. We do not own any real estate. For the year ended December 30, 2017, our total annual rental expense was approximately $729,000.
 
 Item 3.
Legal Proceedings
 
On December 29, 2016, ChromaDex, Inc. filed a complaint (the “Complaint”) in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, naming Elysium Health, Inc. (together with Elysium Health, LLC, “Elysium”) as defendant. Among other allegations, ChromaDex, Inc. alleged in the Complaint that (i) Elysium breached the Supply Agreement, dated June 26, 2014, by and between ChromaDex, Inc. and Elysium (the “pTeroPure® Supply Agreement”), by failing to make payments to ChromaDex, Inc. for purchases of pTeroPure® pursuant to the pTeroPure® Supply Agreement, (ii) Elysium breached the Supply Agreement, dated February 3, 2014, by and between ChromaDex, Inc. and Elysium, as amended (the “NIAGEN® Supply Agreement”), by failing to make payments to ChromaDex, Inc. for purchases of NIAGEN® pursuant to the NIAGEN® Supply Agreement, (iii) Elysium breached the Trademark License and Royalty Agreement, dated February 3, 2014, by and between ChromaDex, Inc. and Elysium (the “License Agreement”), by failing to make payments to ChromaDex, Inc. for royalties due pursuant to the License Agreement and (iv) certain officers of Elysium made false promises and representations to induce ChromaDex, Inc. into providing large supplies of pTeroPure® and NIAGEN® to Elysium pursuant to the pTeroPure® Supply Agreement and NIAGEN® Supply Agreement. ChromaDex, Inc. is seeking punitive damages, money damages and interest.
 
 
-32-
 
On January 25, 2017, Elysium filed an answer and counterclaims (the “Counterclaim”) in response to the Complaint. Among other allegations, Elysium alleges in the Counterclaim that (i) ChromaDex, Inc. breached the NIAGEN® Supply Agreement by not issuing certain refunds or credits to Elysium and for violating certain confidential information provisions, (ii) ChromaDex, Inc. breached the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing pursuant to the NIAGEN® Supply Agreement, (iii) ChromaDex, Inc. breached certain confidential provisions of the pTeroPure® Supply Agreement, (iv) ChromaDex, Inc. fraudulently induced Elysium into entering into the License Agreement (the “Fraud Claim”), (v) ChromaDex, Inc.’s conduct constitutes misuse of its patent rights (the “Patent Claim”) and (vi) ChromaDex, Inc. has engaged in unlawful or unfair competition under California state law (the “Unfair Competition Claim”). Elysium is seeking damages for ChromaDex, Inc.’s alleged breaches of the NIAGEN® Supply Agreement and pTeroPure® Supply Agreement, and compensatory damages, punitive damages and/or rescission of the License Agreement and restitution of any royalty payments conveyed by Elysium pursuant to the License Agreement, and a declaratory judgment that ChromaDex, Inc. has engaged in patent misuse.
 
On February 15, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. filed an amended complaint. In the amended complaint, ChromaDex, Inc. re-alleges the claims in the Complaint, and also alleges that Elysium willfully and maliciously misappropriated ChromaDex, Inc.’s trade secrets. On February 15, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. also filed a motion to dismiss the Fraud Claim, the Patent Claim and the Unfair Competition Claim. On March 1, 2017, Elysium filed a motion to dismiss ChromaDex, Inc.'s fraud and trade secret misappropriation causes of action. On March 6, 2017, Elysium filed a first amended counterclaim. On March 20, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. moved to dismiss Elysium's amended fraud, declaratory judgment of patent misuse and the Unfair Competition Claim. On May 10, 2017, the court ruled on the motions to dismiss, denying ChromaDex, Inc.’s motion as to Elysium’s fraud and declaratory judgment claims and granting ChromaDex, Inc.’s motion with prejudice as to Elysium’s Unfair Competition Claim. With respect to Elysium’s motion, the court granted the motion with prejudice as to ChromaDex, Inc.’s fraud claim and granted with leave to amend the motion as to ChromaDex, Inc.’s trade secret misappropriation claims. On May 24, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. answered the first amended counterclaim and asserted several affirmative defenses. Also on May 24, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. filed a second amended complaint, amending the trade secret misappropriation claims and addressing Elysium’s declaratory judgment of patent misuse counterclaim. On June 7, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. filed a third amended complaint dismissing the trade secret misappropriation claims and asserting two breach of contract claims for Elysium’s failure to pay for the product delivered. On June 16, 2017, Elysium answered the third amended complaint. On August 14, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. moved for judgment on the pleadings as to Elysium’s declaratory judgment of patent misuse counterclaim. On September 26, 2017, the court denied ChromaDex’s motion without prejudice and directed Elysium to file an amended counterclaim if it intended to maintain its declaratory judgment counterclaim. On October 11, 2017, Elysium filed a second amended counterclaim, re-alleging the claims in the first amended counterclaim and adding a claim for unjust enrichment and restitution of the royalties Elysium paid to ChromaDex, Inc. pursuant to the License Agreement. On October 25, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. filed a motion to dismiss the declaratory judgment of patent misuse and unjust enrichment claims and/or strike allegations in the unjust enrichment claim contained in the second amended counterclaim. On November 28, 2017, the court denied the motion. ChromaDex, Inc. answered the second amended counterclaim on December 12, 2017. The parties are currently in discovery.
 
On July 17, 2017, Elysium filed petitions with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for inter partes review of U.S. Patent No. 8,197,807 (the “’807 Patent”) and 8,383,086 (the “’086 Patent”), patents to which ChromaDex, Inc. is the exclusive licensee. The U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”) denied institution of an inter partes review for the ’807 Patent on January 18, 2018. For the ’086 patent, on January 29, 2018 the PTAB granted institution of an inter partes review as to claims 1, 3, 4, and 5 and denied institution as to claim 2.
 
 
-33-
 
On September 27, 2017, Elysium Health Inc. ("Elysium Health") filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, against ChromaDex, Inc. (the “SDNY Complaint”). Elysium Health alleges in the SDNY Complaint that ChromaDex, Inc. made false and misleading statements in a citizen petition to the Food and Drug Administration it filed on or about August 18, 2017. Among other allegations, Elysium Health avers that the citizen petition made Elysium Health’s product appear dangerous, while casting ChromaDex, Inc.’s own product as safe. The SDNY Complaint asserts four claims for relief: (i) false advertising under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a); (ii) trade libel; (iii) deceptive business practices under New York General Business Law § 349; and (iv) tortious interference with prospective economic relations. ChromaDex, Inc. denies the claims in the SDNY Complaint and intends to defend against them vigorously. On October 26, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. moved to dismiss the SDNY Complaint on the grounds that, inter alia, its statements in the citizen petition are immune from liability under the Noerr-Pennington Doctrine, the litigation privilege, and New York’s Anti-SLAPP statute, and that the SDNY Complaint failed to state a claim. Elysium Health opposed the motion on November 2, 2017. ChromaDex, Inc. filed its reply on November 9, 2017. The motion is currently pending.
 
On October 26, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against Elysium Health (the “ChromaDex SDNY Complaint”). ChromaDex alleges that Elysium Health made material false and misleading statements to consumers in the promotion, marketing, and sale of its health supplement product, Basis, and asserts five claims for relief: (i) false advertising under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. §1125(a); (ii) unfair competition under 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a); (iii) deceptive practices under New York General Business Law § 349; (iv) deceptive practices under New York General Business Law § 350; and (v) tortious interference with prospective economic advantage. On November 16, 2017, Elysium Health moved to dismiss for failure to state a claim. ChromaDex, Inc. opposed the motion on November 30, 2017 and Elysium Health filed a reply on December 7, 2017. On November 3, 2017, the Court consolidated the SDNY Complaint and the ChromaDex SDNY Complaint actions under the caption In re Elysium Health-ChromaDex Litigation, 17-cv-7394, and stayed discovery in the consolidated action pending a Court-ordered mediation. The mediation was unsuccessful and the motion is currently pending.
 
The Company is unable to predict the outcome of these matters and, at this time, cannot reasonably estimate the possible loss or range of loss with respect to the legal proceedings discussed herein. As of December 31, 2017, ChromaDex, Inc. did not accrue a potential loss for the Counterclaim or the SDNY Complaint because ChromaDex, Inc. believes that the allegations are without merit and thus it is not probable that a liability has been incurred.  
 
From time to time we are involved in legal proceedings arising in the ordinary course of our business. We believe that there is no other litigation pending that is likely to have, individually or in the aggregate, a material adverse effect on our financial condition or results of operations.
 
 Item 4.
Mine Safety Disclosures
 
Not applicable.
 
 
-34-
 
PART II
 
 Item 5.
Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
 
Since April 25, 2016, our common stock has been traded on The NASDAQ Capital Market (“NASDAQ”) under the symbol “CDXC.” From November 10, 2014 to April 22, 2016, our common stock had been traded on the top tier of the OTC Markets Group, Inc. (the “OTCQX”) under the symbol “CDXC.”
 
On April 13, 2016, the Company effected a 1-for-3 reverse stock split. All information presented herein has been retrospectively adjusted to reflect the reverse stock split as if it took place as of the earliest period presented. An additional 1,632 shares were issued to round up fractional shares as a result of the reverse stock split.
 
The following table sets forth the range of high and low sale prices of our common stock for each of the periods indicated as reported by NASDAQ and OTCQX. Closing sale prices were used for the period when our common stock was traded on NASDAQ and closing bid quotations were used for the period when our common stock was traded on OTCQX. These prices reflect inter-dealer prices, without retail mark-up, mark-down or commission and may not necessarily represent actual transactions.
 
 
Fiscal Year Ending December 30, 2017
 
Quarter Ended
 
High
 
 
Low
 
December 30, 2017
 $6.96 
 $3.88 
September 30, 2017
 $4.71 
 $2.91 
July 1, 2017
 $3.96 
 $2.26 
April 1, 2017
 $3.67 
 $2.50 
 
 
 
Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2016
 
Quarter Ended
 
High
 
 
Low
 
December 31, 2016
 $3.31 
 $2.31 
October 1, 2016
 $4.39 
 $2.88 
July 2, 2016
 $5.76 
 $2.84 
April 2, 2016
 $4.77 
 $3.60 
 
On March 8, 2018, the closing sale price was $5.16.
 
Securities Authorized for Issuance under Equity Compensation Plans
 
Information about our equity compensation plans is incorporated herein by reference to Item 12 of Part III of this Annual Report.
 
 
-35-
 
Performance Graph
 
The performance graph below compares the annual percentage change in the cumulative total return on our common stock with the NASDAQ Capital Market Composite Index and the S&P Small Cap 600 Health Care Index. The chart shows the value as of December 30, 2017, of $100 invested on December 29, 2012. The stock price performance below is not necessarily indicative of future performance.
 
The performance graph below is not “soliciting material,” shall not be deemed “filed” with the SEC and shall not be incorporated by reference into any of our filings under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, whether made before or after the date hereof and irrespective of any general incorporation language in any such filing, except as shall be expressly set forth by specific reference in such filing.
 
 
 
 
12/29/12
 
 
12/28/13
 
 
1/3/15
 
 
1/2/16
 
 
12/31/16
 
 
12/30/17
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
ChromaDex Corporation
  100.00 
  288.03 
  162.02 
  219.62 
  198.62 
  352.84 
NASDAQ Composite
  100.00 
  141.58 
  162.13 
  173.35 
  187.34 
  242.49 
S&P Small Cap 600 Health Care Index
  100.00 
  135.35 
  152.67 
  165.19 
  159.35 
  211.40 
 
 
-36-
 
Holders of Our Common Stock
 
As of March 8, 2018, we had approximately 58 registered holders of record of our common stock.
 
Dividend Policy
 
We have not declared or paid any cash dividends on our common stock during either of the two most recent fiscal years and have no current intention to pay any cash dividends. Our ability to pay cash dividends is governed by applicable provisions of Delaware law and is subject to the discretion of our Board of Directors.
 
Recent Sales of Unregistered Securities
 
Other than as previously disclosed in our past Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K, the Company did not have any sales of unregistered securities for the period covered by this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
 
 Item 6.
 Selected Financial Data
 
The annual financial information set forth below has been derived from our audited consolidated financial statements. The information should be read together with, and is qualified in its entirety by reference to, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” the consolidated financial statements and notes included elsewhere in this Form 10-K and in our SEC filings. The selected financial data in this section are not intended to replace our consolidated financial statements and the related notes. Our historical results are not necessarily indicative of the results that may be expected in the future and results of interim periods are not necessarily indicative of the results for the entire year.
 
 
-37-
 
 
 
 
 
Years Ended
Consolidated Statement of Operations Data
 
2017
 
 
2016
 
 
2015
 
 
2014
 
 
2013
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sales, net
 $21,201,482 
 $21,664,648 
 $17,884,886 
 $11,861,099 
 $7,438,857 
Cost of sales
  10,724,177 
  11,274,114 
  10,350,281 
  6,855,690 
  3,926,765 
Gross profit
  10,477,305 
  10,390,534 
  7,534,605 
  5,005,409 
  3,512,092 
 
    
    
    
    
    
Operating expenses:
    
    
    
    
    
Sales and marketing
  4,459,224 
  1,558,213 
  1,507,868 
  1,482,784 
  1,627,795 
Research and development
  4,007,381 
  2,522,768 
  891,601 
  513,671 
  134,040 
General and administrative
  17,641,889 
  9,214,763 
  7,201,231 
  7,648,773 
  4,747,561 
Loss from investment in affiliate
  - 
  - 
  - 
  45,829 
  44,961 
Other
  745,773 
  - 
  - 
  - 
  - 
Operating expenses
  26,854,267 
  13,295,744 
  9,600,700 
  9,691,057 
  6,554,357 
Operating loss
  (16,376,962)
  (2,905,210)
  (2,066,095)
  (4,685,648)
  (3,042,265)
 
    
    
    
    
    
Nonoperating income (expense):
    
    
    
    
    
Interest expense, net
  (152,784)
  (333,286)
  (566,917)
  (123,976)
  (4,006)
Loss on debt extinguishment
  - 
  (313,099)
  - 
  - 
  - 
Nonoperating expenses
  (152,784)
  (646,385)
  (566,917)
  (123,976)
  (4,006)
Loss before income taxes
  (16,529,746)
  (3,551,595)
  (2,633,012)
  (4,809,624)
  (3,046,271)
Provision for income taxes
  - 
  - 
  (4,527)
  - 
  - 
Loss from continuing operations
  (16,529,746)
  (3,551,595)
  (2,637,539)
  (4,809,624)
  (3,046,271)
 
    
    
    
    
    
Income (loss) from discontinued operations
  (315,140)
  623,410 
  (133,528)
  (578,561)
  (1,373,254)
Gain on sale of discontinued operations
  5,467,268 
  - 
  - 
  - 
  - 
Income (loss) from discontinued operations, net
  5,152,128 
  623,410 
  (133,528)
  (578,561)
  (1,373,254)
Net loss
 $(11,377,618)
 $(2,928,185)
 $(2,771,067)
 $(5,388,185)
 $(4,419,525)
 
    
    
    
    
    
Basic and diluted earnings (loss) per common share:
    
    
    
    
    
    Loss from continuing operations
 $(0.37)
 $(0.10)
 $(0.07)
 $(0.14)
 $(0.09)
    Earnings (loss) from discontinued operations
 $0.11 
 $0.02 
 $(0.01)
 $(0.01)
 $(0.04)
Basic and diluted loss per common share
 $(0.26)
 $(0.08)
 $(0.08)
 $(0.15)
 $(0.13)
Basic and diluted weighted average
    
    
    
    
    
    common shares outstanding
  44,598,879 
  37,294,321 
  35,877,341 
  35,486,460 
  33,329,148 
 
 
   
At The End of Year
Consolidated Balance Sheet Data
 
2017
 
 
2016
 
 
2015
 
 
2014
 
 
2013
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Cash
 $45,388,848 
 $1,642,429 
 $5,549,672 
 $3,964,750 
 $2,261,336 
Working capital (1)
  7,415,742 
  7,786,372 
  4,400,432 
  2,189,442 
  1,602,008 
Total assets
  62,723,600 
  19,752,068 
  18,749,209 
  11,516,847 
  8,986,892 
Long term debt
  - 
  - 
  3,345,335 
  1,977,113 
  - 
Total stockholders' equity
 $53,833,668 
 $9,974,358 
 $5,274,674 
 $3,998,391 
 $5,665,451 
 
    
    
    
    
    
 
(1) Trade receivables plus inventories less accounts payable.
 
    
    
    
    
   
Years Ended
Consolidated Cash Flow Data
  2017 
  2016 
  2015 
  2014 
  2013 
 
    
    
    
    
    
Net cash used in operating activities
 $(9,804,178)
 $(2,936,596)
 $(2,111,138)
 $(2,580,406)
 $(3,906,011)
Net cash provided by (used in) investing activities
  4,601,926 
  (1,724,922)
  (647,731)
  1,590,275 
  998,651 
Net cash provided by financing activities
 $48,948,671 
 $754,275 
 $4,343,791 
 $2,693,545 
 $4,648,696 
 
 
-38-
 
 Item 7.
Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
 
You should read the following discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operation together with “Selected Financial Data,” the consolidated financial statements and the related notes included elsewhere this Form 10-K. This discussion contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. When reviewing the discussion below, you should keep in mind the substantial risks and uncertainties that impact our business. In particular, we encourage you to review the risks and uncertainties described in “Risk Factors” in Part I, Item 1A in this Form 10-K. These risks and uncertainties could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in forward-looking statements contained in this report or implied by past results and trends.
 
Overview
 
ChromaDex Corporation and its wholly owned subsidiaries, ChromaDex, Inc., Healthspan Research, LLC and ChromaDex Analytics, Inc. (collectively, the “Company” or, in the first person as “we” “us” and “our”) are an integrated, global nutraceutical company devoted to improving the way people age. The Company's scientists partner with leading universities and research institutions worldwide to uncover the full potential of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide ("NAD") and identify and develop novel, science-based ingredients. ChromaDex's flagship ingredient, NIAGEN® nicotinamide riboside, sold directly to consumers as TRU NIAGEN®, is backed with clinical and scientific research, as well as intellectual property protection. The Company also has a core standards and contract services segment, which focuses on natural product fine chemicals (known as “phytochemicals”), chemistry services, and regulatory consulting.
 
The discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based on the ChromaDex financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. The preparation of these financial statements requires making estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the financial statements, as well as the reported revenues, if any, and expenses during the reporting periods. On an ongoing basis, we evaluate such estimates and judgments, including those described in greater detail below. We base our estimates on historical experience and on various other factors that we believe are reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying value of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may differ from these estimates under different assumptions or conditions.
 
As of December 30, 2017, the cash and cash equivalents totaled approximately $45.4 million. The Company anticipates that its current cash, cash equivalents and cash to be generated from operations will be sufficient to meet its projected operating plans through at least March 16, 2019. The Company may, however, seek additional capital prior to March 16, 2019, both to meet its projected operating plans after March 16, 2019 and/or to fund its longer term strategic objectives.
 
Additional capital may come from public and/or private stock or debt offerings, borrowings under lines of credit or other sources. These additional funds may not be available on favorable terms, or at all.  Further, if we issue equity or debt securities to raise additional funds, our existing stockholders may experience dilution and the new equity or debt securities we issue may have rights, preferences and privileges senior to those of our existing stockholders. In addition, if we raise additional funds through collaboration, licensing or other similar arrangements, it may be necessary to relinquish valuable rights to our products or proprietary technologies, or to grant licenses on terms that are not favorable to us. If we cannot raise funds on acceptable terms, we may not be able to develop or enhance our products, obtain the required regulatory clearances or approvals, achieve long term strategic objectives, take advantage of future opportunities, or respond to competitive pressures or unanticipated customer requirements. Any of these events could adversely affect our ability to achieve our development and commercialization goals, which could have a material and adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition.
 
Some of our operations are subject to regulation by various state and federal agencies. Dietary supplements are subject to FDA, FTC and U.S. Department of Agriculture regulations relating to composition, labeling and advertising claims. These regulations may in some cases, particularly with respect to those applicable to new ingredients, require a notification that must be submitted to the FDA along with evidence of safety. There are similar regulations related to food additives.
 
Results of Operations
 
Our losses per basic and diluted share were $0.26, $0.08 and $0.08 for the twelve-month periods ended December 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016, respectively. Over the next two years, we plan to continue to increase marketing, research and development efforts for our flagship ingredient, NIAGEN® nicotinamide riboside, and our consumer branded product TRU NIAGEN®. 
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
Dec. 30, 2017
 
 
 Dec. 31, 2016
 
 
 Jan. 2, 2016
 
Sales
 $21,201,482 
 $21,664,648 
 $17,884,886 
Cost of sales
  10,724,177 
  11,274,114 
  10,350,281 
Gross profit
  10,477,305 
  10,390,534 
  7,534,605 
Operating expenses  -Sales and marketing
  4,459,224 
  1,558,213 
  1,507,868 
                   -Research and development
  4,007,381 
  2,522,768 
  891,601 
                   -General and administrative
  17,641,889 
  9,214,763 
  7,201,231 
                   -Other
  745,773 
  - 
  - 
Nonoperating            -Interest expense, net
  (152,784)
  (333,286)
  (566,917)
                   -Loss on debt extinguishment
  - 
  (313,099)
  - 
Provision for income taxes
  - 
  - 
  (4,527)
Loss from continuing operations
  (16,529,746)
  (3,551,595)
  (2,637,539)
Income (loss) from discontinued operations, net
  5,152,128 
  623,410 
  (133,528)
Net loss
 $(11,377,618)
 $(2,928,185)
 $(2,771,067)
 
 
-39-
 
Year Ended December 30, 2017 Compared to Year Ended December 31, 2016
 
Net Sales. Net sales consist of gross sales less discounts and returns.
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Net sales:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $11,153,000 
 $16,775,000 
  -34%
  Consumer Products
  5,465,000 
  - 
  - 
  Core standards and contract services
  4,583,000 
  4,890,000 
  -6%
 
    
    
    
     Total net sales
 $21,201,000 
 $21,665,000 
  -2%
 
● 
The decrease in sales for the ingredients segment is mainly due to decreased sales of NIAGEN®. The Company made a strategic decision to transition from an ingredient and testing company to a consumer driven nutraceutical company. This has resulted in a shift in our sales away from resellers of NIAGEN® to our TRU NIAGEN® branded consumer product.
 
● 
With the acquisition of Healthspan Research LLC in March 2017, the Company began selling consumer products that contain the Company's branded NIAGEN® ingredient. Segregation of the financial results for the consumer products segment coincides with the Company's strategic shift towards the consumer products. The Company expects the sales for consumer products segment to grow over the next twelve months.
 
● 
The decrease in sales for the core standards and contract services segment is primarily due to decreased sales of analytical reference standards.
 
Cost of Sales. Costs of sales include raw materials, labor, overhead, and delivery costs.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
 
Amount
 
 
% of
net sales
 
 
Amount
 
 
% of
net sales
 
Cost of sales:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $5,492,000 
  49%
 $7,920,000 
  47%
  Consumer Products
  2,189,000 
  40%
  - 
  - 
  Core standards and contract services
  3,043,000 
  66%
  3,354,000 
  69%
 
    
    
    
    
     Total cost of sales
 $10,724,000 
  51%
 $11,274,000 
  52%
 
 
-40-
 
The cost of sales, as a percentage of net sales, decreased 1%.
 
● 
The cost of sales, as a percentage of net sales, for the ingredients segment increased 2%. This increase as a percentage of net sales was primarily due to a write-off of our NIAGEN® related inventory of approximately $183,000 in 2017.
 
● 
The cost of sales, as a percentage of net sales for the core standards and contract services segment, decreased 3%. We were able to lower our reference standards purchasing costs by diversifying our sources.
 
Gross Profit. Gross profit is net sales less the cost of sales and is affected by a number of factors including product mix, competitive pricing and costs of products and services.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Gross profit:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $5,661,000 
 $8,855,000 
  -36%
  Consumer Products
  3,276,000 
  - 
  - 
  Core standards and contract services
  1,540,000 
  1,536,000 
  0%
 
    
    
    
     Total gross profit
 $10,477,000 
 $10,391,000 
  1%
 
● 
The decreased gross profit for the ingredients segment is due to the decreased sales of NIAGEN®. The Company made a strategic decision to transition from an ingredient and testing company to a consumer driven nutraceutical company. This has resulted in a shift in our sales away from resellers of NIAGEN® to our TRU NIAGEN® branded consumer product.
 
● 
The consumer products segment posted gross profit of $3.3 million for the year ending in December 30, 2017. The Company expects the sales and gross profit for consumer products segment to grow over the next twelve months.
 
● 
The gross profit for the core standards and contract services segment remained the same as the decrease in sales was offset by improved profitability.
 
Operating Expenses – Sales and Marketing. Sales and Marketing Expenses consist of salaries, advertising and marketing expenses.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Sales and marketing expenses:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $1,280,000 
 $1,197,000 
  7%
  Consumer Products
  2,673,000 
  - 
  - 
  Core standards and contract services
  506,000 
  361,000 
  40%
 
    
    
    
     Total sales and marketing expenses
 $4,459,000 
 $1,558,000 
  186%
 
 
-41-
 
● 
For the ingredients segment, the increase is largely due to increased marketing efforts to raise consumer awareness for our line of proprietary ingredients.
 
● 
For the consumer products segment, we have increased staffing as well as direct marketing expenses associated with social media and other customer awareness and acquisition programs. We will continue to expand both staffing as well as increase other marketing expense as we invest in building out our own global branded consumer product business.
 
● 
For the core standards and contract services segment, the increase is mainly due to our increased marketing efforts.
 
Operating Expenses – Research and Development. Research and Development Expenses consist of clinical trials and process development expenses.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Research and development expenses:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $2,903,000 
 $2,488,000 
  17%
  Consumer Products
  1,104,000 
  - 
  - 
  Core standards and contract services
  - 
  35,000 
  -100%
 
    
    
    
     Total research and development expenses
 $4,007,000 
 $2,523,000 
  59%
 
● 
In 2017, we began allocating the research and development expenses related to our NIAGEN® branded ingredient to the ingredients and consumer products segment, proportional to revenues recorded. Previously, these expenses were recorded all in the ingredients segment. Overall, we increased our research and development efforts compared to 2016 and we plan to continue to increase research and development efforts for our flagship ingredient, NIAGEN® nicotinamide riboside.
 
● 
For the core standards and contract services segment, we explored processes to develop certain compounds at a larger scale during the year ended December 31, 2016.
 
Operating Expenses – General and Administrative. General and Administrative Expenses consist of general company administration, IT, accounting and executive management expenses.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
     General and administrative
 $17,642,000 
 $9,215,000 
  91%
 
    
    
    
 
 
-42-
 
The following expenses contributed to the increase in general and administrative expenses in 2017:
 
An increase in legal expenses. Our legal expenses increased to approximately $5.1 million in 2017 compared to approximately $1.3 million in 2016. The ongoing litigation with Elysium and our increased efforts to file and maintain patents related to the proprietary ingredient technologies were the main reasons for the increase in legal expenses.
 
An increase in share-based compensation. Our share-based compensation expense for 2017 increased to approximately $4.6 million compared to approximately $1.2 million for 2016.
 
Severance payments related our former Chief Financial Officer, Thomas Varvaro. The Company made an accrual of $0.6 million for future payments to be made over the next two years.
 
An increase of approximately $0.4 million in expenses associated with information and technology. We invested in additional staff and as well as external consulting in developing and maintaining our Ecommerce platform, which we use to sell our branded consumer product TRU NIAGEN®.
 
Operating Expenses – Other. Other expense consists of loss from an ongoing litigation.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
     Other
 $746,000 
 $- 
  - 
 
● 
In relation to the ongoing litigation, the Company incurred a write-off of approximately $746,000 in gross trade receivable from Elysium related to royalties billed as part of the existing Trademark License and Royalty Agreement.
 
Nonoperating – Interest Expense, net. Interest expense, net consists of interest on loan payable and capital leases offset by interest income.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 30, 2017
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
Change
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
     Interest expense, net
 $153,000 
 $333,000 
  -54%
 
● 
The decrease in interest expense was mainly due to the term loan from Hercules Technology II, L.P. which the Company drew down an initial $2.5 million on September 29, 2014 and a second $2.5 million on June 18, 2015. The Company fully repaid the loan on June 14, 2016.
 
 
-43-
 
Depreciation and Amortization. For the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017, we recorded approximately $0.5 million in depreciation compared to approximately $0.3 million for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016. We depreciate our assets on a straight-line basis, based on the estimated useful lives of the respective assets. We amortize intangible assets using a straight-line method, generally over 10 years. For licensed patent rights, the useful lives are 10 years or the remaining term of the patents underlying licensing rights, whichever is shorter. The useful lives of subsequent milestone payments that are capitalized are the remaining useful life of the initial licensing payment that was capitalized. In the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017, we recorded amortization on intangible assets of approximately $0.2 million compared to approximately $0.1 million for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016.
 
Income Taxes. At December 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016, the Company maintained a full valuation allowance against the entire deferred income tax balance which resulted in an effective tax rate of 0% for each of 2017 and 2016.
 
Net cash used in operating activities. Net cash used in operating activities for the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017 was approximately $9.8 million as compared to approximately $2.9 million for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016. Along with the net loss, a decrease in accounts payable was the largest use of cash during the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017. Net cash used in operating activities for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016 largely reflects increase in trade receivables along with the net loss.
 
We expect our operating cash flows to fluctuate significantly in future periods as a result of fluctuations in our operating results, shipment timetables, accounts receivable collections, inventory management, and the timing of our payments, among other factors.
 
Net cash used in investing activities. Net cash provided by investing activities was approximately $4.6 million for the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017, compared to approximately $1.7 million used in for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016. Net cash provided by investing activities for the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017 mainly consisted of proceeds from disposal of assets, offset by purchases of leasehold improvements and equipment and intangible assets. Net cash used in investing activities for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016 mainly consisted of purchases of leasehold improvements and equipment and intangible assets.
 
Net cash provided by financing activities. Net cash provided by financing activities was approximately $48.9 million for the twelve-month period ended December 30, 2017, compared to approximately $0.8 million for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016. Net cash provided by financing activities for 2017 mainly consisted of proceeds from issuances of our common stock and exercise of stock options, offset by principal payments on capital leases. Net cash provided by financing activities for 2016 mainly consisted of proceeds from issuances of our common stock and warrants through a private offering to our existing stockholders and exercise of stock options, offset by principal payments on loan payable and capital leases.
 
Trade Receivables. As of December 30, 2017, we had approximately $5.3 million in trade receivables as compared to approximately $5.9 million as of December 31, 2016.
 
Inventories. As of December 30, 2017, we had approximately $5.8 million in inventory, compared to approximately $7.9 million as of December 31, 2016. As of December 30, 2017, our inventory consisted of approximately $4.2 million of bulk ingredients, approximately $0.7 million of consumer products and approximately $0.9 million of phytochemical reference standards.  Bulk ingredients are proprietary compounds sold to customers in larger quantities, typically in kilograms.  These ingredients are used by our customers in the dietary supplement, food and beverage, animal health, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries to manufacture their final products. Consumer products inventory consists of TRU NIAGEN® branded finished bottles of dietary supplement products that contain NIAGEN® ingredient and related work-in-process inventory. Phytochemical reference standards are small quantities of plan-based compounds typically used to research an array of potential attributes or for quality control purposes.  The Company currently lists over 1,800 phytochemicals and 400 botanical reference materials in our catalog and holds a lot of these as inventory in small quantities, mostly in grams and milligrams. 
 
 
-44-
 
Our normal operating cycle for reference standards is currently longer than one year. Due to the large number of different items we carry, certain groups of these reference standards have a sales frequency that is slower than others and varies greatly year to year. In addition, for certain reference standards, the cost saving is advantageous when purchased in larger quantities and we have taken advantage of such opportunities when available. Such factors have resulted in an operating cycle to be more than one year on average. The Company gains competitive advantage through the broad offering of reference standards and it is critical for the Company to continue to expand its library of reference standards it offers for the growth of business. Nevertheless, the Company has recently made changes in its reference standards inventory purchasing practice, which the management believes will result in an improved turnover rate and shorter operating cycle without impacting our competitive advantage.
 
The Company regularly reviews inventories on hand and reduces the carrying value for slow-moving and obsolete inventory, inventory not meeting quality standards and inventory subject to expiration. The reduction of the carrying value for slow-moving and obsolete inventory is based on current estimates of future product demand, market conditions and related management judgment. Any significant unanticipated changes in future product demand or market conditions that vary from current expectations could have an impact on the value of inventories.
 
We strive to optimize our supply chain as we constantly search for better and more reliable sources and suppliers of bulk ingredients and phytochemical reference standards. By doing so, we believe we can lower the costs of our inventory, which we can then pass along the savings to our customers. In addition, we are working with our suppliers and partners to develop more efficient manufacturing methods of the raw materials, in an effort to lower the costs of our inventory.
 
Accounts Payable. As of December 30, 2017, we had $3.7 million in accounts payable compared to approximately $6.0 million as of December 31, 2016.
 
Advances from Customers. As of December 30, 2017, we had approximately $0.4 million in advances from customers compared to approximately $0.4 million as of December 31, 2016. These advances are for large-scale consulting projects, contract services and contract research projects where we require a deposit before beginning work.
 
Year Ended December 31, 2016 Compared to Year Ended January 2, 2016
 
Net Sales. Net sales consist of gross sales less discounts and returns.
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Net sales:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $16,775,000 
 $12,542,000 
  34%
  Core standards and contract services
  4,890,000 
  5,343,000 
  -8%
 
    
    
    
     Total net sales
 $21,665,000 
 $17,885,000 
  21%
 
● 
The increase in sales for the ingredients segment is due to increased sales of NIAGEN® and PTEROPURE®.
 
● 
The decrease in sales for the core standards and contract services segment is primarily due to decreased sales from our regulatory consulting operations. For regulatory consulting operations, we put a further emphasis on intercompany work supporting our ingredients segment.
 
 
-45-
 
Cost of Sales. Costs of sales include raw materials, labor, overhead, and delivery costs.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
 
Amount
 
 
% of
net sales
 
 
Amount
 
 
% of
net sales
 
Cost of sales:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $7,920,000 
  47%
 $6,664,000 
  53%
  Core standards and contract services
  3,354,000 
  69%
  3,686,000 
  69%
 
    
    
    
    
     Total cost of sales
 $11,274,000 
  52%
 $10,350,000 
  58%
 
The cost of sales, as a percentage of net sales, decreased 6%.
 
● 
The decrease in cost of sales, as a percentage of net sales, for the ingredients segment is largely due to price reductions from our suppliers through increased purchase volumes.
 
● 
The cost of sales, as a percentage of net sales for the core standards and contract services segment remained the same at 69%.
 
Gross Profit. Gross profit is net sales less the cost of sales and is affected by a number of factors including product mix, competitive pricing and costs of products and services.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Gross profit:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $8,855,000 
 $5,878,000 
  51%
  Core standards and contract services
  1,536,000 
  1,657,000 
  -7%
 
    
    
    
     Total gross profit
 $10,391,000 
 $7,535,000 
  38%
 
    
    
    
● 
The gross profit for the ingredients segment increased due to the increased sales of the ingredient portfolio we offer, coupled with lower prices from our suppliers due to increased purchase volumes.
 
● 
The decreased gross profit for the core standards and contract services segment is largely due to decreased sales from our regulatory consulting operations, which put a greater focus on intercompany work supporting our ingredients segment.
 
 
-46-
 
Operating Expenses – Sales and Marketing. Sales and Marketing Expenses consist of salaries, advertising and marketing expenses.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Sales and marketing expenses:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $1,197,000 
 $1,112,000 
  8%
  Core standards and contract services
  361,000 
  396,000 
  -9%
 
    
    
    
     Total sales and marketing expenses
 $1,558,000 
 $1,508,000 
  3%
 
    
    
    
● 
For the ingredients segment, the increase is largely due to increased marketing efforts to raise the consumer awareness for our line of proprietary ingredients.
 
● 
For the core standards and contract services segment, the decrease is largely due to making certain operational changes as certain personnel who were previously assigned to the sales and marketing group were moved to an administrative group.
 
Operating Expenses – Research and Development. Research and Development Expenses consist of clinical trials and process development expenses.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
Change
 
Research and development expenses:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Ingredients
 $2,488,000 
 $892,000 
  179%
  Core standards and contract services
  35,000 
  - 
  - 
 
    
    
    
     Total research and development expenses
 $2,523,000 
 $892,000 
  183%
 
● 
For the ingredients segment, we increased our research and development efforts with a focus on NIAGEN®.
 
● 
For the core standards and contract services segment, the expense is mainly associated with exploring processes to develop certain compounds at a larger scale.
 
Operating Expenses – General and Administrative. General and Administrative Expenses consist of general company administration, IT, accounting and executive management expenses.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
Change
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
     General and administrative
 $9,215,000 
 $7,201,000 
  28%
 
 
-47-
 
● 
One of the factors that contributed to the increase in general and administrative expenses was an increase in bad debt expense. Our bad debt expense for 2016 increased to approximately $0.9 million compared to $0.4 million for 2015. In December 2016, we recorded an allowance of $0.5 million for a certain doubtful account against bad debt expenses.
 
● 
Another factor that contributed to the increase was an increase in patent maintenance expense. Our patent maintenance expense for 2016 increased to approximately $0.7 million compared to approximately $0.4 million for 2015.
 
● 
Another factor that contributed to the increase was an increase of approximately $0.5 million in expenses associated with administrative staff. We made certain operational changes as certain personnel who were previously assigned to our sales and marketing group were moved to an administrative group in 2016.
 
● 
Another factor that contributed to the increase in general and administrative expense was an increase in royalties we pay to patent holders as the sales for licensed products increased in 2016. For 2016, royalty expense increased to approximately $0.7 million, compared to approximately $0.5 million for 2015.
 
● 
Also, there were one-time expenses of approximately $0.1 million associated with the initial listing of the Company’s stock on the NASDAQ Capital Market in 2016.
 
● 
These increases in expenses were offset by the decrease in share-based compensation expense. For 2016, our share-based compensation expense decreased to approximately $1.2 million compared to approximately $2.0 million for 2015.
 
Nonoperating – Interest Expense, net. Interest expense consists of interest on loan payable and capital leases offset by interest income.
 
 
 
Twelve months ending
 
 
 
December 31, 2016
 
 
January 2, 2016
 
 
Change
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
     Interest expense, net
 $333,000 
 $567,000 
  -41%
 
    
    
    
● 
The decrease in interest expense was mainly related to the Term Loan Agreement dated September 29, 2014, between the Company and Hercules Technology II, L.P, which the Company drew down an initial $2.5 million on September 29, 2014 and a second $2.5 million on June 18, 2015. The Company fully repaid the loan on June 14, 2016.
 
Depreciation and Amortization. For the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016, we recorded approximately $0.3 million in depreciation compared to approximately $0.3 million for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016. We depreciate our assets on a straight-line basis, based on the estimated useful lives of the respective assets. We amortize intangible assets using a straight-line method, generally over 10 years. For licensed patent rights, the useful lives are 10 years or the remaining term of the patents underlying licensing rights, whichever is shorter. The useful lives of subsequent milestone payments that are capitalized are the remaining useful life of the initial licensing payment that was capitalized. In the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016, we recorded amortization on intangible assets of approximately $88,000 compared to approximately $45,000 for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016.
 
 
-48-
 
Income Taxes. At December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016, the Company maintained a full valuation allowance against the entire deferred income tax balance which resulted in an effective tax rate of 0% for 2016 and 0.2% for 2015.
 
Net cash used in operating activities. Net cash used in operating activities for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016 was approximately $2.9 million as compared to approximately $2.1 million for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016. Along with the net loss, an increase in trade receivables were the largest uses of cash during the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016. Net cash used in operating activities for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016 largely reflects increase in inventories, trade receivables along with the net loss, as well.
 
We expect our operating cash flows to fluctuate significantly in future periods as a result of fluctuations in our operating results, shipment timetables, accounts receivable collections, inventory management, and the timing of our payments, among other factors.
 
Net cash used in investing activities. Net cash used in investing activities was approximately $1.7 million for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016, compared to approximately $0.6 million for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016. Net cash used in investing activities for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016 mainly consisted of purchases of leasehold improvements and equipment and intangible assets. Net cash used in investing activities for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016 also consisted of purchases of leasehold improvements and equipment and intangible assets.
 
Net cash provided by financing activities. Net cash provided by financing activities was approximately $0.8 million for the twelve-month period ended December 31, 2016, compared to approximately $4.3 million for the twelve-month period ended January 2, 2016. Net cash provided by financing activities for 2016 mainly consisted of proceeds from issuances of our common stock and warrants through a private offering to our existing stockholders and exercise of stock options, offset by principal payments on loan payable and capital leases. Net cash provided by financing activities for 2015 consisted of proceeds from loan payable and issuances of our common stock and warrants through a private offering to our existing stockholders.
 
Liquidity and Capital Resources
 
For the twelve-month periods ended December 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016, the Company has incurred losses from continuing operations of approximately $16.5 million, $3.6 million and $2.6 million, respectively. Net cash used in operating activities for the twelve-month periods ended December 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and January 2, 2016 was approximately $9.8 million, $2.9 million and $2.1 million, respectively. The losses and the uses of cash are primarily due to expenses associated with the development and expansion of our operations. These operations have been financed through capital contributions, the issuance of common stock and warrants through private placements, and the issuance of debt.
 
Our Board of Directors periodically reviews our capital requirements in light of our proposed business plan. Our future capital requirements will remain dependent upon a variety of factors, including cash flow from operations, the ability to increase sales, increasing our gross profits from current levels, reducing sales and administrative expenses as a percentage of net sales, continued development of customer relationships, and our ability to market our new products successfully. However, based on our results from operations, we may determine that we need additional financing to implement our business plan. Additional financing may come from public and private equity or debt offerings, borrowings under lines of credit or other sources. These additional funds may not be available on favorable terms, or at all. There can be no assurance we will be successful in raising these additional funds. Without adequate financing we may have to further delay or terminate product or service expansion plans. Any inability to raise additional financing would have a material adverse effect on us.
 
As of December 30, 2017, the cash and cash equivalents totaled approximately $45.4 million. The Company anticipates that its current cash, cash equivalents and cash to be generated from operations will be sufficient to meet its projected operating plans through at least March 16, 2019. The Company may, however, seek additional capital prior to March 16, 2019, both to meet its projected operating plans after March 16, 2019 and/or to fund its longer term strategic objectives.
 
 
-49-
 
Dividend Policy
 
We have not declared or paid any cash dividends on our common stock. We presently intend to retain earnings for use in our operations and to finance our business. Any change in our dividend policy is within the discretion of our board of directors and will depend, among other things, on our earnings, debt service and capital requirements, restrictions in financing agreements, if any, business conditions, legal restrictions and other factors that our board of directors deems relevant.
 
Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements
 
During the fiscal years ended December 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016, we had no off-balance sheet arrangements other than ordinary operating leases as disclosed in the accompanying financial statements.
 
Contractual Obligations and Commitments
 
The following table summarizes our contractual obligations and other commitments as of December 30, 2017:
 
 
 
Payments due by period
 
 
 
Total
 
 
2018
 
 
2019
 
 
2020
 
 
2021
 
 
2022
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Capital leases
 $576,000 
 $236,000 
 $196,000 
 $126,000 
 $18,000 
 $- 
Operating leases
  2,093,000 
  601,000 
  590,000 
  424,000 
  340,000 
  138,000 
Purchase obligations
  3,571,000 
  3,489,000 
  82,000 
  - 
  - 
  - 
Total
 $6,240,000 
 $4,326,000 
 $868,000 
 $550,000 
 $358,000 
 $138,000 
 
Capital leases. We lease equipment under capitalized lease obligations with a term of typically 4 or 5 years. We make monthly instalment payments for these leases.
 
Operating leases. We lease our office and research facilities in California, Colorado and Maryland under operating lease agreements that expire at various dates from September 2018 through February 2024. We make monthly payments on these leases.
 
Purchase obligations. We enter into purchase obligations with various vendors for goods and services that we need for our operations. The purchase obligations for goods and services include inventory, research and development, and laboratory supplies.
 
Critical Accounting Policies
 
The discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based on our financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. The preparation of these financial statements requires us to make estimates and judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses, and related disclosures. On an ongoing basis, we evaluate these estimates, including those related to the valuation of share-based payments. We base our estimates on historical experience and on various other assumptions that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may differ from these estimates under different assumptions or conditions.
 
 
-50-
 
We believe that of our significant accounting policies, which are described in Note 2 of the Financial Statements, set forth in Item 8, the following accounting policies involve the greatest degree of judgment and complexity. Accordingly, these are the policies we believe are the most critical to aid in fully understanding and evaluating our consolidated financial condition and results of operations.
 
Revenue recognition: The Company recognizes sales and the related cost of sales at the time the merchandise is shipped to customers or service is performed, when each of the following conditions have been met: an arrangement exists, delivery has occurred, there is a fixed price, and collectability is reasonably assured. Discounts, returns and allowances related to sales, including an estimated reserve for returns and allowances, are recorded as reduction of revenue.
 
Shipping and handling fees billed to customers and the cost of shipping and handling fees billed to customers are included in Net sales. Shipping and handling fees not billed to customers are recognized as cost of sales.
 
Taxes collected from customers and remitted to governmental authorities are excluded from revenue, which is presented on a net basis in the statement of operations.
 
In May 2014, the Financial Accounting Standards Board ("FASB") issued Accounting Standards Update No. 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers: Topic 606 (ASU 2014-09), to supersede nearly all existing revenue recognition guidance under U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles ("GAAP"). The core principle of ASU 2014-09 is to recognize revenues when promised goods or services are transferred to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration that is expected to be received for those goods or services. ASU 2014-09 defines a five step process to achieve this core principle and, in doing so, it is possible more judgment and estimates may be required within the revenue recognition process than required under existing U.S. GAAP including identifying performance obligations in the contract, estimating the amount of variable consideration to include in the transaction price and allocating the transaction price to each separate performance obligation. ASU 2014-09 is effective for us in our first quarter of fiscal 2018 using either of two methods: (i) retrospective to each prior reporting period presented with the option to elect certain practical expedients as defined within ASU 2014-09; or (ii) retrospective with the cumulative effect of initially applying ASU 2014-09 recognized at the date of initial application and providing certain additional disclosures as defined per ASU 2014-09.
 
The Company will adopt ASU 2014-09, effective the first day of our fiscal year 2018, using the modified retrospective transition method. Under this method, the Company could elect to apply the cumulative effect method to either all contracts as of the date of initial application or only to contracts that are not complete as of that date. The Company elected to apply the modified retrospective method to contracts that are not complete as of December 31, 2017. We do not expect the adoption of ASU 2014-09 to have a material impact on our financial statements.
 
Inventories: Inventories are comprised of raw materials, work-in-process and finished goods. They are stated at the lower of cost, determined by the first-in, first-out method, or market. The inventory on the balance sheet is reflected net of valuation allowances. Labor and overhead has been added to inventory that was manufactured or characterized by the Company.
 
The Company regularly reviews inventories on hand and reduces the carrying value for slow-moving and obsolete inventory, inventory not meeting quality standards and inventory subject to expiration. The reduction of the carrying value for slow-moving and obsolete inventory is based on current estimates of future product demand, market conditions and related management judgment. Any significant unanticipated changes in future product demand or market conditions that vary from current expectations could have an impact on the value of inventories.
 
Share-based compensation: Under the Company's 2017 Equity Incentive Plan, as amended, the Board of Directors may grant restricted stock or stock options to employees and non-employees. For employees, share-based compensation cost is recorded for all option grants and awards of non-vested stock based on the grant date fair value of the award, and is recognized over the period the employee is required to provide services for the award. For non-employees, share-based compensation cost is recorded for all option grants and awards of non-vested stock and is remeasured over the vesting term as earned. The expense is recognized over the period the non-employee is required to provide services for the award.
 
 
 
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The Company recognizes compensation expense over the requisite service period using the straight-line method for option grants without performance conditions. For stock options that have both service and performance conditions, the Company recognizes compensation expense using the graded attribution method. Compensation expense for stock options with performance conditions is recognized only for those awards expected to vest.
 
From time to time, the Company awards shares of its common stock to non-employees for services provided or to be provided. The fair value of the awards are measured either based on the fair market value of stock at the date of grant or the value of the services provided, based on which is more reliably measurable. Since these stock awards are fully vested and non-forfeitable, upon issuance the measurement date for the award is usually reached on the date of the award.
 
 Item 7A.
Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
 
Interest Rate Risk
 
We may become exposed to risks associated with changes in interest rates in connection with our credit facility with Western Alliance. As of December 30, 2017, we did not have an outstanding loan payable balance, however, we established a formula based revolving credit line with Western Alliance Bank, pursuant to which we may borrow an aggregate principal amount of up to $5,000,000, subject to certain terms and conditions. If we decide to borrow from this credit line, the interest rate will be calculated at a floating rate per month equal to the greater of 3.50% per year or the Prime Rate published in the Money Rates section of the Western Edition of The Wall Street Journal, or such other rate of interest publicly announced by Lender as its Prime Rate, plus 2.50 percentage points, plus an additional 5.00 percentage points during any period that an event of default has occurred and is continuing. If the Prime Rate rises, we will incur more interest expenses. Any borrowing, interest or other fees or obligations that we owe Western Alliance will become due and payable on November 4, 2018.
 
Our capital lease obligations bear interest at a fixed rate and therefore have no exposure to changes in interest rates.
 
The Company’s cash consists of short term, highly liquid investments in money market funds managed by banks. Due to the short-term duration of our investment portfolio and the relatively low risk profile of our investments, a sudden change in interest rates would not have a material effect on either the fair market value of our portfolio, our operating results or our cash flows.
 
Foreign Currency Risk
 
All of our long-lived assets are located within the United States and we do not hold any foreign currency denominated financial instruments. Our international sales are denominated in U.S. dollars and we collect in U.S. dollars.
 
Effects of Inflation
 
We do not believe that inflation has had a material effect on our results of operations or financial condition during the periods presented.
 
 
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 Item 8.
 Financial Statements and Supplementary Data
 
The financial statements are set forth in the pages listed below.
 
 
 
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REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM
 
 
To the Shareholders and Board of Directors of
ChromaDex Corporation
 
Opinion on the Financial Statements
 
We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of ChromaDex Corporation and Subsidiaries (the “Company”) as of December 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016, the related consolidated statements of operations, stockholders’ equity and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 30 2017, and the related notes (collectively referred to as the “financial statements”). In our opinion, the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company as of December 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 30, 2017, in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.
 
We also have audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) ("PCAOB"), the Company's internal control over financial reporting as of December 30, 2017, based on the criteria established in Internal Control - Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO) in 2013 and our report dated March 15, 2018, expressed an unqualified opinion on the effectiveness of the Company’s internal control over financial reporting.
 
Basis for Opinion
 
These financial statements are the responsibility of the Company's management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company's financial statements based on our audits. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
 
We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audits to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. Our audits included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. Our audits also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the financial statements. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.
 
 
Marcum llp
 
/s/ Marcum LLP
 
We have served as the Company’s auditor since 2013.
 
 
New York, NY
March 15, 2018
 
 
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REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM ON
INTERNAL CONTROL OVER FINANCIAL REPORTING
 
 
To the Shareholders and Board of Directors of
ChromaDex Corporation
 
Opinion on Internal Control over Financial Reporting
 
We have audited ChromaDex Corporation's (the “Company”) internal control over financial reporting as of December 30, 2017, based on criteria established in Internal Control-Integrated Framework (2013) issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission. In our opinion, the Company maintained, in all material respects, effective internal control over financial reporting as of December 30, 2017, based on criteria established in Internal Control – Integrated Framework (2013) issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission.
 
We have also audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (“PCAOB”), the consolidated balance sheets as of December 30, 2017 and the related consolidated statements of operations, stockholders’ equity, and cash flows for the years then ended of the Company and our report dated March 15, 2018 expressed an unqualified opinion on those financial statements.
 
Basis for Opinion
 
The Company's management is responsible for maintaining effective internal control over financial reporting, and for its assessment of the effectiveness of internal control over financial reporting, included in the accompanying “Management Annual Report on Internal Control over Financial Reporting”. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company's internal control over financial reporting based on our audit. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
 
We conducted our audit in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether effective internal control over financial reporting was maintained in all material respects. Our audit of internal control over financial reporting included obtaining an understanding of internal control over financial reporting, assessing the risk that a material weakness exists, and testing and evaluating the design and operating effectiveness of internal control based on the assessed risk. Our audit also included performing such other procedures as we considered necessary in the circumstances. We believe that our audit provides a reasonable basis for our opinion.
 
Definition and Limitations of Internal Control over Financial Reporting
 
A company’s internal control over financial reporting is a process designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting and the preparation of financial statements for external purposes in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. A company's internal control over financial reporting includes those policies and procedures that (1) pertain to the maintenance of records that, in reasonable detail, accurately and fairly reflect the transactions and dispositions of the assets of the company; (2) provide reasonable assurance that transactions are recorded as necessary to permit preparation of financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, and that receipts and expenditures of the company are being made only in accordance with authorizations of management and directors of the company; and (3) provide reasonable assurance regarding prevention or timely detection of unauthorized acquisition, use, or disposition of the company’s assets that could have a material effect on the financial statements.
 
Because of the inherent limitations, internal control over financial reporting may not prevent or detect misstatements. Also, projections of any evaluation of effectiveness to future periods are subject to the risk that controls may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or that degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate.
 
 
/s/ Marcum LLP
 
Marcum llp
 
New York, NY
March 15, 2018
 
 
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ChromaDex Corporation and Subsidiaries
 
 
 
 
 
 
Consolidated Balance Sheets
 
 
 
 
 
 
December 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016