From the November 2005 issue of Entrepreneur

Brothers Tom and Neil Koehler got into the renewable energy business long before being green was cool. Now their company, Pacific Ethanol, is red-hot. When recent changes in California law created an instant billion-gallon demand for ethanol, the brothers immediately drew up plans for a network of new ethanol production plants.

Their first plan to raise the $50 million needed for each plant was an IPO, but that would have taken too long. So in March, Pacific Ethanol purchased a defunct public company shell, allowing the Koehlers to sell over $21 million in stock to public investors--not bad for a 24-person company.

Pacific Ethanol's new stock symbol, PEIX, can already be found on the Nasdaq. "We hoped it would be a little cheaper and a little quicker, but in hindsight, it was exactly the right move," says Tom. "It made us one of the few pure-play ethanol stocks in the public markets."