Jupitermedia CEO Attacks Shutterfly

Includes: JUPM, SFLY
by: David Jackson

Look at this fascinating comment by Jupitermedia (JUPM) CEO Alan Meckler (pictured left) about Shutterfly's (SFLY) business:

Shutterfly Goes Public

Shutterfly went public last week at $15.00 per share. Shutterfly describes itself in the prospectus in the following: "We are an Internet-based social expression and personal publishing service that enables consumers to share, print and preserve their memories...Our vision is to make the world a better place by helping people share life's joy."

The company is moving in on $80 million a year of revenue and makes no money. The business is fiercely competitive. And today, after an IPO, the company has a market cap of over $300 million.

This IPO reminds me of IPOs of the 1999-2000 era. In those days companies went public on ideas with no revenue. Shutterfly has revenue but I would doubt that it can ever be profitable. I can understand why the prospectus uses the "joy" word after studying the financials and the business model.

As a CEO of a public company I realize that this post might draw criticism. I am used to criticism and realize that if my own company's financial results do not satisfy The Street then I will be condemned and reminded of this post. However we do make money - lots of it. And our market cap is now significantly lower than the market cap of Shutterfly (Nasdaq:SFLY).

I am constantly amazed by the process of being a public company. I spend hours with analysts and fund managers. They rip apart and parse my every phrase and thought about our business model. And that is why for the life of me I cannot understand how any fund manager would have purchased shares in Shutterfly at the level the company sold itself to the market.

Congratulations to the banks that brought this deal to the market and of course to the founders (many of whom sold shares on the offering). I wish you luck with your business and no ill-will. I am just a mere Internet industry commentator who has observed it all in the Internet space since 1994. We shall see where this all winds up over the next 12 months.

Now back to making sure Jupitermedia remains a significantly profitable corporation.

The comment was published on Mr Meckler's blog, which doesn't allow comments. Readers can leave thoughts and comments here. Or read more from Mr Meckler in JUPM's Q2 Earnings Conference Call transcript.