Seeking Alpha
View as an RSS Feed

Barry Randall  

View Barry Randall's Comments BY TICKER:
Latest  |  Highest rated
  • The Bizarro World Of Tesla Longs [View article]
    A sincere thanks for your fact-based comments. A welcome respite from the unicorns and rainbows offered up by most others.
    May 29, 2013. 06:25 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Bizarro World Of Tesla Longs [View article]
    Range is directly proportional to weight and cost; all the EV manufacturers are utilizing the same off-the-shelf L-ion battery technology. Tesla (like Whole Foods) was successful in realizing there was a sub-market of cost-no-object consumers who are willing to pay up for what the consumers feel is a premium experience. That's great, and full credit to Tesla for figuring that out.

    But Tesla has no patent or other stranglehold on that market; and Nissan, Ford, Mitsubishi and a dozen other car manufacturers can quickly cobble together a nice car with a bigger battery pack to serve that niche market. The car business is at heart a scale business. If Tesla wants to stick to it's current market, it will succeed and probably be eventually profitable in an un-subsidized way. But if they go toe-to-toe with the Big 6, they'll lose.

    And the Tesla is not out-selling the Leaf. Current sales rates have the Leaf selling 30,000 units worldwide in 2013; roughly 40% of that in the United States. Tesla has indicated that they have orders in hand for 20,000 Model S's, but their current rate of production will result in sales figures less than that for calendar 2013.

    But the two cars are addressing different markets and are therefore not directly comparable.
    May 29, 2013. 06:04 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Bizarro World Of Tesla Longs [View article]
    You seem more sensible than many of the others commenting on my story, but let me take mild issue with one of your statements:

    "The p/e ratio does not matter at this point in the growth stage, as long as pie in the sky projections have some level of possibility of being reached."

    The P:E ratio does matter, in that Tesla bulls keep trotting out the fact that the company recently reported positive earnings (dubious though they may be with the warrants and the credits from other car manufacturers). If the company is now "profitable" then it's absolutely fair game to use that in a P:E comparison. And unlike dot-coms of the late 90s, many of which turned out to have fabulously profitable business models like eBay, Tesla is at heart a car manufacturer, which is a low-margin, deeply cyclical business. So it's current P:E looks even more bizarre in that context.
    May 29, 2013. 05:58 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Bizarro World Of Tesla Longs [View article]
    Next time, before you comment, you really should read the whole story. I compared the Leaf (which exists in the real world) with Tesla's planned Gen III car (which does not yet exist in the real world, but is supposed to be available in two years).

    To say that the Tesla Model S is without compromise is delusional. The S's direct competition is a BMW 5-Series, which has an 18.5 gallon tank and gets over 33 mpg on the highway. That gives it a range of 625 miles, vs. between 200-300 for a Model S. Oh, and it takes more than 5 minutes to replenish that range when you're out of charge in the Tesla (or the Nissan Leaf for that matter).

    Get a grip. It's a nice car. Not nirvana.
    May 29, 2013. 05:53 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Bizarro World Of Tesla Longs [View article]
    Why should I correct a comment that only exists in your addled brain? I neither stated nor implied that Nissan did not accept a government loan.

    Mitsubishi makes the i-MiEV electric vehicle, fully legal for sale in the US. BMW offers Mini EVs in California. Neither manufacturer accepted loans from the U.S. government.

    Thanks for validating my decision to describe where you live as, "Bizarro World."
    May 29, 2013. 05:37 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Bizarro World Of Tesla Longs [View article]
    I run a long-only technology fund. I'm strictly an observer when it comes to TSLA stock. The first line of my piece congratulates the longs who have done well recently in Tesla. No bitterness here.
    May 29, 2013. 05:22 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Silicon Motion: Sifting Through The Wreckage [View article]
    Here it is:
    May 1, 2013. 12:20 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Silicon Motion: Sifting Through The Wreckage [View article]
    I don't believe it's in Samsung's DNA to purchase upstream vendors like Silicon Motion. Read the recent Bloomberg Businessweek story about Samsung and its very unusual culture.

    Not saying SIMO won't get bought; I just doubt seriously that Samsung would be the buyer.
    Apr 29, 2013. 01:32 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Measurement Specialties Doesn't Quite Measure Up [View article]
    Thanks for the thoughtful, fact-based report.
    Mar 13, 2013. 02:30 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 3D Systems Or Stratsys: Which Is The Best Bet For Now? [View article]
    That's certainly a possibility, but why would MakerBot accept a buyout, when they already enjoy structural advantages (simpler products at lower prices with much lower overhead) that will serve them well as they move into more commercial settings?

    Of course, a big fat check for millions of dollars could change that trajectory...but a lot of founders (think Facebook and Groupon) have turned down big fat checks because they believed that they could make more (and perhaps enjoy the ride more) by remaining independent.
    Feb 17, 2013. 10:10 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Zillow Is A Better Play On The Housing Recovery [View article]
    Congratulations on your bullish call on Z back in November. I caught the earlier move that topped out around 40 and was lucky (really) to avoid the downdraft to the low 20s. I thought for sure that the slowing growth and management's own weak margin guidance would send it lower and keep it going down.

    But I was wrong and you were right. Way to go.
    Feb 13, 2013. 06:25 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • 3 Technology Stocks With Recent Intensive Insider Selling [View article]
    Philip Marlowe: Thanks for your fact-based rebuttal of this story, w/r/t EPAM in particular.
    Feb 13, 2013. 01:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 3D Systems: Too Much, Too Soon Or A Calculated Risk? [View article]
    I addressed this issue a few weeks ago in this column:

    Note carefully that I think 3D printing has an exciting future in commercial applications - but I think there are a variety of reasons that will prevent it from being a mass, consumer market.
    Feb 6, 2013. 05:52 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Cerner Buyback: Waste Of Cash [View article]
    Why? Is an information ratio of 0.7 not good enough for you?
    Feb 6, 2013. 03:43 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Citic Capital Near $16 Per Share Deal For AsiaInfo-Linkage, A 45 Percent Premium? [View article]
    I read the CC transcript. Nothing was said about any MBO/LBO. The emphasis was strictly on the quarterly performance, which was extremely solid.
    Feb 5, 2013. 02:53 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment