Wednesday, December 4, 2013
10:26 PMApple, China Mobile sign iPhone deal: WSJ
- Apple (AAPL) and China Mobile (CHL) have finally inked an iPhone deal, WSJ reports.
- APPL will now have access to the carrier's 700M subscribers — that's "seven times the size" of Verizon's base, MarketWatch notes.
- Rollout is expected this month.
- See also: Chinese 4G licenses handed out, services to start soon
6:57 PMChinese 4G licenses handed out, services to start soon
- The Chinese government has finally issued 4G licenses (long anticipated) to China Mobile (CHL), China Unicom (CHU), and China Telecom (CHA), paving the way for commercial service launches to start.
- China Mobile, which has already built out a giant "trial" 4G network, is set to have a 4G partner conference in two weeks that will reportedly feature an iPhone announcement. China Telecom says it will launch 4G services in Q1.
- Notably, the licenses only cover 4G networks relying on the TD-LTE standard (allows for more capacity to be allocated to downlinks than uplinks, if carriers wish). China Unicom and Telecom both want to run networks using the FDD LTE standard, which is far more popular internationally, and say they still plan to request FDD LTE licenses in the future.
- In addition to Apple, Chinese 4G launches are likely to benefit Qualcomm (QCOM). Whereas Qualcomm faces tough competition in the Chinese 3G baseband chip market (particularly on the low-end) and has had royalty collection issues for sales of phones running on China Mobile's TD-SCDMA 3G network, it has a dominant share of the global 4G baseband market, and hasn't had any major 4G collection issues.
- Many think the Chinese government's anti-monopoly probe of Qualcomm is a bargaining tactic aimed at securing 4G royalty rate concessions.
6:22 PMIntuit buying document site Docstoc, reportedly for up to $50M
- Intuit (INTU) is acquiring Docstoc, a document-focused resource site for small businesses that claims 25M+ registered users. AllThingsD reports the purchase price "could reach $50 million."
- Docstoc offers 20M+ professional documents on its site, along with articles, videos, and other content aimed at SMBs. Some of its content is free, while other material requires subscription plans. The startup also provides a platform for uploading, syncing, and selling user-created documents.
- Docstoc is the latest in a string of SMB-focused acquisitions made by Intuit, which recently obtained $1.025B from the sale of its online/mobile banking software unit (but apparently could've obtained more).
- Other recent acquisitions include workers comp. tech provider Prestwick Services, tax return software firm GoodApril, and Facebook ad/e-commerce services provider Payvment.
5:59 PMTeng Yue unwilling to sell 6.8% stake in iSoftStone at proposed $5.45/ADR
- 6.8% shareholder Teng Yue Partners writes a letter to the board of iSoftStone (ISS) calling the current $5.45/ADR (previously $5.85) offer made by a consortium composed of CEO Tianwen Liu and ChinaAMC "wholly unacceptable."
- The fund is unwilling to sell its shares at the price and aims to discuss with the Independent Committee of the board a price at which it would be willing to do so.
5:57 PMSymantec hires Microsoft exec to be new CTO
- Symantec (SYMC) has hired Amit Mital, until recently in charge of Microsoft's Startup Business Group (forecasts tech trends and helps bring new technologies to market), its new CTO. Mital replaces Steve Trilling, who will be "moving to an operational senior leadership role in the company." (PR)
- The CTO change follows a string of executive departures (I, II, III), and comes at a time when CEO Steve Benett is trying to streamline Symantec's product offerings to better contend with hungry security and storage software rivals.
5:37 PMBroadridge Financial Solutions CFO takes medical leave of absence
- Broadridge Financial Solutions (BR -1.1%) CFO Dan Sheldon takes a temporary medical leave of absence. (8-K)
- COO of the Mutual Fund and Retirement Solutions Group Michael Liberatore will serve as Principal Financial Officer and Corporate Controller David Lissa will serve as Principal Accounting Officer in Sheldon's stead.
5:30 PMGeneral Growth replacing Molex in S&P 500; Facebook -1.7% AH
- General Growth Properties (GGP) is replacing Molex (set to be acquired by Koch Industries) in the S&P 500 following the Dec. 9 close. GGP is up 5.4% AH on the news.
- Facebook (FB), rumored to be the next company to be added to be added to the index, is selling off on the news after rising 4% in regular trading.
5:26 PMAvago's guidance in-line, shares -1.6% AH
- Avago (AVGO) expects FQ1 revenue to be down 3%-6% Q/Q due to "typical" seasonal weakness in all of its markets. That spells a revenue range of $693.7M-$715.9M, in-line with a $704.2M consensus.
- Wireless chip revenue (47% of total) rose 19% Q/Q and 10% Y/Y in seasonally strong FQ4. The business has benefited from healthy sales to Apple/Samsung, and strong demand from Avago's 4G power amplifier modules (differentiated by its FBAR filters).
- Wired infrastructure sales (33% of total), boosted by a "stronger than expected" contribution from recently-acquired CyOptics, rose 22% Q/Q and 55% Y/Y. Industrial & Other sales (20% of total) were down 4% Q/Q and up 2% Y/Y.
- FQ3 gross margin was 50.5%, -40 bps Q/Q and -60 bps Y/Y, but above the midpoint of a guidance range of 49%-51%. FQ1 GM is expected to be in a range of 49.5%-51.5%.
- Thanks in large part to CyOptics, opex rose 30% Y/Y, eclipsing rev. growth of 19%.
- FQ4 results, PR
5:02 PMIcahn ups Nuance stake to 18.72%, shares +1.5% AH
- Carl Icahn is having a busy day. Shortly after announcing a proposal for an Apple buyback vote, the billionaire activist investor discloses he has raised his stake in Nuance (NUAN) to 18.72% from a prior 16.9%. (13D)
- The new vote of confidence comes a couple weeks after Nuance tumbled due to the disappointing guidance provided with its FQ4 report, and two months after Icahn announced an agreement with the voice recognition software leader that landed him two board seats.
- Shares remain down 29% from where they traded when Icahn first disclosed a stake (then 9.3%) in Nuance on April 1.
4:49 PMKLA-Tencor slumps due to bookings forecast, takes peers lower with it
- During a Credit Suisse conference talk, KLA-Tencor (KLAC -2.7%) CFO Bren Higgins stated his company's FQ2 (Dec. quarter) bookings could miss the midpoint of its guidance range. The potential shortfall is attributed to a $100M order push-out for reticle inspection tools used in the production of cutting-edge 10nm chips.
- KLA had guided on its FQ1 CC (transcript) for FQ2 bookings of $800M-$950M ($875M midpoint), up from FQ1's $790M and well above revenue guidance of $670M-$730M.
- Susquehanna's Mehdi Hosseini, who rates KLA a Negative, is "puzzled" by Higgins' explanation, given Intel (long at the bleeding edge of chip manufacturing) is the only company investing in 10nm R&D for now - the chip giant is just getting set to mass-produce 14nm chips - and that KLA's reticle inspection bookings have been in the ~$70M range in recent quarters.
- The reticle inspection market has been a weak spot for KLA. However, during an upbeat September conference talk, Higgins said demand was improving.
- Chip equipment sales have been expected to improve in 2014: Trade group SEMI just estimated sales will rise 23% in 2014, after dropping 13% in 2013.
- Several chip equipment peers have followed KLA lower: AMAT -3%. ASML -2.5%. LRCX -2.9%. RTEC -1.5%. MTSN -2.5%.
4:44 PMSynopsis -4.1% AH after in-line FQ4, weak FQ1 guidance
- Synopsis (SNPS) shares are down 4.1% AH following a largely in-line FQ4 but weaker-than-expected FQ1 guidance.
- Time-based license revenue grew 12.5% Y/Y to $412.9M, upfront revenue +26.4% to $36.5M, and maintenance revenue -4.9% to $55.5M.
- Management sees FQ1 revenue of $475M-$485M (missing analyst expectations of $504.3M) and EPS of $0.51-$0.53 ($0.62). FY2014 revenue is seen at $2.06B-$2.085B (vs. consensus of $2.09B) and EPS at $2.55-$2.60 ($2.54).
- Conference call at 5pm ET, PR
4:20 PMEquinix announces $500M buyback program, shares +1.1% AH
- Equinix (EQIX) has authorized a $500M buyback program that lasts until the end of 2014. At current levels, the program is good for repurchasing 6% of outstanding shares. (PR)
- It arrives at a time when Equinix shares are down 22% YTD in spite of a huge tech stock rally, thanks to a mixture of steep multiples (shares did much better in 2012), REIT conversion worries. and concerns about indirect competition from cloud service providers.
4:05 PMDigital Ally spikes into close after business journal covers KCTG deal
- Shares of Digital Ally (DGLY +1.7%) spike 4.4% in the minutes before the close to close the day black after the Kansas City Business Journal rehashes the company's previously-announced win of an initial contract from KCTG and echoes the company's belief that the relationship could drive future business.
4:00 PMIcahn proposal reportedly calls for buyback of "at least" $50B
- David Faber reports Carl Icahn's Apple (AAPL -0.3%) buyback proposal calls for "at least" $50B in share repurchases in FY14 (ends Sep. '14).
- As a "precatory" proposal, the resolution won't be binding even if a majority of Apple shareholder votes are cast in favor of it.
- Meanwhile, Time has published an Icahn cover story that focuses on his Apple efforts. Icahn tells the magazine he filed his proposal on Nov. 26 (thus making it eligible to be voted on at next year's shareholder meeting), and that he remains a supporter of Tim Cook.
- Icahn: "A lot of people say Steve Jobs probably wouldn’t have talked to me, and maybe that’s true ... But I think [Cook] found our conversation sort of interesting. He said, `Look, you’ve accomplished a lot, and we want to listen to you.’”
3:08 PMIcahn to make "precatory" proposal to call for Apple buyback vote
- Carl Icahn on (where else?) Twitter: "Gave [Apple] notice we’ll be making a precatory proposal to call for vote to increase buyback program, although not at $150 billion level."
- Icahn, never scared to self-promote, also says he'll be on the cover of the next issue of Time (out tomorrow), which will feature a piece on investor activism.
- Apple (AAPL -0.5%) shares haven't moved much in response to Icahn's comments. Tim Cook has said Apple won't announce any changes to its capital allocation policy before early 2014. Icahn, meanwhile, has been pushing for a $150B expansion of Apple's buyback program, and has said he would "test the waters" regarding a proxy fight if the company ignored his calls.
2:59 PMCiena rallies on bullish FBR note, peers/suppliers also up
- FBR's Scott Thompson thinks Ciena (CIEN +7%) will deliver a beat-and-raise FQ4 report on Dec. 12, and sees the telecom equipment vendor benefiting from carrier adoption of network architectures that feature "more intelligence and flexibility at the optical layer."
- Thompson sees carriers building more advanced metro optical networks, replete with data centers that enable services such as content caching, app hosting, and advanced mobile messaging. He points to a recent optical switching deal between Verizon and Ciena as an example of how the latter benefits from this trend, and sees a similar deal with AT&T arriving soon.
- At the same time, he cautions optical gross margins "could be under pressure," thanks to aggressive pricing from Infinera (INFN +2%), lengthy deployment times, and the adoption of software-defined networking controllers (CYNI is among the companies providing them) that remove some intelligence from the optical layer.
- Ciena flew higher three months ago following its FQ3 report. The company reported solid demand for its integrated Ethernet switching/optical networking hardware, which now accounts for 56% of revenue.
- Infinera is following Ciena higher, and so are Finisar (FNSR +5.2%), JDS Uniphase (JDSU +3.1%), Fabrinet (FN +1.8%), and AppliedMicro (AMCC +3.9%).
2:32 PMFacebook higher amid S&P 500 hopes; Instagram exec leaving for Snapchat
- UBS thinks Facebook (FB +3.6%) could be added to the S&P 500 as soon as tonight. Deutsche also believes such a move could happen soon.
- With a market cap of $118B and a 2013 revenue consensus of $7.6B, Facebook's inclusion within the benchmark index appears to be just a matter of time.
- Meanwhile, Instagram exec Emily White, who was in charge of the mobile photo-sharing service's nascent ad efforts, is leaving to become the COO of Snapchat. She could return to the fold one day if Snapchat founder Evan Spiegel has a change-of-heart regarding Facebook's (widely reported) buyout overtures.
2:11 PMFCC chairman suggests Netflix could pay ISPs to improve service quality
- FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, in response to a question about whether ISPs should be allowed to charge service providers who are "data hogs" extra: "I think that we're seeing the market evolve in such a way that there will be variations in pricing, there will be variations in service ... Netflix (NFLX -0.9%) might say, 'I'll pay in order to make sure that my subscriber might receive the best possible transmission.'"
- At the same time, Wheeler, who has previously worked as the CEO for both the U.S. cable and wireless industries' top trade groups, says he supports net neutrality, and is opposed to allowing ISPs to block/limit services.
- Many Web giants, including Google and Facebook, are already paying U.S. ISPs to directly connect to their networks (and thus improve the speed/reliability of user connections). But Netflix has held off, reportedly out of fear of setting a precedent. The company has instead focused on partnering with ISPs (provided they're willing to do so) to build out its Open Connect CDN.
- Previous: Netflix discusses French launch
1:51 PMISS takes activist investor's side in attempted Telecom Italia board ouster
- Activist Telecom Italia (TI +0.4%) 5% shareholder Marco Fossati, who has voiced concerns that Telefonica's aims do not align with those of shareholders, has won a helping hand from proxy advisor ISS. It has recommended institutional investors back a proposal to remove the company board at a Dec. 20 shareholder meeting.
- Proxy votes are estimated to exceed 9%, while institutional investors hold nearly 50% of the capital base.
- If the coup is successful, shareholders would have to elect a new slate of directors. Fossati's holding company, Findim, has backed a list of 7 new directors presented by Italian asset managers' association Assogestioni.
- Given Telefonica's opposition to the proposal, the board's fate is uncertain. Fossati vowed "We might not have the number of votes ... but we are committed ... This will not finish in December."
1:49 PMMorgan Stanley cuts Accenture and NetApp, ups Western Digital and Brocade
- Citing the impact of faster-than-expected cloud computing adoption, Morgan Stanley's Katy Huberty has downgraded Accenture (ACN -1.9%) and NetApp (NTAP -0.9%) to Equal Weight. Meanwhile, citing more favorable risk/reward, Huberty has upgraded Western Digital (WDC +2.8%) to Overweight and Brocade (BRCD +0.5%) to Equal Weight.
- Concerns about the impact of cloud services on sales of IT outsourcing services such as Accenture's, and enterprise storage hardware such as NetApp's, have been around for some time. Recent numbers (I, II) provided by the companies, and by peers such as IBM and EMC, haven't done much to soothe those fears. Synergy Research recently estimated sales of cloud infrastructure (IaaS) and app platform (PaaS) services rose 46% Y/Y in Q3.
- Accenture now trades at 15x estimated FY14 (ends Aug. '14) EPS exc. net cash, and NetApp trades at just 10x estimated FY14 (ends April '14) EPS exc. net cash.
- Western Digital, whose hard drive sales have been pressured by PC weakness and SSD adoption, recently began shipping its first helium drives (they're lighter, denser, and more power-efficient than traditional drives), in part to better meet the needs of Web/cloud companies.
1:01 PMMoody's downgrades ION Geophysical to B2, outlook negative
- Moody's downgrades ION Geophysical's (IO -2.4%) rating to B2 from B3 and its $175M senior secured notes to Caa1 from B3 with a negative outlook.
- Moody's cites "weaker fundamental performance than originally anticipated," which leaves the company with less financial flexibility to absorb changes in the "highly volatile and cyclical seismic sector, ... typically the first sub-sector in the oilfield services industry to decline in a down-cycle and the last sub-sector to benefit from an up-cycle recovery."
- The firm also noted that ION's cash balance has eroded below projections while its "litigation exposure has increased." A Texas judge ordered ION to pay an additional $73.1M in damages to WesternGeco back in Oct.
12:54 PMBroadcom launches Bluetooth SoC with wireless charging support
- Looking to profit from the nascent wearable computing market and stay a step ahead of Bluetooth chip rivals, Broadcom (BRCM -0.1%) has unveiled a Bluetooth SoC that both supports the low-power Bluetooth Smart standard and (more interestingly) has built-in wireless charging support. (PR)
- The SoC, called the BCM20736, supports wireless charging via the A4WP standard. It also contains a low-power ARM Cortex-M3 CPU core (often found in microcontrollers).
- Rival Qualcomm recently launched its Toq smartwatch, which contains a Bluetooth Smart chip (presumably its own) and wireless charging support. Meanwhile, Samsung (a major buyer of Broadcom's Bluetooth/Wi-Fi combo chips) acquired U.K.-based CSR's Bluetooth chip ops last year, and Apple, widely reported to be working on an iWatch, recently bought low-power Bluetooth chipmaker Passif Semi.
12:20 PMTopsy seen improving iOS search; Twitter reportedly mulled acquisition
- As analysts and pundits mull Apple's (AAPL -0.6%) surprising purchase of Twitter analytics startup Topsy, plenty of attention has been given to Topsy's advanced search tools, which many consider to be better than Twitter's (TWTR +5%) on-site search capabilities.
- Azeem Azhar, the founder of fellow social analytics firm PeerIndex, thinks Topsy could end up acting as "the search layer for iOS," indexing both social media content and "the best bits of the Web that power Siri and Apple Maps." He points out doing so would reduce (but not eliminate) Apple's dependence on Google.
- TechCrunch, meanwhile, thinks Topsy's search tech and ability to gauge consumer sentiment could improve the quality of the App Store and iTunes' search and recommendation engines. And Gene Munster sees Topsy potentially improving Siri and Maps by integrating data related to current events and trending topics.
- Separately, AllThingsD reports Twitter, which is rallying today along with other Internet momentum names, considered buying Topsy on multiple occasions, out of interest in its search tools. But the microblogging giant ultimately held off, something sources think stems from Twitter's belief it could build some of Topsy's tools on its own.
11:55 AMANSYS acquires chemistry simulation software maker Reaction Design
- ANSYS (ANSS +0.7%) acquires chemistry simulation software developer Reaction Design. Closing is expected in Jan.
- Reaction Design has over 400 customers globally. ANSYS plans to offer Reaction Design's CHEMKIN-PRO gas-phase and surface chemistry software alongside its computational fluid dynamics solutions, aiming the offerings at users who want to improve fuel efficiency of combustion engines.
11:25 AMHanwha higher after announcing partnership, supply deal
- Hanwha SolarOne (HSOL +3.9%) has signed an MOU with Chinese solar project developer Jiangsu Zhongtian (ZTT) to create "a long-term strategic partnership to cooperate in the [downstream solar] business." As part of the deal, ZTT plans to use 150MW worth of Hanwha modules in a distributed energy project. (PR)
- The news comes two weeks after Hanwha announced a deal to supply modules for use in Portuguese solar parks, and two days after the ompany announced it had obtained a new $574M credit facility.
11:05 AMAscent Solar higher after announcing Volvo pavilion deal
- Ascent's (ASTI +6.3%) solar modules will be used to power Volvo's Pure Tension Pavilion, which the automaker is using to show off its new V60 hybrid car. Thanks to Ascent's flexible panels, the pavilion can be use to charge a V60. (PR)
- Ascent rallied last week after announcing it plans to open three Southern California kiosks to promote its EnerPlex solar accessories.
10:53 AMTeradata falls due to fresh Morgan Stanley downgrade
- Less than two months after cutting Teradata (TDC -5.3%) to Equal Weight, Morgan Stanley has downgraded the maker of data warehousing and business intelligence hardware/software to Underweight. The prior downgrade took place after Teradata issued a big Q3/2013 warning.
- There have been concerns about the long-term impact the adoption of the increasingly popular Hadoop big data/analytics framework will have on Teradata's traditional warehousing solutions (though some argue it's only a minor threat), as well as about the growth seen by Amazon's Redshift warehousing service since its 2012 launch.
10:22 AMLiquidity Services extends DoD scrap auction deal, shares rally
- Liquidity Services (LQDT +7%) has obtained a 12-month extension of its scrap auction contract with the DoD. The extension means Liquidity will be "the exclusive sales channel for the disposition of scrap property that is approved for public sale" through June 9, 2015. (PR)
- Investors and analysts have been nervous about the status of Liquidity's contract renewal talks with the DoD, both for its scrap and surplus asset agreements. Benchmark recently expressed concerns about the deal terms Liquidity would get for a surplus renewal, given a more competitive bidding process.
- Shares are recouping some of the huge losses they saw two weeks ago, after Liquidity provided weak FQ1/FY14 guidance to go with mixed FQ4 results.
10:22 AMPremiere Global Services climbs on Powwownow acquisition, guidance update| Comment!
9:57 AMChanos: CGI one of "largest short positions"
- James Chanos counts CGI Group (GIB -1.6%) among his "largest short positions," NewsWeek reports. In a 10-page client memo, Chanos cited declining cash flow, falling new business bookings, questionable accounting practices, and the "PR mess" surrounding Healthcare.gov as reasons for his position.
- An increasing amount of investors are on board the short train: although 1.7% of shares outstanding were shorted as of Nov. 15 on the NYSE, 29.9M shares in Toronto had been sold short (almost 11% of shares outstanding), FactSet data shows.
9:56 AMNetflix discusses French launch with government officials
- Netflix (NFLX +0.8%) execs met with French president Francois Hollande's staff yesterday to talk about a possible launch of the streaming giant's services within France.
- An official within Hollande's office says Netflix "wanted information about the legal conditions that would affect its potential arrival in France," while adding execs are also visiting Germany and other European countries.
- A French launch would be a big one for Netflix, given it would bring Netflix's services to a country with 66M people and a fairly high per capita income. In addition to the U.S., the company has thus far launched in Canada, Latin America, the U.K./Ireland, the Netherlands, and Scandinavia.
- One possible hurdle: French laws currently prevent streaming services from showing a movie until at least three years have passed since its cinema debut.
- Netflix had 9.19M international streaming subs at the end of Q3 to go with 31.1M domestic subs, and expects to end Q4 with 10.1M-10.9M international subs.
9:42 AMA roundup of tech ratings changes| Comment!
9:35 AMTowerJazz CEO does not confirm deal to buy Panasonic plants
- TowerJazz's (TSEM) CEO Russell Ellwanger said of media reports claiming the company would buy 3 chip plants from Panasonic (PCRFY) for ~$100M, "I am not confirming about Panasonic but Panasonic is a very, very good semiconductor company with good technologies."
- Ellwanger noted that TowerJazz is keen to find acquisitions that increase capacity through well-run factories, but that "Any type of acquisition we look at would be a few million dollars of cash or equity but nothing more than that."
- The remarks may simply be the drawing of a line in the sand as TowerJazz negotiates with Panasonic, which has long made its intention to divest large parts of its semi operations clear.
9:28 AMGoogle roundup: Robotics, YouTube music service, Chrome apps
- The NYT reports Google (GOOG) has quietly acquired seven companies over the last six months in an attempt to "create a new generation of robots." Former Android chief Andy Rubin, reassigned earlier this year to an unspecified role, is spearheading the effort.
- Google is tight-lipped about its plans, but sources say manufacturing and retail applications are being eyed. The NYT observes Larry Page is a proponent of the idea that "technology should be deployed wherever possible to free humans from drudgery and repetitive tasks." The report comes shortly after Amazon made waves with its drone delivery announcement.
- AllThingsD reports the launch of YouTube's anticipated subscription music service has been pushed back to 2014, with a Q1 launch possible. Though YouTube has the licenses it needs to launch, the online video giant is said to be unsatisfied with the current state of the product.
- While music subscription services are nearly a dime a dozen at this point, YouTube's huge base and ability to integrate videos (both official and user-generated) could make it a serious challenger to leaders such as Spotify.
- Fresh off giving Chrome apps the ability to work in local/offline mode on PCs, Google is set to release a toolkit that allows developers to bring Chrome apps to Android/iOS. Creating a larger developer ecosystem for Chrome apps is key to growing Chrome OS' relatively small PC market share.
8:47 AMPandora higher after gaining listeners and market share in Nov.
- Pandora (P) is ahead 2.6% in the premarket after monthly metrics show gains on both a yearly and monthly basis in the face of iTunes Radio.
- Active listeners of 72.4M as of the end of November is up 16% Y/Y, and up from 70.9M in October.
- Pandora's share of total U.S. radio listening of 8.44% is up from 7.17% a year ago, and from 8.06% in October.
- Listener hours of 1.49B is up 18% Y/Y, and up from 1.47B October.
- Press release
8:08 AMPlug Power skyrockets after business update
- Plug Power (PLUG) soars in early trading after the company provides a positive business update.
- The alternative fuel cell provider says it has seen an extra $17.8M in orders since a previous update on October 8 and that it's on track for a "blowout" quarter. Revenue of $30M-$40M for Q4 is now forecast.
- PLUG +53.1% premarket.
7:56 AMSBA Communications in $645M deal to add 2,000+ Brazil wireless sites
- SBA Communications (SBAC) announces an expansion of operations in Brazil with the acquisition of 2,007 additional wireless sites for ~$645M at current exchange rates.
- Oi SA (OIBR), one of Brazil's largest telecommunications service providers, and its affiliates, will enter into a long-term lease with SBA for antenna space on each of the sites.
- SBA expects the sites will contribute ~R$110M of cash leasing revenue and R$70M of tower cash flow to results during 2014, and anticipates the transaction will be immediately accretive to AFFO/share.
7:44 AMEvercore cuts eBay from a Buy
- Acknowledging EBAY's large addressable markets and reasonable valuation, analyst Ken Sena cites the potential for "sustained take-rate pressure within Payments and a higher level of investment across segments" as reason for cutting to Hold from Buy.
- "While we do not see valuation risk at these levels, we do suspect the potential for further negative estimate revisions, including its 2015 guidance ... In the U.K., we see retailers more effectively competing on customer conveniences, becoming savvier with respect to payment fees, and exploring partnership opportunities to address multi-channel needs. While multi-channel partnership opportunities are good for eBay, we see more risk of higher investment at a potentially lower take-rate."
- Shares -0.9% premarket
7:36 AMHomeAway acquires Australian vacation rental group| Comment!