In addition to missing Q2 estimates, Youku (NYSE:YOKU) is guiding for Q3 revenue of RMB1.09B-RMB1.13B ($177.2M-$183.7M), below an RMB1.15B consensus.
Youku says it was "still in the process" of renewing a service agreement with a major mobile carrier of the end of Q2, and thus opted to defer the recognition of ~RMB40M in revenue until the renewal is in place. That contributed to the Q2 miss, and also a slowdown in Y/Y revenue growth to 27% from Q1's 36%.
Content costs rose to 42% of revenue from 38% a year ago; bandwidth costs were steady at 22%. Opex rose 20% Y/Y to $50.5M (33% of revenue).
Youku now has 500M+ monthly users. Mobile has grown to account for over 30% of revenue. Subscription service revenue rose 379% Y/Y, but over 95% of revenue still comes from advertising.
The company's cash balance totaled $1.6B at the end of Q2, or nearly half its current market cap.
Brocade (NASDAQ:BRCD) and European/Latin American carrier Telefonica state Brocade's Vyatta 5600 software-based router delivered 80Gbps transfer speeds in lab tests carried out on a commodity Intel-based server.
Telefonica: "In less than two hours, we deployed the Brocade Vyatta 5600 vRouter from a memory stick ... These results are allowing us ... to aggressively change our perspective regarding what is possible with software-driven networking."
Brocade asserts the 5600's performance soundly exceeds that of most virtual (software-based) networking gear. "It's been less than one gig -- sometimes more like a couple hundred megs. For carrier-type applications, it became really important to have a much better performance."
The 5600, like some other software-based networking products, is aimed at network functions virtualization (NFV) deployments, through which carriers aim to replace proprietary systems with ones running on commodity servers.
Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN) COO Brent Whittington will be resigning effective Sep. 1. His duties will mostly be split up between operations EVP Mark Faris and engineering EVP/CTO Randy Nicklas, both of whom will report to CEO Jeff Gardner.
Whittington has been Windstream's COO since 2009, and was CFO for four years prior to that. News of his resignation follows Windstream's REIT announcement, and comes amid a broader trend among U.S. companies to eliminate the COO position.
Altair (NASDAQ:ALTI) interim CEO Guo-Hua Sun has resigned due to "time constraints and the identification of a suitable replacement candidate." He'll remain on the company's board.
Replacing Sun as CEO is James Zhan, who (before joining Altair last year) previously worked at Chinese financial advisory firm Sun Hung Kai. Altair has also appointed Thomas Reddington, formerly the COO of the Altairnano subsidiary, its COO.
Altair simultaneously announces it has received a Nasdaq non-compliance warning over its failure to file its Q2 10-Q on time.
RGS (NASDAQ:RGSE) chairman David Belluck: "After completing a comprehensive review of each of our businesses, the Board of Directors has determined that the best opportunity lies with our new Residential and Sunetric segments for maximizing future shareholder value. Dennis Lacey is uniquely qualified for the CEO role."
Lacey states RGS plans to "devote significant internal resources to growing our Residential segment by increasing the size of our sales force, building out our installation capabilities, and launching our leasing platform." At the same time, it will lower its focus on commercial solar, given RGS' commercial sales have been hurt by price pressure and longer project cycle times.
Residential revenue +49% Y/Y in Q2 to $15.9M, and commercial revenue +77% to $15.5M. Sunetric revenue totaled $3.1M. While residential and Sunetric respectively had gross margins of 22% and 26.3%, commercial GM was -4.1%.
Total gross margin was 11%, down from 14.9% in Q1 and 23.1% a year ago. Sales/operating expenses rose to $9.3M from $6.1M a year ago, and G&A spend to $4.1M from $1.9M. EPS was hurt by an $18.8M impairment charge taken on commercial assets.
In tandem with its Q2 report, RGS Energy (NASDAQ:RGSE) announces CEO Kam Mofid has "departed to pursue other interests." Dennis Lacey, formerly the head of RGS' residential solar unit, is the company's new CEO.
Before joining RGS, Lacey served as an exec for Imperial Bancorp, and as the CFO of TeleTech and CKE Restaurants.
Acacia's (ACTG +1.2%) Innovative Display Technologies and Delaware Display Group units have reached an agreement with RPX (RPXC -0.8%). Terms are undisclosed.
This isn't the first deal between Acacia and RPX, whose partners/clients are often at odds with each other. Acacia partners with, and acquires patents from, individuals and companies looking to monetize their IP. RPX's services, which include patent purchasing, aim to protect companies from IP suits.
In addition to posting nearly in-line Q2 revenue (while beating on EPS), Perfect World (NASDAQ:PWRD) has guided for Q3 revenue of RMB956M-RMB1.003B ($155.4M-$163.1M), in-line with a $159.9M consensus.
However, the company's PC gaming base remains under pressure: Average concurrent PC users for games under operation in mainland China totaled 661K in Q2, down from 662K in Q1 and 742K a year ago. Perfect World is counting on mobile titles such as MMORPG Forsaken World and cartoon-style RPG CrossGate Mobile to boost growth.
Nonetheless, online gaming revenue rose 32% Y/Y to $138.8M, and licensing revenue 55% to $7.9M. The strong performance of major PC games such as Swordsman Online and DOTA2 contributed to the growth.
Gross margin fell to 73.1% from 73.6% in Q1 and 76.5% a year ago. Opex rose 19% Y/Y to $88.7M, thanks in part to a 31% increase in R&D spend to $41.9M.
Six months after stepping down as CEO, Steve Ballmer has resigned from Microsoft's (MSFT -0.1%) board.
Ballmer: "In the six months since leaving, I have become very busy. I see a combination of the Clippers, civic contribution, teaching and study taking a lot of time ... I hold more Microsoft shares than anyone other than index funds and love the mix of profits, investments and dividends returned in our stock. I expect to continue holding that position for the foreseeable future."
The announcement comes a day after Ballmer made a headline-grabbing debut as the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, replete with the on-stage theatrics Microsoft employees know all too well.
Microsoft shares are up 42% since Ballmer announced a year ago he would be resigning as CEO.
With the help of its Braintree unit's Venmo Touch service, PayPal (EBAY +1.1%) has launched One Touch, a mobile payments platform that lets users quickly pay across multiple apps after logging in once. Braintree's recently-launched v.zero SDK has been updated to include One Touch support.
Though Venmo Touch has seen a measure of success, PayPal's huge reach - it had 152M active accounts at the end of Q2, and is supported by scores of high-profile online merchants - should allow for much wider uptake.
PayPal has made a long list of moves (I, II) to grow both its mobile e-commerce and offline payments share. The payments giant handled $27B worth of mobile transactions in 2013.
Much like IBM, SAP (SAP +0.8%) is making a series of moves to grow its African sales, which are already increasing at a double-digit clip.
Among other things, the software giant plans to hire up to 250 new employees on the continent through 2015 (it currently has ~700 African workers), open offices in Angola and Morocco, and expand its partner ecosystem in the region.
SAP notes much of its direct investment will be in regional giant South Africa, where it already has a big presence. The company currently has 1.3K+ African clients.
In spite of its name, Manhattan is based out of London. The company has 270+ employees and claims 350+ clients, nearly half of whom are in the Fortune 1000.
Trimble declares the pairing of Manhattan's software with its existing real estate industry products will boost its ability to "deliver total lifecycle solutions that will allow owners and facilities managers to access data captured during the building planning, design, construction and renovation phases."
Two months ago, Trimble bought 3D building information modeling (BIM) services firm Maybim.
"We believe iWatch is an underappreciated market opportunity with the potential for up to 60M shipments in the first year," writes Morgan Stanley's Katy Huberty, bullish as ever on Apple (AAPL +1.2%).
Not surprisingly (given the watch industry's traditional margins), she thinks the iWatch will carry a 40%+ gross margin, thus boosting Apple's total GM.
Huberty also praises Apple's hiring of "over a dozen leaders in key areas of competency, including fashion, medical research, digital content & marketing, and wearables," and believes Tim Cook "now has the bench in place to execute on new product categories."
Shares have topped $100 for the first time since the split, and are close to a split-adjusted Sep. 2012 high of $100.72.
CalAmp (CAMP +2.9%) will be providing leading European MRM (mobile asset monitoring/tracking) services firm Masternaut with "advanced telematics devices to enable trailer, heavy equipment and industrial machinery tracking with Masternaut's Connect telematics platform."
Masternaut claims to have 10K+ customers, and to monitor 300K+ assets, vehicles, and people through its MRM platform. Strong MRM product growth fueled a 17% Y/Y May quarter increase in CalAmp's wireless datacom revenue.