Apr. 15, 2014, 4:55 PM| Apr. 15, 2014, 4:55 PM | 8 Comments
Apr. 11, 2014, 9:26 AM
- SINA's buyback comes with shares having fallen 43% from a 52-week high of $92.83 ahead of Weibo's anticipated IPO, thanks in part to a massive March/April rout in Chinese Internet names.
- The buyback is good for repurchasing 14% of shares at current levels. Sina has $1.87B in cash and short-term investments to finance repurchases, and will soon be receiving additional funds via the sale of 24.2M Weibo shares to Alibaba.
Apr. 10, 2014, 4:01 PM
- Following a two-day rebound, high-beta tech stocks are seeing monumental losses once again. The Nasdaq is closing with its biggest one-day decline since 2011 (eclipsing last week's 110-point drop).
- Security hardware/software providers were hard-hit following Imperva's (IMPV -43.8%) big warning: FEYE -11.6%. PANW -6.4%. PFPT -9.8%. FFIV -4.7%. KEYW -6.5%. FTNT -6.9%. QLYS -10.4%.
- Other high-beta enterprise names didn't fare much better: DATA -10%. SPLK -10.3%. WDAY -9.3%. VRNS -8%. EOPN -7.9%. FIO -7.6%. BLOX -9.7%.
- Major Internet decliners: P -11%. YELP -10.6%. ZNGA -6.6%. YY -7.3%. QIHU -9.3%. SINA -6.6%.
- Solar: TSL -10.4%. CSIQ -10.4%. JKS -7.9%. SPWR -7.4%. JASO -6.8%. CSUN -8.2%.
- 3D printing: DDD -10.6%. VJET -13.3%. ONVO -8.1%. XONE -7.7%. SSYS -6.7%.
Apr. 4, 2014, 5:04 PM
- Weibo (WB) has set an IPO price range of $17-$19. The spells a valuation range of $3.5B-$3.9B for the Chinese microblogging leader, which is looking to raise $340M-$380M by selling 20M shares.
- SINA stands to have a 56.9% stake in Weibo post-IPO, down from a current 77.6%. Alibaba (ABABA) will grow its stake to 32% from a current 19.3% by purchasing 3M shares through the IPO, another 3M through a private placement with Weibo, and 24.2M from Sina.
- Goldman, Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, and Piper are underwriting.
- Previous: Weibo's IPO filing, 2013 financials/user data
Mar. 31, 2014, 9:36 AM
- Sina (SINA +3%) has been upgraded to Outperform by both Pac Crest and UBS.
- ExOne (XONE +3.9%) has been upgraded to Buy by BB&T. Shares tumbled 11 days ago due to a Q4 miss and soft guidance.
- Vipshop (VIPS +7.3%) has been upgraded to Buy by Goldman. Shares have corrected lately after skyrocketing in response to the company's blowout Q4 numbers and strong guidance.
- MercadoLibre (MELI -1.1%) has been started at Sell by Citi. Forex-related concerns have been running high for a while.
Mar. 18, 2014, 9:54 AM
- Sina (SINA -4.2%) has been cut to Hold by Maxim a day after taking off in response to Weibo's IPO filing.
- Informatica (INFA +2%) has been upgraded to Buy by CLSA.
- 21Vianet (VNET +8%) has been upgraded to Outperform by Credit Suisse.
- Marketo (MKTO +2.4%) has been upgraded to Neutral by UBS. The company is widely viewed as a buyout candidate following the acquisition of peers.
- Alliance Fiber (AFOP +8.3%) has been upgraded to Buy by B. Riley.
- Shutterfly (SFLY -5.9%) has been cut to Underperform by Cowen.
Mar. 17, 2014, 2:08 PM
- JG Capital, which started coverage on Sina (SINA +8.4%) with an Overweight and $110 PT today, thinks Weibo is worth $6.5B. That would spell a $5.1B valuation for Sina's 78% pre-IPO stake - the company's post-IPO stake will be lowered by both the sale of IPO shares, and Alibaba's (ABABA) right to up its stake to 30% from a current 19%.
- Weibo disclosed in its F-1 its monthly active user count rose 5% Q/Q and 33% Y/Y in Q4 to 129.1M, in spite of intense competition from Tencent's WeChat. Sina has only been sharing Weibo's daily active users (61.4M at the end of Q4). For reference, Twitter had 241M MAUs at the end of Q4, and WeChat had 271.9M at the end of Q3 (+124% Y/Y).
- The Chinese microblogging leader also states Alibaba-related ad/marketing sales totaled $49.1M in 2013 (26% of total revenue), and that its costs/expenses rose 50% on the year to $246.2M.
- Weibo had a 2013 adjusted net loss of $30.8M, though that's better than 2012's $100.6M. Adjusted EBITDA was -$6.3M vs. 2012's -$81M.
- Previous: Weibo files for $500M IPO
Mar. 17, 2014, 9:09 AM
Mar. 16, 2014, 2:37 AM
- Chinese micro-blogging service Weibo has filed to raise $500M in an IPO in the U.S.
- The company had 129M users at the end of last year vs Twitter's 241M, while 2013 revenue almost tripled to $188M. However, the firm made losses of $38M and warned of uncertainty due to Chinese regulation (read censorship).
- Weibo's filing comes ahead of an expected IPO submission from Internet giant Alibaba, which owns a 19% stake in Weibo. Sina (SINA) owns 78%.
- ETF: IPO
Mar. 14, 2014, 5:37 PM
Mar. 6, 2014, 10:13 AM
- Sources tell PrivCo Sina (SINA +6.6%) plans to launch a Weibo IPO as early as June. That's in-line with a recent WSJ report stating a Q2 offering is planned.
- Citing peer valuations (including those given to WhatsApp and Twitter), PrivCo thinks Weibo is worth up to $8B; the FT has reported Sina (current market cap of $4.7B) is aiming for a $7B-$8B valuation.
- Such a valuation would spell a windfall for Alibaba (ABABA), which bought an 18% stake in the Chinese microblogging leader last year at a $3.26B valuation, and has an option to up its stake to 30%.
Feb. 25, 2014, 5:51 PM
- Though up 163% Y/Y, Sina's (SINA -9.3%) Weibo ad sales were below Deutsche's forecast, says analyst Vivian Hao while taking stock of the company's Q4 report. Hao, who maintains a Buy on Sina, also notes earnings would've missed estimates if not for a $19.5M change in the fair value of investor option liability for Alibaba's Weibo investment.
- At the same time, she's pleased ad sales tied to Alibaba's Taobao and Tmall sites grew 19% Q/Q to $23.8M, aided by a shift to impression-based (CPM) pricing. Hao asserts Weibo's strategic value "remains solid" in the face of stiff competition, given the "scarcity of sizable mobile-popular marketing platforms in China," but also expects a spending ramp to once more pressure near-term margins.
- Sina mentioned on its CC (transcript) Weibo's daily active users rose 4% Q/Q and 36% Y/Y to 61.4M, after adjusting for a methodology change. Average time spent per Weibo DAU rose 3% Q/Q and 16% Y/Y, with mobile engagement growing and PC engagement slipping.
Feb. 24, 2014, 5:46 PM
Feb. 24, 2014, 4:49 PM
- SINA expects Q1 revenue of $162M-$167M, in-line with a $165.2M consensus. Ad revenue is expected to total $133M-$136M, non-ad revenue $29M-$31M.
- Ad revenue +45% Y/Y in Q4 to $160.1M, a major pickup from Q3's 26% growth rate. Non-ad revenue +36% to $32.3M vs. only +5% in Q3.
- Weibo is the main reason growth has accelerated: Weibo ad revenue +163% Y/Y to $56M, Weibo non-ad revenue (data licensing, gaming, membership fees) +114% to $15.4M.
- Gross margin was 64%, flat Q/Q and +700 bps Y/Y. Opex +35% Y/Y, trailing revenue growth (43%) after exceeding it in many recent quarters.
- No Weibo IPO announcement has been made. The WSJ reported this morning Sina is eying a ~$500M Q2 IPO for Weibo.
- Q4 results, PR
Feb. 24, 2014, 4:35 PM
Feb. 24, 2014, 10:56 AM
- The WSJ reports Sina (SINA +4.5%) is planning a $500M Q2 IPO for Weibo, and has hired hired Credit Suisse and Goldman to handle the offering.
- The paper adds Alibaba (ABABA) will likely up its stake in Weibo to 30% from its current 18% (purchased last year for $568M) in the event of an IPO. Sina currently owns 71% of Weibo, a stake Barclays thinks is worth $4.1B; the company's total market cap currently stands at $5.1B.
- Sina has made huge strides in monetizing Weibo in recent quarters. The microblogging service's ad sales rose 46% Q/Q and 125% Y/Y in Q3 to $43.7M, and its value-added service revenue rose 26% Q/Q and 121% Y/Y to $9.7M.
- At the same time, Weibo's engagement rates have been pressured by the manic growth seen for Tencent's (TCEHY) WeChat mobile messaging platform. Weibo had 60.2M daily active users at the end of Q3, +11% Q/Q. WeChat ended Q3 with 271.9M monthly active users, +15% Q/Q.
- Sina might make an official announcement in tandem with this afternoon's Q4 report.
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