Futuristics • 30 Comments
Tue, Jun. 21, 7:51 AM
Dec. 22, 2015, 12:06 PM
- Vague M&A chatter is once more providing a lift to YELP. Priceline (NASDAQ:PCLN) has been mentioned as a suitor this time around.
- Volume is moderate thus far: 1.01M shares vs. a 3-month daily average of 2.85M. 9.5M shares (17% of the float) were shorted as of Nov. 30.
- The rumor comes less than a week after Yelp and Priceline-owned OpenTable confirmed they've ended a multi-year partnership. Yelp bought OpenTable rival SeatMe in 2013.
- 3 months ago: Yelp higher amid vague M&A chatter, call-buying
Jul. 2, 2015, 12:59 PM
- Bloomberg reports YELP CEO Jeremy Stoppelman has decided against seeking a sale for the time being. Shares have tumbled below $38, making new 52-week lows in the process.
- Bloomberg's sources state Yelp "had several interested suitors but isn’t pursuing a transaction in the immediate future." The local reviews leader could resume its sale efforts if Stoppelman changes his mind.
- Shares soared in May after Bloomberg and the WSJ reported Yelp had hired banks - Bloomberg reported Goldman - to help find a buyer. They had already given back a large chunk of their gains going into today.
May 8, 2015, 12:36 PM
- Heavily-shorted YELP is now up 31% from Wednesday's close thanks to multiple reports stating the company has hired banks (Bloomberg says Goldman) to find a buyer.
- Everyone and his sell-side cousin appears to have a list of potential suitors. Jefferies thinks Google (reportedly bid for Yelp several years ago, but carries antitrust baggage) is the most logical buyer, but also sees Facebook, Priceline, GrubHub, and Yahoo as possibilities. Credit Suisse lists Google, Apple, Amazon, Yahoo, and TripAdvisor; Axiom lists several of the aforementioned companies plus Expedia.
- SA author Sarfaraz A. Khan thinks Facebook (has launched services that compete with Yelp) is the most logical U.S. buyer, and Alibaba the most logical international buyer. "[Facebook] is known for buying out competitors instead of spending its cash, time and energy to develop a similar product on its own ... Yelp could be Alibaba's short cut to gaining significant exposure to the local U.S. market."
- Prior Yelp coverage
May 7, 2015, 3:52 PM
- Bloomberg has followed up on the WSJ's report on YELP by stating the local reviews leader is working with Goldman to find a buyer. A source adds Yelp "may draw interest" from Priceline, Yahoo, Amazon, or Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten.
- Piper considers Apple, Google, and Facebook to be the most logical suitors. SunTrust names Apple, Google, and Yahoo as potential buyers. Antitrust regulators might not be thrilled with a Google/Yelp deal.
- Shares have soared above $47. Short-covering has likely played a big role in today's move: 20.8M shares (nearly 1/3 of the float) were shorted as of April 15. Many of those shorts had big paper profits going today (some probably still do).
May 7, 2015, 1:15 PM
- Sources tell the WSJ Yelp (YELP +11.2%) is "working with investment bankers and has been in touch with potential buyers in recent weeks."
- No names have been given for prospective suitors. One source cautions a deal isn't imminent, and that Yelp might decide against one.
- The paper speculates Yelp (currently worth $3.1B) could be valued at over $3.5B in a sale; a long list of tech/Internet companies could theoretically afford that price. Of course, Yelp was worth far more in early 2014.
- Earlier: Yelp reportedly exploring sale
May 7, 2015, 1:05 PM
Feb. 10, 2015, 9:21 AM
- Yelp (NYSE:YELP) is up 4.1% premarket as it adjusts 2015 guidance upward.
- The company has raised Q1 revenue outlook to $118.5M-120.5M, vs. an expected $115.8M. For the full 2015, Yelp is raising net revenue expectations to $574M-579M vs. an expected $543M.
- The company still expects adjusted EBITDA for Q1 to be $19M-21M vs. $20.7M expected. For full 2015, the company sees higher adjusted EBITDA of $102M-105M, in line with expectations of $104.6M.
- Yelp has also acquired food-ordering service Eat24 for about $134M ($75M cash and about 1.4M shares of Yelp Class A stock) and plans to expand its offering to 1M restaurants.
- Previously: GoPro, Yelp see more post-earnings pain (Feb. 09 2015)
- Previously: Yelp in tailspin, down 20% as analysts downgrade en masse (Feb. 06 2015)
- Previously: Yelp traffic: Growth, but slowing down considerably (Feb. 05 2015)
Oct. 25, 2014, 3:24 PM
- YELP has acquired Restaurant-kritik, a leading German restaurant reviews site, for an undisclosed sum. Restaurant-kritik claims 330K+ reviews for 94K+ restaurants.
- Meanwhile, the parent company of popular Japanese restaurant review/guide site Tabelog has disclosed Yelp offered to buy Tabelog, and was turned down. Tabelog claims 5.82M reviews of nearly 790K Japanese restaurants.
- News of both moves come in the wake of a post-earnings selloff caused by light Q4 guidance and slowing unique visitor growth. On its Q3 CC (transcript), Yelp noted international growth was affected by softer Google traffic, and suggested (when asked about slowing unique growth) the mobile shift was affecting PC traffic.
- International monthly uniques totaled 30M in Q3, +40% Y/Y but -3% Q/Q. U.S. uniques totaled 109M, +22% Y/Y and +2% Q/Q. Mobile uniques still rose 46% Y/Y to 73M.
- "Google obviously continues to make changes on their side both competitively and algorithmically," observed CEO Jeremy Stoppelman. Yelp has been one of several firms to harshly criticize Google's integration of its own content within search results, as well as an EU settlement that requires Google to prominently show content from rival sites, but doesn't stop it from also showing its own content. Eric Schmidt recently defended Google's policies.
Jun. 23, 2014, 1:16 PM
- Sources tell dealReporter OpenTable (OPEN +0.1%) talked with bidders other than Priceline (PCLN -0.1%) before accepting the online travel giant's $2.6B bid.
- Though a higher offer is seen as unlikely, one source thinks Yahoo (set to receive an Alibaba IPO windfall) could make a bid. OpenTable is currently 1.9% above Priceline's $103/share offer price.
- Yelp (YELP +3.6%), which blasted off after Priceline/OpenTable was announced, is rallying again. Volatile restaurant deals microcap LiveDeal (LIVE +9.3%) is also up strongly.
- Previous: Street commentary on Priceline/OpenTable
Jul. 18, 2013, 5:59 PM
Yelp (YELP) wants to take on OpenTable (OPEN): the local reviews leader is spending $12.7M (mostly in stock) to acquire SeatMe, owner of a Web/iPad reservation platform for restaurants and nightlife venues. Yelp notes it has ~1M U.S. business listings in the restaurant and nightlife categories, giving it plenty of reach to leverage SeatMe's platform. The announcement comes a week after Yelp launched a platform for taking orders and processing transactions, and two weeks after Groupon launched a high-end restaurant reservation service. OPEN -5.5% AH. YELP +1.4%.| Jul. 18, 2013, 5:59 PM
May 21, 2013, 11:18 AM
Food delivery websites Seamless and Grubhub will merge to create a company that could take the niche industry to the next level. Though online food ordering sites are a hodge-podge of various options, the Seamless-Grubhub combination could lead to an expansive national rollout and a dominant industry position in the space. Should Yelp (YELP +1.4%) or Open Table (OPEN +2.7%) be worried about the threat of expanded services from the new company?| May 21, 2013, 11:18 AM
Oct. 24, 2012, 6:42 AM
Sep. 18, 2012, 12:05 PMYahoo (YHOO) and Alibaba (ALBCF.PK) have officially closed their $7.6B share repurchase deal. Alibaba gets half of Yahoo's 40% stake back - it has the right to buy back half of the remainder if/when it IPOs - and Marissa Mayer now has $4.5B (post-tax) to potentially go acquisition-hunting with, following her decision to "review" plans to return the money to shareholders. Will Yelp (YELP) be in Mayer's crosshairs? Pinterest? Flipboard? | Sep. 18, 2012, 12:05 PM | 4 Comments
Aug. 20, 2012, 11:09 AM
InterActiveCorp (IACI -0.3%) has bought Felix, a provider of local ad services, for a reported price of $30M. Felix, which gets paid by businesses when a "high quality" phone call is made, will be added IAC's CityGrid unit, which owns a stable of local content properties that includes Citysearch and restaurant app developer Urbanspoon. The purchase could be pressuring shares of Yelp (YELP -5.8%), which depends on local businesses for most of its ad revenue.| Aug. 20, 2012, 11:09 AM
Aug. 14, 2012, 1:43 PM
Google's (GOOG) purchase of Frommer's reflects the search giant's recent tendency to acquire and develop the mobile/local solutions it needs, rather than rely on third parties, notes Larry Dignan. Whereas Apple (AAPL) has partnerships with Yelp, Facebook, and others, Google has proprietary offerings such as Zagat, Frommer's, Google+, and Google Wallet. Ryan Kim sees the acquisition as evidence local and travel content are converging - something that may work to the detriment of YELP and TRIP.| Aug. 14, 2012, 1:43 PM | 3 Comments