May 23, 2014, 1:00 PM
- Though Youku (YOKU -6.2%) beat Q1 EPS estimates, revenue of $112.7M missed a $114.2M consensus. Moreover, the company is guiding for Q2 revenue of RMB940M-RMB1B ($150.6M-$160.3M), below a $163.5M consensus.
- Maxim Group (PT cut to $16) blames the growth slowdown on Youku's attempts to lower purchases of long-form content preferred by advertisers.
- It believes a "weak content portfolio" led Youku to lose its Chinese online/mobile video leadership positions in Q1 to Baidu's (BIDU +1.7%) iQiyi and PPS platforms. Baidu has been busy promoting iQiyi/PPS throughout its Web empire.
- "Top-line growth seems to be on a deceleration trend," writes Deutsche (PT cut to $21) in response to Youku's numbers. The firm and thinks the Q2 guidance points to weaker advertiser budget hikes.
- Cost controls helped EPS beat estimates: Youku's content spend fell to 44% of revenue in Q1 from 49% a year ago. Bandwidth costs fell to 29% of revenue from 31%, and opex only grew 9% Y/Y (compares with 36% rev. growth).
- On the CC (transcript), Youku mentioned mobile daily video views have topped 400M (they were only at 200M last June), and that mobile now accounts for 1/3 of revenue.
- Q1 results, PR
May 23, 2014, 9:10 AM
May 22, 2014, 6:16 PM
May 21, 2014, 5:35 PM
May 7, 2014, 10:50 AM
- Has irrational exuberance given way to panic selling? Internet stocks are off again today, as the Street registers disappointment with earnings reports from AOL, Groupon, Zulily, SouFun, 500.com, and King.
- Yahoo (YHOO -6.2%) has fallen below $35 as the Street digests Alibaba's IPO filing. Twitter (TWTR -4.4%), crushed yesterday following its lockup expiration, briefly cracked $30 before rebounding a bit.
- Other decliners: QIHU -8.9%. BITA -7.2%. GOMO -7%. TRLA -5.2%. MELI -4.7%. ANGI -4.6%. Z -4%. YOKU -5.5%. CTRP -5.3%. WUBA -5.3%. JOBS -5.1%. GRUB -4%.
- Internet/social media ETFs: PNQI, SOCL, FDN
Apr. 28, 2014, 10:17 AM
- Sohu (SOHU -4.8%) missed Q1 estimates and provided light Q2 guidance. Meanwhile, as part of a recent crackdown, the Chinese government has pulled The Big Bang Theory and other popular U.S. shows from sites such as Sohu.com, Youku.com (YOKU -4.4%), Baidu's (BIDU -5%) iQiyi, and Tencent Video (TCEHY -2.8%). Time observes The Big Bang Theory has produced 1.3B video views since launching on Sohu TV in '09.
- The news is overshadowing a $1.22B investment in Youku by Alibaba (ABABA) and an affiliated P-E firm, and a WSJ report stating Alibaba is forming a mobile search JV with leading mobile browser firm UCWeb (once targeted by Baidu).
- The deals are the latest in a long line of investments and partnerships struck by Alibaba, Tencent, and Baidu, as each firm tries to build a Web/mobile empire covering over a dozen valuable markets.
- Is Qihoo (QIHU -0.8%) next in line to make a deal? With a $21.6B market cap, the security app/browser/search provider and Baidu rival is the biggest Chinese Internet company to remain independent of the big-3. Qihoo was reported in January to be talking with Alibaba.
- Other decliners: NQ -6.5%. VIPS -5.2%. WB -4.2%. WBAI -3%. LONG -4.5%. QUNR -2.4%.
Apr. 28, 2014, 9:15 AM
Apr. 28, 2014, 7:20 AM
- Alibaba (ABABA) and Yunfeng Capital, a private equity firm co-founded by Alibaba executive chairman Jack Ma, have agreed to acquire an 18.5% stake in Youku Tudou (YOKU) for $1.22B.
- Alibaba and Yunfeng are paying $30.50 per American Depositary Receipt, or a 26.3% premium to Youku Tudou's close on Friday of $24.14.
- Alibaba will hold around 16.5% in Youku and Yunfeng 2%.
- The deal is the latest in a series of acquisitions that Alibaba has carried out over the past few months, spending at least $2.7B.
- Youku Tudou ADRs are +14.75%. (PR)
Apr. 24, 2014, 4:50 PM
- Baidu (BIDU) expects Q2 revenue of RMB11.82B-RMB-12.11B ($1.901B-$1.948B), above a consensus of RMB11.55B.
- Revenue growth accelerated to 59.1% in Q1 from 50.4% in Q4. Online ad customers fell 1.1% Q/Q to 446K after falling 2.8% in Q4, but revenue per ad customer remained steady Q/Q and rose 44.1% Y/Y to RMB20.9K ($3,362).
- As promised, Baidu continues to invest aggressively: SG&A spend soared 136.9% Y/Y to $323.2M, thanks in large to mobile promotional efforts. R&D spend rose 57.5% to $205.4M.
- Traffic acquisition costs rose to 12.4% of revenue from 12.3% in Q4 and 10.2% a year ago. Content costs (fueled by online video licensing) rose to 4.1% of revenue from 3.8% in Q4 and 1.6% a year ago.
- Up in sympathy: SINA +1.6%. SOHU +1%. QIHU +2.6%. YY +1.1%. WB +1.5%. YOKU +1.7%.
- Q1 results, PR
Apr. 16, 2014, 9:55 AM
- Yelp (YELP +2.1%) has been upgraded to Buy by Citi.
- Cree (CREE +2%) has been upgraded to Buy by Needham ahead of its April 22 FQ3 report.
- Youku (YOKU +1.2%) has been upgraded to Neutral by Goldman.
- SouFun (SFUN +5.4%) has been upgraded to Buy by Goldman.
- Motorola Solutions (MSI -1.6%) has been cut to Neutral by Nomura a day after announcing the Zebra Technologies deal and issuing a Q1 warning.
- Control4 (CTRL +7%) has been upgraded to Strong Buy by Raymond James. Q1 results are due on May 1.
- Nimble Storage (NMBL +5.4%) has been upgraded to Buy by UBS.
- J2 Global (JCOM +7.1%) has been upgraded to Buy by Sidoti.
- Xoom (XOOM +1.4%) has been upgraded to Equal Weight by Evercore ahead of its April 22 Q1 report.
- Bitauto (BITA +9.1%) has been started at Outperform by Credit Suisse. Rival Autohome (ATHM +9.8%) has been started at Neutral, but is also up sharply.
- IPO underwriters have given A10 Networks (ATEN +3.7%) five bullish ratings and one neutral one.
Apr. 15, 2014, 4:55 PM| Apr. 15, 2014, 4:55 PM | 8 Comments
Apr. 4, 2014, 11:43 AM
- Youku (YOKU -5.1%) is down 11% over the last two days. Though a broad selloff in tech momentum stocks is clearly a factor, concerns about slumping drama video views also seem to be taking a toll.
- T.H. Capital thinks Youku's average daily video views for newly-added hit TV dramas may have fallen to just 25M in Q1, after totaling 56M in Q4. Meanwhile, the firm thinks average daily views for Youku's in-house professional content may have only grown to 41.3M from 35.4M.
- Youku has been spending aggressively to acquire rights to popular Chinese TV dramas and other professional content, as it continues battling with Baidu, Tencent, and Sohu's online video platforms. Content spend equaled 37% of revenue in Q4, down slightly from Q3's 39%.
Mar. 26, 2014, 9:19 AM
- A source close to Youku (YOKU) tells Marbridge Consulting Tencent (TCEHY) has reached a tentative deal to buy a 20% stake in the Chinese online video platform for at least $300M in cash. Tencent would merge its own sizable online video business into Youku as part of the deal.
- Marbridge has a mixed track record with M&A rumors. Youku rallied last July on a rumor from a Chinese site regarding a Baidu stake purchase.
- Helping Marbridge's report appear plausible: Tencent has already spent nearly $400M this month to buy stakes in e-commerce firm JD.com and real estate site Leju, as it battles with Baidu and Alibaba for Chinese Web/mobile supremacy on a number of fronts.
Mar. 26, 2014, 9:14 AM
Mar. 11, 2014, 4:42 PM
- Alibaba (ABABA) is spending $805M to buy a 60% stake in ChinaVision Media, a Hong Kong-based producer of films and TV dramas.
- The deal represents a big expansion of the Chinese e-commerce giant's attempts to carve a foothold in China's fast-growing and fragmented online/mobile video market. Though Youku (YOKU) remains the market's biggest player, strong competition is provided by Baidu, Sohu, and Tencent.
- Alibaba, Baidu, and Tencent have been constantly finding ways to encroach on each others' turf. Yesterday, Tencent announced it's buying a 15% stake in #2 Chinese e-commerce firm JD.com.
Mar. 10, 2014, 3:57 PM
- Chinese Internet and solar names, many of them among the standouts of the 2013/2014 tech rally, are heading into the close with steep losses after the Chinese government reported exports fell 18.1% Y/Y in February (much worse than expected).
- Internet decliners: WUBA -10.7%. YOKU -7.3%. ATHM -7.2%. QUNR -6.4%. NQ -6%. RENN -5.2%. CTRP -5.2%. YY -4.4%. WBAI -4.4%. KONG -5.5%.
- Solar decliners: JKS -6.3%. YGE -5.8%. TSL -6.7%. CSUN -4.9%. CSIQ -4.5%. DQ -4.2%. HSOL -4.5%.
- Solar ETFs: KWT, TAN
Youku Tudou Inc is an Internet television company in china. Its internet television platform enables consumers to search, view and share high-quality video content quickly and easily across multiple devices.
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