By Richard Laermer, Guest Author
When the search engine god Google was asked by the Justice Department to hand over search data in an effort to revive the Child Online Protection Act (COPA), it quickly refused. That was special. The question reared its head: “What does Google have to hide?” Could it be S-E-X? Cynics sure think so.
Google’s rivals Microsoft, AOL and Yahoo! were all cooperative, dishing out information on how often certain search terms get used. Some believe that for Google to reveal this information would be embarrassing and perhaps detrimental to the company since their data would surely expose how often their service is used by people to find what will get them off. It would reveal a major revenue stream for the company from a less-than-acceptable source. If the COPA were to discover how much pornography is indeed accessible and sought-after online it may have a strong case for implementing search filtering, creating restrictions on content that would hurt Google’s bottom line. >>>
SM: When I have established new processes, I have had to test market segments using those processes. That is one issue that comes up a lot – which segment is ready to buy, which one can be an early adopter?
AS: And you might have the wrong profile of the person to sell into that segment. You might have to hire different people. You might have to redo some of your technology tools. They might not speak to your customers. There are all kinds of things you need to test and fine-tune.
SM: Let’s talk about internal versus outsourced, particularly with the advent of this humongous India phenomena. How do you read that?
AS: Most of our clients have internal operations. But I will say that there is absolutely every opportunity for outsourcers who understand what makes a world class inside sales operation. Again, the combination of the right people, the right process, the right strategy, and the right technology is essential. >>>
We’ve been talking about the US / European GIS / GPS companies, which have been hot and busy with major M&A deals:
* Navteq : Bright Future if Managed Well
* Place and Location Services Growth Fuels Navteq
* Tom Tom + Tele Atlas: Perfect Match
* Trimble’s Compelling Growth Strategy
* Garmin Looks Great, But …
* Nokia Buys Navteq, “Place” Becomes Key
Meanwhile, the Indian market is heating up. Economic Times:
“The size of the geographical information system (GIS) market in India is expected to be $10 billion in 10 years, said speakers at a business conclave during the ongoing 58th International Astronautical Congress.
Annual revenues of the global GIS market are expected to grow from an estimated $4 billion to $150 billion in the next decade.”
Remember, I once talked about a Concept Arbitrage on Navteq? I hope some of you are going for it!
Online Video is a clear growth market, and many parts of the ecosystem are benefiting as a result. I have done a series called
Online Video Beneficiaries, which you can catch up on here:
Over the past few articles, I have taken a look at QualComm’s potential revenue flow over the next few years if it got its way. Before I proceed to look at the effect of the lawsuits and the industry consolidation on the company’s revenues and long term interests, I wish to diverge and look at the company’s recent bickerings with Nokia (NOK).
Let me begin by re-iterating the unstated fact, ratified by my previous analysis: It is all about who gets those percentage margins per phone sold. Nokia, with close to 40% of the market share, has been a prominent QualComm licensee in the past. With the migration to WCDMA/HSDPA picking steam, the Finland company will pay royalties to QCOM on most phones it sells in the near future.
NYT is working on organizing its online business on the basis of key verticals, which will allow it to extend its popular classifieds sections like auto, jobs, real estate, travel, and entertainment, increase user engagement and aid in monetization of the sites. The partnership with Monster to build its online recruitment product offering is a step in the right direction.
NYT has sold assets over the course of the past year to focus on its core business and has also made several small acquisitions and investments totaling about $70 million over the same period. These are strong, strategic fits and financially prudent steps. The Company expects each of these properties to have an attractive ROI. NYT plans to make many more strategic acquisitions.
SM: Closing deals on the phone … there are people who don’t know anything about selling by phone, and would probably tell you that you cannot close deals on the phone. That isn’t true. But there is probably a threshold of how big of a deal can be closed on the phone.
AS: I’m loath to name an amount of money beyond which you cannot close over the phone, especially if you have a customer who already has your product. It is very easy to sell very large deals and add-on deals over the phone. I would suggest, ask for the order – go as far as you can. Try to move to the next stage in the sales cycle, and if you are finding that for whatever reason – culture, the size of the deal, or the need to see more on site – that it is not closing, then you are going to find something out. If you never ask to go forward in the sale cycle, you would never know how far it is possible to go by phone.
SM: One issue about phone sales revolves around the need for a set of reference accounts you can cite to show your credibility. What if you don’t have that?
AS: Then the customer has to touch the product through a free trial. A lot of startups have made the experience so rich with the customer’s actual data and situation, that after a period of time, the customer says “yes, I am comfortable and this is what we really need”. >>>
Verisign (VRSN) provides services for the security of business activity over networks and the Internet. The company consistently relies on its core existing programs of domain registry and SSL certificates to produce results. Is it enough to continue to increase shareholder value?
The company has two divisions: the Internet Services Group (ISG) and the Communications Services Group (CSG).
The ISG is comprised of security services and information services businesses. ISG revenues grew 6% sequentially and 22% year-over-year with revenues of $225 million or 61% of total revenue. Registries jumped to 73 million from 69 million (an annual increase of 27%). Bottom line domain revenues continue revenue support via a renewal rate of 76 percent, consistent with previous quarters. On the other side SSL certificates totaled 883,000 in Q2 compared to 850,000 in Q1. The increase of 221,000 certificates gives a 4 percent growth in its base and 13 percent growth year over year. >>>