At the end of 2020, I wrote Big Idea 2021: SaaS Companies Will Create 10 Million Jobs with the central thesis that SaaS players would evolve into PaaS to create deeper moats around their core market positions and gain access to the related force multiplier.
To recap on the assumptions:
According to the latest SpendingPulse report, the U.S. retail sector continued to grow, with e-commerce sales reporting their tenth consecutive month of double-digit growth. For the month of May, e-commerce sales grew 13.7% over the year. Overall luxury retail sales grew 9.7% in the period, reporting a sixth consecutive month of growth. Within the segment, one of the fastest growing sub-segments was jewelry with growth rates of 13.7% over May of last year. >>>
Dolby (NYSE:DLB) has transformed itself from an audio IP licensing company into an entertainment technology company. As we saw in the previous quarter, it is eyeing the 3D market and is now turning to the mobile market with its Dolby Mobile technology. Let’s take a closer look. >>>
The solar market is preparing for a tough summer. Despite growth in demand, the industry is worried about the feed-in tariff cuts to be imposed by Germany, the world’s biggest solar energy market, from July 1. Following the Greek economic crisis, governments across the continent are cutting subsidies and expenses to manage their budgets. Benefits being given to the renewable energy projects are being trimmed back to keep spending in check. The Italian solar industry expects that country’s government support for renewable energy projects to be reduced by 25% or more in the coming quarter. Spain is also talking of reducing feed-in tariff levels. The falling euro is making matters worse: Input wafer prices and cell prices are increasing while the euro-dominated module sale prices are depreciating, thus impacting reported margins. China remains a strong competitive factor; according to a Pew research report, China is the leader in clean energy investments with $34.6 billion, and the United States follows far behind with $18.6 billion in public and private investments. The Chinese government is still deciding on feed-in tariffs, and many expect the decision to come by next summer, making it difficult for foreign players to invest in China. Meanwhile, Chinese players are continuing to flood the market with lower-priced options, causing worry among local U.S. players. >>>
Last quarter, we saw how the four leading carriers were placed in the 4G race. Last week, Sprint (NYSE:S) released HTC Evo 4G on its high-speed WiMax network, and its launch day sales were three times that of the Palm Pre and the Samsung Instinct, its previous best sellers. Meanwhile, AT&T (NYSE:T), whose weak 3G network is overloaded by the heavy data usage by the iPhone and iPad recently did away with its unlimited plans. Let’s take a closer look. >>>
According to Infonetics Research, the worldwide service provider switch and router market declined 5% in Q1 to $2.95 billion. Vendors such as Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson reported revenue declines due to component and supply challenges. However, the North American market was up 29%, and Cisco increased its service provider router revenue by 33% from last year. Let’s take a closer look. >>>
Last quarter, we saw how Akamai (NASDAQ:AKAM) has been getting aggressive in its pricing. This strategy is paying off, as Netflix chose Akamai as its primary content delivery network (CDN). Online video has been a strong growth driver for the CDN market. Mobile Web is also a strong growth driver. Let’s take a closer look. >>>
Jon Peddie Research estimates the CAD software market to have decreased 23% over the year in 2009 to $5 billion. While growth is expected to return in 2010, analysts don’t expect the market to reach its peak 2008 levels of $6.7 billion. The 2010 CAD market is expected to grow 5% to $5.4 billion with higher growth projected in 2013–2014. Autodesk’s (NASDAQ:ASDK) recent performance also seems to be reflecting the current year’s upbeat trend. >>>
A recently released study estimates U.S. advertising spending to have grown 5.1% over the year in the first quarter of 2010. This is the first quarterly increase since the first quarter of 2008. Ad spending was driven by spending by the auto, retail, and financial services sectors. Television media saw the greatest growth in ad spending of 10.5% over the year. Overall radio media ad spending grew 7.4% over the year, and Internet display ad spending grew 5%. But print ads remained a disappointment, spending for which fell 3.2% over the year for magazines and 3.7% over the year for newspapers. >>>
In my most recent post on Salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) and RightNow (NASDAQ:RNOW), I observed how all the major SaaS companies were growing to become consolidators. It was high time for Salesorce.com, the big daddy of SaaS, to start consolidating. Early this month, Salesforce.com, with annual revenue of $1.3 billion, made its move with the acquisition of Jigsaw, a crowd-sourced contact data provider. Let’s take a closer look. >>>
According to IDC, the overall mobile phone market grew 21.7% in the first quarter while the smartphone market grew 56.7% with shipment of 54.7 million smartphones. Smartphones accounted for 18.8% of all mobile phones shipped in the first quarter. We have recently covered Apple, RIM, Palm (recently acquired by HP), and Nokia. Let’s now look at the performance of Motorola and Samsung.