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Onvia Inc. Message Board

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  • b2bmktwatcher b2bmktwatcher Apr 27, 2000 9:43 AM Flag

    ONVI under pressure my advice& strategy

    Let me get this straight. Credit Suisse / First
    Boston takes Onvia out and issues a "strong buy" rating.
    This is a shock to whom? If I am taking someone out, I
    want to tell the world to buy it. Yes, my actions may
    be different, but this is business.

    were released and there seems to be some discussion
    over the content. One camp says it was bad because
    Onvia did not spend $6mm on advertising and that
    brought the loss in lower. This camp also points to the
    Gross Margin situation (as in negative).

    other camp says earnings were good, since the loss was
    not as bad. They also point to dollar volume of sales
    and number of transactions.

    Now a discussion
    has started again about competitors - without
    reference to the now infamous "we have no competitors"
    comment. Onvia is not unique to this space, just look at
    Staples, Office Depot,, etc.

    It causes
    me great concern to see the following:

    Whether perceived or real, the suggestion that Fisrt
    Boston is selling is not good.
    2) That there appears
    to be little support for the model - atleast right
    now. Reasons are decent earnings and the stock has not
    3) The overall B2B space is the whipping boy right
    now. All stocks in this sector are down and there are
    others sitting on the sidelines waiting to get

    Either way, either view you have this will be a very
    intersting ride. I wonder if anyone out there is looking at
    Onvia as a purchase target?

    SortNewest  |  Oldest  |  Most Replied Expand all replies
    • They used to be neighbors. Amazon has never come
      close to any of Onvia's lines of business. A kind of deal with Amazon couldn't be all

      Who knows...but we can all hope for something
      positive these days.

    • I think the biggest challenge for the market
      right now is figuring out who they are and what they

      It was fairly clear what their focus was
      with the original model of selling products and
      services targeted to small business. It might even make
      sense to add some small business news. The addition of
      RFQ though, flies right in the face of there own
      products strategy, with Onvia competing directly with
      their own customers. The Auctions do the same thing and
      dilutes the impact of other parts of the business.

      From my point of view, it looks like Onvia is trying
      to do too many things, without doing anything really
      really well.

      The "No Competitors" statement,
      reiterated again the other day, is just like Wal-Mart saying
      K-Mart is not a competitor because "we have McDonalds in
      our stores". Mr. Ballman should openly reference his
      competitors and show the market that he knows who they are.
      According to their advertsing they think they compete with
      the yellow pages.

      MY ADVICE: Get Focused. Do
      what you said you would do: "provide products and
      services for small business". Be the best at that and show
      how you can make money doing it, and investors will
      come back. It can be done - just look at CDWC.

      • 1 Reply to b2b_nyc
      • If ONVI had no competitors, as its 20something
        CEO repeatedly asserts, then why are they selling at
        a negative gross margins? That statement is
        ignorant and reckless at best, and disingenuous at

        If you have no competitors, then there is no
        downward pressure on your pricing for goods and services
        -- your gross margins should not just be positive,
        they should be whopping, like ATT long distance rates
        before the breakup, or like MSFT on its Office suite

        A honest statement would be that "Onvia
        is the only company on the Internet that has adopted
        their complete set of strategies as a business model."

        To say over and over again that they have no
        competitors is absurd: are they trying to fool investors or
        are they now just fooling themselves?

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