1. How many shares have been shorted as of today (February 05)?
2. Who is buying the shares that shorts are dumping on the market (is some individual or institution gaining a large stake in Leapfrog)?
3. Which foreign markets is Leapfrog planning to enter in 2014?
4. Is John Barbour considering a company repurchase of stock or possible dividend announcement?
5. With the price of LF stock so low, is Mattel, Hasbro, Disney, etc. considering a takeover?
6. With the price of LF stock so low, is any attempt going to be made to take Leapfrog private?
7. Is Leapfrog going to announce a positive 1Q for 2014 or will it still make its habitual lowball estimates?
8. What new toys/pads/cartridges/cooperative deals with other companies does LF have in the pipeline?
9. Will John Barbour simply announce that Leapfrog is up for sale to the highest bidder?
Obviously many of these questions have been raised numerous times on this message board, and some will be answered next week at the conference call, but longs like me need something more than faith to hold on to their shares under this newest barrage. I hope all of these questions will be addressed during the next four weeks. It's a shame that those stockholders who have held onto their shares for such a long time (longs) are having their savings wiped out because many of us do not have any idea where this company stands now or in the future. A plea to the LF executives - please let stockholders know where the company stands now and where it is headed in the future - and quit playing games with gloom and doom forecasts that cause the stock to be battered into oblivion. In short - tell us truthfully whether this is a viable company or not, and let the chips fall where they may.
I agree with Tom's assessment of LF stock going into 4th Quarter earnings period. I too believe that all the bad news is already out there. If LF has an earnings report which beats expectations we will have to wait until early February to find out for sure. I believe that LF continuously reports low guidance is that they keep thinking that some new pad will come out that will destroy Leapfrog's value as large companies can produce their pads on a large scale and sell for less than the Leappads. HOWEVER: This did not occur in 2012 and I don't think it will occur in 2013 because the Street views everything on how the Leappad sales will do and ignores why parents continue to buy Leapfrog products - it's all about the CONTENT!. What good will it do to buy a cheaper ipad than LF if you do not have the quality of learning cartridges which LF has in its arsenal - cartridges which work only on Leappads. Parents have shown their preference for content that stresses learning skills taught in a manner that children enjoy as opposed to mindless games which teach nothing educationally. I just hope that after 2 years of thinking that they are going to get blindsided by a new Ipad, that they will have enough confidence in their superior content to give realistic earnings guidance for Q1 2014. They should also stress that they will be entering new Asian markets in 3Q of 2014, and that their content cartridges have a higher margin of profits than Leappads. John Barbour is rightfully proud of Leapfrog's growth, and now he needs to express that confidence in the 1Q guidance report. Damn the V-Techs, and the other ipads - Full Speed ahead. Don't be so fearful that LF cannot compete in its own niche - Failure to make realistic guidance forecasts might allow a competitor to buy LF for a fraction of what it's really worth.
Nobody but the execs at Leapfrog knows what sales of LF products are doing during the Christmas season.
The only figures that LF investors know for sure are those issued by Amazon on an hourly basis. Granted, most sales of LF products do not come from Amazon, but perhaps their results reflect what is happening with sales of LF products at Walmart, Target, etc. First off, I do not think that sales of Ultra and the other LF pads are as significant as they were last year. Lots of parents gave these pads to their kids last year and many probably will not buy another one this year, even with different prices for different models and various bells and whistles added on or not added on. Margins for the pads are not as high as they are for the content area cartridges. But when you compare LF products to V-Tech products (its main competition), look at how they compare on Amazon sales:
For learning toys, out of the top 100, during the last week, Leapfrog product sales outnumbered V=Tech each day by about 46-7. Most of the LF sales are the higher margin cartridges. And Leapfrog pads still outpace V=Tech sales by a wide margin. For today (12/12), the total sales margin was 47 - 6 in Leapfrog's favor.
For educational toys, out of the top 100, during the last week, Leapfrog product sales outnumbered V=Tech each day by about 55-12. Obviously some of the same products for both companies were on both lists, but the sheer weight of numbers shows that parents seem to prefer Leapfrog over V=Tech.
What we do not know, though, is if these sales on Amazon reflect sales in the other stores like Walmart and Target. We also do not know about layaways. The numbers for Amazon sales will be less meaningful after this weekend, because parents want to know that the toys they order will arrive by Christmas, so if they do not have them ordered by Wednesday of next week, they will probably buy them at the brick and mortar stores. I am interested in reactions to these observations.