|Bid||1,094.46 x 800|
|Ask||1,096.00 x 4000|
|Day's Range||1,093.79 - 1,107.00|
|52 Week Range||970.11 - 1,289.27|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||1.14|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||27.48|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||N/A (N/A)|
|1y Target Est||1,275.00|
We can argue about the merits and flaws of Chromebooks all day long, but onething is clear: They've found a strong foothold in the education market
Big tech is under the microscope, now that U.S. regulators investigate whether Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB), and Google (GOOG) have too much power. As calls for breaking up these tech titans gain momentum among lawmakers, at least one Silicon Valley insider says “trust” is at the crux of the increased scrutiny. “I think regulators are really responding to a crisis of trust in the tech industry,” Salesforce (CRM) President, Bret Taylor, tells Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade.
Google today launched a new Chrome extension that allows you to flagsuspicious sites for inclusion in the company's Safe Browsing index, which isused by Chrome and a number of third-party browsers
Cloud-based company Salesforce announced its latest platform, New Customer 360 Innovations, at its Salesforce Connections conference today in Chicago. On the heels of this announcement, Salesforce President and Chief Product Officer Bret Taylor joins Yahoo Finance to discuss what he perceives to be the next phase of the digital revolution, and how Salesforce is already getting ahead.
Wedbush says a breakup of these tech giants is unlikely. But changes along those lines could be a catalyst for innovation.
Facebook Inc. and Apple Inc. are most at risk if government regulators are serious about pursuing antitrust actions against Big Tech.
Slack Technologies Inc. is looking for a better direct-listing fate than Spotify Technology SA. The music-streaming service reminded tech unicorns late last year that companies don’t have to issue new shares or raise money through a traditional offering if they wish to go public, and now Slack is following in its footsteps. The business-chat company has filed direct-listing paperwork.
(Bloomberg) -- Walmart Inc. came to dominate retailing through its mastery of logistics—the complicated choreography of getting goods from farm or factory to the consumer. But even the world’s biggest store doesn’t make money selling its wares online in the U.S., largely due to runaway shipping costs. So Walmart is turning to robots.On a drizzly morning earlier this month, Walmart’s U.S. chief Greg Foran led reporters to a curbside package pickup kiosk outside its supercenter in Rogers, Arkansas. Idling there were three Ford delivery vans outfitted with self-driving technology developed by a Gatik, a Silicon Valley startup charged with a trial run aimed at cutting Walmart’s middle-mile shipping costs in half. Going driverless in pursuit of profit is a “no-brainer,” Foran said.As the buzz about human-carting robo-taxis starts to short-circuit, an unheralded segment of the driverless future is taking shape and showing promise: goods-moving robo-vans. Rather than serving up hot pizza pies or deploying headless robots to carry groceries to the doorstep, robo-vans travel on fixed routes from warehouse to warehouse or to a smaller pickup point, transporting packages to get them closer, but not all the way, to consumers.This may be the least glamorous part of the driverless delivery business, but the market for these monotonous “middle miles” could reach $1 trillion and may provide the fastest path to prosperity, analysts say.“This area has the least number of obstacles and the most certain return on invested capital in the near term,” said Mike Ramsey, an analyst with consultant Gartner Inc. “If you’re looking to start a business where you can actually generate revenue, this has fewer barriers than the taxi market.”Driving the demand is the boom in online shopping that has helped cause a severe shortage of truck drivers that tops 60,000 unfilled long-haul positions, according the American Trucking Associations. That has sent costs soaring for a job that is among the most dangerous due to the risk of wrecks and long periods spent on the road.Related: `Smokey and the Bandit' Charm Fades as Trucking Hiring Lags“This middle mile is the most expensive part of the whole supply chain; it’s a huge pain point,” said Gautam Narang, CEO of Gatik, which is attempting to automate Walmart’s “hub and spoke” warehouse system. “This fills a big gap in the market.”From a technological standpoint, business-to-business, or B2B, delivery is the straightforward counterpoint to the complexities of autonomous ride-hailing and driverless delivery directly to consumers, known as B2C or last-mile. Robo-vans like those being put to the test at Walmart follow fixed routes over and over, reducing the chance of mishaps and increasing their time in service generating revenue. Many of these routes are already established using human drivers today, so there’s little need to map new paths and create infrastructure to load and receive the goods.Related: Robot Rides Are Going to Deliver Pizza and Parcels Before PeopleFord Motor Co., testing many forms of driverless delivery, calls these repeatable routes “milk runs,” a throwback term to the days of household dairy delivery.“Anything on driverless delivery that is a milk run is a good application for autonomy,” said Sherif Marakby, chief executive officer of Ford’s autonomous vehicles unit. “B2C is a complex implementation for autonomy that will come with time, but B2B just makes it easier because you get volume and you can be more predictable.”The case for robots ferrying packages before people is becoming more compelling as robo-taxis struggle to gain traction. Consumers have grown wary of giving up the wheel, especially after a pedestrian was killed last year by an autonomous Uber Technologies Inc. test car. Waymo, Alphabet Inc.’s driverless unit, initiated limited automated ride-hailing in suburban Phoenix late last year with human “safety drivers” on board. General Motors Co. no longer says it will debut a similar service this year. Instead, CEO Mary Barra now says the rollout will be “gated by safety.”QuicktakeWhen the Driverless Cars Arrive, Will You Climb In?: QuickTakeDriverless delivery also has another big advantage over robo-taxis: no demanding human passengers. “People have more emotions than boxes,” Ford’s Marakby said.Meanwhile, driverless delivery is already hitting the road. Swedish startup Einride recently began low-speed robo-deliveries on public roads in its home country. It has signed up several Fortune 500 clients, like tire-maker Michelin, plus logistics service provider DB Schenker and German grocer Lidl.Looking like a Star Wars Imperial troop transport on wheels, Einride’s T-Pod trucks are 60% cheaper to build because they lack a passenger compartment. If they get into a jam, they can be remote controlled by humans from a command center. One human monitors the remote controls for 10 trucks. The T-Pods operate in self-driving mode 95% of the time, according to CEO and founder Robert Falck.Stuffed with payload and no human driver, a T-Pod can operate around the clock and cut shipping costs in half. That’s why Falck says his company is already profitable, though he declines to give specifics.“There are solid economics behind this and that’s also what the customer realizes,” Falck said. “If you break down the numbers, it’s the best business case out there.”TuSimple, a San Diego startup valued at $1.1 billion, leads a pack of tech outfits seeking to automate long-haul trucking. The company has a fleet of 50 robot Peterbilt and Navistar trucks that have been transporting commercial loads in Arizona for a year. And while it isn’t profitable yet, it expects to book revenue of more than $1 million a month in the second half of the year.“If you break down the numbers, it’s the best business case out there.”In the final two weeks of May, its self-driving big rigs—equipped with cameras that can see more than a half-mile down the road—completed 10 test runs for the U.S. Postal Service of an arduous 1,000-mile stretch from Phoenix to Dallas. Over Memorial Day weekend, the trucks faced howling crosswinds and “mud rain,” a blinding combination of dust, wind and rain. And yet the robo-rigs consistently beat human-driven trucks to the mail depot by as much as two hours. “We were approaching the edge of our operational design domain,” said Chuck Price, TuSimple’s chief product officer. “But we were able to demonstrate that we can do it much faster, with high consistency and high reliability. So bottom line, it’s more efficient.”By next year, TuSimple says it will pull the safety driver and engineer it currently has babysitting its rigs and go fully driverless—something no robo-taxi has committed to yet. By 2023 or 2024, the company plans to have “commercially ready” robo-rigs rolling out of a factory of a major truck maker.That kind of confidence is hard to come by these days among the purveyors of robo-taxis, still struggling to figure out how to navigate the pedestrians, cyclists and unpredictable traffic of chaotic urban environments. Increasingly, the call of the open road and the mundane middle miles between warehouses is proving to be the clearest path to the autonomous future. That’s why big players like Waymo and Tesla Inc.—still working on driverless people haulers—are also developing robo-rigs.“There’s absolutely a market for this sort of thing,” said Sam Abuelsamid, an analyst with Navigant Research. “People don’t really care much about what goes on behind the scenes to get them the products they want. But the value of all the goods being moved is far more than ride-hailing applications.”To contact the authors of this story: Keith Naughton in Southfield at firstname.lastname@example.orgMatthew Boyle in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Anne Riley Moffat at firstname.lastname@example.org, Chester DawsonFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Subsidiaries of the parent of Google have invested in the cloud-based security software firm since 2015. After CrowdStrike’s IPO last week, Alphabet’s investment is now worth 13 times what it paid.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Slack Technologies Inc. couldn’t have picked a better time to go public. Investors have lost their minds about software companies.Earlier this year, I wrote about how stock buyers were willing to pay handsomely to own shares of fast-growing companies that sell cloud software to businesses. As investors had grown antsy about the FAANGs — the elite technology superpowers such as Apple Inc. and Google parent company Alphabet Inc. — the software PUTIN stocks, as I semi-apologetically called them,(1)were ascendant. Since then, investors have warmly greeted new stock listings by even more business software firms including Zoom Video Communications Inc., Pagerduty Inc. and CrowdStrike Holdings Inc.I went back to my self-selected cohort of 17 business software firms that included Salesforce, Adobe, Atlassian and ServiceNow. The median stock multiple of my cohort, which I had to adjust slightly because of acquisitions, didn’t budge much since the February analysis.The median market value adjusted for cash and debt was about 10.3 times a blend of revenue estimated in the next year, compared with 9.8 times in February. The price-to-earnings multiple of the S&P 500 index has also increased since then.(5) What really stood out was the top-tier companies in my PUTIN index have grown even more bubbly.Look behind the velvet rope to find the 20x Club, the most popular hot spot in stock markets. More than half a dozen software firms now have enterprise values that are more than 20 times expected revenue in the next year, according to Bloomberg data.That is — to put it mildly — not normal. Relative to revenue, buying a share of pharmaceutical software firm Veeva Systems Inc., a member of the 20x Club, is four times the price of Alphabet, one of the dominant companies of this generation. Some of the members of the 20x Club are newly public, and it’s not unusual to see young companies with stock market values that are a bit out of whack. But 20x Club members also include Veeva, Atlassian Corp., Okta Inc., MongoDB and other companies that have been public for 18 months or more. As corporate-messaging service Slack plans to list its shares Thursday in a not-IPO,(2)it may join this elite crew. A valuation for Slack of $17 billion or so would work out to an enterprise value to forward revenue in the ballpark of the 20x Club.There are understandable reasons these business software firms, which are relatively unknown by normal humans, have become darlings of the stock market and technology investing. Something real and seemingly permanent is changing in how companies large and small buy technology. Companies are desperate to modernize their technology so they don’t get left behind and can take advantage of growth opportunities, and that has made them open their wallets to buy new types of internet-friendly, easy-to-use software that promises to help make their marketing spending more efficient, catch cyberattacks before they cripple systems or enable seamless communications among far-flung employees.I’m not yet convinced that these young cloud software companies can ever grow as large as their investors believe, particularly if an economic downturn forces companies to rationalize their technology budgets. But software truly is eating the world, and that has accrued to the benefit of both titans such as Microsoft and relative newcomers like the members of the 20x Club.At the same time, investors are desperate for growth, and business software firms are delivering it in spades. They can also be relatively easy to understand — they sell software in exchange for cash — and businesses have proved to be relatively reliable consumers, unlike people and their tendency to flit from one hot internet thing to the next. And now that superstar tech companies have run into regulatory problems, been hit with tariffs or otherwise have more question marks than before, a bet on a company selling software that an antitrust lawyer would never notice suddenly looks like a good idea. The question is what that promise costs. As stock buyers pay more relative to a company’s revenue, any wobble in growth can result in a crash, and investors’ room for error narrows when stock prices are already high relative to a company’s financial prospects. High stock valuations may also deter some needed consolidation in business software. It has become fashionable not to care about valuation, but there can be a high price to bubbles in share prices. Of course, I could have called a bubble in business software stocks at multiple points in the last decade and it would have been accurate in the moment yet completely wrong. An index of mostly business software companies, the BVP Nasdaq Emerging Cloud Index, has more than quintupled since 2013, compared with a 74% gain for the S&P 500 over the same period. It’s true that 10 years into an unprecedented bull market in stocks, unusual valuations are par for the course. Maybe the bubble for business software firms will never end, or stock prices of these highflying software firms will deflate slowly rather than blow up. Maybe. Or there may be a high price to pay for software companies in an unprecedented stratosphere. (1) No, I am not sorry at all. I will say, however, that the "U" in PUTINs, Ultimate Software Group Inc., was sold in May to an investor group. My acronym is broken.(2) Yes, these software companies tend to be valued as a multiple of revenue rather than profits. In many cases they don't have profits.(3) Bloomberg Beta, the venture capital arm of Bloomberg Opinion parent Bloomberg LP, is an investor in Slack.To contact the author of this story: Shira Ovide at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Daniel Niemi at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Shira Ovide is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering technology. She previously was a reporter for the Wall Street Journal.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
The specter of antitrust action against four of the largest tech companies in the world has evolved into a parlor game among some in Silicon Valley: What antitrust suspect is the most vulnerable?
Major tech companies shell out big bucks for talent — but in this startup-rich town Amazon, Google, Facebook, Apple and the like aren't the only ones desperate to hire these types of workers.
(Bloomberg) -- At a convention on digital currency, rarely does an audience Q&A session include a question as incendiary as, “Why is this fraud allowed to speak at this conference?” But that’s how a discussion about Bitcoin ended up last year in Seoul.The supposed fraud is Craig Wright, an Australian-born technologist who gained notoriety three years ago when he declared himself the inventor of Bitcoin. The provocateur is Vitalik Buterin, a baby-faced Russian-Canadian programmer who helped create another popular digital currency called Ether. No one disputes Buterin’s role in Ether; many reject Wright’s claim to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the mysterious genius behind Bitcoin.Wright is a comic-book supervillain for some in the world of cryptocurrency. Buterin’s rant was applauded by a handful of people at the conference, including one of the panelists and a man on the sidelines wearing a vest and metallic fiber shirt. It had the feel of an impromptu live performance of a Twitter flame war. The whole thing lasted 90 seconds. Footage recorded from the crowd provided an amusing YouTube video and sparked a fresh round of tweets mocking Wright.That appeared to be that, until a year later when Buterin received a letter from Wright’s attorney. The legal notice, dated April 12, said Wright intends to sue Buterin in the U.K. for defamation. Less than a week later, Wright filed suit with similar claims against a podcaster named Peter McCormack, seeking 100,000 pounds ($129,000) in damages. And on May 2, Wright’s lawyers served Roger Ver, an early Bitcoin investor, at a cryptocurrency meet-up in London.Ver says by email he intends to defend himself in court. Buterin and McCormack didn’t respond to requests for comment, but all three have recently posted messages online calling Wright a fraud. In a blog post, Buterin painted the legal dispute as being about censorship, free speech and truth.Wright has spent much of the last year with lawyers. He’s currently defending against claims in a U.S. court that he defrauded the estate of Dave Kleiman, a former business partner who died in 2013. Wright is accused of stealing Bitcoins he and Kleiman mined together about a decade ago. A federal judge ordered Wright to submit documentation of his early Bitcoin holdings, which were sealed on Monday, and he attended mediation Tuesday in Florida.At some point, Wright determined the courts could be a useful venue for achieving his own goals. Wright, who says he holds a master’s degree in law from Northumbria University in the U.K., hopes a series of lawsuits can establish himself as the father of Bitcoin. “This will give me the chance to prove my credentials in front of a judge, rather than being judged by Twitter,” Wright told Bloomberg in an email.If he really is Satoshi Nakamoto, Wright will have no trouble funding a protracted legal war on his critics. The true creator of Bitcoin is estimated to hold about $9 billion of the coins. In most cases, the expensive prospect of getting sued tends to make rational people keep critical views to themselves. “There’s some really broad recognition that the threat of defamation lawsuits really substantially chills speech,” says David Greene, senior staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a civil liberties advocacy group.For whatever reason, that didn’t occur here. Online discussion of Wright reached a peak shortly after his lawsuit against McCormack, and the content was overwhelmingly scathing. During the week following his suit, 65 percent of posts expressed a negative sentiment, compared with about half before, according to Brand24, which monitors conversations on social media. Crowdfunding efforts have popped up to assemble legal defense funds for some of Wright’s defendants. Data from Google suggests the litigation drew the most attention to Wright since his contentious claims in 2016, when he offered what he called definitive proof of his role in creating Bitcoin.Although digital currencies have a market value of more than $280 billion today, the circus surrounding Wright shows that the industry still operates as a free-for-all. Experts aren’t entirely sure who conceived of the world’s most valuable form of digital money, but there’s enough of it to go around that the threat of costly lawsuits doesn’t seem to deter anyone from speaking their mind.John McAfee is a prime example. The software pioneer turned digital coin advocate says he knows the real Satoshi Nakamoto, and it is not Wright. “I am going to tell the truth no matter what the consequences are,” McAfee says. “I’ve been sued over 200 times in my life. I am not afraid of getting sued.” In response, Wright called him “McScammer” and suggested they resolve their dispute in court. The cryptocurrency business is full of colorful characters. Wright joined the starring cast in late 2015, when Wired magazine and Gizmodo reported that he and Kleiman may have invented Bitcoin. A few days later, Wired said Wright may instead be “a brilliant hoaxer.” Police raided Wright’s home in Australia as part of a tax investigation; he moved to Britain.In May 2016, the BBC, the Economist and—most important in the eyes of Bitcoin zealots—several prominent leaders of the cryptocurrency movement said Wright furnished what appeared to be evidence of his claim to the throne. They said he gave a private demonstration of a special digital signature used by Satoshi Nakamoto. “The proof is conclusive, and I have no doubt that Craig Steven Wright is the person behind the Bitcoin technology,” Jon Matonis, founding director of the Bitcoin Foundation, wrote in a blog post at the time.This did not quiet the doubters, either. “It would be like if I was trying to prove that I was George Washington and to do that, provided a photocopy of the Constitution and said, look, I have George Washington’s signature,” Peter Todd, a key Bitcoin developer, told Vice’s Motherboard.Bitcoin holdings attributed to Satoshi Nakamoto haven’t moved in years, according to online ledgers. Critics have urged Wright to verify his identity by transferring some coins, a proposal he has refused.As Wright spars with some cryptocurrency faithful, he’s hoping to get the community’s help with identifying his next legal target. He said he intends to sue an anonymous Twitter user known as Hodlonaut, whose profile picture is represented by a cartoon cat wearing a space helmet. Wright posted a $5,000 reward for information to locate the person behind the account and referred bounty hunters to photos the user had posted showing arm tattoos. Hodlonaut wrote in a tweet Monday that he had issued legal proceedings against Wright in Norway.McCormack, the podcaster Wright sued in April, is piling on as he awaits his day in court. McCormack wrote a satirical response to Wright’s lawyers, saying, “I find it difficult to understand how I can affect the reputation of your client; this mistakenly states that he has any reputation left.”In addition to widespread derision, Wright’s crusade has inflicted damage on his business interests. He’s now pushing a coin called Bitcoin SV, which he says is Bitcoin the way Satoshi Nakamoto truly intended. Wright’s lawsuits drew a harsh rebuke from Zhao Changpeng, the head of one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, Binance. Zhao said he was “against fraud,” and then Binance delisted Bitcoin SV. The coin’s market value plummeted 50% over two days, though it recovered during the broader cryptocurrency rally in May.Wright and his few vocal allies are undeterred. On May 21, Wright said he was granted a U.S. copyright for early Bitcoin code and for the original whitepaper authored by Satoshi Nakamoto. Three days later, someone named Wei Liu filed a competing copyright claim. A spokesman for the agency says it “does not investigate the truth of any statements made.”Calvin Ayre, a dot-com-era gambling tycoon and the most persistent supporter of Wright, said he’d release evidence proving Wright’s claim by the end of May. He didn’t. “But now that we have somebody challenging the copyright, we can take that to a legal conclusion, which is what we are now trying to do,” Ed Pownall, a spokesman for Ayre, wrote in an email.Wright sees the insults as something more sinister than routine internet trolling. He says his detractors are criminals, who profit from human trafficking, and that their true motive is to sabotage his attempts to eliminate illegal uses of Bitcoin. “I designed Bitcoin to stop all of this,” Wright says. “That is why they hate me.”To contact the author of this story: Olga Kharif in Portland at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Milian at firstname.lastname@example.org, Emily BiusoFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
After being blacklisted by Washington in May, the Chinese smartphone leader is demanding Verizon pay over $1 billion in patent licensing fees.
Shareholder activists want Google parent Alphabet Inc to break itself up before regulators force the world's biggest internet ad seller to split into different pieces. SumOfUs, a U.S.-based group that aims to curb the growing power of corporations, is set to make that proposal at Alphabet's annual shareholder meeting on Wednesday at an auditorium at the company's offices in Sunnyvale, California. The proposal has no realistic chance of success as Alphabet's top two executives, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, hold 51.3 percent of shareholder votes.