Friday, October 28, 2016

Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL) Alliances Won’t Help Android Pay Take Down PayPal (PYPL)

Android Pay teamed up with Visa and Mastercard, as the service lags competitors in the digital payments realm

Earlier this week, Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL, NASDAQ:GOOG) announced an agreement with Visa Inc (NYSE:V) and Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) to provide Android Pay users with much more flexibility and convenience in online purchasing, as well as at countless retail locations around the country.

The benefits of this agreement are expected to come to fruition early next year and will allow Android Pay users to more conveniently shop using smartphones and tablets on hundreds of thousands of new sites.

According to Google’s global head of payment products, a strategic partnership has been created allowing users to link their Masterpass and Visa Checkout accounts with the Android Pay app. 

According to Google:
“Visa Checkout and Masterpass users who link their accounts with Android Pay can look forward to easy and secure payments in stores and online with a simple tap.”
Some investors have wondered, though, whether Google’s new relationship with Visa and Mastercard will be received well enough to generate meaningful revenue gains, or if Google is just following suit to remain relevant.

Thursday, October 27, 2016, Inc. (CRM) Would Love to Buy Tableau … But Can It Afford to?

CRM would need to finance an acquisition of DATA

Wall Street is abuzz this week after it was discovered that, Inc. (NYSE:CRM) was never actually considering acquiring Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR). According to a confidential presentation discovered buried within thousands of other email messages that were part of a hack carried out by DCleaks, CRM was evaluating more than a dozen publicly traded companies as possible takeover targets, but the micro-blogging site TWTR wasn’t among them.

What was on the list, however, was Tableau Software Inc (NYSE:DATA). Of all the companies CRM management has been considering as potential acquisitions, DATA seems to make the most sense.

Acquiring Tableau would do two things for Salesforce: incorporate DATA’s current technology and SaaS products and services to leverage the best components of each, while also eliminating a top competitor from the cloud computing arena.

The question, however, is less about why Salesforce would want to acquire Tableau or what synergies may exist, and more about whether current CRM and DATA shareholders would approve a merger.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL) Google TV Could Threaten the Entire Cable Industry

Google TV should only exacerbate the culture of cord-cutting

According to Reuters, earlier this week an agreement was reached between Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL, NASDAQ:GOOG) and CBS Corporation (NYSE:CBS). Apparently, Google will be carrying CBS television content on its yet-to-be-released streaming service.

If the few details revealed by Reuters are indeed accurate, Google will almost instantly become a dominant force in the streaming television space, and could eventually threaten the entire cable industry.

Google’s TV service is expected to launch at some point early next year. YouTube is the undisputed king of online video sharing, and Google has taken steps over the past few years to improve its subscription platform (e.g., YouTube Red) and live streaming capabilities.

The presence of a bundle containing traditional television stations and content wouldn’t be much of a stretch for consumers to digest, and in fact could be extremely well-received.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Seagate Technology PLC (STX) Stock Is NOT a Contrarian Buy

Seagate stock has been on a tear recently, but the rally is out of juice

Seagate Technology PLC (NASDAQ:STX) is expected to announce the results for the first quarter of its fiscal 2017 today. Ahead of that quarterly report, Wall Street has been buzzing with news that several analyst firms have increased target prices for STX stock, and some have raised ratings as well.

The concern, however, is that Seagate stock will not benefit investors in the long run. Management has reported margins and revenues that are above earlier expectations, and claimed increased demand for computer hard drives.