Friday 31 July 2015

What we're listening to this week. Stephen Fretwell 'Magpie'

Let us introduce you to someone you've probably never heard of - Stephen Fretwell (and neither had we, until someone here played it this week). But always good to hear something new. And this is stunning.

From Scunthorpe in England (someone has to be), he released his debut 'Magpie' in 2004 (recorded at Abbey Road) and since then, seems to have supported everyone on tour (notably 'Elbow') as well as a couple of more Albums. 

But this is one of those singer/songwriters who just doesn't seem to have broken through - yet should have, with an Album like this. Not unlike Ed Sheeran in some ways, but deeper (if ye know what we mean - less 'poppy').

The track 'Emily' seems to have got him most notice, but 'Play' is undoubtedly one of the best songs we've heard. Ever. Followed by 'Brother' and 'New York'. 

Worth getting the Album for those 4 tracks alone.
Try 'Play' here - you'll love it, trust us.

And then try 'New York' live, here.

Thursday 30 July 2015

Facebook announces great Q2 numbers. And the stock is?

Facebook just announced its Q2 numbers.
And like Twitter, its stock is down circa -4%....

Revenue of 4.04 Billion usd is +39% year on year! 

968 million DAILY actives users and that's up +17% year on year!

Only about 17% of those users are USA/Canada so Facebook's reach is more global.

About 65% of Facebook active monthly users are now daily users so it's being used more often.

And daily users are using it on average, for 46 minutes a day.

Facebook generates 1.5 Billion searches a day.
And users are sharing +40% more video than they were.

Margin has dropped from 48% to 31% but that's on the back of increased costs through investment which to be fair, Facebook warned it was doing.
They have 2 million advertisers.

Video too, is driving their Ad growth said Sandberg because it's now more targeted.

So overall, that's a pretty great performance no matter what way you look at it. Huge increases in Revenue, Daily active users, better global spread, longer dwell times, video drivers, new investment, more advertisers....and the stock is what? 
Explain that because it's making no sense. 
At all.

Wednesday 29 July 2015

Twitter gets a break.

Bit of a revival in the Twittersphere with better than expected numbers this week.

Q2 Revenue of 502 million usd was +4% better than expected. Active monthly users at 316 million was up from 302 million and up from 288 million end last year. 

That's growth in the face of what was considered a "flat" curve. So no, more people are actively using Twitter. 80% active on mobile giving 88% of the revenue (398 million usd).

It has cash of 3.6 Billion usd and shares gained +5% on the day with of course, Jack Dorsey doing all the talking (and straight talking by all accounts). 

But what this does it raise expectations for Q3 and in particular, growth in users as well as, revenues. The shares have fallen back now somewhat.

So it's a bit of good news that has to be sustained and therein, lies the difficulty. Hung by your own success.

(Postscript Wednesday - after hours trading in shares showed at nearly -13% decline in prices at one stage. So there was an offload......which seems to be about comments made about the slow user growth - Monthly active Users MAU's).