In an audacious move to minimise the risk of mobile social disruption, Facebook is to acquire leading messaging app Whatsapp for up to $19 billion, or $42 per user, or 11% of Facebook’s current market cap
Messaging platforms are becoming the new social media, particularly for younger demographics, and while Facebook/WhatsApp will be huge in mobile, other services could still side-step into Facebook’s territory
The price for WhatsApp may be justifiable to counter the threat, but Facebook has only bought one of many, and paying a full price may encourage the others; expensively buying every competitor does not feel like a long-term strategy
RedBird IMI is pitching for the Telegraph and Spectator by lending the money to the Barclay family to settle all of its debt to Lloyds Banking Group (LBG), suspending the auction of the media assets by Goldman Sachs and upsetting the bidders
Strong political headwinds to RedBird IMI did not take long to emerge in the UK, with the Secretary of State for DCMS, Lucy Frazer, “minded to” issue a Public Interest Intervention Notice (PIIN), as early as this week
Jeff Zucker, CEO of RedBird IMI, is in London this week to promote the deal and respond to concerns over the public interest by making assurances to the UK authorities
Interest in women’s football is unprecedentedly high, with record attendances, TV audiences and importantly participation.
Investment into the Women’s Super League is critical to the long-term success of the game. Strong broadcast partnerships must continue to play a vital role.
WSL viewing is low but increasing. Currently, it is a cost-effective filler for Sky, and good for the BBC’s profile. Rights value should rise but the WSL needs broadcasters more than they need the WSL.
Metrics in Vodafone's Q3 results pointed in various directions with the main positive being revenue growth in Germany, but there were also concerning data points including continued subscriber decline there, and EBITDA across all of Europe.
The company reiterated its guidance for EBITDA and FCF for the year which looks achievable but a stretch. More importantly, these numbers exist only in theory with the Euro-based results looking set to be lower—with implications for the outlook and dividend cover.
Ridding the Group of its Spanish business, and possibly the Italian one too, will be helpful in delivering on the promise of growth, but whether it creates value for shareholders is another matter.