Comments on: Chart of the day, Microsoft edition http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/ A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: Ditman http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-48000 Wed, 04 Sep 2013 21:55:15 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-48000 “over the course of Steve Ballmer’s tenure as Microsoft CEO… its market share has plunged.” Oh yes, its market share for operating systems worldwide is now down to a dismal 91% for Windows. Pathetic. For Office type products, it’s even higher. MSFT will have about $2 billion in cash flow this month, just like it does every month. Mr. Ballmer has been an unqualified disaster.

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By: GRRR http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47997 Wed, 04 Sep 2013 07:15:09 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47997 No offense Felix, but the board never wanted to move away from Ballmer’s strategy. They’ve made considerable number of signals including an outright message to employees that the company is focused on transitioning to a devices and services company.

When Ballmer announced the reorg, you can’t possibly think that it was mere coincidence that he referred to Microsoft’s future as a devices and services company — that’s at least as long as he and the board have been considering the buyout.

The market got the wrong signal when Ballmer announced his impending resignation. They (and most everyone else) thought that this was an opportunity for the company to move in a new direction. With the announcement of the purchase of Nokia, that Elop would be installed as the new head of the devices and services division, and that he was under consideration as the next CEO, the markets seem to have finally understood that Microsoft is NOT changing directions.

Therefore, Ballmer is NOT placing the next CEO in a straitjacket.

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By: y2kurtus http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47994 Wed, 04 Sep 2013 01:27:27 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47994 @realist50 “Microsoft should pay huge dividends to shareholders because in its own hands Microsoft will waste the cash pursuing markets where it will fail.”

I wish I had enough shares to vote you onto the board of MSFT! The cumulative value destroyed by generated by Hotmail/outlook/skype/bing/zune/nokia easily exceed 25,000,000,000. I can’t fault MSFT too much though because if Yahoo had not refused to sell themselves for what was at the time a 50% premium than MSFT would probably be a strong second in search and actually have a 3rd profitable business line.

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By: FifthDecade http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47991 Wed, 04 Sep 2013 00:02:30 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47991 Not quite sure it was Elop who ‘rescued’ Nokia as it was his strategy that put Nokia where it is today, losing 85% of its share price with a move to Windows – but only after getting rid of what was selling and effectively having nothing to sell for about a year apart from low end phones.

As for him making a good CEO of MS, do you really think that?

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By: realist50 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47990 Tue, 03 Sep 2013 23:36:48 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47990 Felix, you should know that comparing employee count to share price makes very little sense. It does make sense to compare headcount to revenue and net income, both of which increased substantially during this time frame. (In fact, revenue per employee may have increased over that time period.) That’s not to say that I’m a fan of Ballmer’s time in charge at Microsoft, merely that your comparison is unfair to the point of misleading.

The logical endpoint of your argument – which you hint at but don’t say explicitly – is that Microsoft should pay huge dividends to shareholders because in its own hands Microsoft will waste the cash pursuing markets where it will fail. I take your argument to be that Microsoft should close down Bing, probably spin off Xbox as its own company, and define Microsoft as a largely enterprise focused company, which happens also to offer compatible Windows and Office products for use at home.

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By: bpondo http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47989 Tue, 03 Sep 2013 21:35:56 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47989 I’m wondering how many graphics, video, and audio professionals will come back to the Mac over the next few years/months? Adobe actually made it easier for them to swap platforms with their cloud services….it’s just a matter of relearning some keyboard shortcuts.

The big 3D software makers are going to have to move more resources into the Mac platform too.

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By: TomWest http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47988 Tue, 03 Sep 2013 20:33:21 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47988 Given that they will own the desktop until the day that desktops become irrelevant (in much the same way IBM owns the big iron market), it would seem smart for Microsoft to go the Income Trust route.

Reduce costs (including R&D) down to as little as possible, return almost all the profit as dividends and continue to make huge amounts of money for the next 20 years for any investor who’s not entirely obsessed with growth (if there are any).

Could be the darling of seniors and anyone else who wants a steady income. The company would probably last longer than any existing tech company, given most spend themselves into the grave in a desperate attempt to find the next “big thing” once their initial “big thing” stops growing.

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By: Harpstein1 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47987 Tue, 03 Sep 2013 20:06:15 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47987 You get a little too “grand” there at the end, certainly don’t see that Microsoft’s entire future is dependent on mobile. If so, then the stock should have a “panic sell” rating on it. They’re already lost mobile, but Balmer couldn’t stand to see it die on his watch so he’s rescued Nokia essentially saving the last Windows Phone maker. But the enterprise is still alive and thriving, and there’s a lot of money to be made in that space without any mobile offerings. Maybe it’s not a glitzy as the consumer market, but still a lot of money to be made there. And we’ll see how the new XBox does, I’m skeptical that there’s a huge market for big boxes like that in home entertainment going forward.

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By: markclose http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47986 Tue, 03 Sep 2013 20:03:31 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47986 I don’t think it’s possible to defend Ballmer’s tenure as Microsoft CEO. That said, the head-count/stock-price measure in wankerish nonsense. The fact that fools were willing to pay high multiples for stocks in the tech-bubble is not Ballmer’s fault. Head count is up ~2.6X, while revenue is up 3.4X and net income is up 2.7X. Still glad he’s on the way out. I think the press likes the Elop as heir apparent story more than the facts warrant.

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By: BryanWillman http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/09/03/chart-of-the-day-microsoft-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-47983 Tue, 03 Sep 2013 17:32:22 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=22421#comment-47983 It is worth remembering that Microsoft’s entire history can be summarized as a mix between “cling to safety” and “swing for the fences”, and that size now means that any new project must be “go big or go home.”

When it’s office, or windows, and they don’t wiff (win8) they get a grand slam for the ages.

They have some quiet businesses that make real money, but it’s about impossible for anything other than really spectacularly large wins to change the share price in any useful way. That’s the problem – they need giant dollars to raise EPS even a little bit.

Given that smartphones will at some point level off just as PCs have, the entire industry will have to learn to live with saturation and not being ultra hot ultra growth anymore. It will be painful for all.

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