News Review: Analyst BUY Rating on GoDaddy $GDDY, Price Target $41

Domain Mondo's weekly review of internet domain news, analysis, and look ahead [pdf]:

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Feature • Summit Redstone [domain: summitredstone.com] has started coverage on the world's largest domain name registrarGoDaddy Inc. (NYSE: GDDY) [domain: godaddy.com], with a Buy rating and a price target of $41.00. Summit Redstone analyst Jonathan Kees:
 "With more than a $10B addressable market in the U.S. alone targeting SMBs, GoDaddy (GDDY) has strong competitive advantages that enable market share growth and leadership. The advantages include a well-known brand, large customer base, and significant scale, which together with targeted marketing, in-language build-out’s, and product add-on’s, should facilitate a more successful expansion overseas and growth of Average Revenue Per User (ARPU). In addition, we find the financial guidance and targets such as 2016 revenue growth and long term adjusted EBITDA margin of mid 20% achievable at the very least because its main competitors are preoccupied with major acquisitions and in our view not as focused on the market thus presenting a share opportunity and secondarily GDDY has been investing in its technology, platform, and brand allowing it flexibility to pull back on opex spending if desired in order to meet margin goals. We launch with a BUY as we believe that the consistent performance continues and that GDDY maintains its competitive position, market leadership, and financials improvement. Our $41 price target is based on 3.5x EV/2017 sales of $2.1B." (emphasis added)
GoDaddy reported it lost 11 cents in Q2 2016 (an improvement from a 46 cent per-share loss in Q2 2016), missing consensus estimates for just a 7-cent loss. Q2 2016 revenue beat estimates and the company raised full-year revenue guidance. Shares closed Friday, October 7, 2016, at $35.48 (see chart below).  See also GoDaddy Is A Multi-Year Compounder | SeekingAlpha.com.

GoDaddy shares (NYSE: GDDY) are UP 35% in the last 12 months
GoDaddy is one of 10 companies on the Domain Mondo Q3 2016 earnings season coverage list:
  1. Alibaba BABA
  2. Alphabet GOOG
  3. Amazon AMZN
  4. Apple AAPL
  5. Facebook FB
  6. GoDaddy GDDY
  7. Neustar NSR
  8. Rightside NAME
  9. Twitter TWTR
  10. Verisign VRSN
Q3 2016 preview: Factset.com (pdf).

Other Internet, ICANN & Domain Name News:

•  New gTLD .WEB: "Either one of two things will happen when .WEB comes out. It will either suck all the oxygen out of the room and those other [new] gTLDs will start to collapse or it will breathe new life into them. I believe it will suck the oxygen out."--Rick Schwartz, The Domain King®, interviewed in TheDomains.com.

•  Domain name registry and technology services provider Neustar (NYSE: NSR | neustar.biz) SEC 8-K Filing, Oct 6, 2016, NeuStar, Inc. is currently the only provider of Local Number Portability Administrator services in the United States:
"These services are provided pursuant to the seven regional contracts, as amended (the “NPAC Contracts”) between the Company and the NAPM. On September 29, 2016, the NAPM provided written notice of its election to extend the term of the NPAC Contracts, which were set to expire on September 30, 2016, in accordance with Section 24.2 thereof (the “Extension Notice”). In connection with such extension and in accordance with the NPAC Contracts, the NAPM had the option to license the source code that the Company uses to provide services to the NAPM. As set forth in the Extension Notice, the NAPM did not elect to license the Company’s source code. In accordance with Section 24.2 of the NPAC Contracts, the Company shall continue to provide services and transition services, subject further to the right of the NAPM to deliver to the Company one or more 180 Day Termination Notices (as defined in the NPAC Contracts). Based on the timeline published by the Transition Oversight Manager on August 31, 2016, we expect to provide services and transition services until at least the end of May 2018" (emphasis added). 
Neustar shares closed down Friday at $25.93:
Shares of Neustar (NYSE: NSR) are down (-5.61%) since Sep 22, 2016
•  2 troubling trends in domain name registrations noted by attorney Doug Isenberg1) a new type of cybersquatting activity involving trademark infringement used for employment scams aimed at job seekers; and 2) ICANN's new gTLDs have created new opportunities for cybersquatters. Isenberg says .COM domain names account for about 58% of all disputed domain names in WIPO proceedings this year, but he fails to note .COM represents about 68% of all gTLD domain name registrations and the total number of .COM domain names in UDRP disputes has been declining according to WIPO:
Number of .COM Domain Names in UDRP disputes by year (source: WIPO.int)
•  Why does the Chinese government use an English domain name?: "... the Chinese government has a global view ... Translated to domain names, this means simple, easy-to-understand English words will be popular and .com will remain the best extension in corporate China."--Coreile.com (emphasis added). Also note: English is the most-widely spoken language in the world (native + non-native speakers)--see Why English Dominates the Web: Native & Non-native English Speakers and Countries With Best Non-native English Speakers.

•  The Trump campaign bought domain name ClintonKaine.com for $15,000 and is using it to highlight Clinton scandals--Politico.com.

•  Major Chinese telecom companies are assessing opportunities to enter the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) market, where the internet penetration rate is low. This could be part of China’s One Belt One Road initiative, a $40 billion initiative launched in 2014 to recreate the legendary Silk Road--digitalwatch.giplatform.org (pdf)--see that same source for 2016 World Trade Organization (WTO) Public Forum discussions on e-commerce and trade.

•  The State of Broadband: Broadband catalyzing sustainable development | September 2016 | broadbandcommission.org (pdf): "Research shows that a 20% increase in ICT [information and communications technology] investment can lift a country’s GDP by one percentage point, making national broadband networks a matter of strategic concern to governments around the world."

•  WIPO: Member States Unanimously Decide to Close Investigation Cases Against WIPO Director General Francis Gurry--WIPO.int.

•  ICYMIOversight Transition Isn't Giving Away the Internet, But Won't Fix ICANN's Problems | Electronic Frontier Foundation | EFF.org: "... While EFF stayed out of the IANA transition debate, we do keep a watchful eye on ICANN where it comes to the misuse of its policies and processes to censor Internet content. By exercising pressure on domain name registrars and registries, it's possible for law enforcement agencies and rightsholders (both within and without the United States) to exact finer-grained censorship, picking off individual domains that are alleged to host unlawful or undesirable content. This is a far greater and more present danger that continues to receive far less public attention than the IANA transition. EFF has proposed and will be leading a session at the next ICANN meeting in Hyderabad in November to discuss this problem, and to introduce the ICANN community to two of our projects that we believe could be helpful in understanding and addressing it—Shadow Regulation and the Manila Principles. Not much has changed this weekend, and that includes the continuing threats to free expression and privacy that sometimes emerge within the domain name system. Long after the headlines and the clamor over this transition have died down, we'll be keeping the same vigilant watch." (emphasis added)

•  Also Statement on the transition of IANA from the U.S. government to the global internet community |  InternetGovernanceCoalition.com"... Although this is an important step in the transition process, there is still much work that needs to be done to ensure the accountability and transparency of ICANN. We look forward to working with the multi-stakeholder community on these ongoing efforts" (emphasis added). Coalition members include 21st Century Fox, AT&T, CISCO, Comcast, Disney, Facebook, GoDaddy, Google, Juniper, Microsoft, NCTA, Time Warner Cable, Telefonica, Verizon.

•  New gTLD .MUSICICANN Minutes | Board Governance Committee (BGC) Meeting 17 Sep 2016: DotMusic Limited (DotMusic) made a presentation to the BGC regarding Reconsideration Request 16-5. DotMusic's presentation materials published here (pdf). BGC Action: "BGC to consider additional information provided and then consider Reconsideration Request 16-5."

•  ICANN57 Jinxed? Another mishap for the upcoming ICANN57, Nov 3-9, in Hyderabad, India: Fire on Cargo Ship Affects IT Equipment Bound for ICANN57 Hyderabad | ICANN.org.

•  Pre-ICANN57 Policy Update Webinar | ICANN: The ICANN Policy Development Support Team will provide a Policy Update Webinar on Thursday, 20 October 2016 at 10:00 UTC and 19:00 UTC, in preparation for the upcoming ICANN Annual General Meeting in Hyderabad. The purpose of the webinar is to summarize policy activities across the ICANN policy development community and briefing the community on the Cross-Community sessions taking place in Hyderabad. RSVP via this form by 14 October 2016. Remote participation details will be sent the week of 17 October 2016.

•  ICANN Amended And Restated Articles Of Incorporation--ICANN.org"As approved by the ICANN Board on 9 August 2016, and filed with the California Secretary of State on 3 October 2015" [sic].

•  Approved Board Resolutions | Special Meeting of the ICANN Board 30 Sep 2016| ICANN.org: IANA Intellectual Property Agreements -  the intellectual property rights at issue include three IANA-related trademarks and a group of domain names [IANA.org] registered by ICANN that are either currently in use for the performance of the IANA functions or use the IANA-related trademarks (collectively, the IANA IPR). "Resolved (2016.09.30.01), the ICANN Board approves ICANN entering into the Assignment Agreement between ICANN and the IETF Trust to assign the IANA IPR. Resolved (2016.09.30.02), the ICANN Board approves ICANN entering into the requisite License Agreements for the purpose of using the IANA IPR in the performance of each of the IANA functions."

•  Only 1 issue open for comment at ICANN closes in OctoberProposal for Georgian Script Root Zone‬ Label Generation Rules (LGR)--Close Date 28 Oct 2016 23:59 UTC.

Editor’s Note: Tech news is now covered in Domain Mondo’s TechReview,  first published yesterday, and investing and macro economic news will be covered in the new MacroView,  which will normally be published weekly, as the post following the News Review.

-- John Poole, Editor, Domain Mondo 

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