AMZN Advertising

A Former AMZN Advertising Executive who spent over 8 years at the company shares how 1P and 3P vendors buy ads on Amazon.

A key takeaway is that ~75% of AMZN ad revenue is from trade marketing - the rest is from marketing budgets. The mid and upper funnel spend is where the real growth opportunity lies; AMZN is helping merchants build brand equity on and off AMZN-owned properties.

I think it’s already pretty mature. The only thing is, when you look at it, what Amazon has been trying to do since we started to hear about cookieless, is to expand their upper funnel first party inventory, so things like Twitch, live sport and maybe audio ads, also, IMDb. It’s a lot of super qualitative first party inventory that is super interesting for advertisers to address. - Former AMZN Ads Director

The launch of Amazon's Marketing Cloud could also be an inflection point in the adoption of AMZN's DSP. The more mid and upper funnel budget that AMZN can attract, the more ad revenue will grow beyond the magical mature rate of 5% of GMV.

My gut feeling is that we’re just at the beginning of what can be done and what we’ll see on the DSP with Amazon; most of the discussion I’ve had, in the last two to four years, have been mainly about trying to convert brands into DSP. But the main change that happened in the last year and half is Amazon Marketing Cloud. The adoption really rose just in the last six months in Europe, but even in the US, we see more and more adoption. I was at Amazon unBoxed in November; all of the discussion was around Amazon Marketing Cloud and APS connections. - Former AMZN Ads Director

ServiceNow vs Jira vs DDOG

This is an interesting interview with a CTO at a Fortune 500 customer of ServiceNow and how offerings like Jira and DDOG are a threat:

You mentioned Jira, for example; if you don’t use necessarily the ‘best of breed’ or different solutions, it has merit. However, where it really falls apart is when you think about the dev sec ops transition because the way they are presenting it – and I can understand why – it’s kind of the IT holistic end-to-end view that is driving the adoption of who will be the all-in-one or most-in-one solution. In companies that are truly software-driven, software as a service, have true dev ops and so on, I would argue that the integration that matters is neither IT or ops folks are communicating through one tool, but it’s the visibility of the software delivery that drives everything. What matters more? Understanding the software, the code change that caused a problem with one of our big customers and how it’s getting handled, who is working on it, who is going to deliver it, which is the dev ops integration with Jira? Or that we know that everything that needs to come together in order for us to work with a customer is in one single pane of glass, like the contractual obligations; even that is probably also more in Salesforce? I think that if IT was truly king, then maybe this argument is valid, but in today’s world, it’s software that’s king in the enterprises that I’m familiar with. That’s probably the weakest area of ServiceNow. - Fortune 500 Customer of NOW

The transition to an integrated 'dev sec ops' stack changes the competitive landscape:

Another reason is that, historically, we had dev ops separate. This is part of the things I’ve changed where we’ve had developer and ops in separate organizations; when you think about true integrated dev ops, that does integrate code life cycle into the process so it doesn’t just start with the incident, it starts with when the code was tested, in which environment, who wrote it etc. ServiceNow has less desirable solutions than true dev ops software platforms such as Datadog, so that’s ITSM. - Fortune 500 Customer of NOW

Masimo Patient SafetNet & Patient Monitoring

A US Hospital Customer of Masimo sharing insight into how hospitals are thinking about growing in and out-of-hospital patient monitoring systems:

We will be looking to expand some of our in-hospital functionality. They're not eliminated as a possibility for enhanced in-patient functionality in eICU, where very few players have been successfully doing it. They're very expensive, so if somebody can come in and do it just as well as them and be more attractive, I think they have a lot of opportunity there. It's probably been a year and a half since I got a full demo, but I worry when vendors move outside their core space. I hate when somebody tells me, yes, we can do that, absolutely we can do that. That gets old because even the EHR, even Epic, overpromises and underdelivers. You can't do it. So what space are you in? How can you be plug-and-play with other technologies? Do you have to be an AV company, the monitoring company, and the software? You've got to be careful with that pace of growth. But I like what they're doing with their approach to skin sensors, that patch they came out with. I think there is a big opportunity in that within the hospitals. I know we focused our conversation on outside the hospital. I think they’re positioned well. In my personal opinion, knowing some of their competitors and what they're doing, I think they're positioned well. - MASI US Hospital Customer

Credit Acceptance Litigation

A Former CACC Regional Manager and Current Customer walks through how CAPS works and shares potential risks on the recent litigation against CACC:

I don't know what they're looking to go after. I have a feeling the consumer went to the dealer who said, Credit Acceptance allowed me to do this. The dealer did something wrong and are pointing the finger at Credit Acceptance, who are the big fish they will go after, instead of the dealer who maybe did five or six deals wrong and skated the system. Credit Acceptance will probably take a hit on this, but it frustrates me that it probably started at a dealer coloring outside the lines which created a flag. Part of the problem is that Credit Acceptance allows me to change the price of my car today, but I have to click a link to state why I am changing it. There is no choice for, I want to make more money on the customer, because the FTC doesn't allow for that. - Former CACC Regional Manager and Current Customer

10x Genomics

A former 10x Genomics Sales Director describes how 10x is faring in spatial and the potential impact on its single-cell business:

"10x announced yesterday they have a road-map for 5,000, but didn't provide any data or timeline, whereas NanoString have a tested product with data. Other companies don't have single cell like 10x, so they have nothing to lose. All they need to do is capture the market 10x created by developing the spatial market. 10x enjoyed a lifetime of monopoly in single cell, growing exponentially from 10 million to more than half a billion. Their biggest problem will be their customers switching from single cell to spatial, and they don't care whether they use 10x or Illumina. If research demands you need spatial information to study cancer and treat patients better, they will simply switch. 10x are still promoting single cell using Chromium which gives the whole transcriptome, but it lacks spatial context. - Former Sales Director at 10x

FDM Group Margin Pressure

FDM Group has seen its growth slowing dramatically since the Covid-19 pandemic. This Former Director gives an overview of the business and how FDM can combat margin pressure:

"I think [margins] might [come under pressure]. I think [FDM] has a lot of flexibility in there, though, remember that they work it out on a daily rate called a 'buy rate' versus the sell rate. The buy rate is, basically, how much did it cost in its purest terms to have that individual on our books? In year one, you also include the additional training costs, and the training through that initial six to 12 week period. In year two, they are only really focused on, what is this person costing the company through payroll, National Insurance contributions, pensions and so on? They've got an opportunity, with a massive range, to move those margins to still maintain business. The margins may not be as much, however, they've still got the business coming in and I think that's where this model is good. There's a lot of flexibility there. Don't start at £275; start at £220, start at £230, introduce different ranges, a sliding scale, volume discounts, these are all the things that FDM and the others can do. There's still profitability in this type of approach. - Former Director at FDM Group

Alphawave Semi, Synopsys & Silicon IP

A Former Director at Alphawave explaining the companies competitive advantage in a niche field:

One competitive advantage is the speed they’re able to churn out IPs or going into the chiplet side, just faster tape out. That is one where having experienced founders is an advantage. Founders who have done this in the past with a previous company and worked at Intel in the past have that knowledge of how the business operates very well. Also, from my experience, they've kept their operations relatively lean versus other organizations. That allows for changes to trickle through much faster. That allows for any fires to be put out faster. That's an area they've been doing well in. - Former Director at Alphawave