Hipster tech – GoPro, Twilio, Square and Etsy

A number of the new kids on the ‘US tech firm’ block - are reporting this week. This includes GoPro, Twilio, Square and Etsy. We discuss what the companies do and the pros and cons for future growth and success.

GoPro

About: Manufacturer of portable action cameras that combine with a suite of apps to edit and share the videos. The latest video camera model is the ‘Hero 5’ and the firm has also developed a drone called the ‘Karma’ which the camera can attach to.

Pros: Combines affordable tech with social media / lifestyle marketing which has attracted a loyal fan base.

Cons: Biggest threat is that Apple and other hardware makers - now including Google could produce rival models – or just make smart phone cameras so good that a Go Pro isn’t needed.

Price chart:

Source: CMC Markets, 27/10/2016

Twilio

About: A ‘cloud computing’ company that licenses the Twilio application to software developers to use in their own software to allow text and VOIP phone calls. Could say it allows third parties to have a built in Skype.

Pros: Communications are increasingly important to the global marketplace. Twilio gives firms- including other app developers- a secure option for communicating away from the prying eyes of Microsoft, Google and Apple.

Cons: A very niche product that is only of use to some app developers and many of those may prefer an in-house solution.

Price chart:

Source: CMC Markets, 27/10/2016

Square

About: Square was co-founded by one of the co-founders of Twitter Jack Dorsey and he is CEO of both companies. It is a mobile payment company which has its own hardware product called the ‘Square Reader’ for individuals and merchants to use and accept digital payments.

Pros: Square is generally agreed to be an easy-to-use product and digital/mobile payments is a potentially huge market – especially in the developing world.

Cons: The inclusion of hardware means the take-up will be slower. Starbucks, the firm’s biggest customer ended its relationship in 2015.

Price chart:

Source: CMC Markets, 27/10/2016

Etsy

About: A peer-to-peer e-commerce website and app, much like Amazon and eBay, that focuses on craft, vintage and handmade items.

Pros: One of the few companies that can compete with Amazon as an online marketplace because of its niche catering to craft / hand-made products and services.

Cons: Growth can only be as fast as the number of new sellers. Etsy’s craft niche limits this. Otherwise it will have to dilute quality by allowing more mass market and factory-manufactured items for sale.

Price chart:

Source: CMC Markets, 27/10/2016

 

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