Merger Monday was the theme for the day and that caused buyers to return to
the market in a big way. In fact, on the heels of its longest sell-off since
June 2005, the Dow rose more than 1.0% on the session and snapped a six-day
AppleInsider reported NVIDIA's (NVDA +3.04%) bid to acquire
PortalPlayer (PLAY -.15%) is surprising and the motives behind the decision,
while possibly iPod-related, are not exactly clear, according to one Wall Street
analyst. "This deal comes as a surprise to us as we believe there are other
semiconductor firms that offer more technology for less money," Wedbush Morgan
Securities analyst Craig Berger wrote in a research note to clients following
the announcement. The analyst said he believes PLAY's intellectual property
portfolio is limited when compared to other semiconductor makers in similar mkt
segments. "There are so many beaten-down chip stocks" whose shares are trading
at just 1x sales, he wrote, "including Genesis Micro (GNSS -.1%),
Zoran (ZRAN +2.08%), Pixelworks (PXLW +2.58%), and SigmaTel (SGTL
+3%)." Berger concluded that "there may be some attractive new product
technology in PortalPlayer's roadmap (wireless, next generation processor) that
interests NVIDIA" that he is not fully aware of, or NVIDIA "thinks it has a
better chance of penetrating Apple (AAPL +1.81%) iPod (video) products if
it owns and integrates PortalPlayer's technology."
Taser (TASR +3.39%) announced that the jury returned a unanimous defense
verdict today in the Alvarado in-custody death lawsuit filed against TASR in
U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Co notes this is the
twenty-fourth wrongful death or injury lawsuit that has been dismissed or
judgment entered in favor of TASER International.
Moscow CableCom (MOCC +8.41%) announced that it has received an
unsolicited offer from Renova Media Enterprises, its largest shareholder, to
acquire MOCC in a merger in which the co's stockholders would receive $10.80 per
share of the co's common stock in cash. Co said that its Board has appointed a
special committee of independent directors to review and evaluate the offer and
consider its options. Co noted that Renova Media Enterprises is already the
controlling shareholder, directly holding 43.1% of the outstanding share capital
of MOCC and 61.7% of its share capital on a fully diluted basis. In addition,
Moskovskaya Telecommunikatsionnaya Corporatsiya, more commonly known in the
market as COMCOR, which is controlled by Renova Media Enterprises, owns 23.1% of
the Company's outstanding share capital and 14.6% of its share capital on a
fully diluted basis.
Boutique firm BWS Financial noted that the WSJ is reporting that Google (GOOG
+1.09%) is about to start buying ad space on 50 daily newspapers for a 3-month
trial period. GOOG would then allow online advertisers with the option of also
being included in the newspapers. Firm believes that GOOG's efforts would
include technology from AdStar (ADST +21.71%), which has a proprietary
technology in converting online text to the ad format of newspapers in the US.
The newspapers that were mentioned in the report already have classified ad
agreements with ADST. Firm also knows that ADST has been in talks with several
online companies over the past few months, including GOOG, but there were no
material developments at the time.
Thomas Weisel said that gven the strong performance of several competitors and
positive channel feedback on the Enterprise networking demand environment (Cisco
has ~75% share), they expect Cisco (CSCO +3.83%) could exceed their F1Q
revenue and non-GAAP EPS estimates of $7.843 bln and $0.29 (Street is at $7.891
bln and $0.29). The firm expects F2Q07 revenue guidance to be at or above their
$8.024bn estimate (Street consensus is $8.039 bln). The firm's positive bias
stems from 1) a strong outlook from their enterprise field checks; 2) carrier
spending shift to I.P.; and 3) share gains in key segments.
Piper Jaffray raised their tgt on Research In Motion (RIMM +3.5%) to $116
from $100, and raised their FY07-08 ests, citing checks indicating strong RIMM
device sales as well as their belief that new smartphone products will launch at
additional North American carries in the coming months.
Tomorrow before the open look for the following companies to report: BBG, BLTI,
BIOS, GRRF, CMLS, DF, DISH, EMAG, FCL, FTO, HW OPTN, REDF, SLXP, SRZ (revs
only), TEVA, and OATS. Sep Consumer Credit is the lone economic indicator
scheduled to be released on Tuesday.