The monthly industry news will be available on Eagle’s website early next week, with more details to flesh out the summary below.
January was the usual slow start to the year with companies returning from their holiday break and slowly getting back into the swing of things. I am convinced that the increasing and relentless competitive environment ensures (a) that people truly value their time off, and (b) a slow start upon return!
Some of the studies and reports that became available this month indicate worker confidence down, an increase in holiday e-commerce spending and some relatively positive predictions on the economy as it relates to our industry for 2007. Postini’s latest news on spam was not good, with spam estimated at 94% of all email in December … partially driven by the latest worm, but that is likely not going to change!
Probably the big news for January was Microsoft’s launch of Vista, its latest Windows software with much fanfare attended by the leaders of the PC companies who expect to see some increase in sales as people upgrade. Motorolla and Symantec both experienced tough financial quarters and both announce layoffs, Motorolla 3,500 people and Symantic didn’t give numbers.
On the M&A front, not a lot of deals but Verizon is shifting its focus, divesting some its more traditional telco business to focus on wireless and broadband offerings. Fairpont communications will pick up the divested operations for a cool $2.7 billion, AOL is paying more than $1 billion for Tradedoubler, Arrow Electronics is paying about $500 million for the IT distribution arm of Agilysys and Macrovision is buying Mediabolic for about $43 million.