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Audible: Welcome To Schizzo-Land


What are these people thinking!?!?!


Last quarter they slaughter it, this quarter - at least judging from the post-close trading - it's a love fest. The more things change . . .

Am I upset about Audible's (ADBL) results? No. Are these results a defining moment in the story of this company? Not even close.

What continues to be mind-blowing is that virtually no one on the conference call dug with any depth into the "higher education" project and the new exclusive rights to content. From my read of the call transcript, here is my take:

The "education project" is moving much faster than I thought it would. The company has "volunteered" that its initial focus for this initiative will be on the adult "continuing ed. / professional training" market; This was (again) the biggest news item in the quarterly release (IMHO). Why? Because, the type of material distributed in the continuing ed. / professional training environment is typically fairly homogeneous and lends itself to be re-used over and over with limited changes. Vast market of captive end users, cost efficiencies for the content providers (be it professors or corporate training staffs), and convenient delivery for all concerned - Bingo!

On the exclusive rights to content, the info ADBL released was limited. The deal with the BBC "sounds" good for the prospects of "ADBL U.K." We were also told that ADBL signed 24 new exclusive deals. But it would be nicer to know who the new partners are. I'll do some more digging and pass on what I find out.

Meanwhile, I fully expect none of the above to matter much today. Analysts will rave about the revenue guide-up, and the lower SAC (subscriber acquisition costs), all while slicing and dicing the "new subscriber figures" in light of the slightly higher churn rate. And what will ultimately truly make or break the future of ADBL and its stock will obviously pass them by.

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Position in ADBL
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