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July, 2012  // Posts published in July, 2012

Jul 30 2012 Personal Services

Weight Watchers’ Attendance Still Challenged As More Members Go Online

Research Question: Are Weight Watchers’ poor meeting attendance rates fixable? By: David Franklin Companies: FRA:HOO/HLF, NTRI, VTX:NESN, WTW Click here to download the report (.pdf)   Summary of Findings Customer surveys and five of seven industry specialists indicate Weight Watchers International Inc’s. (WTW) meeting attendance is declining because of greater use of its online program, increased competition, confusion […]


Urban Outfitters Whisper

Research Question: Is Urban Outfitters successfully appealing to a broader demographic with new on-trend designs? Company: Urban Outfitters (URBN)   Blueshift’s initial research on Urban Outfitters shows Urban’s increasing appeal across a more diverse customer base and more on-trend apparel, but looming threats from competitors.   Observations A Blueshift primary interview with a retail and […]


Monsanto Whisper

Research Question: Will current drought conditions fuel future sales of Monsanto’s drought resistant corn, DroughtGard? Company: Monsanto (MON)   Blueshift’s initial research on Monsanto’s DroughtGard indicates great product potential but skepticism among industry specialists that Monsanto’s corn will actually boost production.   Observations In March, Monsanto announced a large-scale test of DroughtGard, its biotech corn […]


TripAdvisor Whisper

Research Question: With its traffic quality improvement strategy, will TripAdvisor see an increased share of its OTA clients’ customer acquisition budgets? Company: TripAdvisor (TRIP)   Blueshift’s initial research on TripAdvisor indicates attempts to improve traffic quality and become more transparent with its OTA clients may come at the expense of short-term gains with decreased spending […]


BI Growth To Outpace Other Business Software Initiatives; MSTR, QLIK Well Positioned

Research Question: Which is the best analytic tool in today’s growing market for big data? By: Reverdy Johnson and Guido Gualandi Companies: CRM, IBM, MSTR, ORCL, QLIK, SAP, TDC, TIBX Click here to download the report (.pdf)   Summary of Findings Business intelligence (BI) is a top priority for IT managers as executives clamor for access to real-time data […]


Digital’s Appeal Wards Off Economic Woes, Local Landscape Rocky

Research Question: Has the second-quarter slowdown in local advertising markets abated? Is digital advertising, particularly social and online video, growing despite the economy? By: Rachel Dangermond Companies: AOL, BLC, CBS, CCO, CMCSA, CMLS, DIS, FB, GCI, GM, GOOG, JRN, LAMR, MSFT, MNI, NWS, NYT, SBGI, T, TWX, YHOO Click here to download the report (.pdf) July 26 Update Digital […]


Jul 26 2012 Food & Beverage, Retail

Sysco’s ERP Rollout on Track, but Rising Food Costs a Concern

Research Question: Will ERP rollout delays and rising food costs hurt Sysco’s margins? By:  Susan Jennings Kantari Companies: SAP, SYY Click here to download the report (.pdf)   Summary of Findings Sysco Corp.’s (SYY) margins could decline as much as 10% due to rising food costs, although the company has been able to pass some price increases […]


United Natural Foods Whisper

Research Question: Will UNFI’s upgraded warehouse systems improve its margins? Companies: United Natural Foods (UNFI)   Blueshift’s initial research on UNFI indicates company initiatives to improve efficiencies are receiving mixed reviews, making it questionable whether it will improve margins.   Observations To improve gross margin and performance with both supplier and retail customers, UNFI is […]


Home Renovation Whisper

Research Question: Will the improving trend in home renovations and remodeling provide widespread stimulation of the building supplier market? Companies: Masco (MAS), USG Corporation (USG), Whirlpool (WHR), Lowe’s (LOW), Home Depot (HD), & others Regions Covered: California, Southeast/Florida, Midwest, & Northeast   Blueshift’s initial research indicates positive remodeling trends, with our upcoming report aimed at […]


IPG Photonics Whisper

Research Question: Will IPGP’s first-to-market fiber-optic laser technologies and unique in-house manufacturing business model drive continued growth? Company: IPG Photonics Corporation (IPGP)   Blueshift’s initial research indicates that IPGP’s fiber-optic technology has the potential to shift/change the world of lasers, but timing and wide-spread adoption remains unknown.   Observations A Blueshift primary interview with a […]