Archive for June 2007

iPhone-Launch-Day-1-Tuesday-15.jpgCall options of Marvell Technology have been trading at four times their usual volume today. Apple’s iPhone is widely rumored to use a wi-fi processor manufactured by a company Marvell bought last year. Shares of Marvell traded up 5.81% for the day, with nearly twice the average number of shares changing hands.
One analyst we spoke to said he did not believe that the surge trading volume in the options and shares indicated anything suspicious.
“Some people are definitely trading on hopes that the stock will get a bump once the teardown analysts release their reports on the iPhone,” the trader told us. (He asked to remain anonymous because he wasn’t authorized by his employer to speak on the iPhone.) “But I don’t think this pick-up is due to someone having inside information about what’s insider the iPhone.”
Marvell is still priced well-below the highs it hit in early 2006. Since then the company has faced an stock options scandal that lead to the resignation of its chief financial officer. Its most recent quarterly results came in below estimates.
But it hasn’t all been bad news for Marvell. Nasdaq announced this week that it was holding off suspending trading in Marvell’s while Nasdaq’s board reviewed allegations against the company. Marvell was recently added to the Russell 2000 index.
“There’s other news on this company besides the iPhone,” the trader told us. “But today’s interest is definitely trying to get in pre-teardown.”
Of course, it’s not just speculating traders who are excited about the iPhone. Nerds are excited too! Our reporter on the scene, Scott Bressler, says that there are approximately 362 people on line at the Apple store in Soho. At noon there were about 280, up from 68 at midnight.
(Photo: Waiting for tonight’s iPhone launch outside the Apple store by Scott Bressler).

  • 29 Jun 2007 at 3:07 PM
  • M&A

Esprit Looking To Eat Smaller, More Fashionable Company

espritbuyingspree.jpgOur more fashionable little sister site, Fashionista.com, noticed today that Esprit is on the hunt for a small, high-end brand to buy. Despite its powerful earnings and impressive performance of its stock—Bloomberg notes that it is the best performing stock on the Hang Seng index in ten-years—the company’s executives feel the brand lacks a little luxury appeal.
“Even though they sell loads of sportswear to Germany and the rest of Europe, they know they’ve got nothing on TopShop, H&M, or even The Gap in terms of style cred,” Fashionista writes. “Their hope is to find a company that makes Esprit look better to designers and fashion folk who might, eventually, pair with the line.”
The Fashionista readers have been chiming in with the names of potential targets. Luella and Diane von Furstenberg both seem to be favorites.
What Should Esprit Buy? [Fashionista]

  • 29 Jun 2007 at 2:54 PM
  • Apple

iPhone Arrives, No One Notices

iPhone-Launch-Day-1-Tuesday-15.jpgApple will release the iPhone tonight, but consumers and the media are unanimously apathetic. We just googled “iphone” and received five results, four of which referred to the International Paper Historians eg. “IPH, one group of paper historians…”

What little buzz there is for the phone seems confined to NYC, maybe just downtown. This picture of the Apple Store in Soho was taken by Scott Bressler.

bear_stearns_synth.png
[via The Big Picture]

SEC Requests Bear Documents

bearstearns.jpgCNBC reports that the SEC has asked Bear Stearns to turn over its documents about the investments made by its two hedge funds that nearly collapsed. Bear representatives, Masters o’ PR, have pointed out that inquiry is “informal” rather than full-fledged. But the only reason the investigation is being called “informal” is because Bear Stearns is cooperating, says the SEC. If they were to put up a fight regarding turning over the documents, a subpoena would be requested and the investigation would become “formal.”
Related: Jeff Lane, the guy Bear recruited from Lehman Brothers to replace Richard Marin as asset management chief, is “not known as a fixer of failed things.”
SEC Heightens Scrutiny Of Bear Stearns’ Hedge Funds [CNBC]

  • 29 Jun 2007 at 1:27 PM
  • Apple

Inside the iPhone: Let’s Gut This Thing!

iphoneiphoneiphonedealbreakeriphonelaunchsmaller.bmpLast night we sent DealBreaker intern Scott Bressler to scout the scene at the Apple stores in NYC. In Soho he met the folks at the front of the line, who are broadcasting their standstill adventure at iPhone Launch TV. They plan to be the first to buy the iPhone, which they will auction on eBay for charity. (Scott made an appearance on their webcast last night, and we’ll be posting his pictures later today.)
So the bleeding hearts are selling the iPhone for charity. We’re sure that’s sweet of them. But what we want to do is get our hands on one of these babies and smash it.
That’s the only way we’re going to get real answers to the question that has Wall Street traders speculating, whispering and rumor-mongering today: Who makes the components of the iPhone? Some rumored parts makers are Marvell Technology, Broadcom, Samsung, Infineon Technologies, FoxConn Technology and Cambridge Silicon Radio. Apple won’t say who is manufacturing the guts of the new phone, and none of various players are commenting to the press.
But that hasn’t kept the stocks from moving. Marvell technology seems to be a favorite. The stock is up nearly 3.5% today, and just halfway through its trading day it has almost reached the three-month average for trading volume. Broadcom is down a bit, after rising earlier in the week. Infineon has been up and down all week, and is currently trading about where it started on Monday.
Clearly we need to learn who makes what inside the iPhone as soon as possible. And the only way to do it is to break the phone open.
The market expects Apple to sell as many as 1 to 2 million iPhones today.
Update: It looks like we’re not the only ones who want to break the iPhone.

  • 29 Jun 2007 at 12:07 PM
  • Tim Sykes

Tim Sykes Once Lived In A Cramped Dorm Room

timothy.jpgBarbarians at the Gate was a great read but who’s up for a new book by the voice of our generation? By a day trader so great he turned $12,415 in Bar Mitzvah money into a fully audited pre-tax sum of $1.65 million, a writer so wonderful he just might trump Mergers and Acquisitions in book sales? Anyone not vigorously shaking his/her yes is a liar and a fool. Yes, friends, hedge fund guru Tim Sykes has a book. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a publisher other than himself. And master of his own publicity as he is, he needs a little help. So we’ll be excerpting his memoir, “An American Hedge Fund: How I Made $2 Million As A Stock Operator & Created A Hedge Fund” whenever the mood strikes us, and if you like it, you can buy it (in October), and if you don’t (and/or have some edits), you can email Tim at Tim at timothysykes dot com.

“My high school teammates loved my wins but were put off by my intensity. As a result I didn’t get captain; probably because they knew I’d work them as hard as I worked myself.”

“I hated Tufts University from the start. The weather seemed colder than Connecticut. The girls were overwhelmingly unattractive.”

“I was used to having my own space. Lots of it. I’d drawn a forced triple, which meant that I shared a room with two roommates instead of just one. The room was barely meant for two people, let alone three, so it was extremely tight and crowded. Early on, I banded together with one of my roommates whom I liked and we planned to irritate the third roommate into leaving. We toyed with him on a daily basis using such petty tricks as subscribing his email address to pornographic websites and spraying his sheets and pillows with Windex. After a few weeks, our operation succeeded and he moved out. My roommate and I celebrated our newfound space by throwing a party for the dorm.”

Read more »

Breaking: Richard Marin Replaced At Bear Stearns

RichMarinBearStearnsFiredReplacedHedgeFundsSubprime.jpgMovie critic and head of the Bear Stearns the asset-management division that ran the two nearly-collapsed hedge funds, Richard Marin, has been replaced by Jeffrey Lane of Lehman Brothers Holdings. Though Marin will remain an “adviser” to Bear Stearns, he will now have considerably more time to blog.
Rich, Rich, Rich. What can we say? We warned you about comparing yourself to the Spartans. Sounds like you basically just met the Wall Street equivalent of the fate of King Leonidas.
Lane To Head Bear Stearns Asset Management [CNBC]
Bear Stearns Hires Lehman’s Lane as Head of Fund Unit [Bloomberg]