Blog

5 Nov 14
You may be just about old enough remember the globally successful hit “Love is All Around” which brought UK popsters Wet, Wet, Wet international stardom off the back of the movie soundtrack to ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral’ – and enjoyed a record 15 consecutive weeks at Number One in 1994; but now Akazoo proves that it’s the Music that is ‘all around’ in its latest partnership launch.

MTN Cyprus, a member of the MTN Group (a multinational telecommunications company operating in 22 countries) has recently partnered with InternetQ to launch Akazoo, the unlimited social music streaming service, exclusively for its subscribers.

Leveraging a flamboyant and artistically creative theme, a sonorous media blitz accompanied the uber-cool product launch; which beautifully highlighted the multi-faceted and youthful audience for the ‘Akazoo by MTN’ service demonstrating exactly how it’s done with “Unlimited  music anytime & anywhere you want it” (often with funky headphones) these days!

For this pulsating project, Akazoo has been made its catalogue available as an affordable' add-on' option, which provides a two-month free introduction to the social streaming music service followed by a subscription, whereby music fans can listen to their favourite music wherever they go for just €6.49 for their unlimited premium package.

Following the blast of nationwide TV ads, eye-catching online marketing campaigns and unique in-store promotion; 'Akazoo by MTN' is now the talk of the town.

And with its boisterous announcement, plus some tremendously harmonious teamwork between MTN Cyprus and InternetQ PLC., Akazoo by MTN is made live providing streaming access  to more than 20 million songs exclusively to subscribers anywhere, anytime!

So, no matter where you are in Cyprus, you can be sure that the Music is All Around!

25 Sep 14
Indeed, as the saying goes, things often seem to happen in three's, and as the time comes for InternetQ PLC to formally release its interim results (September 30th), it's good to reflect on the opportunities the company has to further engage with the investor community at large.

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Following on from its successful appearance and exhibition at the Stock Market Show, managed by Shares Magazine, at the Business Design Centre, Islington on September 13th. InternetQ will also be speaking at the upcoming Proactive Investors One2One Investor Forum, likewise to be held in London, on Thursday the 2nd October.

Collectively, directors from the Deltex Medical Group (AIM: DEMG), InternetQ (AIM: INTQ), Venture Life Group (AIM: VLG) and Horizon Discovery Group (AIM: HZD) will be briefly presenting about their respective companies to the gathered audience of "sophisticated & private investors, private client brokers, fund managers, financial institutions, hedge funds, buy & sell side analysts and journalists".

More specifically, the event will be held at the Chesterfield Mayfair Hotel, 35 Charles Street, Mayfair in West London. The presentations themselves will start at 6:00pm and finish around 8:00pm. After the company talks are complete, the directors will also be available to take questions during a canapé and wine reception.

This type of high-touch occasion provides the perfect platform for InternetQ to further illustrate exactly what is happening in the Mobile market today and where the business strategy is headed; plus, answer any pertinent questions existing, or potential, shareholders may have.

We look forward to meeting you in Mayfair!

10 Sep 14
This Saturday, 13th September, InternetQ will be both exhibiting and speaking at the Stock Exchange Show being held in the Business Design Centre Islington, located in the heart of bustling north London, from 9am until 5:30pm – and of course, we will be delighted to meet up with any investors, or potential investors, looking for some insight into the company's future prospects.

Overall, the show itself is designed to help private investors fully understand the investment opportunities and scope that investing in the London Stock Exchange brings to their various portfolios. The Stock Market Show, as a concept, is created (and hosted) by Shares Magazine, in partnership with the London Stock Exchange. It is a one-day event connecting individual investors with listed companies and industry experts.

The event will host more than 45 presentations from selected listed companies as well as keynote speakers and investment professionals. It is billed as: "your chance to network with the exhibitors which include corporate brokers, AIM Company Nomads and private investor service providers, allowing you to gain an insight into a variety of investment options and in turn help make informed investment decisions."

Organisers are bullish, highlighting the day is about to become "a hot talking point among investors across the country", announcing that ‘This is Money’ is the official media partner. ‘This is Money’ is a website read by millions of people and part of the Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGT) media stable.

Attendees will hear from more than 50 speakers across 5 stages, including: product experts, CEOs from listed companies and renowned journalists from Shares including Daniel Coatsworth, Mark Dunne, Steven Frazer and Tom Sieber who will all be giving presentations on investing. There will also be some 40 exhibitors from a range of market-leading AIM companies, such as InternetQ PLC. So, see you there!

6 Aug 14
Android may take the biscuit for its creative naming rights, but it all boils down to one thing, in the Minimob Pâtisserie, fragmentation is a myth! Minimob developers can relax, safe in the knowledge that for their Apps – serving-up  three compliant flavours (Jellybean, Gingerbread & Ice Cream Sandwich) should satiate more than 90% of the marketplace! Plus, if you throw in a KitKat, then you potentially hit 98% of all our Android smartphones. Sweet!

 

 

14 Jul 14
The mobile advertising industry is going through a dramatic evolution with its rapid transformation to performance-based business models. This means advertisers are becoming more focused on what they get, for what they spend; a theme that became strongly evident during the recent ad:tech ASEAN event held at Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre on July 8 & 9th. 

In the main, ad:tech ASEAN gathers what's considered an 'elite community of digital marketers, agencies, publishers and technology suppliers to share views on the latest industry trends, best practices and new technologies.' In Singapore, there were three concurrent breakout track sessions and keynotes focusing on the state of the industry – as well as ‘fireside chats’ on how digital marketers can plan for the future.

Quite a telling summary for the digital marketers convention came from Tito Costa, the MD of Zalora in Asia; "Mobile is a big revenue area for the e-commerce website. Smartphones are changing the way people use the internet and shop online, Costa said. The rollout of 3G in several markets in the region has meant that search on smartphones is exceptionally high.

For Zalora, social and mobile are the largest customer-acquisition channels, and as such most of the company's marketing budget is skewed to digital. He further said the company has taken a performance-based approach. That has allowed us to focus on what matters." 

This effectively means a sharper focus will be on “measurability” going forward and (whilst there are now, (according to market-watcher Fiksu) as many as 300 mobile advertising networks around the world) it is fair to say Minimob, InternetQ's pioneering performance-based advertising platform has long been leading the way with this specific form of attribution.

As many as 3,000 trade visitors and company delegates bustled around the exhibition and conference zone, generating quite a bit of foot traffic to the Minimob stand, which saw hundreds of potential buyers (and sellers) drop-in to discuss the sharp end of monetization in today's App ecosystem. Interested parties heard at first-hand how Minimob can lead to a significant boost in the CPI-campaign (Cost per Installation) returns for developers, as well as direct advertisers, such as globally expanding Game publishers and App providers, hailing for example, from India.

The sheer level of global demand for this type of highly targeted performance-based advertising service has caught the interest of all the major social networks in recent months, but Minimob actually offers advertisers a simple way to cut through the clutter. Indeed, the uptake for the platform and ever-increasing number of clients, clearly shows it's the right platform, in the right place, at the right time. 

InternetQ now has a long-established relationship with the organisers of the ad:tech series and continues to find exciting new business leads for Minimob - whether in San Francisco, New York or now, Singapore.

4 Jul 14
What could arguably be seen as the most "unpredictable" and exciting World Cup in history maybe reaching a fever-pitch of passionate interest in countries like Argentina and Brazil for obvious reasons, but Latin America had yet another reason to celebrate.

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This time thanks to leading Mobile Operator CLARO working in close conjunction with InternetQ to successfully launch huge subscriber promotions in football-related mobile marketing campaigns, in countries like Paraguay and the Dominican Republic. CLARO has more than 63 million subscribers across the Latin American territory.

Given the intense interest in the “beautiful game” at present, these carefully crafted mobile campaigns enabled the audience to play thematic trivia games focused on pertinent football questions – and ultimately to win significant cash prizes and even automobiles; somewhat mirroring the dazzling lifestyles of the professional footballers we've seen on display in Brazil throughout the tournament. Indeed, now your average football fan, through his own skill and commitment, could get fast-tracked via his mobile device, to a life of luxury thanks to CLARO and InternetQ.

With the successful application of top management strategy and team tactics from InternetQ, the performance-based advertising logic -- consistently applied throughout the game -- delivered an outstanding result, reflecting a truly World Class level of user conversions averaging some 8.2% of subscribers. More importantly, this number is expected to be surpassed when it actually comes to "Finals" time, reaching as high as a 12.5% conversion rate when the final whistle blows!

As we now come to the “business end” of the global tournament in Brazil itself, and the fate of the lustrous “Jules Rimet” trophy is once again decided (well, for another four years at least) by those challenging and winning against the best-of-the-best; in Mobile terms InternetQ stands a pretty good chance of helping Claro lift the MNO version of the trophy!
 

25 Jun 14
It certainly was a busy week in Mobile, with InternetQ executives driving a lot of industry-leading activity primarily centred on the CommunicAsia 2014 event in Singapore last week. 

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Firstly, as co-organiser of MobileMonday Singapore, InternetQ VP Colin Miles helped emcee a buzzing night of insight and networking with delegates from around the World at Muddy Murphy's Irish Inn, the theme of the night was the state of "innovation in advertising" from SPB TV; a leading mobile video content provider. MobileMonday Singapore has some 1,800 members, is the accredited representative of the global MoMo network - which includes chapters in some 140+ countries worldwide.

Secondly, InternetQ was the chairman and moderator for the exciting "Mobile Marketing" track at CommunicAsia which featured some of the biggest names in the business: Yahoo, Singtel and Google, all pushing forward their vision of the App economy and where the advertising dollars seem to be heading in a hurry. InternetQ announced some of the results of the recent App Ecosystem report (issued by MEF), representing a 13-country survey of some 10,000 mobile consumers. This was followed by a strong debate on the impact of Social Media on Mobile Networks operators, with a “fireside chat” with some of Telenor's top marketing communications leaders.

Thirdly, to round things off, as Chairman of MEF Asia, InternetQ jointly hosted and co-sponsored the exclusive, international MEF Connects event at the neo-classical Fullerton Hotel; where a networking event of grand proportions enabled members (and potential members) from across the mobile ecosystem to mingle and swap ideas along with business cards. Attendees came from as far afield as the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India and China) and many other countries besides.

Co-sponsor and Board member Ravi Rajagopalan from Empays helped draw the crowd, which included several banks and financial institutions who were all looking to mobile payment services as a matter of some urgency!

Stay tuned for more global event updates and conference reports from InternetQ as we continue to drive the leadership agenda for Mobile Marketing all around the World.

30 May 14
When I first heard of the "Apple to Buy Beats" deal I did scratch my head for a brief moment – and then start thinking about the reasons why? Why? Why, would such a hugely successful product-orientated company like Apple with so many options, choose this particular one?

I didn't have to wait long to see the flood of comments from industry experts, informing 'insiders' and random consumers speculate as to the possible reasons, strategic or otherwise.

Probably most controversially, a lot of backchat was triggered by the apparent 'happiness high' that Dr Dre seemed to be enjoying whilst basking in the reflected glory of potentially becoming the World's first 'Billionaire rapper'. Some off-the-cuff one-upmanship that reminded us of 'zeitgeist' Jay-Z entertainingly escalating the Bling stakes in his recent 'Picasso Baby' track.

But, if I was perhaps looking for an even more controversial statement, I wouldn't have needed to go further than find some key points outlined by outspoken music 'blogger' Bob Leftsitz. His take was not for the fainthearted in the corporate communications office at Cupertino.

"Tim Cook is an operations guy, he’s clueless, the company has no vision and this is evidence of it. Steve Jobs was famous for saying one thing and doing another, decrying this and then doing exactly that. Anybody with a brain knew that streaming was eclipsing downloads. Except at Apple, where they were adhering to Jobs’s philosophy. But it turns out Apple had no Plan B, no streaming service ready to be launched when necessary."

His abiding summary being that the purchase was motivated primarily for the Beats International streaming service.

When the news itself hit Facebook, I was also interested in what the people thought and swiftly got a dose of outlandish vitriol that in many ways gave the downside of social media creating 'breaking news' announcements prematurely and in an unguarded fashion.

Just to capture some of the funniest from people best described as ‘totally not’ being in the Apple ‘fanboy’ camp: "Apple Hipsters love a nice, polished turd and that's exactly what Beats products are…" Although, someone else explained it with a Randy Jackson-esque illustration... "Yo Dawg! I put your over hyped, overpriced, and technologically inferior yet stylish company, inside another over hyped, overpriced, technologically inferior yet stylish company”!

Can things be really this partisan on the question of ‘Why buy Beats’? And given that passions are running high, has the sheer volume of socially stated opinions started to drown out the actual elements of the deal? Yes, the Court of Public Opinion remains in session. Another blog, The AWL, covered a swath of intrigue and tried to harness the social media outcomes, but focused first and foremost on the inherent topic of Racism, big business and misplaced attempts to grab headlines.

When the M&A news ‘blew up’ on-or-around May 9th, I was conveniently perched on my couch to see the hastily arranged interview CNBC did with the cofounder of Monster Cable Products, Noel Lee (he being the accredited inventor of the original tech ‘smarts’ behind Beats headphones) and whilst he couldn’t shed much light on the terms of the deal itself, he knew he had missed out on a big pay day, having sold his stake to HTC several years ago.

The focus of the interview though, was perhaps more shocking in that the premise was basically along the lines that Apple had been paying close attention to Beats' marketing successes – and urgently required a #Trending transplant to somehow maintain relevance with the younger generation of affluent American adults seeking branded digital wear-ability.

The ultimate benefit of the transaction therefore coming in the form of Jimmy Iovine sitting on the Board. The same Iovine, I had only seen up-close on TV criticising, sorry mentoring, singers on the American Idol, season 12. Was he (and additionally the culturally impactful Dr Dre) in fact an acqui-hire and informally, but crucially, was Iovine addressable as the new Steve Jobs? Drumroll please.

Overall, and having read at least 50 articles, interviews and blog-posts on this sensitive subject, the consensus seems to agree that the deal was going to be done on the basis that the headphones couldn't be ‘consciously uncoupled’ from its dynamic new streaming service. And I quote: “Timothy Acuri of Cowen and Company also cited potential in the wearable electronics market for a potential Beats deal. But the analyst said he's more intrigued by the unique ‘personalization engine’ technology that drives the Beats Music subscription service.”

That Jimmy Iovine would also come along for the ride, giving him a famous leg up in the pantheon of global music influencers, and arguably helping to guide Apple back in to the centre of many consumers musical behaviour management –especially given the waning appetite for downloads being replaced by streaming propositions– was somewhat handy too.

But wait, hasn’t Dr Dre’s premature outburst put the mockers on the deal. To a degree, but even as the doubt is surfacing in certain quarters; the spin doctors are hard at work and the deal plays on.

For industry observers like myself, who’ve been watching the effect of digitization and broadband access on Music for nearly 20 years, it’s like a watershed moment; wearable music that can be streamed from the so-called Jukebox in the sky, makes perfect sense and puts a real slant on the term ‘surround sound’.

From a business perspective, and I speak as someone who works for a company pioneering the distribution of streaming music services the world over, it helps set a sizeable benchmark for value that we can use. In this case, conceivably valuing InternetQ’s social music streaming service Akazoo (www.akazoo.com) at around USD$320 million. That in itself, is not a bad answer to the reason why such a deal might finally be done – and the key people will acquiesce, actually 3.2 billion reasons.

Contributed by Colin JG Miles. @ColinMiles @InternetQ © All rights reserved. May 27th 2014.

21 May 14
Living 'life thru a lens' as Robbie Williams succinctly put it in his debut album, is not only something which glamorous rock stars are wont to do – but also something hum-drum business entities listed on stock markets are effectively doing, minute-by-minute; as their various corporate activities are by necessity shared as widely as possible.

InternetQ has recently gone down the route of increasing the frequency of its trading updates (to quarterly from half-yearly) to try to avail its shareholders of the pertinent headline news that’s being generated by its exciting range of global activities, particularly its ‘music streaming’ through Akazoo.

But to quote ProactiveInvestors responding to the initial trading update: "The impressive growth story at mobile marketing and digital entertainment specialist InternetQ (LON:INTQ) continued in the first quarter of 2014. All business divisions contributed to year-on-year revenue growth of 68% to €30.3mln, while adjusted underlying earnings (EBITDA) shot up 59% to €5.2mln. The company said EBITDA margins were higher than expected in both parts of its business."

Whilst clearly the results were chart-topping material from an investors point-of-view, probably the most intriguing word in the paragraph is "underlying", because it points to the overall direction of the company, its unfolding story – and where the ticker might eventually get to in the ‘charts’.

One ‘supportive’ underlying trend line might be the so-called Exponential Moving Average or EMA. "This type of moving average reacts faster to recent price changes than a simple moving average. In general, the 50- and 200-day EMAs are used as signals of long-term trends." A quick look at the EMA 200-day graph highlights that upward growth could well be a longer-term trend worth watching. 

Likewise, if you look at underlying trends in the consumer marketplace, the shift to smart-phones and streaming music – with its potential influence on InternetQ's benchmark valuation – could prove impactful over time. In a follow-up piece, ProactiveInvestors also placed strong emphasis on the trending nature of the market for such Music providers and their incredible valuations.

So, what will it take to get us to the top of the charts? Well, in the end, it took the young Robbie Williams almost 27 weeks before finally hitting the coveted number one spot – and he went on to become one of the World’s most successful artists. Likewise, InternetQ looks to maintain its chart ranking over the long term, thanks to its upwardly mobile musical momentum.

19 May 14
Whatever people may think (or 'post' on Social Media) about the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC), it continues to attract global headlines, pull-in massive viewing audiences - and capture the imagination of an increasingly sophisticated, culturally-diverse group of musical artistes from all around Europe - and now the World.

This year, the 59th Eurovision Song Contest held in Copenhagen, Denmark (the ESC has been broadcast since 1954) was beamed across Europe; as well as Australia, Canada, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Jordan, South Korea, New Zealand, and even the United States. As such, more than 125 million people were again expected to tune-in and cast their votes.

On this occasion, the 2nd Semi-Final also had the participation of Greece and Poland, and was held on Thursday 8th May. The countries received the seventh and eighth place respectively and so went on to participate in the Grand Final that was held on Saturday 10th May. By way of expansion, Australia also got its chance to make a guest appearance, in addition to the 26 other countries that had made the Grand Final (culled from the original semi-final count of 31 nations).

As you can imagine, this scale of public ballot creates a complex and challenging logistics exercise for the EBU (European Broadcasting Union) voting service provider, DIGAME; which once again turned to InternetQ in order to provide the rock-solid support and lightning fast matriculation of its platforms to deliver the results for Greece and Poland. In this case, both SMS and IVR were used to calculate the abiding judgement of the TV viewers.

InternetQ has a developing history with DIGAME and Eurovision, having provided the services for the past three years: in 2012, enabling the SMS voting for Greece and Turkey, in 2013 powering the SMS voting for Greece and Albania, and this year: supporting the SMS voting for Greece and Poland, as well as the IVR voting for Poland.

For the SMS vote, viewers could send the number of their favourite contestant to a 5-digit shortcode for a 21-minute window. In Poland, viewers could also call a premium line and vote up to 20 times through a single phone number. Despite the incredibly tight voting window, InternetQ managed to provide a reliable and highly-resilient service to DIGAME once more.

It probably goes without saying that pretty much the entire online world has shared the name and commented on the artistic qualities of the winning entrant, in this case Ms Conchita Wurst from Austria, and this somehow whets the future appetite for cultural controversy that the ESC always seems able to court. However, one thing that is not in question, is the veracity of the vote!