<THE EVENING NEWS>
Wednesday, April 22, 1998
MARKET CLOSE
DJIA            9176.72    -8.22      (-0.09%) 
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HEROES

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) gained $3 3/4 to $98 3/4 in advance of reporting third quarter earnings after the market closed. The company announced Q3 earnings of $0.50 per share on sales of $3.77 billion, up from $0.40 for the year-earlier period. Analysts had already revised EPS estimates upward to a mean of $0.48 last month after Microsoft said Q3 EPS would be $0.04 higher than the then mean estimate of $0.44. The company said Q3 earnings were boosted by continued strong worldwide adoption of Office 97. While the company is still concerned about business in Asia, it said there is "some evidence that the business there is not getting weaker." Despite the higher-than-expected earnings, Microsoft warned that growth has slowed for each of the last four quarters and said it expects slower growth for the rest of this year. Microsoft CFO Greg Maffei and Investor Relations Chief Tony Dirksen will join the Fool on AOL tomorrow night, April 23rd at 9 o'clock, for a live auditorium event. Come on in via the Fool's main screen or through keyword: AOL Live.

Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) traded up nearly $10 from its close of $116 3/4 in after-hours trading following its second quarter earnings report after the bell today. The operator of theme parks and resorts, including its just opened Animal Kingdom, reported Q2 EPS of $0.52 (before a gain on sale of assets), within the range of analysts' estimates and up 13% year-over-year on flat revenues (on a pro forma basis). Broadcasting revenues of $1.59 billion displayed the best growth for the company, at 4% year-over-year, resulting in a 15% increase in operating income due to the operating leverage inherent in that business. In what might be an especially pleasing announcement for the Wade Cook crowd, the company announced a 3-for-1 stock split. In what is especially pleasing for the rest of the rational-minded investing world, the company also announced it has raised its pre-split share repurchase authorization by $5.3 billion, or 52% from its previous authorized amount, to 133.3 million shares, representing 20% of the company's currently outstanding common shares.

Pittsburgh-based Mellon Bank (NYSE: MEL) popped up $8 1/8 to $78 today after Bank of New York (NYSE: BK) put a stock swap merger offer on the table that values Mellon at $90 per share, or 1.4 shares of Bank of New York for each Mellon share. BONY and Mellon have discussed a merger in the past, as Mellon's Dreyfus Funds unit would fit quite nicely with Bank of New York's securities administration, trust and custody, and transfer lines of business. Last year, securities processing, administration, and capital markets activities made up over 50% of BONY's revenues while asset management and trust comprised 34% of Mellon's 1997 revenue. Today's move by Bank of New York takes the appeal of merging the two banks straight to investors, which is exactly what Mellon Bank did last year after CoreStates Financial (NYSE: CFL) repeatedly rebuffed Mellon's offers to merge. CoreStates, of course, soon after agreed to merge with First Union (NYSE: FTU), and Mellon has been seen as vulnerable to offers ever since. One potential white knight for Mellon might be fellow securities and asset management specialist State Street Corp. (NYSE: STT), which BONY has also pursued for over a year. Under the "your enemy is my friend" rule of thumb, State Street and Mellon could generate back-office cost savings, consolidate market share in certain lines, and become a much more difficult company for Bank of New York to try and acquire.

Pharmaceutical giant Warner-Lambert (NYSE: WLA) soared $8 3/4 to $187 13/16 after announcing late yesterday that it expects first quarter sales growth of around 25% (adjusted for foreign exchange fluctuations) and earnings of $0.99 per share, a 35% increase from the year-earlier period and two cents higher than analysts' mean estimate. The company said its current momentum, driven by sales of anti-cholesterol drug Lipitor and diabetes drug Rezulin, is "clearly sustainable." It expects to increase EPS by at least 35% this year and 30% next year. The company aims to make Lipitor, which already has generated about $1.4 billion in sales in 14 months, the world's top-selling drug. That would mean beating Astra AB's (NYSE: A) ulcer drug Prilosec, which garnered $2.2 billion in U.S. sales alone last year, as well as the new Pfizer drug Viagra, which is already on pace to bust the $2 billion mark. Lipitor is scheduled to launch in more than 25 new markets by the end of this year, making it available in 45 countries. Several brokerage houses raised their ratings on Warner-Lambert: Merrill Lynch raised its long-term rating to "buy," Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette rated the company a "buy" with a 12-month target price of $225 a share, and BT Alex. Brown upgraded it to "strong buy." Warner-Lambert will report first quarter earnings next Tuesday.

QUICK TAKES: Pentium chip maker Intel (NYSE: INTC) jumped $5 1/8 to $84 1/16 on more than twice its average volume after company executives told analysts that strong sales to North American distributors and in China and India are countering the chip inventory building up among U.S. computer makers and in some other Asian markets. The company is also counting on new products to boost sales, including a 500-megahertz microprocessor dubbed Katmai scheduled for release in the first half of next year... Dell Computer (Nasdaq: DELL) climbed $3 1/16 to $77 7/16 after the PC direct seller announced that starting in May it will only offer Intel's Pentium II processors on its Dell Dimension desktop PCs worldwide, leading the way toward phasing out Intel's older Pentium processors.

Compaq Computer (Nasdaq: CPQ) leapt $1 5/8 to $28 1/2 as the computer maker, along with Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT), announced plans to extend digital TV support to include progressive scan formats adopted by leading broadcasters including ABC and Fox... Netherlands-based Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG) jumped $7 7/8 to $91 1/16 after reporting Q1 EPS of 2.00 guilders, up from 1.32 guilders in Q1 1997, beating analysts' mean estimate of 1.53 guilders. The consumer electronics maker expects to generate double-digit earnings growth and significant positive cash flow this year... Telecommunications networks and systems company Lucent Technologies (NYSE: LU) connected for $2 1/4 to $76 1/2 after reporting Q2 EPS of $0.14 (before charges) versus $0.05 a year ago. Analysts had expected $0.09, according to First Call.

Allstate Insurance parent Allstate Corp. (NYSE: ALL) gained $5/8 to $96 3/4 after announcing Q1 EPS of $2.20, boosted by higher revenues and lower frequency of claims due to mild weather. That compares with $1.73 a share for the prior-year period and the First Call mean estimate of $1.42... Charles Schwab (NYSE: SCH) rose $2 1/8 to $35 7/8 after the financial services company declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.04 a share payable May 27 and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter upgraded its rating on the company to "outperform" from "neutral"... Washington Mutual (Nasdaq: WAMU) gained $2 3/4 to $72 1/2 after the country's biggest thrift reported Q1 earnings of $1.02 a share versus $0.71 in the year-ago period and ahead of the First Call mean estimate of $1.00. Salomon Smith Barney reiterated its "buy" rating with a 12-month target price of $91 a share.

Home improvement retailer Lowe's (NYSE: LOW) advanced $2 1/4 to $71 after announcing it will spend $1.5 billion in the next three to four years to build more than 100 stores in Western states... Car retailing and rental company Republic Industries (NYSE: RII) cruised ahead $13/16 to $29 1/4 after announcing it will acquire Driver's Mart Worldwide for about $40 million in cash and will build and operate as many as 27 AutoNation USA used car megastores by the end of the year 2000... Online retailer Cybershop International (Nasdaq: CYSP) leapt $4 7/8 to $21 3/8 after announcing a two-year sponsorship and marketing agreement with Excite Inc. (Nasdaq: XCIT) under which cybershop.com will be displayed more prominently than any competitors.

AlphaConnect, a division of Alpha Microsystems (Nasdaq: ALMI), announced it has released its BusinessVue software product for the Internet business solutions market, sending the company's shares up 120%, or $3 3/8 to $6 3/16... Online financial information provider Track Data (Nasdaq: TRAC) rocketed ahead $6 13/16, or 273%, to $9 5/16 on no news as it was swept up by the current Internet fever.

Charlotte-based Glenayre Technologies (Nasdaq: GEMS) jumped $3 to $13 7/8 after reporting Q1 EPS of $0.05, down from $0.22 but a penny higher than the First Call mean estimate of $0.04. It helped that the personal telecommunications products and systems company also announced a $13.5 million paging network contract in China and $30 million in orders from PageMart Wireless (Nasdaq: PMWI) for Glenayre's NPCS infrastructure... Level 8 Systems (Nasdaq: LVEL) gained $1 1/2 to $12 1/2 as the software company introduced its new EventWorks program for integrating computer applications on different systems.

Dendrite International (Nasdaq: DRTE) was lifted $2 5/8 to $32 1/2 after announcing that it is raising its 1998 earnings goal to $0.83-$0.85 per share. The sales support company reported Q1 EPS of $0.15, up from a loss of $0.02 last year and ahead of analysts' mean estimate of $0.12... First Federal Capital (Nasdaq: FTFC) added $2 3/16 to $35 3/16 on announcing a 2-for-1 stock split payable June 4. The banking company also raised its dividend to $0.14 a share from $0.12.

Earnings Movers

Aavid Thermal Technologies (Nasdaq: AATT) up $3 23/32 to $36 3/32; Q1 EPS: $0.33 (before charges) vs. $0.21 last year; Estimate: $0.31

Allegiance Corp. (NYSE: AEH) up $6 5/8 to $45 1/4; Q1 EPS: $0.48 vs. $0.37 last year; Estimate: $0.42

American Business Products (NYSE: ABP) up $1 7/8 to $22 15/16; Q1 EPS: $0.42 (before charges) vs. $0.36 last year

Ball Corp. (NYSE: BLL) up $4 3/16 to $40 1/8; Q1 EPS: $0.30 (before charges) vs. $0.14 last year; Estimate: $0.23

Brinker International (NYSE: EAT) up $1 11/16 to $23 1/8; Q3 EPS: $0.24 vs. $0.18 last year; Estimate: $0.22

Cardinal Health (NYSE: CAH) up $4 1/2 to $93 1/8; Q3 EPS: $0.72 (before charges) vs. $0.58 last year; Estimate: $0.71

FirstFed Financial (NYSE: FED) up $3 3/8 to $45 3/8; Q1 EPS: $0.75 vs. $0.48 last year; Estimate: $0.66

H.F. Ahmanson (NYSE: AHM) up $2 11/16 to $78 5/8; Q1 EPS: $1.09 (before charges) vs. $0.78; Estimate: $0.94

Inacom Corp. (NYSE: ICO) up $2 5/8 to $32 5/16; Q1 EPS: $0.54 vs. $0.42 last year; Estimate: $0.51

LandAmerica Financial Group (NYSE: LFG) up $3 1/4 to $51 7/8; Q1 EPS: $0.92 (before charges) vs. $0.09 last year; Estimate: $0.55

Liz Claiborne (NYSE: LIZ) up $7/8 to $47 11/16; Q1 EPS: $0.69 vs. $0.59 last year; Estimate: $0.67

PhyCor Inc. (Nasdaq: PHYC) up $1 1/4 to $23; Q1 EPS: $0.24 vs. $0.19 last year; Estimate: $0.24

RealNetworks (Nasdaq: RNWK) up $1 1/8 to $33 9/16; Q1 EPS: a loss of $0.07 (before charges) vs. $0.17 loss last year; Estimate: a loss of $0.10

GOATS

After much ranting and raving by various gooroos in the mainstream financial press (as well as by concerned Fools right here on these pages), stocks deemed to be "sure things" based on their ties to the Internet fell back to Mother Earth today after spending the past few trading days in the stratosphere. Web content aggregators were down today, as Infoseek (Nasdaq: SEEK) lost $4 1/4 to $32 5/8, Lycos Inc. (Nasdaq: LCOS) dropped $4 11/16 to $61 7/8, and Excite Inc. (Nasdaq: XCIT) fell $7 1/4 to $65 1/2. Online marketing firm THINK New Ideas (Nasdaq: THNK) slipped $3 13/16 to $28 7/16, Go2Net Inc. (Nasdaq: GNET) slid $2 3/4 to $26 5/8, and USWeb Corp. (Nasdaq: USWB) slumped $3 3/4 to $33 even though Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette reiterated its "buy" rating on the stock. Meanwhile, Audio Book Club (AMEX: KLB) decreased $3 to $8, Navarre Corp. (Nasdaq: NAVR) moved $3 1/2 lower to $6, Homecom Communications (Nasdaq: HCOM) shed $2 1/16 to $9 7/8, and Market Guide (Nasdaq: MARG) gave back $3 1/2 to $19 1/2 after recording big gains yesterday.

Baan Co. (Nasdaq: BAANF) dropped $3 7/8 to $49 1/2 after reporting fiscal Q1 EPS of $0.01, missing the First Call mean estimate of $0.11. The company reported a $71 million increase in deferred revenues to comply with new accounting guidelines for revenue recognition. Fellow business software developer PeopleSoft Inc. (Nasdaq: PSFT) also slumped $3 7/8 to $52 1/16 despite reporting Q1 EPS of $0.13, which was a penny ahead of the Street estimate. Slowing licensing revenue growth at both companies is causing some concern that the two firms are losing ground in their three-way brawl with German enterprise software giant SAP A.G. PeopleSoft's software sales jumped 64% in the quarter to $136.9 million, but an analyst told Bloomberg News that he had been expecting an even higher figure. In comparison, licensing revenue at Baan increased by an anemic 8% in Q1 to $90 million.

QUICK CUTS: Wireless communications company Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) dropped $2 to $57 3/4 after saying lower demand for its mobile Q phones and the delayed launch of a new product will negatively impact near-term results. In fiscal Q2, the company said it earned $26 million, or $0.36 per share... National Semiconductor (NYSE: NSM) fell $9/16 to $23 after saying it will lay off 1,400 people, or 10% of its workforce, and take a $60-$70 million charge to fiscal Q4 earnings due to the soft semiconductor market... Interactive entertainment software firm T*HQ Inc. (Nasdaq: THQI) was bodyslammed $3 1/16 to $26 15/16 after an analyst at B. Riley & Co. rated the company "underperform" on the belief its license for the popular World Championship Wrestling game will not be renewed. According to Bloomberg News, the game accounts for 88% of THQ's revenues.

Consumer services giant Cendant (NYSE: CD) slid $1 9/16 to $22 1/4 after shareholders filed a class action lawsuit alleging the firm made "false and misleading statements" about its business to investors... Interactive multimedia products maker 7th Level (Nasdaq: SEVL) tanked $1 9/16 to $7 11/16 after its proposed merger with privately held Pulse Entertainment was canned because the companies deemed that staying independent would "be more profitable for each company"... Medical lasers manufacturer PLC Systems (AMEX: PLC) fell $2 5/16 to $14 1/8 after the company said an FDA panel will review its application for a heart surgery laser for the second time on Friday. Last July, the same FDA panel rejected the laser due to a lack of sufficient data to back up the device's effectiveness.

PSW Technologies (Nasdaq: PSWT) lost $1 1/4 to $8 3/8 after BT Alex. Brown downgraded the software services firm to "market perform" from "buy." The company reported a Q1 loss of $0.02 per share, missing the First Call mean estimate for earnings of $0.02... Metalworking tools manufacturer JLK Direct Distribution (NYSE: JLK) sank $5 1/2 to $33 7/8 after reporting fiscal Q3 EPS of $0.29, missing the First Call mean estimate by a penny... Information security and wireless communications products maker Transcrypt International (Nasdaq: TRIIE) fell $1 5/16 to $6 13/16 after the company said it is being investigated by the SEC. The reason for the investigation was not disclosed.

Itron Inc. (Nasdaq: ITRI), which provides automated data collection services to utilities, fell $4 1/8 to $16 1/2 after reporting fiscal Q1 EPS of $0.01, which was in line with the First Call mean estimate. However, the company said customer delays of already booked orders will result in a fiscal Q2 loss... Security Dynamics Technologies (Nasdaq: SDTI) lost $3 3/32 to $22 21/32 after the provider of network and data security products was downgraded by Prudential Securities and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter. The company reported Q1 EPS of $0.07 today, but warned that sales and earnings growth will be lower than expected over the near-term... Database management software developer Borland International (Nasdaq: BORL) sank $1 3/16 to $9 15/16 after reporting a Q1 loss of $0.27 per share, including $19.3 million in restructuring and acquisition charges and a $3.8 million tax benefit.

Cybex International (AMEX: CYB) fell $1 11/16 to $10 1/2 after the maker of cardiovascular and strength training equipment said a delayed product launch and soft sales for its cardiovascular equipment will result in fiscal Q1 EPS of $0.15 to $0.18, below the Street estimate of $0.29... Specialty healthcare and chemical products maker Mallinckrodt Inc. (NYSE: MKG) slid $1 3/8 to $35 13/16 after reporting fiscal Q3 EPS before charges of $0.61, ahead of the First Call mean estimate of $0.43. The firm said fiscal 1999 results will be negatively impacted by the divestiture of its industrial chemical business and price deterioration for its X-ray related products.

Copier and printing systems firm IKON Office Solutions (NYSE: IKN) dropped $9 3/8 to $25 1/4 after reporting fiscal Q2 EPS of $0.35 excluding $20 million in "transformation" charges, missing the Street estimate of $0.38... 3D graphics accelerator chipset maker 3Dfx Interactive (Nasdaq: TDFX) slumped $4 7/8 to $26 1/2 following potentially ominous news in Intel's (Nasdaq: INTC) conference call yesterday. The chip giant said it plans to integrate auxiliary chips for graphics onto a single piece of silicon by next year, which is making folks in the graphics chip biz nervous.

Earnings Movers

Cadence Design Systems (NYSE: CDN) down $2 1/2 to $35 1/2; Q1 EPS: $0.12 loss (including charges) vs. $0.19 earnings last year; Estimate: $0.24

BMC Industries (NYSE: BMC) down $1 1/8 to $19 5/8; Q1 EPS: $0.14 vs. $0.28 last year; Estimate: $0.16

ChoicePoint Inc. (NYSE: CPS) down $1 9/16 to $56 5/16; Q1 EPS: $0.50 vs. $0.36 last year; Estimate: $0.52 (single analyst)

Autoliv Inc. (NYSE: ALV) down $1 7/8 to $31 3/4; Q1 EPS: $0.41 vs. $0.54 last year; Estimate: $0.43

ONSALE Inc. (Nasdaq: ONSL) down $1 9/16 to $30 7/8; Q1 EPS: $0.24 loss (after charges) vs. breakeven last year; Estimate: $0.18 loss

Auspex Systems (Nasdaq: ASPX) down $1 5/16 to $7 9/16; Q3 EPS: $0.09 loss vs. $0.25 net last year; Estimate: Breakeven

WLR Foods (Nasdaq: WLRF) down $29/32 to $5 7/8; Q3 EPS: $0.69 loss vs. $0.56 loss last year; Estimate: $0.62 loss

Axent Technologies (Nasdaq: AXNT) down $1 5/8 to $30 3/8; Q1 EPS: $0.41 (including charges) vs. $1.17 loss last year; Estimate: $0.11

FOOL ON THE HILL
An Investment Opinion
by Louis Corrigan

Hunting Gorillas

Since the day Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) went public in 1986, it has probably never looked inexpensive based on standard investment criteria. And yet it's been the quintessential great investment of the last decade, with the company's market cap rising from two-thirds of a billion dollars at its IPO to $240 billion today when it trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of about 63.

The software giant is only one of many high-tech firms that trade at a P/E multiple that makes many value-oriented investors cringe. And yet, many of these companies experience long periods of accelerating gains in market share, rising margins, and eventually, the industry position to muscle into entirely new markets when growth in the core business begins to wane. In other words, conventional notions of valuation don't seem to work because they are based on ideas of competitive restraints that don't apply to high-tech the same way they do in other industries.

Microsoft might teach us, then, that some strong technology businesses get stronger over time, and this potential is often not sufficiently factored into a stock's price, lofty though it may appear. Still, it's important to determine exactly why this should be so and which cases this lesson might cover and which ones it won't. After all, every high-tech investor can reel off a string of examples where the highflyer crashed and the wreckage was not pretty. For every Microsoft, there's at least one Novell (Nasdaq: NOVL). For every Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO), a Shiva (Nasdaq: SHVA).

Such issues are at the core of The Gorilla Game, an instructive new book by Geoffrey A. Moore, Paul Johnson, and Tom Kippola. If you have more than a passing interest in high-tech investing, you ought to find this an indispensable and highly readable guide. It will sharpen your analytical skills by helping you conceptualize the type of market a company operates in and the concomitant competitive advantages the company may or may not have at its disposal. It also provides a conservative, risk-averse framework for buying and selling these stocks based on fundamental changes in the marketplace.

The book's value derives from a happy joining of the authors' special talents. Moore is a well-known business strategist whose earlier books, Crossing the Chasm and Inside the Tornado, have greatly influenced corporate managers throughout the high-tech sector due to the productive way they conceptualize market opportunity. Readers familiar with Moore's earlier work will recognize that these books provide the basic conceptual foundation for the new book. Added to the mix, though, are insights on how to turn Moore's framework into a full-fledged approach to technology investing. This input comes from Johnson, a respected senior technology analyst at BancAmerica Robertson Stephens, and Kippola, a successful private investor who now works for The Chasm Group, Moore's consulting outfit.

As the name implies, a gorilla is a monster company, the undisputed master of its domain. Yet one finds gorillas in the mist only in certain jungles. For example, the authors argue that while America Online (NYSE: AOL) and Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) are obvious leaders in the burgeoning Internet space, and both have been exceptional investments, neither is gorilla material. The reason is somewhat complicated, but essentially, both operate as transaction service companies that depend on branding and the cultivation of community. The cost to the user of switching from these services to others is really little greater than the cost of switching from one favorite television show to another. We all love Seinfeld, but if it had to go head to head against ER, then most people would see that its competitive position, though incredibly strong, is hardly insurmountable.

Gorillas develop only in markets where it's possible to create such an insurmountable competitive position, such as Microsoft's on the PC desktop. These are markets where customers and suppliers would endure huge costs in switching to a competitor's product. Such high switching costs are concentrated in industries where one company succeeds in providing an open but proprietary architecture that offers a discontinuous innovation relative to what's gone before and thus creates an entirely new supply chain.

An architecture must be proprietary because the vendor needs to have control over its pricing and implementation, but it must also be open so that other companies will integrate their own value-added products with the gorilla's, creating a value chain where all the players have a stake in promoting the would-be gorilla's solution. A company like Iomega (NYSE: IOM), for example, has proprietary storage solutions that distinguish it from commodity hard drive manufacturers such as Seagate (NYSE: SEG). But the cost of switching from a Zip drive to a competitor's high-capacity removable storage product is significantly lower than that of switching computer operating systems, for example, because Iomega hasn't succeeded in building a strong enough value chain around its offering and perhaps might never succeed in doing so.

A gorilla can only develop when a market moves into hypergrowth and vendors along the potential supply chain spontaneously standardize on one company's product in order to respond quickly to the demand. That standardization, in turn, fuels the customer demand. This scenario is built on the technology adoption life cycle, a relatively familiar concept where innovators try just about anything that's new. Early adopters may follow, but the market only explodes when more pragmatic customers jump on board, bringing the product to what the authors call Main Street. One reason investors continually undervalue gorillas is that the move to standardization and value chain creation that this process entails does not lead to a more mature market with increasing competition and diminishing returns. Instead, it often produces one company with increasing market share and thus a far more profitable and lengthy stay on Main Street than one might expect.

The gorilla game involves learning how to spot industries that might give rise to gorillas and to learn when to invest in these industries so as to minimize the risks but still capture a significant share of the gains. For the investor, three periods are crucial: the chasm, the bowling alley, and the tornado. The chasm represents the market after the early adopters have jumped on board but the more pragmatic buyers (the "herd") remain reluctant to commit to the new innovation and older industry players try to belittle the upstart's offerings. The bowling alley is the first step after crossing the chasm, the point when a new product penetrates whole niches of a larger market. The tornado represents the market stage when a product moves beyond these niches, proliferating in the mainstream mass market.

A gorilla game investor gets interested when the market enters hypergrowth, such as significant sequential quarterly growth combined with 100% or more year-over-year growth. The authors recommended buying application software companies during the bowling alley phase while waiting until the tornado for companies selling enabling technology, such as an operating system. But they say an investor should buy an entire basket of stocks (usually two to four) representing all the companies with a good shot at becoming the gorilla. The goal then is to look for signs of the emerging gorilla, usually selling off the also-rans (called chimps) as they drop out of the competition. An investor should consolidate the money from those stocks into the remaining candidates until only the gorilla remains. The gorilla should then be held for the long term, until an entirely new product category seriously threatens to end its rule.

This brief sketch only begins to touch on the nature of the gorilla game, and why, for example, a great company like Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) is a king in a royalty game with princes and serfs but will never be a gorilla candidate. In addition to this framework, the book offers several case studies, including a snapshot current to last September on the ongoing gorilla game in the customer service software arena. It concludes with some helpful investment tools and techniques for hunting gorillas as well as a model portfolio for investing in the "tornado alley" that is the Internet. But rather than talk more now about a book that deserves extended community involvement, I'll simply suggest you take a look and join us for the discussion started by our own Mike Buckley in the new Gorilla Game message folder. Happy hunting!

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