Should DuckDuckGo File Its IPO to Better Challenge Google Inc.?

Amid concerns that Google Inc. is too big to ever be disrupted, a rebel search engine emerges. Here's why an IPO might make sense.

May 29, 2014 at 10:30AM

Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL)(NASDAQ:GOOG) competitor DuckDuckGo is beginning to look like a potential IPO candidate, Fool contributor Tim Beyers says in the following video.

For those that don't know DuckDuckGo is an alternative search engine built on the premise that user data needn't be tracked in order to deliver comprehensive, relevant search results quickly. Millions identify with the pitch. According to its website, DuckDuckGo handles triple the number of direct queries today as it did a year ago -- more than 5 million daily. Google processes far more, of course, and Bing is also a significant competitor thanks to Microsoft's (NASDAQ: MSFT) backing. That DuckDuckGo is growing rapidly in the shadow of deep-pocketed rivals speaks to its advantages.

And while we aren't privy to financial data for privately held DuckDuckGo, it's fair to presume revenue is also soaring. Why? DuckDuckGo sells sponsored links to appear alongside search data. Rising traffic should also produce rising revenue, which, in turn, should help grow the underlying platform. Exactly the sort of virtuous cycle investors should want to see from an IPO candidate.

Yet the story doesn't end there. DuckDuckGo is also opening its platform to new code and human-supplied answers to queries via a program called DuckDuckHack. The company's passionate and fast-growing community of users can help to extend the platform in ways the DuckDuckGo team -- or, for that matter, Google or Microsoft -- have yet to imagine.

Now it's your turn to weigh in. Do you use DuckDuckGo? If so, do you believe it possesses a defensible advantage over Google? Please watch the video to get the full story and then leave a comment to let us know your take, including whether you would buy, sell, or hold Google stock at current prices.

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Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team and the Motley Fool Supernova Odyssey I mission. He owned shares of Google (A and C class) at the time of publication. Check out Tim's web home and portfolio holdings or connect with him on Google+Tumblr, or Twitter, where he goes by @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.

The Motley Fool recommends Google (A and C shares). The Motley Fool owns shares of Google (A and C class) and Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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