In the online marketing space, comScore
The company calls itself a "digital marketing intelligence platform," aimed at helping firms measure the behaviors and demographics of online users. comScore maintains a global panel of more than 2 million online users who have granted permission to the company to track them. To pull this off, comScore has built a super-sophisticated proprietary database that crunches information on 182 million Web pages and 4.5 billion URL records each week -- a whopping 28 terabytes of data every month.
In 2006, comScore posted a 31% increase in revenue, to $66.3 million, and generated $10.9 million in cash flow from operations. The revenue comes mostly from subscriptions, which gives the company a predictable recurring stream. Marquee customers include Verizon
Despite able competitors such as Compete, Hitwise, and NetRatings, comScore maintains a massive infrastructure, a broad product offering, and large survey panel -- all solid competitive advantages.
With the proceeds from its IPO, comScore can continue to fuel its growth ramp. It can mine new opportunities from the emergence of online video, widgets, IP television, and other new-fangled media technologies. The firm should also get lots of traction in markets abroad.
With online advertising continuing to grow at a rapid clip, comScore's services will be a "must have." Its space is also in the midst of rapid consolidation, as seen with the recent buyouts of aQuantive
In short, comScore seems to have the right stuff at the right time.
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