With shrewd marketing, peaceful coexistence between players and owners that allows for salary caps (and minimums), and an $18 billion network and cable TV contract, the National Football League (NFL) is the most successful professional sports league in the U.S., and the Super Bowl is its crown jewel. Here are the numbers behind Sunday's big game:
- $42,000: Average price for a 30-second commercial during the first Super Bowl in 1967.
- $2.1 million: Average price for a 30-second commercial in this year's Super Bowl.
- 61: Number of 30-second ads sold for this year's game.
- 130 million: Number of Americans expected to watch at least part of the game.
- 0: Number of times Ozzy Osbourne curses in a spot for Pepsi (also featuring Donny and Marie Osmond).
- $1.1 million: Average 2002 NFL player salary.
- $4.5 million: Average 2002 National Basketball Association (NBA) player salary
- 6'5": Height of NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue
- $4.8 billion: 2002 NFL revenues
- 63%: Amount of 2002 NFL revenues shared equally among its teams.
- 14,692: Expected number of tortilla chips consumed by Fool staff on Super Bowl Sunday.
- $3.5 billion: 2002 Major League Baseball (MLB) revenues.
- 20%: Amount of 2002 MLB revenues shared equally among its teams (increasing to 34% in 2003).
- 1: Wins needed to propel Tampa Bay or Oakland to Super Bowl glory.
Whether you're a Bucs or Raiders fan, or just watching for the commercials, or because your spouse won't let go of the remote, enjoy the game -- and try to get to work on time on Monday. Actually, strike that. We don't care about your job. Just get to Fool.com in time for our take on all the day's market news.
In today's Motley Fool Take:
- Starbucks' Juiced-Up Sales
- Quote of Note
- Rumble in Amazon's Jungle
- Discussion Board of the Day: Amazon
- Fujitsu Dips Intel's Chips
- Shameless Plug: Two for the Price of One
- Quick Takes: American Electric Power, E*Trade, Lockheed Martin, more
- On the Air: This Week on The Motley Fool Radio Show
- And Finally...
Revenues jumped 25%, as previously announced, to $1 billion. Same-store sales were also jacked up, growing 9% for the quarter.
Starbucks' earnings shot ahead 17% to $80 million from last year's $68.4 million. On a per-share basis, that's $0.20 versus $0.17 -- rich enough to top analysts' expectations by two cents.
Margins were largely unchanged, underscoring the caffeine pusher's business strength in the face of a weak economy. Gross margins were up slightly to 58.2%, while net margins dropped a tad to 8%. Starbucks brewed up nearly $140 million of free cash flow during the quarter, as well. Not bad for hocking bean water, eh?
The coffee king pointed (again) to the Starbucks Card as a real driver of its results. The quick turnaround for customers who use the card, rather than fumble around for cash, gets them the juice even faster. Obviously, that speeds up response rates and leads to more people buying more coffee. It creates positive impressions, too, in the minds of customers who have good experiences and therefore return. The company's new automated espresso machines also give sales rates an extra jolt.
Looking ahead, Starbucks sees another successful year (we're starting to sound like a broken record!), raising its 2003 earnings forecast to $0.67-$0.68 a share from $0.65-$0.66. Should that play out, it will mean earnings-per-share growth of around 22% from fiscal 2002. The chain expects to open at least 1,200 new shops during the year and increase total revenues by 20%.
Starbucks' success has almost become passé. The company's just so good and so solid that it becomes increasingly difficult to generate enthusiasm again and again for its outstanding results. Those poor shareholders....
"The voodoo priest and all his powders were as nothing compared to espresso, cappuccino, and mocha, which are stronger than all the religions of the world combined, and perhaps stronger than the human soul itself." -- Mark Helprin, Memoir from Antproof Case, 1995
Things keep getting better for the online retail bellwether left for dead by the Street a little more than a year ago.
Shareholders don't need to be reminded of Amazon's
Think about it. What did the cynics argue about back then? That Amazon's low-price strategy would put it out of business? Well, it has survived and done that one better by making free shipping a permanent fixture. That Amazon was a debt-laden, money-scorching disaster? Well, it produced $135 million in free cash flow in 2002. That Amazon's days of growth were numbered? Well, it will deliver pro forma profits of $0.27 a share and is looking for sales to grow by at least 15% this year.
Yes, we can always scold a company for its liberal definition of "pro forma," but it's hard to argue with Amazon's 2002 free cash flow and the fact that it reported an actual profit -- all expenses considered -- over the holidays. Fourth-quarter sales grew by 28% to hit a healthy $1.43 billion.
It's time to get real. The dot-com dream of fat margins in e-tail, given the operating efficiencies and lack of local operating overhead, may never materialize. Amazon will play it razor-thin with free shipping and low prices -- the only two proven tonics to grow sales online. With Wal-Mart
The upside may be capped, but naysayers have to concede that Amazon won't fall prey to spontaneous combustion. It's here -- for keeps.
Has Amazon crossed the line and become a legitimate retailer? Is the stock overvalued, undervalued, or priced just right? Is the free shipping on all orders over $25 a sound strategy? All this and more -- in the Amazon discussion board. Only on Fool.com.
Chip maker extraordinaire Intel
For Intel, which has a hankering to get its chips into more than just personal computers, this is a nice step forward. It's also a solid vote of confidence for its 64-bit Itanium line of chips.
Fujitsu will use the ultra-fast Itanium chips for its high-end servers and Intel's Xeon chips for smaller systems. The huge Japanese computer and electronics company expects to have the smaller servers ready for market by the end of 2004, and the more sophisticated systems out in 2005.
No one wants to shut Microsoft
Fujitsu is the fifth-largest server manufacturer in the world, and has been producing servers using the Unix operating system and Sparc architecture from Sun Microsystems
The agreement between Fujitsu and Intel isn't exclusive, though. Fujitsu will continue to make its own servers, as well as the Unix/Sun ones. The company will just have another offering soon, broadening its product line and perhaps market share. That's an unquestionably good thing for Fujitsu, and certainly for Intel, too.
We've bundled our best sources for stock ideas: the annual Stocks 2003 and our monthly gem The Motley Fool Select. It's a classic combo like Oreos with milk or Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
American Electric Power
Two of the country's largest defense contractors posted fourth-quarter losses. Lockheed Martin
Shares of Nortel Networks
In local news, the family of Caleb Barkley put away their Monopoly game for the last time. "After playing it 27 times together, we realized it just isn't that much fun," said daughter Julie. "We'll be concentrating on the Top 50 list at Funagain.com, instead."
This week on The Motley Fool Radio Show, David and Tom Gardner talk to Monster.com founder and chairman Jeff Taylor and visit with game-show legend Chuck Barris.
And do you have an interesting job that you'd love to talk about? Next week's show features our "How's Business?" special. Maybe you're a butcher, a baker, or candlestick maker? Maybe you're a farmer, rancher, musician, a puppeteer, or a paralegal. Tell us about your job. Give the Fool Radio line a call at 866-NPR-FOOL. That's 866-677-3665.
Today on Fool.com:
- For updated stories throughout the day, be sure to bookmark our ever-changing News section.
- Our personal finance experts explain how to make the very best decision with every dollar.
- With growth in 2003 hinging on second-half results, investors in KLA-Tencor are nervous.
- Fool Community member Rodger Garfinkle takes shareholders' concerns straight to the top.
- Be prepared -- the IRS is once again performing random audits. Check out our Tax Center to learn more.
- In Fool's School, find out how a company earns money, and where the money goes.
Bob Bobala, Robert Brokamp, Jeff Fischer, Tom Jacobs, LouAnn Lofton, Bill Mann, Selena Maranjian, Rex Moore, Rick Munarriz, Matt Richey, Jackie Ross, Reggie Santiago, Dayana Yochim