Helium Zone: WEBDEX Gains 15% Led By Lycos

ISDEX,
Wall Street’s starting to believe in a little arachnophoria as Lycos
value per user shot up 32% to $151 since November 11 as the former search
engine begins building a Web network of various sites.


Lycos’
(NASDAQ:LCOS) buying spree of Whowhere/Angelfire (directory/Websteader),
Tripod (Websteader for Generation Y) and Wired Digital (HotBot search and
content) all brought Lycos’ monthly unique user value up to the top 4 slot
in Media Metrix’ October tally of the top Web properties.


Ironically, as
the user value dropped at leader Yahoo (at least according to Media Metrix),
its market capitalization soared even higher, and with it the WEBDEX user
value to $744, far dwarfing any of the other sites in WEBDEX.





















































































































































Internet.com’s

October

Nov 11

Nov 18

Nov 11

Nov 18

Percent

WEBDEX

Users

Market cap or PMV*

Market cap or PMV*

User

User

change

 

(millions)

(millions)

(millions)

Value

Value

 

Yahoo

25.2

$15,458

$18,764

$613

$744

21.4%

AOL.com*

24.4

$3,600

$3,870

$148

$159

7.5%

Microsoft.com*

20.5

$2,350

$2,500

$114

$122

6.4%

Lycos

18.3

$2,099

$2,768

$115

$151

31.9%

Excite

15.5

$2,490

$2,745

$160

$177

10.2%

Netscape.com*

15.7

$2,200

$2,350

$140

$150

6.8%

MSN.com/Hotmail*

17.8

$2,250

$2,400

$126

$135

6.7%

GeoCities

14.9

$1,156

$1,328

$78

$89

14.9%

AltaVista

11.13

$750

$800

$67

$72

6.7%

Infoseek

10.9

$1,018

$1,164

$94

$107

14.3%

TOTAL

174.4

$33,371

$38,689

$1,655

$1,905

15.1%

AVERAGE

17.4

$3,337

$3,869

$166

$191

15.1%

AVG. without Yahoo

16.6

$1,990

$2,214

$116

$129

11.4%


The average for the entire group was $191. Without Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) the
average hit a much tamer $129. Yahoo on a WEBDEX basis is starting to
approach AOL-like valuations, and we’re not talking AOL.com–AOL (NYSE:AOL)
the whole kit and kaboodle.


And for those who keep fighting the tape on
Yahoo, we have always believed its value was a tad high but our hunch is
that Yahoo could see AOL-like valuations within the next 18
months.


Netscape.com (the Web asset only) value-per-user also pops up
after the buzz that it may do a deal with AOL
made the rounds. Netscape also acquired Yahoo-clone NewHoo (a
people-maintained Web guide). Terms undisclosed but hopefully cash for the
sake of NewHoo.


Netscape (NASDAQ:NSCP) shares rally to close at near $40
November 18. We’ve long held that AOL should acquire the business-centric
Netscape Netcenter Web site.


We don’t think AOL users are very heavy
Netcenter users. And Netscape could finally step out from ‘he said-she
said’ business model it operates under–part software firm, part content
firm. Fair value for Netscape.com? We estimate $2.35 billion, in line with
the search/guide group (sans Yahoo). It would give AOL the number one
consolidated reach Web site by far that we estimate could be about 40
million monthly users.


Besides, it could be another chance to create a voice slogan “you’ve got
Netscape,” that’s got to have some value itself.


Making its re-entry on WEBDEX is AltaVista, remember it? This is the
once powerful, brawn over brain search engine that used to be Yahoo’s
engine de jour before Inktomi (NASDAQ:INKT) did it one better.


Now under
Compaq’s (NYSE:CPQ) rule after it acquired Digital, we believe AltaVista
has to come back from the ‘WWF wrestling, we can index the entire Web’ (and
still wear spandex) mode of mentality to more of here’s just the good stuff
that you find good, ‘good’ being relevant.


Which brings us to a point of
pondering–even these top 10 Web sites have a long way to go to get really
relevant, granulated. They keep making assumptions about what users want.
Just imagine if they delivered the brand new things that users would want
if they were available.


Sort of like imagining the difference between
black and white TV and color TV, color TV to VCR, VCR to DVD. People only
want the better thing once they use it and compare it to the previous
thing. And then consider what WEBDEX valuations would be.

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