ADOTAS – In case you haven’t been paying attention, the U.S. stock markets have been taking a shellacking lately, and if you thought the ad tech sector — with it’s ever-growing revenue and rapidly developing technology — would be immune, think again.
On Thursday, the NASDAQ composite dropped 136.68 points yesterday for a falloff of 5%. At press time, the index is down around 200 points or 7% for the week, though Friday was hovering around breaking even.
Two of the companies in ad tech hit hardest are ValueClick (VCLK) and Interclick (ICLK), which were down 13.83% and 12.97% for the week, respectively. Until recently, both companies were having terrific runs. In July, ValueClick hit its highest price in three years while Interclick’s stock reached its highest mark in its less-than-two-year lifespan.
ValueClick’s stock actually took a 13% tumble on Wednesday alone, a day after the company announced it had acquired retargeting operation Dotomi and announced second quarter earnings — revenue up 26% to $125.1 million and earnings per share at $0.21. Both those numbers beat estimates, so you might be wondering what was up with the major selloff — looks like investors weren’t happy with the Dotomi acquisition, particularly because the deal was 55% cash and 45% stock
Closing Aug. 3 at $16.52, VLCK fell further to $16.09 on opening on Thursday before tumbling another 6.66% to close at $15.42. Opening on Friday at $15.12, the stock was up 0.91% to $15.56 as of press time (1:21 PM EST). Better, but a bit of a drag considering that the company started the week around $18.50.
In July, VCLK reached $18.78, its highest price since June 2008. The stock peaked at $32.68 back in May 2007.
Interclick isn’t announcing second quarter results until next Wednesday (after the market closes), but its stock began to slide late Tuesday and carried on into Wednesday, falling to $6.40 before an afternoon recovery that lifted ICLK to above $7 (actually gaining 1% for the day). However, the stock fell 9% on Thursday to close at $6.38. Opening at $6.44 on Friday, ICLK was down 2.12%to $6.24 as of press time (1:21 PM EST).
Following the company’s first quarter earnings report, which generally met analyst expectations, the stock dipped 5.7% over 18 days. Hopefully that’s not an omen for next week — even if it is, the stock ramped mightily during June and July.
Over the last six months (between February and June), Interclick’s stock had risen about 42%, accelerating from $5.50 to a peak of $8.90 in early July — the highest the stock had reached since Interclick’s IPO in November 2009. However, the stock fell close to 9% in July, with serious dips coming after Piper Jaffray initiated the stock with a neutral rating and the launch of Genome, Interclick’s self-service audience recommendation and planning platform.
Other kinds of advertising companies are taking a bath too. Interpublic has witnessed a 13.66% Omnicom Group has fallen 6.71% over the week to around $42.25 as of press time, while DG FastChannel (which bought rich media ad server MediaMind in mid-June) has slumped around 17.5% to 23.65 as of press time.