56.50 -0.09 (-0.16%)
After hours: 5:29PM EST
|Bid||56.05 x 3200|
|Ask||56.85 x 1300|
|Day's range||56.42 - 56.85|
|52-week range||42.40 - 60.50|
|Beta (3Y monthly)||1.15|
|PE ratio (TTM)||18.52|
|Earnings date||16 Dec 2019 - 20 Dec 2019|
|Forward dividend & yield||0.96 (1.70%)|
|1y target est||56.47|
(Bloomberg) -- Dell Technologies Inc. announced a goal to make half of its global workforce female by 2030, one of a raft of pledges meant to foster greater diversity and sustainability at the personal computer maker.The company also set a 2030 target for women to make up 40% of the employees worldwide who manage people. Women comprised 30.4% of Dell’s workforce as of February. And the company said it wants 25% of Dell’s U.S. workers to be African-American or Hispanic by 2030, an increase from almost 13% this year.Dell is among a number of technology companies that have mapped out grand pledges for a more diverse workforce. Facebook Inc. said in July that it wanted to double the number of women, black and Hispanic employees in the U.S. in the next five years -- so half of its U.S. workforce would be from underrepresented groups by 2024. Like several of its peers, including Oracle Corp. and Intel Corp., Dell has been accused by the U.S. Labor Department of paying women and ethnic minorities less than other employees in the same roles. Dell paid $7 million to settle such allegations in September.“We think there is a lot that is challenging the world right now and we are committed to being a significant contributor to solving these problems,” Christine Fraser, Dell’s chief responsibility officer, said in an interview. “We don’t think of it as something that’s nice to do. We think of it as a business imperative.”Dell will educate 95% of its 157,000 employees each year on topics such as unconscious bias, micro-aggressions and privilege, the Round Rock, Texas-based company said Tuesday in a statement.“It’s not just about putting the numbers out,” Brian Reaves, Dell’s chief diversity and inclusion officer, said. “The changes that are coming out behind these goals are in every part of our business.”Dell, which also makes servers, storage hardware and networking gear, said it would expand its sustainability efforts. By 2030, for every product a customer buys, the company said it will recycle or reuse an equivalent product. Dell will also make 100% of its packaging recyclable by the same deadline. More than half of the company’s product content will be made from recycled or renewable materials.“We see e-waste as one of the fastest-growing waste streams,” David Lear, Dell’s vice president of corporate sustainability, said in an interview. “We very intentionally design our products knowing we’ll get it back one day.”The company also said that 75% of the electricity at Dell facilities will come from renewable sources by 2030, and 100% by 2040. Currently, Dell’s headquarters north of Austin, Texas, are powered by renewable energy, Lear said.To contact the reporter on this story: Nico Grant in San Francisco at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Andrew Pollack, Mark MilianFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
As streaming has turned the television industry on its head, one media mogul went against the trend this year. He revealed the advice from News Corp. Founder Rupert Murdoch by way of Oracle CEO Larry Ellison that led him to do it.
McDonald’s Corporation Former CEO Easterbrook Departed without “Cause” So Keeps Valuable Stock and Options By John Jannarone At first glance, it might appear that Stephen Easterbrook left his post as CEO of McDonald’s Corporation with peanuts. But a closer look reveals he may keep restricted stock and options worth over $60 million. On Sunday, the […]
(Bloomberg) -- Oracle Corp. opened its appeal in a legal challenge of a Pentagon cloud-computing contract valued at as much as $10 billion with a familiar argument: the procurement was unfairly tailored for Amazon.com Inc.In in its opening brief, which was filed on Friday, Oracle said the cloud project violated federal procurement law and was tainted by relationships between former Pentagon officials and Amazon.Oracle is appealing a July ruling from the U.S. Court of Federal Claims that dismissed its legal challenge to the cloud contract based on similar claims. At the same time, Amazon is mulling its own potential legal challenge of the project after losing the deal to Microsoft Corp. late last month, Bloomberg News has reported.The legal challenges could revive fresh criticism from industry, lawmakers and analysts of the Pentagon’s handling of the controversial cloud project, known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI. The project is designed to consolidate the Defense Department’s cloud computing infrastructure and modernize its technology systems.The department is facing accusations that former employees with ties to Amazon may have structured the deal to favor Amazon and that President Donald Trump may have unfairly intervened in the process against Amazon. Trump has long been at odds with Amazon Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post.“As DOD has asserted throughout this litigation, and as confirmed by the court, DOD reasonably evaluated and equally treated all offerors within the framework of a full and open competition,” Elissa Smith, a Department of Defense spokeswoman, said in a statement in response to Oracle’s latest move. She said rulings from the claims court and the Government Accountability Office “validated that DoD followed all the applicable acquisition processes.”Trump Surprise“It is difficult to recall any prior procurement of this scale, value and significance in which two of the four leading competitors had compelling conflicts of interest or bias allegations,” said Steven Schooner, a professor of government procurement law at George Washington University. “This is extraordinary.”Trump surprised the industry earlier this year when he openly questioned whether the contract was being competitively bid, citing complaints from Microsoft, Oracle and International Business Machines Corp.A new book by Guy Snodgrass, a speechwriter to former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, alleges that Trump, in the summer of 2018, told Mattis to “screw Amazon” and lock it out of the bid. Mattis didn’t do what Trump asked, Snodgrass wrote. Mattis has criticized the book.Dana Deasy, the Pentagon’s chief information officer, said during his confirmation hearing last week that to the best of his knowledge, no one from the White House reached out to any members of the JEDI cloud contract selection team.Amazon didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.Criteria ChallengedFederal Claims Court Senior Judge Eric Bruggink dismissed Oracle’s lawsuit in July, saying the company didn’t meet the criteria for the bid and thus didn’t have the standing to challenge the procurement.The Pentagon eliminated Oracle and IBM as potential bidders in April, leaving Amazon and Microsoft as the final competitors for the contract.In its appeal, Oracle contends that the Pentagon’s minimum requirements for the contract, as well as its decision to pick just one winner, violated federal procurement laws designed to ensure competition. Under the law, two different Pentagon officials are required to offer separate legal justifications for choosing just one vendor for an award of this size.Bruggink said in his July ruling that one of the Pentagon’s legal justifications was “completely reasonable” while acknowledging that the second one “does not fit the contract.”The government has said choosing one winner would reduce security risks and better enable it to consolidate its technology products.Tainted RelationshipsOracle is claiming that the procurement has been marred by conflicts of interest, including ties between former Defense Department officials and Amazon. At least two of the former employees were offered jobs at the company while working on the contract, according to the lawsuit.In one case, Deap Ubhi, who had worked at Amazon before joining the government, helped craft the JEDI procurement for weeks after accepting a job offer in October 2017 from Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud unit, according to the lawsuit. Ubhi had advocated in favor of the Pentagon’s decision to choose just one winner for the JEDI award, the lawsuit said.Bruggink ruled that the conflict of interest allegations “raise eyebrows,” but that the Pentagon’s contracting officer properly determined the relationships had no adverse impact on the integrity of the acquisition process, and that Amazon didn’t gain a substantive advantage as a result.But Oracle’s appeal contends that “JEDI suffers from corruption of a high order” and that the court’s argument that the conflicts of interest had no impact on the procurement “lacks a rational basis.”Separately, the Defense Department’s inspector general has been reviewing potential unethical conduct surrounding the bid, but said there is no reason why the Pentagon can’t move forward with an award.(Updates with Defense Department comment in sixth paragraph)To contact the reporter on this story: Naomi Nix in Washington at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sara Forden at firstname.lastname@example.org, Mark NiquetteFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Today we'll take a closer look at Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL) from a dividend investor's perspective. Owning a...
(Bloomberg) -- Within hours of Amazon.com Inc. losing a lucrative Pentagon cloud-computing contract to rival Microsoft Corp. there were hints that the Seattle giant would challenge the decision.Amazon has several options to do so, extending from federal courts to Capitol Hill -- and, with the clock ticking on some of them, the company is expected to move expeditiously.The Defense Department late Friday awarded the closely watched contract to modernize the Pentagon’s computing infrastructure to Microsoft, an upset victory for a company initially viewed as a distant second to Amazon in the market for cloud-computing services. The project could be worth as much as $10 billion over a decade and lead to other contracts.High-profile federal procurement projects often face legal or administrative appeals, and experts in federal contracting say a protest from Amazon became more likely after President Donald Trump earlier this year publicly suggested that the Joint Enterprise Defense Initiative, or JEDI, was unfairly structured to give the Seattle company an advantage.“Amazon has the president on record clearly stating that he was looking at intervening in the procurement process,” said Barbara Kinosky, a managing partner at Centre Law and Consulting LLC, a specialist in federal contracting. “I am guessing Amazon and its legal team did not spend the weekend watching the World Series.”Amazon is considering its options for legal challenges, a person familiar with the matter has said. The company had been preparing for the award under the assumption that the Pentagon’s decision would wind up in court regardless of the winner, said another person familiar with Amazon’s thinking.For Amazon, the value of the contract far exceeds $10 billion, technology analysts and experts in government procurement say. The company’s Amazon Web Services division gained legitimacy as a provider of technology tools to big companies and governments in part with a deal, signed in 2013, to provide services to the Central Intelligence Agency.With JEDI, Amazon had the opportunity to earn another seal of approval and take a step toward making AWS the default option for federal agencies. Instead, Amazon faces the prospect that a contract it was widely expected to win will instead bolster the credentials of its most capable rival at a time when AWS’s growth rate is slowing.“The JEDI loss challenges what once looked like clear dominance in the federal market for Amazon,” said James Bach, an analyst with Bloomberg Intelligence. “By picking Microsoft, the Pentagon, with its sensitive workloads and rigorous security requirements, made clear that Amazon can’t rest on its laurels as cloud-market leader to win deals.”Government Accountability Office rules give Amazon 10 days from the date of a contract award, or five days from their official debriefing from the Pentagon, to file a protest and pause the procurement. The debriefing is designed to give Amazon feedback on its bid. AWS and the Defense Dept. didn’t return messages seeking comment on Monday.Such a challenge would trigger a review that the GAO must complete within 100 days and prevent the contract from taking effect in the meantime, though the Pentagon has the power to override the hold and proceed anyway. Two years after first outlining the project, there are signs the Pentagon is eager to move quickly.Even while Oracle Corp. challenged the bidding process in court earlier this year, the Pentagon started to lay the groundwork for implementation by various defense agencies. And it’s notable that Oracle’s challenge failed and is now under appeal -- a sign of how high the bar is to challenge the bidding process.Amazon also could file a lawsuit with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims seeking an injunction to prevent the contract from taking effect. Courts in such cases ultimately tend to defer to the government agency that awarded the deal. But a lawsuit would give Amazon’s lawyers the opportunity to seek documents from the Pentagon and Microsoft that might make the public case for a rehearing of the contract, said Charles Tiefer, a professor of government contracting law at the University of Baltimore. Amazon could also seek to apply pressure on Capitol Hill, he said.“The issue of whether President Trump intervened either explicitly or implicitly might well get the attention of a House committee or subcommittee,” Tiefer said. “Trump was very, very loud in his expression of bias.”When Amazon was seen as the likely winner, rivals like Oracle and International Business Machines Corp. lobbied the Pentagon to award components of the deal to multiple suppliers. The Defense Department could try to forestall an Amazon protest by offering a portion of the deal to AWS.On Tuesday, Dana Deasy, nominated to be the Pentagon’s chief information officer, said that to the best of his knowledge the White House didn’t reach out to the contract selection team. Deasy was speaking at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on his nomination.Though no law flatly prohibits a president from weighing in on a contract, Trump’s comments broke precedent and struck some as a violation of longstanding norms separating contracting from political considerations. Strict rules govern what factors agencies can consider in awarding government business. The White House didn’t respond to a request for comment.Amazon could argue that Trump’s actions and the Pentagon’s decision, made under the appearance of public pressure from the White House, has the effect of blacklisting Amazon from contract work during the administration, said Steven Schooner, a professor of government procurement law at George Washington University. Formally disbarring a contractor is by law supposed include a notice period and guarantees of due process, he said.“The challenge for Amazon will be proving that the pressure was applied and proving that the pressure worked,” he said.(Updates with Pentagon CIO nominee comment in 16th paragraph.)To contact the reporters on this story: Matt Day in Seattle at email@example.com;Naomi Nix in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org;Daniel Seiden in Washington at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sara Forden at firstname.lastname@example.org, Robin AjelloFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Alphabet Inc.’s quarterly earnings were dented by heavy investment in Google’s cloud-computing business, which is key to future growth but still runs a distant third in the market behind Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp.Executives said the company will keep spending to pursue opportunities in cloud, artificial intelligence and consumer hardware.Net income in the third quarter was $7.1 billion, or $10.12 a share, down from $9.2 billion, or $13.06 a share, in the same period a year earlier, the company reported on Monday. Analysts expected $12.35 a share, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.Google, the world’s largest online search provider, has been building data centers, buying equipment and hiring salespeople and engineers to support its cloud unit, which rents computing power and software services over the internet. Former Oracle Corp. executive Thomas Kurian was hired late last year to reinvigorate this effort.In the latest period, expenses totaled $31.3 billion, up 25% from a year earlier, while revenue rose 20% to $40.5 billion. Capital spending was $6.7 billion, up 27%.“We continue to invest thoughtfully in talent and infrastructure to support our growth, particularly in newer areas like cloud and machine learning,” Ruth Porat, chief financial officer of Alphabet and Google, said in a statement.Alphabet shares fell about 1.5% in extended trading, after closing at $1,288.98 in New York. The stock hit a record earlier on Monday, so expectations were high ahead of the results.Sales and marketing costs will keep rising through the end of the year as Google ramps up advertising ahead of the holiday shopping season, Porat said. The company recently launched a new Pixel smartphone and will need to promote it aggressively to compete with Apple Inc.’s iPhones and Samsung Electronics Co.’s Galaxy handsets.Consumer devices are one way Alphabet is seeking new sources of revenue growth, beyond the main Google digital advertising business. But cloud-computing may be the company’s biggest opportunity. In July, Google said it expected to pull in $8 billion this year in cloud revenue. That’s still a lot less than Amazon and Microsoft, and executives didn’t update that number on Monday.Google hired 6,450 employees in the third quarter, and the largest additions were in cloud computing, for both technical and sales roles, Porat said. “We do remain on pace for head count growth in 2019 to be in line with growth in 2018,” she added during a conference call with analysts.Total revenue, excluding payments to distribution partners, was $33 billion, compared with the average estimate of $32.72 billion. Google’s Other Revenue, which includes cloud and consumer hardware, was $6.4 billion. RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Mahaney was looking for $6.6 billion.Google’s ad revenue rose 17% to $33.9 billion, suggesting demand for the company’s search, video and web display ads remains strong, even as regulatory and privacy pressures mount.Sundar Pichai, chief executive officer of Google, said sales growth was driven by mobile search, YouTube and cloud.He also addressed antitrust investigations into the company, saying Google has helped to cut prices and increase choice for small businesses and consumers. He suggested the company’s forays into new businesses was prompting regulatory push-back spurred by incumbents.Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department started inquiries into whether Google and other large technology firms have violated antitrust law. The House Antitrust Subcommittee has held hearings and submitted intensive document requests to tech companies about potentially anti-competitive practices. And state attorneys general investigating Google recently ordered it to turn over a wide range of information about its ad business.“In many of these areas we are the new entrant and we create competition, and sometimes the competitive pressures can lead to concerns from others,” Pichai said.(Updates with comment from CFO in eighth paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Gerrit De Vynck in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Alistair BarrFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- If someone woke from a coma and saw that the S&P 500 Index was up 21% for the year and reaching a new record high on Monday, the immediate reaction would most likely be that everything is great. But that’s far from true.The list of reasons stocks should be down is much longer than the one for why they should be up. The economy has slowed, and a majority of chief financial officers anticipate a recession within a year. Earnings have stopped growing, and estimates are being cut. Stock valuations are high. The U.S.-China trade war has not been resolved. Congress has started an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump. On the other hand, the Federal Reserve is easing monetary policy, but that’s only because the outlook has deteriorated.So why are equities roaring ahead? The answer comes down to a handful of stocks: Apple Inc., Microsoft Corp., Visa Inc., MasterCard Inc. and Oracle Corp. Those five companies account for half of the S&P 500 tech sector, which has surged 30.2% for the year. Exclude that sector and the S&P 500 would be up only about 14%, according to DataTrek Research. That’s still good but nothing special when compared with the returns in the rest of the world, with the MSCI All-Country World Index excluding the U.S. having gained 12%.Therein lies the hidden risk embedded in the market, which is that any missteps by any of these highfliers could spell doom for equities more broadly. It also underscores just how lacking in breadth this latest leg up has been. For one, the percentage of stocks on the New York Stock Exchange closing above their 200-day moving averages has dropped to 53% from 59% in mid-September.Not only that, but the spread between the share of S&P 500 members closing at 52-week highs and the share at 52-week lows has been in a general downtrend since June.To be sure, it’s not unusual that a handful of stocks have led the broader market higher. Before this year, it was the FAANG group of stocks: Facebook Inc., Apple, Amazon.com Inc., Netflix Inc., Google parent Alphabet Inc. and a few others. A few years ago, AQR Capital Management’s co-founder and chief investment officer, Clifford Asness, published a paper examining the impact of individual stocks on the S&P 500 from 1994 to 2014. What he found was that while the S&P 500 rose 9.3% a year, the top 10 stocks accounted for 4.1 percentage points of that gain on average.Then there’s the awkward fact that smaller stocks that make up the vast majority of the market are down about 11% from their records reached in August 2018 based on the S&P Small Cap 600 and Russell 2000 indexes.This stock market has delivered plenty of surprises, and betting against it has been a losing proposition. In January, when the S&P 500 was trading at about 2,600, the median estimate of about 25 Wall Street strategist surveyed by Bloomberg was for it to end the year at 2,913. It surpassed that level in April and ended Friday at 3,203. But those same strategists are more cautious, predicting the benchmark to drop to 3,000 by the end of the year.Of course, they could raise their forecasts, but that would be awkward given the trend in profits and the slowing economy. Third-quarter earnings are tracking at a 3% decline from a year earlier, and forecasts for the fourth quarter have been cut to a gain of 1.2% from the 5.4% increase that was forecast at the end of July, according to Cantor Fitzgerald. The S&P 500’s price-to-earnings ratio, at just shy of 20 times, is the highest since last October, just as the benchmark was beginning a tumble that led to a 14% drop in the final three months of the year.All that suggests investors need to look beyond the headlines about yet another record.To contact the author of this story: Robert Burgess at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Daniel Niemi at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Robert Burgess is an editor for Bloomberg Opinion. He is the former global executive editor in charge of financial markets for Bloomberg News. As managing editor, he led the company’s news coverage of credit markets during the global financial crisis.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
LONDON, Oct. 28, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- SuiteConnect - DARING Foods, a leading UK plant-based food company, has chosen Oracle NetSuite to help manage growing domestic and international demand for its tasty, healthy and affordable plant-based foods. With NetSuite, the Glasgow-based start-up is able to take advantage of an integrated business platform to capitalise on the growing demand for alternatives to meat in the UK, while also scaling its core business processes to support upcoming international retail launches and distribution deals.
LONDON, Oct. 28, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- SuiteConnect -- eve sleep, the European sleep wellness brand, is helping more and more people unleash the power of sleep with Oracle NetSuite. NetSuite has helped enable eve sleep to meet the growing demand for its products and improve the experience for its customers by increasing efficiencies across its supply chain and streamlining core business operations.
LONDON, Oct. 28, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- SuiteConnect -- Zero Carbon World, a UK charity dedicated to decarbonising the UK through advocating the adoption of electric vehicles, is using Oracle NetSuite to support its vision of creating a sustainable and equitable decarbonised society. NetSuite has helped enable Zero Carbon World expand its national open source charging network for electric vehicles – removing a key barrier to electric vehicle adoption – in the UK.
LONDON, Oct. 28, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- SuiteConnect -- Oracle NetSuite today announced a series of new innovations to help organisations in the UK and Ireland unlock growth and take their business to the next level. The latest innovations within the NetSuite platform include new SuiteSuccess industry cloud solutions and capabilities for nonprofits that are designed to help organisations in the UK and Ireland drive growth, reduce costs and quickly and easily achieve the benefits of cloud computing.
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) just overtook AWS (Amazon Web Services) to bag the $10 billion JEDI (Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure) cloud contract.
(Bloomberg) -- Microsoft Corp. has won the sought-after JEDI cloud computing contract with the Pentagon valued at as much as $10 billion over a decade, dealing a blow to the market leader, Amazon.com Inc., which had been the front-runner.The decision, which was announced by the Defense Department late Friday, may be challenged by Amazon, according to a person familiar with the matter, because President Donald Trump weighed in on the bidding process. The terms of the competition were also hotly contested by another rival, Oracle Corp.The Pentagon has said the cloud project, known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI, is intended to help bring American military technology into the modern era.The Defense Department is investing in commercial cloud services, which host computing power and storage in remote data centers, to improve data security and speed up real-time sharing of information across the military.The Pentagon said the contract was expected to be completed by 2029. Microsoft shares rose 0.6% to $140.73 at Friday’s close.Amazon, which won a lucrative cloud contract with the Central Intelligence Agency in 2013, was long seen to have the upper hand in the competition. But politics entered the picture. Trump has long been at odds with Amazon’s Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos. Bezos also owns the Washington Post, which Trump claims has treated him unfairly in its coverage“We’re surprised about this conclusion,” said Douglas Stone, an Amazon spokesman. He added that the company was “the clear leader in cloud computing, and a detailed assessment purely on the comparative offerings clearly lead to a different conclusion. We remain deeply committed to continuing to innovate for the new digital battlefield where security, efficiency, resiliency, and scalability of resources can be the difference between success and failure.”Trump surprised the industry earlier this year when he openly questioned whether the contract was being competitively bid.A new book by Guy Snodgrass, a speechwriter to former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, alleges that Trump, in the summer of 2018, told Mattis to “screw Amazon” and lock it out of the bid. Mattis didn’t do what Trump asked, Snodgrass wrote. Mattis has criticized the book.Amazon was believed to be the front-runner until Friday evening.The decision is a big boost for Microsoft’s cloud business.“This is a paradigm changer for Microsoft,” said Daniel Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities who has a “buy” rating on Microsoft. “It’s a landmark win that will change the cloud computing battle over the next decade. It’s a shocker to Amazon and Bezos to lose it. But for Microsoft it signals a new era of growth in cloud. This adds $10 to the stock in my opinion.”A Microsoft representative referred questions to the Defense Department announcement. The White House did not respond to a request for comment.Amazon Web Services, the retail giant’s cloud computing arm, has a wide lead in the business of selling cloud services to businesses and governments, with $32.5 billion in sales during the most recently reported 12 months. Microsoft, which doesn’t break out comparable sales for its Azure unit, likely pulled in a fraction of that, analysts say.In a statement released later Friday night, the Defense Department said that “the acquisition process was conducted in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. The process cleared review by” the U.S. General Accounting Office and the Court of Federal Claims.“All offerors were treated fairly and evaluated consistently with the solicitation’s stated evaluation criteria,” the department added, saying that “additional contracts are planned for both cloud services and complementary migration and integration solutions necessary to achieve effective cloud adoption.”The Pentagon’s inspector general said in a separate statement on Friday night that it had “not found evidence that we believe would prevent the DoD from making a decision about the award of the contract.” The watchdog agency, which was leading a review by “multidisciplinary team of auditors, investigators, and attorneys,” was aiming to have its work done by the end of November.The Defense Department had come under criticism for its handling of the winner-take-all project, which was marred by accusations of improper ties between former Pentagon officials and Amazon. Oracle and International Business Machines Corp. waged a fierce lobbying and legal campaign over the decision to choose just one provider, arguing it would imperil the Pentagon’s data and stiffle innovation. Both companies were later eliminated from the competition, but Oracle filed suit.A judge said the company did not have the legal standing to challenge the terms of the procurement process. Oracle has appealed that verdict. Alphabet Inc.’s Google, another large cloud provider, withdrew from consideration last year amid employee concerns over the company’s ties to defense contracting.As recently as Tuesday, the Pentagon said Defense Defense Secretary Mark Esper had recused himself from any decisions involving the contract to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest because his son works with one of the original applicants.IBM confirmed that Esper’s son has been a digital strategy consultant with the company since February but said that his job was “unrelated to IBM’s pursuit” of the cloud deal.The government has ramped up scrutiny of large technology companies, including Amazon, Apple Inc., Facebook Inc. and Google, over issues ranging from consumer privacy to marketplace competition. Yet even as Microsoft spent much of the 1990s wrangling with U.S. officials, ultimately losing a landmark case that accused the software maker of anti-competitive practices, it has largely stayed out of the recent round of regulatory glare. The company has even become a steady government contractor.Chris Lynch, the former director of the Pentagon’s Defense Digital Service who helped design the JEDI project, praised the decision on Twitter. “JEDI Cloud is critical to our women and men in uniform,” he wrote.But Representative Steve Womack of Arkansas, one of several Republican lawmakers who took their concerns about the process to the White House, said he remained “concerned with the contract structure.” He has said that the single source bid amounts to “limiting competition.”Bezos and Microsoft founder Bill Gates are the two richest men in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.\--With assistance from Dina Bass, Sara Forden, Ben Brody, Ryan Beene and Matt Day.To contact the reporters on this story: John Harney in Washington at email@example.com;Naomi Nix in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Sara Forden at email@example.com, John Harney, Tom GilesFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
We searched using our Zacks Stock Screener for large-cap, blue-chip tech stocks that look both stable and poised to expand even in a difficult environment....
(Bloomberg) -- Activist investor Starboard Value contends Box Inc. has underperformed its competitors due to a slowing growth rate and poor profitability and could be an attractive takeover target.Starboard sees the software maker as having multiple avenues to unlock value, including accelerating growth, striking a better balance between its sales growth and profitability, or potentially even seeking a buyer.“We believe this company is very, very attractive and could be acquired,” Starboard Chief Executive Officer Jeff Smith said Thursday at the C4K Investors Conference in Toronto.Box’s shares rose as much as 4.5% in New York trading. They closed up 3.7% to $16.36, giving the company a market value of $2.42 billion.Starboard disclosed a 7.5% stake in Redwood City, California-based Box last month, putting more pressure on the company, which has struggled to accelerate sales and become more profitable.Preferred AvenueSmith said later Thursday in an interview with Bloomberg TV his preferred avenue for the company to create value wasn’t through a sale. He acknowledged several potential strategic buyers, such as Adobe Inc. or Oracle Corp., along with private equity firms, may be interested in acquiring Box.A representative for Box declined to comment.Box is facing problems similar to those of other companies whose organic growth has slowed while having trouble shifting their model, Smith said. Box hasn’t met lofty sales growth targets that are common in the cloud-computing market, as it tries to transition to a broader software suite from from its current data-storage products.“The issue comes when you’re promising more growth than you’re achieving and you’re not able to pivot and balance that profitability and instead, as you may see in Box, you instead continue to spend more and more dollars chasing that growth,” Smith said. “Those companies that are reaching that level really need to also understand how to balance profitability.”Starboard has been one of the busiest activists this year, launching 10 campaigns, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Those targets have included Dollar Tree Inc., EBay Inc., Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Papa John’s International Inc., where Smith was appointed chairman in February.(Updates with closing share price in fourth paragraph.)\--With assistance from Michael Bellusci, Erik Schatzker, Nico Grant and Josh Friedman.To contact the reporters on this story: Scott Deveau in New York at firstname.lastname@example.org;Hema Parmar in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Liana Baker at firstname.lastname@example.org, ;Alan Goldstein at email@example.com, Michael Hytha, Matthew MonksFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Analysts' view on Amazon's (AMZN) Q3 performance points to mixed results. While Amazon Web Services are expected to improve revenues, uptick in costs associated with one-day shipping is a dampener.