Company Profile: Hargreaves Landsdown is one of the U.K.'s leading independent financial service providers and asset management specialists.
Current Share Price: 444.12 GBP (Nov. 28)Motola's Take: Motola likes Hargreaves because the company services the do-it-yourself market, like retail investors too small for the advisor market, with a mutual fund platform. "This is important because the U.K. is undergoing a sea change similar to what happened in the US about 15 years ago -- the move from defined benefit to defined contribution," Motola says. Therefore, there is a large and growing asset base whose needs are not being addressed, Motola says. While he expects competition to increase over time, "Hargreaves has little direct competition at the moment. The business is growing revenues well in excess of 20% and it trades at a very attractive valuation."
Yoox SpA Company Profile: Yoox SpA is an Italy-based Internet company that specializes in high-end fashion and design brands. Current Share Price: 9.20 euros (Nov. 28) Motola's Take: Motola is impressed with Yoox's customer list, which includes a who's who of European design houses: Prada, Armani, and Marni, among many others. "Yoox understands the fashion business, and is uniquely capable of answering the needs of their clients, making entry barriers quite high," Motola says. Around 20% of revenues come from Italy itself, with the rest of Europe representing almost half, Motola points out. Yoox also continues to grow by taking a larger percentage of online sales, adding new customers and adding new geographies. "When Yoox adds a new geographies, many of the their existing customers 'opt-in,' extending their value and their reach," Motola says. -- Written by Robert Holmes in Boston.
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