Yelp ( YELP) got unmercifully sold off as part of the Facebook ( FB) IPO debacle a few weeks ago.There was no reason for it, but the stock briefly broke its IPO price a couple of weeks ago when it got down to $14.That's around the time I went on Bloomberg TV's Money Moves to stick up for the stock and continue to speak bullishly about the company. And since that time, the stock has been on an absolute tear. It's up 50% in two weeks. The stock is now at $21.50 and looks ready to move higher. Where does the stock go from here? The biggest announcement of the last few weeks was Apple ( AAPL) confirming that Yelp would be more deeply integrated into Siri to provide its users with more relevant local search results when they use the voice-automated personal assistant. Investors are assuming that this partnership will lead to much more significant traffic to Yelp. But another interesting announcement from last week was that Yelp would get more deeply integrated into Microsoft's ( MSFT) Bing search results. On the surface, both deals make sense for Yelp since it rejected Google's (GOOG) buyout offer a couple of years ago and then got into a scrap with Google for scraping Yelp's data for its search results. So, why wouldn't Yelp want to team up with folks who are anti-Google like Microsoft and Apple? But there's something also very interesting about both of these announcements. Both deals put Yelp in your car for future local business searches. At Apple's WWDC event last week they announced that they be integrating Siri into future car models. You'll eventually have a Siri button you press and then talk to your personal assistant in the car just as you do on your iPhone. It's going to be very important for you to know the nearest gas station or Panera Bread to you when you're driving around. Microsoft has also been making a big push of voice technology into a line of cars and, more recently, getting some of their other applications like Bing included. So, now users will be able to get details for local businesses as they drive around, whether in an Apple-friendly car or a Microsoft-friendly one.
In Yelp's original IPO filing, they actually talk about the potential for their service in cars. In some ways, Yelp could become a new in-car ad network. So, Yelp is back to where it was a few weeks ago prior to its earnings announcement, in which they raised full year guidance. It's still an attractive buyout candidate for someone. I still like them.