LinkedIn: Stock's a Buy, Company's a Perpetual Start-up

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- I'm in San Francisco Friday to chat with Tim Westergren, co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer at Pandora (P). (Check my Twitter feed -- @Rocco_TheStreet -- for pictures from Pandora's Oakland HQ and elsewhere around the Bay Area all weekend.)

We'll air my conversation with Westergren Tuesday morning on the first edition of TheBeach Meets TheStreet. This article sums up what we're going for. There's no better guest to kick it off than Westergren.

I get at this whole "thing" I'm trying to get at (read that a few times and it makes sense ... really) in this morning's Apple ( AAPL): Einhorn's a Hustler and He Doesn't Understand or Care About Apple.

Perpetual start-up. Start-up mentality. Start-up culture.

There's just this whole way of thinking about companies as start-ups that, say, the classically trained MBA simply cannot wrap his or her head around. As someone who is rarely at a loss for words, I have a bit of difficulty expressing how I feel. It's almost like it's such a part of me that I can't explain it (if that makes sense!).

That said, when I talk to entrepreneurs, people at start-ups and others of that ilk, they just "get it." They completely understand why I'm bullish Amazon.com ( AMZN) and bow to the Bezos. When I pitch them on TheBeach Meets TheStreet, the idea of a raw, unrefined, wholly casual production resonates with them. They have no trouble making sense of the notion that companies such as Pandora, Facebook ( FB) and LinkedIn ( LNKD) are the future ... NOW.

Investors need to embrace a new way of thinking as the decade progresses: This is not 1999-2000. That era set the stage for what we have now -- companies changing the rules of the game, not to mention the way we carry out our most basic daily functions.

If LinkedIn's earnings report doesn't make you think twice about all of this, I'm not sure what will.

This is the classic case of a perpetual start-up with massive long-term opportunity and the drive, resources and know-how to leverage it.

You can read the above-linked article to get the numbers on LinkedIn's quarter, but I'm more concerned with the great instinct of the company's CEO, Jeff Weiner, and the people who work with him. They just get things done. Head down. Tunnel vision. No attention paid to the critics who claim they're not for real ... because they realize -- though with humility -- that these critics simply do not get it.

It's in the stuff I highlighted at the beginning of the year -- 31% ago -- when I called LNKD The Riskiest Sure Bet of 2013.

When you see a company like LinkedIn make a smart move into content -- as it did around the time it hired its executive editor, Dan Roth, from Wired and Fortune fame -- you absolutely must pay attention. I have the advantage, I guess, of knowing who Roth is because I work in the same industry. That move, though largely unreported by Wall Street analysts and the media, was big and an illustration of how the company operates across its business.

Rarely do you see the finance types hitting hard the focus of my article from earlier in the year where I translated what Weiner said on the conference call before last in response to the only question he was asked about content:
Translation: We're giving people more reasons to visit LinkedIn. Increased visits lead to greater adoption of our premium services. In other words, LinkedIn operates a stickier ecosystem today than it did six months or a year ago.
As LinkedIn becomes more useful, it, using Marissa Mayer's words with regards to Yahoo!'s (YHOO) information and entertainment platform, becomes a "daily habit" for current and prospective members, thereby increasing the likelihood that these users will click an ad or buy a premium subscription.

Generally, it's not a good idea to jump on such a massive move. Always makes sense to wait for a pullback. However, with LNKD -- especially if you're already in a profitable position -- this might be as good a time as any to buy more.

-- Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.

Rocco Pendola is TheStreet's Director of Social Media. Pendola's daily contributions to TheStreet frequently appear on CNBC and at various top online properties, such as Forbes.

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