Alongside analyst downgrades and reports that Facebook is working on a competitor to Snap (SNAP) Maps, a feature that shows you the location of friends nearby, Snap's stock took yet another beating on Thursday. Shares slumped more than 5%, reaching an all-time low of $7.80 per share.
Snap has been on a consistent downward slide since the company reported its latest earnings, sinking more than 37%. In that Aug. 7 report, investors were rattled by news of that Snap lost users for the first time ever, which CEO Evan Spiegel blamed largely on a poorly-received redesign in early 2018.
Since then, the exit of strategy chief Imran Khan, an influential executive who announced plans to leave the faltering social media firm in September, have further discouraged some investors. In a note to clients on Thursday, Evercore ISI's Anthony DiClemente cited a lack of positive catalysts for Snap in lowering the firm's price target from $9 to $7 per share.
"We believe that competition (particularly from Instagram) is irreversibly reducing Snap's opportunity to deliver on long-term investor expectations," DiClemente wrote.
Competitive threats from Facebook (FB) and Instagram, a long-standing narrative concerning Snap's staying power as advertising-driven social media firms have collectively faltered, are continuing to be an issue. On Thursday, Facebook's habit of copycatting Snap features -- as it did previously with Instagram Stories -- again came to the fore with news that Facebook is developing a mapping tool similar to Snap Maps.
Nonetheless, Wedbush's Michael Pachter suggested that the competition between Snap and the much-larger Facebook may be overblown: "Instagram Stories is old news," he said in an email. "Snap is fine; that's why I upgraded in September."
Meanwhile, Citi's Mark May wrote in a note on Thursday that should revenue growth continue to slow, Snap may need to raise more capital in 2019 or 2020. In August, Snap reported a net loss of 14 cents per share on revenue of $262 million, both of which beat consensus estimates.
Could this mean that Snap is ripe for a takeover? TheStreet's Eric Jhonsa speculated that the Snapchat parent could make an appealing buy for a company like Alphabet (GOOGL) , given the latter's potential willingness to absorb any risks as well as its general lack of aptitude at building social media products.
And according to NYU professor Scott Galloway, Amazon may be another tech giant interested in snapping up the lagging social media firm: Speaking on a Recode podcast, Galloway cited Snap's popularity with a younger demographic -- an often-cited bright spot for Snap -- as one reason that Amazon might be interested in buying and potentially delivering product ads to Snap's users.
Whether it's Amazon or another company that ends up acquiring it, "Snap won't be an independent company by the end of 2019," Galloway predicted.