I have to be one of the few persons on the planet following this unusual situation. The same was true for Teton Petroleum (TPE). Just as we had an event (pending acquisition of large land holdings) in Teton that was buried in an SEC filing we also have in this situation some recent key catalysts that should benefit the stock substantially in my opinion.
When you have these catalysts and you are able to recognize them as such the results can be explosive. It is extremely difficult many times to decipher the catalysts. Being ancient and very experienced helps in this exercise. Once upon a time in another life, I was Prez of a Venture Capital Company so I know a tad about intellectual property.
The following is meant to help you to do your own due diligence and make your own decisions. You determine your own destiny, no one else. Investing in the stock market involves high risk including this situation. As always I eat my own cooking so I do own shares in this company. I am not aware of any newsletter covering the Company. I did find a Company summary (I noted a few errors in it) by using Google.
This is a Company in complete transition. Let me repeat so it sinks in, this is a Company in complete transition. This creates the opportunity IMO. What does this imply? IMO we probably won't recognize the Company in several months. We are likely to see dramatic changes to the Company over the next several months. I would imagine a new name. Hopefully a new website. Hopefully a cleanup of their balance sheet (I happen to be a CPA and this is the first thing I look at. I don't like their current balance sheet. However, I recognize how very easily their balance sheet could be cleaned up. This has to be a top priority of management IMO. Ask yourself why would a world class intellectual property team join this Company???? ) ETC. ETC. ETC.
The opportunity is created by this transition. Change is our friend here. We watched AMRS build from scratch since they had no operations at the beginning. Here all the pieces have already been assembled, it is just a matter of execution. The Company has put together a world class team to carry out part of the execution. This only insures success in my mind. I am betting on the world class team!
Market Central, Inc
Profile of the Company found on the Internet: profiles.shaazamstocks.com See conclusions.
Website www.marketcentral.com Note: This website does not reflect the Company's present business thrust so it should be mostly ignored.
Key article to read: econtentmag.com
I calculate there are about 7 million common shares outstanding---see press release for shares retired in November 2004--Yahoo shares outstanding is WRONG---The float is about 2 million shares per the above profile---There is 5 million shares of Series A preferred convertible one-for-one and about 4 million Series B preferred convertible one-for-one--note even if they do convert these would be restricted shares and not freely traded until securities regulations complied with.
There are approximately 5 million options outstanding at average price over $ 2 a share and 3 million warrants to purchase shares at approximately $ 2.40 a share. Note that the exercise prices are north of current market price which is positive IMO.
Market Central Description
"Market Central is an emerging leader in the Knowledge Management industry, specializing in solutions that enable businesses to efficiently store, categorize and retrieve information with state-of-the-art technologies. For these technologies, Market Central holds multiple valuable patents in its Intellectual Property portfolio. Market Central continues to invest in the enhancement of these Intellectual Property assets, development of new additions to the portfolio, and evaluation of related acquisitions. As part of the strategic decision to leave the call center business and focus on next generation knowledge management tools in such areas as search, intelligent document recognition and online collaboration software, Market Central has acquired technologies that combined have had over $20 million invested over 45 man-years of development."
Statement by Ron Laurie, Co-Founder and Managing Director, Inflexion Point Strategy "who has led IP teams in some of the largest technology deals in history, worth over $50 billion":
"Market Central has a bold vision for commercializing its technology and monetizing its intellectual property assets," noted Laurie. "The Company has an intriguing IP portfolio. I am excited to work with Market Central to identify potential partners that share its vision."
The KEY immediate catalyst will be "commercializing its technology and monetizing its intellectual property assets"--don't discount or underestimate the potential here:
Market Central Launches Intellectual Property Asset Management Program
Business Wire (Wed, Feb 2)
Comment: You do not assemble a world class intellectual property team as follows (includes Google's counsel!!!!) to sit on their thumbs !!!!!!!!!!!!! I suggest you
do a google search on all parties involved.
Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox, P.L.L.C. ("SKGF")
"We secure patents and trademarks for products of all kinds---and by astute licensing and fierce defense---help realize their maximum value."
Robert G. Sterne, Founder and Director, SKGF skgf.com
Donald J. Featherstone, Director, SKGF skgf.com
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati ("WSGR")--Google legal counsel !!!!
Michael Raschid, Partner; WSGR wsgr.com
Trevor Chaplick, Partner, WSGR wsgr.com
Ron Laurie, Co-Founder and Managing Director, Inflexion Point Strategy Inflexion Point Strategy is an intellectual property investment bank and business advisor that works with technology companies and institutional investors in buying, selling and investing in strategic IP assets and IP-intensive businesses by providing clients a seamless integration of domain expertise in business, technology and IP asset management. Inflexion Point is headquartered in Palo Alto, with offices in Berkeley and Los Angeles. Website: www.ip-strategy.com. See also: ipsociety.net See Client list: ip-strategy.com
Here is the Company's press release ---I have added the word "KEY" to parts that I believe (IMHO) are extremely important--Realize also that all the parties had to approve the wording of this press release--that in itself is KEY:
Market Central Launches Intellectual Property Asset Management Program
Market Central, Inc. (MKTE), a knowledge management company specializing in solutions that enable businesses to efficiently store, categorize and retrieve information with state-of-the-art technologies, today announced the formation of a team of leading intellectual property advisors to assist the company with intellectual property planning, identifying parties interested in the Company's intellectual property and structuring possible transactions.
The Company has retained (KEY) Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox, P.L.L.C. ("SKGF"), Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati ("WSGR"), and Inflexion Point Strategy LLC to support this effort. The team will be led by Doyal Bryant, CEO and Paul Odom, Chief Scientist overseeing the development of Market Central's patents; Robert G. Sterne, Founder and Director, SKGF; Donald J. Featherstone, Director, SKGF; Trevor Chaplick, Partner, WSGR; Michael Raschid, Partner; WSGR; and Ron Laurie, Co-Founder and Managing Director, Inflexion Point Strategy.
Market Central has a growing intellectual property portfolio that includes patents, patent applications and innovations that (KEY) may be of interest to parties involved in search technologies, XML applications and other data management applications. The recent auction of the CommerceOne patent portfolio (KEY) related to XML applications sold for over $15 million highlights (KEY) the potential value of IP assets in this area. "There are many approaches to monetizing IP assets, and we believe Market Central is (KEY) approaching and preparing itself for the next wave in IP asset management. Many people, lawyers in particular, are still looking at IP assets as a bundle of (KEY) legal rights that you need to assert in court in order to get some money out of them," Bryant said. However, he said "some (KEY-this press release had to be approved by all parties) leading companies, like ours, are starting to use those intangible assets to create new businesses and market their technologies."
"Our announcement today is just the next step in the Market Central's growth as a leading knowledge management technology company. With the existing high-level interest in XML and next generation search and document content management technologies, we believe the (KEY) time is right for us to (KEY) aggressively move our technology and IP strategies forward. We decided that our best course of action was to surround ourselves with leading professionals, who can assist us extract the greatest value from our growing intellectual property portfolio. With this team, we have done that," stated Bryant.
"We appreciate the confidence that Market Central has placed in us to help bring together a truly remarkable team of intellectual property experts," commented Sterne. "With its intellectual property strategy and the creation of this team, Market Central has positioned itself well to (KEY) successfully maximize the value of its innovations. We look forward to working with Market Central and the other team members," he added.
"Market Central has a (KEY) bold vision for commercializing its technology and monetizing its intellectual property assets," noted Laurie. "The Company has an (KEY because who is saying this:) intriguing IP portfolio. I am excited to work with Market Central to identify potential partners that share its vision."
"We are very excited about working with Market Central in order to help develop a strategy to leverage its intellectual property assets," said Trevor Chaplick, Managing Partner of the Reston, Virginia office of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, a leading legal advisor to growth and technology enterprises. He added, "We hope to be an integral part of the business and legal team that helps Market Central achieve its strategic objectives regarding such intellectual property."
Background of Ron Laurie:
BSIE U.C. Berkeley, JD U.S.F. Ron has worked in Silicon Valley for over 40 years, first as a software engineer and then as one of the nation's top intellectual property lawyers. As an attorney, Ron advised computer, communications, semiconductor, media and financial services companies on IP strategy—a subject he taught at Stanford and U.C. Berkeley law schools—with a focus on the strategic use of IP assets in complex business transactions. Ron was a founding partner of the Silicon Valley offices of Skadden Arps and Weil Gotshal, and led IP teams in some of the largest technology deals in history, worth over $50 billion. Ron has been listed in virtually every peer review survey of leading IP lawyers including Top 25 California IP Lawyers, Best Lawyers in America, America's Leading Business Lawyers, Global Counsel 3000, and International Who's Who of Business Lawyers.
Understanding Laurie's "monetizing IP assets":
"There are many approaches to monetizing IP assets, and we believe this is going to be the next wave in IP management."
The SECOND KEY Catalyst is the marketing of the Company's IP Technology---IMO---The world class IP team would not have come on board if they did not believe this IP technology had some merit! This could be a huge market need to address:
What problem the Company's technology is attempting to address:
Search’s Missing Ingredient
The rapidly expanding information pool is restricting search users’ ability to find the information that they want based on their initial queries. The missing ingredient in the current search technology is relevance. The average user puts in 1.8 words in the initial query and gets back anywhere from 1,000 to 100,000 or even millions of “hits”. Even the best technologies are limited and inefficient when attempting to create true relevance at this scale. The algorithms used today by existing search engines produce results that amount to an arbitrary guess at what the user had in mind. The next step in search technology has to be one in which the user can effectively and intuitively communicate relevance criteria to the system with a minimum amount of effort.
"The Company has developed a next-generation suite of solutions that include proprietary, patented software for data capture, cleansing, mining, integration, search and intelligent document recognition.
The Company's proprietary and patented software was acquired in July, 2003 when it purchased the assets of Pliant Technologies. The software automates the capture, search, cleansing, workflow management, and information mining of all types of unstructured and structured data.
The software has harnessed artificial intelligence within a new state of the art search engine based around its SourceWare® product which uses patented technology that enables the integration of any data (e.g. text, database tables, fields, objects, spreadsheets, graphics, video, etc.); performs sophisticated searches of data for mission critical information; and mines data for business intelligence.
This is a rapidly growing area in the B2B market since more than 80% of referenced information in business is unstructured. Market Central's software provides digitalized structure and the ability to group data to unveil patterns useful to business development. The market for intelligent document capture alone is estimated at $250M with a CAGR of 6.1% to 15.6%.
Market Central's software has been awarded five (5) patents (one is pending). Moving forward, the company will focus its efforts on acquiring and developing technologies that improve the way businesses and people communicate, collaborate, search, and share information. This new direction is designed to strengthen Market Central and help shape the future growth of the company in demand markets such as search, collaboration/customer service, and Intelligent Document Recognition (IDR).
The Company has recently signed a Letter of Intent to acquire the assets of Convey Systems, Inc. including patents, intellectual property, software, and certain other assets, from Convey's parent company, The Tag Group, Inc. (PNK: TGGP) and the Board has entered into an interim management agreement naming Mr. Doyal Bryant, President and CEO of Convey Systems, to serve as the President and CEO of Market Central, Inc., pending the consummation of the transaction.
In addition, Mr. Preston Rodenbaugh, an executive officer in Convey, will serve as Executive Vice President of Market Central under the same management agreement. Convey Systems, Inc., a Charlotte, North Carolina-based company provides web-based collaboration software systems with national and international customers in financial, travel, and libraries services. Convey System software is recognized as one of the world's leading virtual reference tools for the libraries of the world. " END
Ask yourself how big in terms of market cap is Google? $ 51 BILLION. This is not to say that this Company is the next Google. It merely indicates the importance placed on such IP technology. I also recall that Google paid Yahoo some $ 300 million just before their IPO:
Yahoo paid IN 2003 $ 1.6 Billion for Overture. newsfactor.com Y
The point of the above is to show this is a large market. This Company has a tiny market cap. The reason it is, is because it is in transition. When the dust clears from the Company's transition, will a brilliant diamond appear or coal?
I have decided to bet with the world class intellectual property team just brought on board. They are the real professionals.