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NEWS 

SMB Jumpstreet Technology Podcast DownloadSage buys Fairsai – HRMS – Sage People – probably explains why CEO Stephen Kelly skipped out on his namesake “CEO Circle” event which was held for the top Sage partners in Costa Rica February 23-27, 2017. Sage annual meeting was also the Tuesday after CEO Circle. Maybe Sage was scrambling to try to announce during the AGM.

Payments giant Verifone investigating breach – Credit and debit card payments giant Verifone [NYSE: PAY] is investigating a breach of its internal computer networks that appears to have impacted a number of companies running its point-of-sale solutions, according to sources. Verifone says the extent of the breach was limited to its corporate network and that its payment services network was not impacted. http://krebsonsecurity.com/2017/03/payments-giant-verifone-investigating-breach/

Phishing scams impacting schools in Connecticut – employees tricked into emailing copies of W2 forms to an email address they thought was a co-worker – http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local/Glastonbury-Schools-Phishing-Scandals-Impacts-1600-Workers-415374893.html

Sage Summit Tour Underway Globally – appears to be meeting attendance projections

Microsoft To Roll out Teams More Widely March 14 – top requests for improvements include allowing external access, better notifications, support for private channels. Microsoft has a long road ahead to catch Slack and other competitors.  https://microsoftteams.uservoice.com/forums/555103-public-preview/filters/top

 

EVENTS

http://ingrammicrocloudsummit.com/
Ingram Micro Cloud Conference – April 19 – 22 – Phoenix, AZ

https://www.italliance.com/eweb/DynamicPage.aspx?Site=ITA&WebCode=2017SPRING4
IT Alliance – April 23- 25, 2017 St Petersburg FL

https://www.sage.com/sage-summit/en-us/
Sage Summit Tour Events Ongoing – USA Stop May 9-11, 2017 Atlanta with 4,250 projected to attend –

 

MAIN DISCUSSION

The importance of moats – a deep, wide ditch surrounding a castle, fort, or town, typically filled with water and intended as a defense against attack.

Via Morningstar – Economic Moat

An Economic Moat is a proprietary Morningstar data point.
The idea of an economic moat refers to how likely a company is to keep competitors at bay for an extended period. One of the keys to finding superior long-term investments is buying companies that will be able to stay one step ahead of their competitors, and it’s this characteristic–think of it as the strength and sustainability of a firm’s competitive advantage–that Morningstar is trying to capture with the economic moat rating.

What is your company’s moat?

What is NOT a moat?
· Most commonly resold technologies with no customization
· Hourly rates

Examples of common moats

  • Michael Porter
    • Cost advantage / efficiencies
    • High switching costs (customizations, managed services)
    • Network effect (value of product or service increases as more people use it)
    • Intangible assets (such as brand recognition)

Other things to consider

  • Vertical specialties (IP) – modifications, reports, custom code
  • Support agreement (annual)
  • Industry knowledge
  • Response time
  • Size of company – end to end services
  • Geographic reach – ability to be on-site
  • Tie in the customer subscription with your own support agreement to one bundle/price