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    Essential is now valued at over one billion dollars
    Essential, the new phone startup from Android founder Andy Rubin, is now a unicorn, according to reports from Bloomberg columnist Tim Culpan over the weekend. If you’re not up to date on the parlance of Silicon Valley, a unicorn is a company that’s valued at over $1 billion dollars.
     
  1. psionandy

    psionandy Android Expert
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    give it a couple of months... and watch it fall....
     
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  2. LV426

    LV426 I say we take off and nuke this place from orbit
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    Showing my economic naivety here, but how can a company which has sold nothing, be valued at over one billion dollars?
     
  3. overlordror

    overlordror Well-Known Member
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    Can't wait to see this phone on the list of biggest Android failures at the end of the year. That huge status bar, no thanks.
     
  4. kate

    kate Dreaming of Bugdroid.
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    Foxconn paid $3 million to own 0.25% of Essential, which mathematically makes 100% of Essential worth $1.2 billion.

    Not an expert either, but if someone is willing to pay it that's what they say it's worth. Sort of like the stock market, if everyone wants to buy a companies stock it goes up and then the company is worth more.
     
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  5. Hadron

    Hadron  
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    Twitter has held a valuation of more than 10 times this for several years despite never making a profit or showing any sign of having a strategy for doing so. It's as Kate says, except in some cases I wonder whether there is an objective judgement of prospects for profit or just a feeling that something so well-known and used must be worth something.

    In this case I think the phone is only part of their plans (we've seen less of the home automation stuff, but that's certainly a big part of it - whether that market has the potential those people think it has is a different question). Though if you were just looking at the phone business I wonder how much they'd need to do to turn a profit? They can't have anything like the outgoings of someone like say HTC, who employ many thousands and own several factories. Now considerations like that don't get you to a billion dollar valuation - the people who are investing tens or hundreds of millions see something more than a boutique phone manufacturer who can sell enough to survive - but it is relevant to their prospects for short-term survival. But I'm sure that with the investment they have they are not going to disappear in the next year or two, no matter how well their first phone does or does not sell.

    In fact they aren't pretending they expect this one to become a market leader (though the statements they make mean they are hoping it will sell better than the Pixels). I sort of wonder whether this first phone's purpose is as much to get attention as to turn a profit: unusual design, exotic materials that are not designed to be turned out in the 10s of millions, it might be more about marketing and establishing an identity than being profitable in itself. Obviously for that to work it needs to get on the market, but I do wonder if it's actually intended as a loss-leader?
     
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