QTS is Top Performer in 2013 as Data Center Stocks Lag the Market

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Wall Street loved IPOs in 2013, and that trend extended to the data center sector. QTS Realty and CyrusOne were the top performers among publicly-held data center companies for 2013 after going public earlier in the year.

But they were the best of a weak bunch. The sector trailed the broader market, as investors cooled on data center stocks amid growing cloud competition and debates about the valuation of service providers.

QTS Realty (QTS) ended the year at $24.78, an 18 percent improvement on the $21 pricing of its IPO in October. Shares of QTS jumped in late December after analysts from Morgan Stanley recommended the stock. CyrusOne(CONE) had its IPO in January at $19 a share, and closed the year 17.5 percent higher at $22.33, recording strong sales along the way. The two newcomers edged out CoreSite Realty (COR), which had the best showing among incumbent data center REITs with a 16.4 percent gain for the year.

Mediocre Gains as Wall Street Advances

Despite those gains, it was a year many data center investors might like to forget, as even the sector’s top performers trailed the broader market. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 26.5 percent for the year, while the S&P 500 improved by 29.6 percent and the NASDAQ soared 38.3 percent.

That weak performance marked a departure from recent years, when the data center sector outperformed the market with strong gains in both 2011 and 2012. By early 2013, the lofty valuations for data center and cloud computing companies came under scrutiny on Wall Street, including high-profile debates over the performance of two industry bellwethers, Rackspace Hosting (RAX) and Digital Realty Trust (DLR).

Rackspace had been on the vanguard of the providers gaining from interest in cloud computing, soaring 37 percent in 2011 and 73 percent in 2012. But in February Rackspace shares slid 20 percent after the company’s earnings raised concerns that the rate of adoption for cloud computing services may be moderating. The company was then the focus of a critical writeup in Barron’s asserting that RAX was overvalued. Subsequent earnings stumbles left Rackspace shares down 47 percent for the year, making it the sector’s worst performer.

In May, hedge fund Highfields Capital Management asserted that investors should short shares of Digital Realty, saying the huge data center developer was understating the future investment in facilities that would be required to support its enterprise customers. Digital Realty said Highfields was “mischaracterizing and drawing inaccurate conclusions” from its disclosures, but the debate focused Wall Street’s attention on data center maintenance costs. In October Digital Realty lowered its revenue guidance for the coming year, saying enterprise tenants were deploying new data center space more slowly than expected. That triggered a selloff in data center stocks, which helped push DLR shares to a decline of 27 percent for the year.

As for the fourth quarter performance, the Data Center Investor chart tracks closely with the full-year showings, with QTS and CyrusOne leading the pack, with Rackspace trailing.


Private Investment Firm Littlejohn & Co. Acquires Hostway Corporation

imageWeb host Hostway Corporation has been acquired by Littlejohn & Co., a Greenwich, CT-based private investment firm whose resources are expected to enhance Hostway’s managed, cloud and web hosting efforts and their promotion.

Hostway already provides hosted IT solutions to more than 500,000 small and medium-size businesses and enterprise customers. As demand for hosted IT solutions continues to grow, Littlejohn will serve as an active shareholder and board of directors, and support Hostway’s efforts to acquire new customers and further differentiate its offerings.

“We are extremely pleased to partner with Littlejohn and gain access to additional resources to help us grow our managed, cloud and web hosting businesses,” Hostway president John Martis said in a statement.

Hostway currently has more than 250,000 square feet of data center space across four continents and 12 countries, and it is one of the largest cloud hosting and IaaS providers in the world.

Littlejohn managing director Michael Kaplan said in a statement, “We look forward to working with Hostway’s management to accelerate growth by continued investment in Hostway’s technology platform, enhancing its sales and marketing efforts and selectively making acquisitions targeted at enhancing the customer experience.”

Over the past few years, private equity firms have shown great interest in large web hosts. In July 2013, Host Europe Group, a company with more than a million customers, was bought by European private equity firm Cinvin for £438 million (or roughly $671 million at the time). And in 2011, web host Go Daddy was bought by KKR & Co., Silver Lake Partners and Technology Crossover Ventures.

With the backing of their private equity partners, many of these hosting companies have, in turn, had greater power to grow through acquisition. For instance, with the help of its backing, Go Daddy was able to make a recent string of purchases including web host Media Temple and domain marketplace Afternic.

In the Hostway transaction, Cowen and Company, LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor to Littlejohn, and DH Capital, LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor to Hostway.

Great Advice For Anyone Running A Home Business

There are endless commercials, ads and magazines devoted to running your own business. It can be difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff when comes to being an entrepreneur. Do not believe everything you read. You need to carefully read the information about to be presented to you.

It is advisable to have a PO box as a mailing address for your home based business. Don’t use a home address when you need to post advertising online! You want to protect both your identity and your family’s identity.

If you have the knowledge, promoting a business need not be tough. One great option may be to set up a website to promote your home business. You can set up the website on your own within a day. Sometimes you can register a domain for free, but there could be a small cost to register. The fee can prove worthwhile if it leads to increased profits.

Your business domain name has to be memorable and connected to your business. If your domain name is confusing, you will not reel in your customers. Catchy and simple is best for a domain name.

Write down a schedule for your work day and stick to it. With set office hours, you will avoid working at all hours of the day and night. It is important that you have time for your family and yourself, just like if you had a traditional job. You will still be able to have a social life.

Beginning your home based business is not as difficult as you may think. There are many options in business models that don’t require an outlay for an office or store. Consider which products and services you would want to try and research what is needed to start such a business.

Register your company with a DBA or “Doing Business As” license. Options for doing so can be researched through your bank or local Chamber of Commerce. It’s not very costly and you can separate your business and personal accounts.

Understand the risk reward of every product that you purchase when running a home business. One model is to sell your products for two times your production cost. Some will charge triple the cost of production.

Before you make a large investment of money and time in your home business, carefully craft a good business plan. Get a plan put together and see if you can have a consultant look over it. He or she is able to provide you with an analysis that is objective. Once you have the blueprint in place, you can begin with your home business. When your business is up and running, you can refine your plan as needed.

This article contains a lot of interesting tricks and hints about how to run a home business that other well known writers haven’t talked about. Running a business takes hard work, dedication and doing your homework first. If you put in the effort, you are more likely to see a reward. Good luck.

Get Help With Your Home Business

Many people think of starting a home-based business, but they don’t know where to begin or what to do. Are you one of them? If you feel lost, you have found the right article. This article will help answer some of your questions about owning and operating a home business.

It is not hard to promote a business once you know what you are doing. Don’t overlook establishing an online presence for your new business. You can set your own website up in a day or so. Some domains can be registered for free, but the majority will take a nominal fee. The fee is normally worth it when you’re bringing in a profit.

Get ideas by viewing competitor’s sites, but make sure you’re not plagiarizing. For example, it’s a great idea to take note of the types of keywords they are using, but they should not be copied verbatim. Don’t ever use your competition’s name as a keyword!

Become great at managing the cash that comes into your home business. How well you manage cash flow can determine if you’re successful or not. Know what can wait and what you must pay now. Keep a buffer in place to ensure that any emergency can easily be handled, but make sure that you can pay it back.

A home business can provide additional income for all of your needs. It is very possible to look after little ones while making money right from your living room.

With the increased popularity of the Internet, it is now possible to find information on any topic right away. Stay current on new trends and developments.

Keep track of your mileage and gas receipts when you use your car for your business. These expenses help reduce your tax burden since they are 100% deductible. You must be honest about it. You could be asked by the IRS to prove that your deductions are vital for your business.

One thing you can do to make an income from home is to give people lessons on the things you’re able to do. Many people would rather learn privately rather than in groups. These lessons can be taught in the comfort of your own home in a variety of subjects.

Try to limit family interruptions while you are on the clock. Interruptions are distracting, and distraction will impede your productivity. Let folks know when you will be available. They should understand that you require a private work environment so you can finish and spend time with them sooner. Make sure your children have supervision and also that you are available in case of an emergency.

Obey all your local laws. Fines may result if you do not abide by the regulations in place. Also remember that a neighbor-friendly attitude goes right along with making sure you comply with the letter of the law. That means little traffic and no signs. Don’t draw too much attention.

The information presented here should have allowed you to form ideas that will help you create a home business. Remember, though, this information is only as good as the effort you put into applying it. So be sure to do these things, and you’ll be very successful in the future.

Look Here Now For Solid Tips On Home Business

There are a variety of rewards which come from working at home, such as flexibility. You can choose a niche that you are passionate about. Learn some great tips from this article that will assist you in operating your home business successfully.

When beginning a home business it is best to first discuss accounting and finance issues with a representative at your bank. He or she will help you with establishing a bank account for your business and buying some checks with the name on it.

You should always track your business travel miles for deduction purposes. Accurate records are important for this deduction in order to back up your reasoning.

Take others’ opinions to heart. Some people like to share opinions, and everyone has one. You can also learn a lot by listening to your customers. You don’t have to agree, though! Let others continue to have their personal opinions, and you keep with yours, but be open to constructive ideas. Use both negative and positive feedback to develop your business.

When you work at home, you will need an office. It doesn’t have to be gigantic, but it does need to be cozy. Your office should be a place where you can feel calm, productive, inspired and efficient. Size is not as important, so make whatever area you have work.

Train your family and friends to respect your privacy and to treat your office as a real place of business. This minimizes distractions and allows you to conduct business without unnecessary interruptions. You have to take your home business seriously.

Take a break from time to time to ensure that you get your relaxation time. You probably want to make all the money you can, but you don’t need to put your health at risk doing so. Take breaks periodically so you can get refreshed and stay in the right state of mind.

Affiliates are useful tools for marketing your products. Trade your affiliate links with some other home businesses to boost each other’s business traffic. You could even join affiliate programs already in existence and promote products common to yours. This lets you boost your own revenue without adding more work or inventory for yourself.

You want to make sure that you have a completely separate business phone line. You do not want your children answering the phone for your business. Plus, you want a message about your business on your answering machine. You want your business to look and sound professional. A high quality voice mail system is also something that you should consider.

To be the owner of a successful home business, you need to ensure that you are aware of how much you need to spend in order to make certain products. You should have about a 100 percent markup on your product. Sometimes people charge three or more times their costs successfully!

It doesn’t have to be hard or take a long time for you to have a good home business. Make a plan and then stick to it, if you want your home business to flourish. It is a great feeling to be able to work for yourself and set your own hours. By using the tips that you read here you will have a successful business in no time!

Supplement Your Income With A Home Business

Making your home business is something that can be frustrating and rewarding at the same time. The amount of effort you put in will determine how much you make back. Soon it will stand on its feet, but your business may seem that it isn’t working at first, unless you are very lucky. Just like any other business, it takes effort to get things started.

Do you have a new child, but no money for child care? You could start an in-home child care business. Working as a home business owner will allow you to generate an income while looking after your child.

Keep your workplace safe. Get a smoke detector, as well as a fire extinguisher, for your office. In addition, make sure your computer is set up in a way that is comfortable for you. Fire protection will lower the costs of your insurance, and a good keyboard and computer desk will cut the chances you’ll get an injury to your hands, wrists and back.

To be the owner of a successful home business, you need to ensure that you are aware of how much you need to spend in order to make certain products. Typically, it’s wise to double the amount you paid to make the product when selling it. Other businesses charge as much as three times the cost in a retail environment.

Share space on a server instead of buying your own server for a small business. Virtual hosting is affordable and offers more than enough bandwidth and hard drive space. A dedicated server is only necessary if your site has a popular forum or lots of videos.

While you should work hard for your business, take time for yourself as well. You want to further your business every chance you get, but you can’t burn yourself out or make yourself sick. Take breaks to eat and exercise to stay as healthy and functional as possible.

Add a phone line to your home that is strictly for your business. You can write this off on your taxes. If you decide against having a dedicated phone line, remember to make a note of all business calls you make; you can claim them as a tax deduction.

Prior to launching a business, be certain to have dedicated office space. This may not seem that important, but it is hard to stay motivated if you don’t have the proper setup.

If you are talented artistically, you can build a business around graphic design for companies in your local area. Many places that operate locally enjoy using independent designers because they’re more flexible and can also personalize their services. This gives you the advantage over the bigger guy.

Choose a home based business that you are interested in and that you are capable of doing. Picking a home business you actually enjoy will show potential customers how enthusiastic you are. This will help you immensely as you expand your customer base.

One thing to keep in mind when you’re working on your business is to keep a log of any miles you have traveled. This can be written off if you can prove it was for business purposes.

Don’t get discouraged if at first you’re working tirelessly. Nobody becomes wealthy overnight. If you work hard and prepare well, your business is likely to stand the test of time.

Have Success Working At Home With This Advice

Did you start your home business long ago? You probably went online and read whatever you could about home businesses in the past. But, that was then and this is now; you need a little refresher course. Use the information in this article to capture that same excitement.

Incorporate your family into your home business to give them an idea of your responsibilities. For example, if your cousin is a web designer, he can create your website. Your partner could work as a secretary when you need help. Kids can help stuff envelopes or sort bills.

Choose a business name that personally resonates with you. Buy the domain name for your business, even if you don’t have any website plans. Domains often cost less than ten dollars annually, so get yours before someone else takes it. When determining if you need a complete site, put up a brief one that includes simple contact information.

There will never be one single product that your entire audience will want at the same time, but you can learn to produce items that catch the majority’s interest. Don’t think that you must change what you’re selling to please everyone. Focus on those consumers who have an interest in what you can offer.

Don’t expect to be able to run a business with no operating costs. While there are many home business tools and resources out there that can be obtained for free, there are those services that you will need from time to time that you will have to open the bank for. Sometimes, the free options just aren’t as good, and this will reflect on your success while using them.

Join home business forums and discussion groups online. This can also expand your network, which is crucial in business. There could be someone out there waiting for what you have to offer.

Have a “soundbite” description of your business ready in your mind. To retain the attention of customers, keep your description clear and concise. This will help you come up with a slogan that expresses your business’ main objective.

Stay away from overly ostentatious designs and layout when planning your business website. Splashy pictures and graphics should only be used for those trying to attract party animals or kids, so make sure your site falls in line with the product you are selling.

Think about how enthusiastic you were when you first opened your business and do your best to get back to that state of mind. You may need a little motivation to get you back to a place you once were. Hopefully, this article has helped you.

Use These Tips To Experience Home Business Success

From online articles to magazine to paid and special programs, there is tons of home business information out there. Don’t buy the first thing that you see. This article has the information you need.

One thing to keep in mind when you’re working on your business is to keep a log of any miles you have traveled. If you keep your gas receipts and a mileage log, you can write these costs off come tax time.

Don’t go crazy with the layout and design of your home business website unless you’re a clown that is hired for birthday parties. Sites with flashy graphics and splashy colors should only be used if they are appropriate for your business.

Keep books and items that you refer to often in a place that is easy to access. If you write and often need a thesaurus or dictionary, place it close by. Maybe you need to have a list of numbers close to you that you call often. Whatever you do, make sure these books are within reach for when you need them.

If customers and clients are going to visit you at home, you need a good business insurance. Your homeowner’s policy generally will not extend liability to business activities, while business insurance will provide coverage for your business machinery and furniture as well as providing liability coverage in case a client receives an injury on your property.

Consider investing in a receipt scanner, which will allow you to track your expenditures without having to wade through boxes of papers in your office. You can easily find a good one by just reading some reviews and getting what suits you.

You need to think about home distractions if you intend to have a successful home business. When you can identify them, you can then start to find out how to deal with them and in turn, be more productive.

Seek the council of an accountant who can ascertain which business expenses you are able to deduct from your taxes. Discuss your business with your accountant prior to starting it. Your business space, mileage and more can be an expense that is written off.

Use magazine pictures to illustrate the rewards you will give yourself when you reach your goals. Use pictures of things you want to get as a result of your home business; for example, you can post a picture of your house if you want to pay your mortgage in full. Your vision board should include all things you are passionate about! )

After reading this article, you probably notice that a lot of tips and tactics here aren’t really the “secrets” those self-proclaimed gurus talk about during their infomercial spots. As long as you are knowledgeable and run your business like other businesses are ran, you should have no problem becoming successful.

The Basic Steps For A Better Home Business

Any home business is an excellent way to earn some extra cash or even earn a full-time living. Investing your time in creating a successful home business is worthwhile. Continue reading for some advice to consider when thinking about starting a home business.

Use magazine pictures to illustrate the rewards you will give yourself when you reach your goals. Think about what things you would do, or items you would purchase, if you met your financial goals. My vision board includes a gorgeous kitchen renovation, Niagara Falls and a favorite restaurant. )

Make the most of your creative talents by starting a graphic design company, and market to other businesses in the area. A lot of local businesses will hire independent designers instead of companies because of the personal service and flexibility. Don’t overlook this competitive advantage.

There’s not just one service or product that everybody will want or need. Don’t think that you must change what you’re selling to please everyone. Focus on customers who are the most likely to be interested in what your business offers.

You should monitor your results and stay up to date with new trends to make sure you are offering products to the right audience. Do some research on your competitors, compare prices regularly and consider signing up for new seminars or reading new books to stay up to date.

If you want a home business, yet don’t know what kind of business you’d like, the Internet can give you plenty of ideas that are successful. Be careful, though, of the online scams. Do not purchase guides, e-books and other items that contain information you can easily get for free. Some scams are more convoluted and ask you to pay for access to high paying jobs, or tuition for classes online that are irrelevant. If things sound just too good, in all likelihood, they are not what they appear.

If driving is part of your day-to-day business, make sure you are logging those miles. You can deduct mileage when tax time rolls around. You can have a big tax write-off!

One thing that is important when running a home business is to have an established work schedule. Not doing this can cause you to work at all hours, causing home and work life to overlap. If you allow your family life to be too disturbed, it will cause a lot of damage to your family. Following a schedule, and letting others know about it may be difficult in the beginning, but it means that people will give you your privacy when you are working.

To be successful with your home business, it is crucial that you’re aware of the amount you are spending to create a product. A good rule of thumb is to sell the product twice as much the cost is. Others even charge three times the cost when it comes to retail.

Do you have an office with the needed supplies that you feel comfortable in? This may seem like a minor thing, but having an organized home office goes a long way to making your work space a pleasant one. You will work harder if your work space is inviting.

You can make your dreams of flexibility and variety come true with the right home business. Running your own business can be one of the most fulling things you will ever do. The information in the article you’ve just read will help you build a solid business.

Home Business Tips That Everyone Should Know About

With the Internet, you can learn about a variety of different things. The Internet can teach you how to run your business successfully. This article is filled with useful information you need to know about before you launch your home business.

Work at something you find interesting. When you aren’t passionate about a field, you’ll never be dedicated enough to find success. Selecting a business appealing to you makes it more likely that you will succeed.

Set a work schedule. Without a set schedule, you will be working all the time. Give yourself free time, and determine a schedule as if you were reporting to work for a company. This way, you will still have a social life when the weekend comes.

Self-promotion is key to success with a home business, so make sure you are willing to do that. Promoting is a large part of success in home businesses. The end goal is to give the perception of high quality and experience when you communicate with those that may bring you customers, directly or indirectly. Learn how to promote yourself successfully since this will help you boost your profits.

If customers will be coming to your home, having business insurance is a must. You generally won’t be covered with homeowner’s insurance when you’re doing your activities that relate to business. Business insurance will only cover things like your equipment. Be sure that you figure out what policy does what for you.

When working from home, you should spend 20 percent of your time learning. The rest of the time you should be DOING things. Doing means making money, so whatever your business might be, you need to be actually creating, calling, emailing, whatever actions you must take to bring in income.

An accountant can help you figure out what you can and can’t write off. Make sure you have this information before beginning your business so you can track the expenses. For example, workspace in your home that is solely used for your business is a potential tax write-off.

All home office workers need some type of office in their home. The space need not be large, but it should be attractive. You should make your office a space where you feel productive, inspired, and calm. Don’t be concerned about size as you can do well with whatever sized space you have.

You should be far more optimistic after reading the above strategies. It’s much easier than you first believed, but you have to keep a sharp-mind to stay ahead. Remember everything you’ve just learned, and keep this article on hand to use as a reference. You need to thoroughly understand the material so that it can be used wisely.