Case Studies: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Apple

A course in business for tech folks, and in tech for the business folks
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Instructed by Loony Corn Business / Other
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  • Lectures 33
  • Length 4 hours
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
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About This Course

Published 12/2015 English

Course Description

  • Conducted by an instructor who worked in Sales Finance at Google, and set up Product Finance at Flipkart

Whether you are an engineer seeking to understand business, or a business/strategy person seeking to understand technology - this course is right for you.

What's Covered:

  • Case studies of Apple, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
  • In-depth analysis of the business models of these companies
  • Line-by-line walk through their financial statements and investor filings
  • Product choices - good and bad - made by these companies
  • Competitive analysis of each company: how they stack up in revenue, growth, profitability and valuation

Talk to us!

  • Mail us about anything - anything! - and we will always reply :-)

What are the requirements?

  • Students should have heard of Apple, Twitter, Google, Facebook and LinkedIn and ideally should have used some of these companies products

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Understand common business models in the tech industry
  • Spot trends, and possibly pick the winners and losers of tomorrow
  • Understand how we got to today - the key players, their successes, failures, strengths and weaknesses
  • Make sense, line-by-line of the financial statements and investor reports of tech companies

Who is the target audience?

  • Aspiring entrepreneurs - those who don't learn from history are condemned to repeat it
  • Engineers and product managers - folks with a strong understanding of product, now looking to get the business knowledge needed to build a business
  • Finance and business professionals - folks who get the business aspects, and are now looking to really understand product and technology

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: The Business of Technology

We outline what you'll be able to do by the end of this course, and then plunge into an examination of Twitter's recent travails, and see how 'engagement precedes monetisation'

Section 2: Case Study: Apple

Its not that the company is the most valuable and profitable company in the world, and its not even because Apple's history is rich, interesting, and full of fascinating highs and lows. Its because more than any other company, Apple has applied Micro Econ 101 - the way to stand apart from perfect competition is via differentiation and branding.


Pretty damn important


iPhones and Macs both prove a truism from Micro Econ 101: Perfect competition implies undifferentiated products and identical prices. Apple has this figured out - it vacuums all of the industry profits in smartphones with ~ 20% market share.


In 2001 Apple adopted a strategy it called the Digital Hub. See how iPod + iTunes set the stage for all of the spectacular hits to follow, including the iPad and the iPhone


Apple Pay and the Apple Watch represent the first major bets placed by the company in the post-Jobs era. The jury is out on whether these will be monster hits too.


Apple's size and geographical spread are worth understanding - especially the company's success in China.


Apple only competes with the best: Google, Samsung and Microsoft have all had complicated relationships with Apple


We examine Apple's revenues, profit margins, growth rates and valuation.


Apple's story is inextricably linked to Steve Jobs - a brilliant, complicated individual


We trace Apple's history from its founding in 1976 until the return of Steve Jobs for his second stint with the company in 1997. Interesting but volatile times for the company.


In the period between Jobs' return to Apple in 1997 and his death in 2011, the company delivered an astonishing turnaround, and redefined one industry after another.

Section 3: Case Study: Twitter

Twitter is a thriving platform, but a struggling company. This divergence makes it more - not less - important for us to understand.


Why is Twitter so important? Because it is a flourishing platform but a struggling company.


Twitter did a great job of monetising its early engagement, but did n't pay heed when engagement stagnated.


For a company with its public profile, Twitter has astonishingly small revenues, and astonishingly high costs.


Because we don't really know a company until we understand its size and geographical spread.


Twitter has had a strange life so far. Who knows what tomorrow will bring.


Key characters from Twitter's past and possibly its future.


Twitter competes with two of the most successful and valuable company's in the world right now: Google and Facebook. So far, its struggled to go toe-to-toe.

Section 4: Case Study: LinkedIn

LinkedIn is low on drama, but high on diversification. It is especially interesting to study right now, as it seeks to go from being a professional social network, to a content destination.


LinkedIn is important because it straddles many worlds. One company with 4 business models.


But not a slouch at spending money either. That's the tale of LinkedIn's costs and revenues.


LinkedIn publishes unusually granular information about its geographic split - but even so the most noteworthy bit about its international operations is its relative success in China


LinkedIn's life has been far less drama-filled than that of many of its tech industry peers.


LinkedIn seems to be making a conscious shift from professional social network to content destination. See the why - and the how.


LinkedIn has 4 superbly diversified streams of revenue that still somehow make sense together, and defy classification - or competition

Section 5: Case Study: Facebook

Facebook is the most important social network, and one of the most successful companies in the world today


Facebook is doing many things right (right now): monetising well, engaging well; making smart acquisitions (Instagram, Whatsapp); executing on product. This rare combination has investors super-optimistic.


Facebook's core business is very very profitable - the company is consciously sacrificing some of those profits to quickly build up other businesses that might become its core businesses tomorrow.


Facebook's geographical splits show some interesting trends: the company is adroitly milking more revenue out of its mature markets, while simultaneously building engagement and a large user base in emerging markets.


Facebook's run so far has been widely studied - but this section focuses on Myspace's decline, and a brief period of uncertainty in 2012-2013 as drivers of Facebook's dream run in the last 2 years.


Some companies have size, others have growth, yet others have profits. Right now, only Facebook has them all. This Goldilocks combination is what makes Facebook so valuable relative to its peers (Google is 4x Facebook's revenues, but < 2x Facebook's valuation)

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Instructor Biography

Loony Corn, A 4-person team;ex-Google; Stanford, IIM Ahmedabad, IIT

Loonycorn is us, Janani Ravi, Vitthal Srinivasan, Swetha Kolalapudi and Navdeep Singh. Between the four of us, we have studied at Stanford, IIM Ahmedabad, the IITs and have spent years (decades, actually) working in tech, in the Bay Area, New York, Singapore and Bangalore.

Janani: 7 years at Google (New York, Singapore); Studied at Stanford; also worked at Flipkart and Microsoft

Vitthal: Also Google (Singapore) and studied at Stanford; Flipkart, Credit Suisse and INSEAD too

Swetha: Early Flipkart employee, IIM Ahmedabad and IIT Madras alum

Navdeep: longtime Flipkart employee too, and IIT Guwahati alum

We think we might have hit upon a neat way of teaching complicated tech courses in a funny, practical, engaging way, which is why we are so excited to be here on Udemy!

We hope you will try our offerings, and think you'll like them :-)

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