Beleaguered Napster declines after analyst downgrades, says products not being marketed

“Shares of online music service operator Napster Inc. fell Friday after a Kaufman Bros. analyst downgraded the stock to “Hold” from “Buy,” saying its products aren’t being marketed during the busy holiday shopping season,” The Associated Press reports. “Napster shares declined 11 cents, or 4.5 percent, to $2.36.”

“In a Friday client note, Kaufman analyst Barbara Coffey said… she isn’t seeing Napster’s products being marketed. ‘Subscription music is a product that needs to be marketed and sold to consumers,’ she wrote. ‘Without marketing, we believe that it will remain undiscovered,'” AP reports. “Coffey also lowered her price target for the stock to $3 from $6.”

“The analyst noted that music executives consider Apple Inc.’s iTunes Store the largest digital music seller, trailed by wireless carriers selling items such as ringtones and ringback tones and, finally, subscription services like Napster’s,” AP reports.

MacDailyNews Take: “Consider?” What’s to consider? Apple’s iTunes Store is the largest digital music seller. By far.

Full article here.

Business models that fly in the face of human nature are doomed to failure.


  1. Perhaps there are just remarkably few people who want this service? I mean, besides the people who are forced to purchase it, such as if you go to some universities…

    Also, music exec’s “consider” iTunes Store the largest digital music vendor? Makes it sound like it’s an opinion, and not a fact.

  2. Could someone with talent *please* send MDN a picture of a bloody click wheel, for the article we all know’s coming. The .gif of the flying office chair is nice but when Napster finally crash lands I want have an image that’s appropriate!

    Who did this picture? Let’s recruit him!

  3. I for one use almost everyday. You get low quality free album streams, but I’m at work and don’t require Hi-Fi.

    np Miles Davis (most of) The Complete on the Corner Sessions

    Napster seems to know how to do one thing well – burn cash.

    I do think subscription is OK. I own a TON of albums and CDs. But, since the album format is dead (MDN said so), music is now ephemeral in everyone’s life, is ownership really necessary? I certainly don’t want iTMS drm or any other drm clogging my life.

  4. Napster in its current configuration may as well be called Zune MarketPlace. What made the Napster brand is long dead and gone– which is missed almost entirely the young’ns who think they know digital music. The model doesn’t work. Name it sh*tcan and it’ll make little difference. Well, actually, it might make more cash for a while…

    The company had a bad business plan as MDN points out so well. It attempted to capitalize on the Napster name without really considering that digital consumers were no longer all that naive. Hmm… much like MS today– an old business coupe expected to pay off forever and ever. Anyway, it’s a good thing that it’s dying.

    Toodles, sh*tcan.

  5. Synonyms: abandoned, alone, aloof, beleaguered, blockaded, cloistered, close, closet, confidential, covert, cut off, deserted, hermetic, hidden, incommunicado, insular, isolate, lonely, lonesome, out-of-the-way*, personal, private, quarantined, quiet, recluse, reclusive, remote, removed, reserved, retired, screened, seclusive, secret, segregated, sequestered, sheltered, shut off, shy, singular, solitary, tucked away*, unapproachable, unfrequented, uninhabited, unsociable, withdrawn

  6. I’d have to agree w/ Coffey. Music can be very seasonal, and I’ve spent over $100 on CDs @ Target and 2nd-hand stores already, and do I have 100 good songs like I would have if I had bought from the iTunes Store? Of course not.

    Napster could easily push the economic advantage of spending $14.95 or whatever to fill your house and portable mp3 player w/ Xmas music for the month of December, ’cause frankly, no one cares about Xmas music in January.

    Rhapsody could do this, too, since some part of their service is Mac-compatible. Instead, what I do to expose myself to new Xmas music is to listen to somafm, Xmas in Frisco, via iTunes Radio, and then try to buy CDs from what I hear there.

    The advantages for me of still buying CDs is lossless bitrate, DRM-free and the ability to take the CDs back to the 2nd-hand stores next Nov for them to prep for Xmas 08. Subscription though could work if done right.

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