As you may have already heard, yesterday we announced that I am retiring from the sell side, after ten excellent years that I will always remember and cherish. The decision was not easy for me and, in fact, I have been thinking about it for quite some time now. Part of my reluctance was based on the desire to continue to expand the strong platform that we have built here at Piper, a process that I have enjoyed over the past years, and one that has been fruitful both for our clients and for us at Piper. I also wanted to make sure that after my departure, the platform continues its strong reputation and further expands. I am happy that the new team which will include Aaron Kessler and Gene Munster, as well as a number of other analysts, is exactly capable of this, and thus, I can leave without worry. Aaron and Gene, as well as the rest of the new Internet and China team, are highly thoughtful, intelligent, and well-respected analysts, who I am convinced will maintain our high standards and further expand the platform. Over the next few weeks, we will transition coverage of my universe to the new team.
Safa’s seminal paper on the Search economy, “The Golden Search”, published in 2003, was instrumental to my strategic thinking when it was released. I’d like to thank Safa for his contribution to our great industry.