Exclusive extracts from this 60-page-long report:
- Who are the key players?
U.S. Internet companies largely dominate the global web in terms of revenues as well as worldwide users. Building on favourable conditions in their home market (large user base, start-up culture, venture-capital financing, high Internet penetration rate, IT skills and creativity), U.S. Internet companies have excelled at building innovative web services from start-ups into large-scale, multinational platforms. First-mover advantages have further contributed to cementing their leadership against international competitors.
Groups analysed in this report include: Alphabet, Facebook, Tencent, Baidu, LinkedIn, Naver Corp, InteractiveCorp, Twitter, Sina Corp and Yandex.
- What are the players' strategies?
With online advertising remaining by far the industry's main income source, Internet companies' strategies continue to be tailored around increasing user traffic on their web properties in order to gain a greater share of the digital ad market. Product development and targeted acquisitions remain key to preserving the attractiveness of their web properties in the eyes of developers and online advertisers alike. Diversification, international expansion, and continued efforts to develop and strengthen mobile platforms are crucial to attracting global Internet users.
- What are the players' key growth and profitability drivers?
Leading Internet companies are characterized by structurally high profit margins that reflect their lean cost structure and scalable business models (low fixed costs, decreasing marginal costs, advantages of network effects, etc.). In 2018, the average operating margin of a panel of leading Internet companies reached 27%, slightly over its five-year average.