The Week's Winners and Losers: 2 Very Different Crashes for Angie's List and Tesla

Electric Car
AP, Reed Saxon
Companies can make brilliant moves, but there are also times when things don't work out quite as planned. From a widely anticipated IPO to a reputation-burning engine fire, here's a rundown of the week's best and worst moves in the business world.

Twitter -- Winner

Investors finally got to crack open the hood to check out Twitter's engine ahead of its IPO race. The dot-com darling filed its prospectus on Thursday night. No one should be surprised to find that Twitter is not profitable. It's just starting to monetize its booming traffic that consists of more than 500 million tweets a day -- on average -- going out to more than 200 million users.

However, Twitter's revenue nearly tripled to $316.9 million and it has more than doubled through the first half of this year.

There's also no mobile monetization challenge with Twitter. Unlike some companies that have struggled to profit from advertising on smartphones and tablets, mobile usage accounts for 65 percent of Twitter's revenue. Sure, it would be great to see Twitter go public as a profitable company, but there's little reason to think that this won't be a hot IPO later this year.

Tesla Motors (TSLA) -- Loser

Tesla's been having no trouble selling its desirable but expensive Model S sedans pretty much as fast as it can manufacture them, with hundreds of orders coming in a week -- especially in California, where its sales numbers are beating some big and familiar names.

However, the electric car maker may struggle in the near term after a video came out showing a Tesla Model S whose engine caught on fire after it reportedly crashed into a large metal object. No one was hurt, but the same can't be said about Tesla's reputation.

Engine fires happen often in the world of internal combustion engine cars, too, but Tesla's trying to get folks to pay $63,000 or more for its vehicles. That may not be quite as easy a sell for now.

Amazon.com (AMZN) -- Winner

The National Retail Federation expects retail sales to climb 3.9 percent year-over-year during the upcoming holiday shopping season, but some merchants will be faring even better.

Amazon.com is one of the market darlings that should do well this season. It's certainly preparing for a deluge of shoppers: The leading online retailer announced that it would hire 70,000 temporary workers as it braces for the holiday rush, 40 percent more seasonal hires than last year.

Angie's List (ANGI) -- Loser

Shares of the Angie's List fell nearly 18 percent on Thursday after confirming that it is testing a lower annual price of $10 in some markets. The basic membership price until now has been $40 a year, as subscribers take advantage of reasonably honest reviews for local service providers.

Angie's List is hoping that it can make that back by embracing a model where it gets a piece of the eventual transaction. There is potential there, but investors don't like to see prices come down. Even if it's in a few major markets, it won't be long before information spreads and folks will demand the 75 percent price break, too.

Facebook (FB) -- Winner

You may not want to live near your coworkers, but Facebook is betting that some its employees may see it differently. The leading social networking website operator is working with a developer to construct a $120 million apartment complex that will have 394 housing units near its corporate headquarters.

Real estate prices in Facebook's Menlo Park, Calif., home have understandably started to get out of hand, so the company is going on the offensive to offer convenient a housing solution for potential hires.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Amazon.com, Facebook, and Tesla Motors. The Motley Fool owns shares of Amazon.com, Facebook, and Tesla Motors. Try any of our newsletter services free for 30 days.

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wcorp516

C'mon, a contractor's business depends on word-of-mouth, not an Angie's list.

October 05 2013 at 7:59 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
wcorp516

I used Angie's list once for a plumber. Two guys showed up for a simple job and I was over charged. Perhaps t wasn't Angie's list's fault, but I think I'm intelligent enough to select my own tradesmen. I got lazy for awhile. Face it, you're paying more when two get into the act.

October 05 2013 at 7:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ken

Angies list is a joke. I wouldn't count on getting a worthwhile opinion from them. Too many ways for companys to game the system, to say nothing of the fact that Angies list get's paid by the companys it's rating.

October 05 2013 at 2:13 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Charles Teske Jr

I'm a contractor that has been in business for 20 years. I still have an A+ rating on Angies list, but nobody can see it b/c I've been de-listed. An angies list representative called us up and threatened to obscure my reviews unless I bought advertising from them. I told them in not so pleasant terms to get lost.
Angies' List has a huge conflict of interest when they solicit the contractors they are reviewing. They are also not being up front with those buying subscriptions when they obscure the listings of good companies b/c they won't pay 5K a year or more to advertise. Wasn't the whole purpose of Angies list to give its subscribers access to the best companies...not just the ones that pay them. A local news station is working to expose this fraud....stay tuned Dallas, TX.

October 05 2013 at 11:29 AM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Charles Teske Jr's comment
Workathomedad

Pretty scary allegation Charles. Thank you for exposing this. Hope your business does well inspite of Angies list

October 05 2013 at 1:22 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
prinsovdarqnezz

I bought RITE AID at $0.18 a share and invested 1k 5 or so years ago today it is at $5.19 a share. That was one of the best performing stocks I have ever purchased.

October 05 2013 at 9:42 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
analyst0042

I find Angie's List very helpful in finding a contractor thats has been tried out by other people in my area. It helps you eliminate those who talk a good game but do not deliver. I have hired several contractors this way with excellent results.

October 05 2013 at 9:14 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to analyst0042's comment
TB

How often does the average Joe need a contractor, doctor, or babysitter reference? Not 10 bucks a year worth, let alone 40.

October 05 2013 at 9:40 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Mike

I'm hoping the the twitter IPO means the death of that worthless venue in a couple of years. Hey, I think I said that in less than 140 characters.

October 05 2013 at 9:07 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Pusskit

Angie's List........Never could understand that as word of mouth passes very quickly! Facebook....No thank you..........It's to the point now that you don't know who's watching you! Your nothing but a tiny bug under a magnifying glass!

October 05 2013 at 6:28 AM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply