LockerDome (“an ad platform with a brain”) is a software designed specifically for performance-based advertising. LockerDome, headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, is trusted by leading advertisers and publishers to drive revenue. Advertisers trust LockerDome’s ad platform to generate revenue from product sales, and publishers trust LockerDome to maximize revenue from their website, in-app, and email traffic.
Mark Lewis, CFO, is LockerDome’s head of finance and accounting. Mark also oversees competitive intelligence (CI) analysis for the company.
LockerDome competes with public adtech companies such as Critteo, The Trade Desk, and Rubicon. As the CFO, Mark manages all of LockerDome’s admin, accounting, legal, and HR teams. This makes for a lot of responsibilities and limited time for CI research, especially at a rapidly growing, lean tech company.
Before using Sentieo, Mark was investing far too many hours searching through documents and manually tracking competitor activity. He was using Excel or Google spreadsheets to track comparable company metrics: funds raised, valuations (at private round, IPO, current, exit), revenue, net income, EBITDA, valuation multiples, acquisitions, board seats, and more.
Mark was spending hours on gathering, tracking, and updating these metrics — all manually. Unfortunately, this made it easy for him to miss insights and difficult for him to maintain updates and scale his work. He was also dealing with many different sources of information that he was unable to easily access.
All of these issues led him to try Sentieo.
Solution and Results
In 2018, Mark invested in Sentieo as his principle corporate research platform in order to accelerate his research process. The goals of this investment were to:
• Dramatically decrease the time he and his team spent
researching competitor news and public filings
• Reduce the risk of LockerDome missing a change in strategy
by a competitor that would have impacted their business
• Get visibility into competitor insights to drive the process of
adapting and growing their corporate strategy
In this “how to” post, we will review how to use our Table Explorer table chaining function in SEC documents, as well as the major updates we integrated with our recent v3.9 release.
Broadly speaking, you can do a LOT with tables in Sentieo.
Export one or all document tables into Excel
Search only within table (s) using our popular “in:table” shortcut
See side-by-side historical tables (very useful for annual filings like proxy statements)
Export PPT/PDF tables to Excel
But none of these functionalities come close to what Table Explorer can do. Table Explorer uses a machine learning model to identify, chain, and visualize reported data. This is done in an auditable, transparent fashion, with added one-click flexibility for elements such as YoY and QoQ changes, common size statement conversion, and more. Analysts save countless hours with this ability to quickly chain tables, as well as visualize data and trends.
We will start with a simple example: the income statement. Table Explorer chains either 8-Ks, or 10-Qs/10-Ks. Since Q4s are not always reported, we create “synthetic” Q4 statements with one click. We use Adobe’s income statement as an example. Watch the video to find out more.
In this second video, we cover the balance sheet. Similar to the income statement video above, we have an easy adjustment for Q4 balances. We go over the Netflix balance sheet, starting with their most recent filing.
In this next video, we cover the cash flow statement. Cash flow statements are often presented in a cumulative fashion: 3-month in Q1, 6-month in Q2, 9-month in Q3, and 12-month in Q4. In this specific example, we use Mondelez International, the global snacking giant. We convert to quarterly with just one click. (We even came up with a new word for this function: “to quarterize”).
Table X does not stop here. You can export your chained data to Excel and to our data visualization tool, Plotter, for further work. You can save the data into your Sentieo Notebook to add to a full thesis.
The video below reviews these steps. We extract and chain Adobe’s income statement, convert it to “common size,” then visualize and export the percentage split of service vs. product revenues for the company. We then export to our main data visualization tool Plotter, where we overlay two of the thousands of data sets included in Sentieo, and finally, we save the chart in our Notebook for use in our full-blown thesis on the company.
Table X works on other tables too. For example, you can extract your own KPIs or any other table-based data. While some KPIs might be available from the standardized data providers, not all are, and extracting your own means greater confidence in your data through our on-screen auditing function. In this fifth video, we show you how. We extract and chain Chipotle’s KPI tables, and we quickly visualize the trends in average unit volumes and comparable store sales.
After Table X was released to rave reviews earlier this year, the number one request was handling line item renaming. With the latest product release, we created a Row Merge/Demerge capability to address this workflow. We show you how in this video. In the example here, Crocs, a footwear company with a wholesale and a retail business, reports a quarterly store count by geographic region. However, the company changed its line item name from “Europe” to “EMEA” recently, creating a discontinuity in this specific data set. We show how to merge the two rows and how to check that the mapping is correct.
In the final, and most technical, video we show you how Table X handles a specific type of table called a “roll-forward” table. A standard use case for this is a company reporting a change in balance over the quarter, where we have the starting balance on top of the table, any changes below that, and then we have the ending balance at the bottom. In this specific example, we chain Chipotle’s unit openings/closings table from their 10-Qs and 10-Ks, and then make a few quick adjustments to add a Q4 column with the correct starting/ending balance, and intra-quarter additions. We also demonstrate the importance of visualizations. Unit openings are clustered in Q4, and this plays a role in forecasting the annual revenues due to the backend loading.
To find out more about Sentieo’s Table Explorer, or any of the other features in our complete workflow research platform, please get in touch with us.
You can easily gain a competitive edge by staying ahead of emerging global or industry trends, including:
• consumer/customer preferences
• trends that are favorable/unfavorable to you or your competitors
• new or disruptive ideas and products
Ask yourself and your team:
What are the macro, global market, and consumer trends happening right now that are impacting my business and my peers?
How To Do It
Alternative datasets can give you great insight into market trends. Try a tool that includes datasets like:
• Twitter mentions – Observe globally trending topics, your competitor’s brand mentions, and their number of followers. Are they spending advertising money on Twitter?
• Alexa website visits – Are your competitor’s website visits going up or down? How come?
• Google Trends – How are people searching for your competitors on the web?
Understanding macro trends can also help you focus your efforts during earnings season. A tool that allows you to plot both financial and document data can expedite this step in your workflow.
In the example below, we plotted document mentions of “wage inflation” (green bars) against EBIT Margins for Cheesecake Factory and Texas Roadhouse (purple & orange lines). We see that as wage inflation has risen, there has been a substantial decline in the margins for the two chains. With visualization tools, CI analysts are able to see the factors that drive trends, and stay ahead of competititors.
Key catalysts to track include earnings announcements, product launches, and transactions. Use a calendar tool that automatically feeds in from your company watchlists.
For example, below we used our watchlist “Big Tech” to auto-populate our Sentieo earnings calendar for easy tracking.
Our latest release builds on our transcript sentiment tool with Smart Summary™ enhancements to help you save time and get more insights, especially during earnings season.
Download a PDF Report
To get a Smart Summary™ PDF report as you’re researching in Sentieo, click on the PDF icon in the top right-hand corner of the Smart Summary™ panel to immediately download a PDF of the report.
Check Out Your Report
Your PDF report will include language classifications like Guidance, KPIs, Deflection, and much more.
Get Smart Summary™Reports Sent Straight to Your Inbox
Now you can automatically receive a Smart Summary™ PDF report in your email inbox when you schedule alerts for a single company or a group of companies in a saved watchlist. Don’t miss a beat during earnings season!
Sentiment & Deflection Charts
We also added two new, at-a-glance charts to the Smart Summary™ panel.
One visualizes the trends of Management Sentiment, Analyst Sentiment, and the “spread” between them. (See left screenshot below).
The second chart shows the company’s Deflection score going back 2 years. (See screenshot on right).
Use these visual cues to get quick insights into the companies that you cover.
Highlight and Tag Transcript Content
Now you can highlight and add tags to transcript content while in Smart Summary™. Highlighted text is automatically tagged to the company ticker for easy surfacing in the future.
You’ll never lose track of your highlights, annotations, and notes, which are all centralized in your Sentieo Notebook.
Our Head of Research runs through how to get the most insights out of Smart Summary:
The amount of data available to researchers today can be overwhelming. In fact, competitive intelligence professionals are often drowning in data.
The tens (or even hundreds) of companies that they track each produce hundreds of data points, documents, and news — any of which could inform a change in corporate strategy or competitive response.
CI professionals can easily miss valuable information as they spend hours searching for relevant and actionable nuggets, or even just a more general understanding of market dynamics.
So how should analysts surface through this data deluge to find missing insights?
We came up with 6 key questions that you should be asking yourself (and your team) as you track your peers’ activities. The answers to these questions will help define your CI strategy.
Why It Matters
Staying on top of your competitors’ news, events, and more can help you plan and time your own strategies — whether those be announcements, launches, or promotional activities.
Following a competitor’s activities will help you understand which media outlets they have partnered with, and in turn, how they are positioning their brand and/or product(s) within those publications.
Knowing where competitors hold events can also give insight ?into their target demographics. You’ll also be able to shed light ?on the types of activities where they invest most of their marketing spend.
How It Works
Some tools allow you to set up instantaneous email alerts for specific companies, document types, and keywords. You may also want to create themed watchlists to look at multiple competitors at once.
Why It Matters
How well are your competitors doing, by the numbers? The documents that they’ve filed with the SEC are a gold mine ?of information.
To get insight into a competitor’s next move, search the company’s annual 10-K filing, specifically within the “Outlook” or “Use of Proceeds” sections, which show if the company has used capital to expand or grow, to repay debt, or to support general operations. Can you see specific plans for this capital?
How It Works
Use a tool that allows you to search across all document types, and even within specific document sections.
Get alerted when new competitor documents are released, whether they be a 10-Q covering the company’s quarterly performance, an 8-K for material events (acquisitions, changes
in corporate management, or updated fiscal year end-date), ?or an S-1 for an IPO.
Why It Matters
Annual reports (among many other document types) can also give good insight into product research and development (R&D), which can include everything from initial product design to compliance testing, to new market deployment.
Track exactly how much your competitors are spending on innovation.
How It Works
Get alerted on specific company and keyword searches like “NVDA > R&D > automation,” so you’re always in the know about your competitor’s product roadmap.
Nothing on this website should be considered investment advice. We do not make recommendations (long or short) in any securities. We do not express opinions as to whether any company's accounting practices are in violation of SEC, GAAP, IFRS or other rules/regulations.
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