The Internet of Things Inc. Has an IPO
We’ve talked before about what great potential there is for the Internet of Things (IoT), a vision of the world where everything is connected and the big datsets we collect from this giant network of sensors makes us more efficient than ever. When you have technologies like IoT with such disruptive potential, institutional and retail investors will take notice. Institutional investors have access to the most promising IoT startups, while retail investors can typically only invest in publicly traded stocks. As with most early-stage disruptive technologies, there are very few pure-play investment opportunities readily available on the public markets. So when we saw a Canadian company called “The Internet of Things Inc.” debut an IPO on the Canadian Venture Exchange (CVE) under the ticker ITT, we got all excited and decided to take a closer look.
The first thing we did was go to the Internet of Things Inc.’s corporate website and what we found was mainly a collection of videos, podcasts, and articles.
UPDATE 10/20/2016: This is actually the wrong website. http://iotintl.com/ is the website for Iot-Inc., not www.iot-inc.com like you would expect. This is a bad sign because some OTC companies will purposely try to make themselves appear similar to other companies in order to receive validation. We’re not saying that happened here, but it’s pretty bad to not own your own domain. Start rant:
When we scrolled to the bottom of the page, there was the CEO of the Company smiling at us and asking if we wanted to download “Bruce’s Private Reserve”. We thought, why not, and clicked the link only to have the following pop-up appear:
Now we don’t know how this comes across to you, but for us, this is starting to feel like some sort of infomercial. Having only looked at the website so far, the best piece of information we could find about what this company actually does was the following statement:
The primary purpose of this site is to teach managers how to plan their company’s Internet of Things business and product line.
So is this a non-profit firm or is there an actual plan here to make money? Will the IoT Inc. offer consulting services? The statement cites the primary purpose of the site, not the company. In order to find out more about The Internet of Things Inc., we took a look at their financial filings. Here’s what the Internet of Things Inc. states about who they are and why they exist:
Internet of Things Inc. is an IoT technology accelerator and industry acquisition company. The Company is focused on accelerating IoT-based technology companies, and the development and implementation of disruptive IoT-based solutions. The Company will partner with companies across a wide range of industries to leverage the power of IoT.
Now we’re going to put our grammar police hats on for a moment here. You’re an “industry acquisition” company? This means you just bypass buying up single companies and just buy the entire industry? Then the Internet of Things Inc. goes on to say they will “partner with companies” to “leverage the power of IoT“. Again, another statement is made about vague notions as opposed to stating a tangible business model and value proposition. Maybe they’re operating in stealth mode and trying to draw competitors off their scent? We just don’t know.
UPDATE 10/20/2016: End rant. So, our criticisms of this site haven’t changed any, even though it isn’t Iot-Inc. What puts the nail in the coffin for CVE:ITT is the below financial info.
Since inception, The Internet of Things Inc. has burned through $5.75 million USD which we can only presume was used for the production of a great deal of educational material used to “teach managers how to plan their company’s Internet of Things business“. That’s all fine and dandy but where’s the money to be had here? Assets for The Internet of Things Inc. show $58,000 in cash, some software they acquired worth for $334,000, and an investment they made for $500,000. The Company’s market cap sits at just under $5 million.
Now the only thing more confusing than the Internet of Things Inc.’s business model is why we would even take the time to write about such a company? The truth is that the names of companies play a significant role in marketing their stocks to naïve investors. Let’s take someone who has never invested in the market before, but after watching a MSNBC special on the potential growth of IoT, decides they want to invest. They punch in “The Internet of Things” into Google and there pops up The Internet of Things Inc. (CVE:ITT). Shares are “so cheap” at 3.5 cents a share that our amateur investor decides to buy 1,000 shares. That’s why we wrote this article.
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