Thursday, May 22, 2008

Fon's latest (fake) economic figures

Well it seems like after some controversy, even though we still know that these numbers are a lie, Martin decided to release information about the number of active hotspots, number of foneros, and total revenue that Fon has pulled in.

"Revenues at Fon last month were slightly over 100K euros. Gross margins are over 70%. Cash burn which was over a million euros during December was down to 480K euros in April and is going down to 350K euros in June. This puts us on target to be profitable in the last quarter of 2009. Number of registered Foneros is at 830,000. Number of registered hotspots is 332,000 and of active hotspots at anytime has gone up to 212,000 around the world up from 145,000 in December. Last week we added 6000 hotspots and we are on target to have 300K hotspots by year end. Headcount is 61 employees around the world which is remarkable for a company that is managing the largest and fastest growing WiFi network in the world. Our top countries are UK, France, Japan, Germany, USA, Taiwan, Spain and Italy."

Martin's blog: "Fon latest figures"

Fon Boards: "Economical Data"

El Fon Blog: "Fon Math 2008"

What I find interesting from all of this, besides the fact that we can not verify this information and never will (go figure), is the number of active hotspots compared to the total number of registered hotspots. Approximately 36% of the routers registered are inactive. What the heck is going on here Martin. First, you question the public on "Why do some Foneros disconnect their Fonera WiFi router?" and now you confirm that more than one third of your company is wasted. This absolutly astounds me and the numbers that he gives us still don't tell the whole story. First, he says "up to 212,000 active hotspots" and second we don't know how many total routers were sold. I'm sure if we take into consideration the average number of active hotspots (which is probably less than 212,000) and the total number of routers sold, that 36% of inactive Fon routers will increase significantly. Of course, Fon will not disclose this information or they can kiss of their investors (and their money) goodbye.

Again check out the Fon boards link I posted above. Since we can not verify any of this information, I really don't know what to think of all of this. I think everything boils down to quality not quantity. If we can't access the Fon hotspot, we might as well just not even count it as being active. From what I know, FrancoFon keeps track of the number of hotspots, and their numbers come up different from Martins. The El Fon Blog post (link above) discusses this, I don't know much about it and I don't want to misinterpret information.

FrancoFon: "count 206,886 registered Fon hotspots, not 332,000 or 198,366. FrancoFon has determined that 95,324 Fon hotspots are active, (but who knows if they are accessible?) not 212,000."

This means that 46% of the total hotspots are inactive! So who do we believe in the end? It seems to me that Fon once again is hiding information that only they will ever know. I encourage you to read the three links I posted above and remember this information when you keep you Fon router on and have trouble finding an active Fon hotspot to connect to.

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