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Author Archives: scuttleblurb

GFL and waste management

(all $ is USD unless noted otherwise; CAD figures are converted to USD at $1 USD: $1.28 CAD) The waste management business isn’t hard to understand conceptually, though to get a felt sense of the territory probably requires a bunch ground level inside knowledge because the competitive dynamics differ so much by market. Still, the […]

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CarMax, Carvana, and used car retailing

Related posts: [KMX – CarMax; CVNA – Carvana] Moat, Growth, and Competition (Mar. 30, 2018) [CVNA – Carvana] Fat tail investing (Aug. 13, 2020) As previously discussed, the cost structure of used car retailing has become less variable, more fixed over the years. CarMax pioneered this transition in the early ‘90s, applying the lessons of […]

[AVLR] Avalara + another quick EVBG update

[AVLR] Avalara Avalara makes software that businesses use to calculate sales tax and prepare returns, leveraging two key enabling elements: The first is content. Avalara maintains a current log of sales tax requirements across myriad jurisdictions, domestic and international, and the business logic to apply the right tax rules to the right product in a […]

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[TRUP] Trupanion

Trupanion is a pet medical insurer that promises its members the best value, not the cheapest price. It runs a cost-plus model, targeting a 71% claims ratio (% of premiums paid to vets) for each category, so that if it turns out that vet costs for 3-year old German Shepherds in 97214 run at, say, […]

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[ABNB, BKNG] Airbnb v Booking

With 60% of rooms supplied by a fragmented set of independent hotels, the European hospitality market is set up to be aggregated: no individual hotel is large or prominent enough to effectively bargain against an aggregator or attract guests on their own, and coordinating action among a diffuse set of players is challenging.  A hotel […]

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