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Author: FASTEDDY Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 11  
Subject: ION Date: 11/18/2010 8:57 PM
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I once owned a seismic company some years ago but it went bankrupt. However, Warren Buffet bought its bonds.

Who are the competitors to ION in the seismic industry?
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Author: RHinCT Big gold star, 5000 posts Ticker Guide SC1 Red Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 3 of 11
Subject: Re: ION Date: 11/18/2010 11:12 PM
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I know nothing about the sector, but how about Bolt?

Bolt Technology Corp. (BOLT)

The Company develops, manufactures and sells marine seismic energy sources and underwater electrical connectors and cables, miniature industrial clutches, brakes and sub-fractional horsepower electric motors.


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Author: TMFCaccamise Big red star, 1000 posts CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 4 of 11
Subject: Re: ION Date: 11/19/2010 12:13 PM
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FASTEDDY,

ION competes with a few major players and also with a bunch of smaller regional companies. Here is a good look at the competition:

Industry size: $15 to $17 billion (measured in annual revenues)

CGGVeritas – 21% - meaningful positions in all segments; largest player with a comprehensive set of offerings.

Western Geco – 14% - meaningful positions in all segments; a division of SLB (and the SLB model: any technology developed is used by the in-house services arm as part of a bundled full-scope offering.

PGS – 9% - focuses on marine acquisition; has a data processing arm; the #3 player in marine in terms of fleet size, they just divested their land business; they are battling with Geco’s marine technology offering.

BGP – 8% - focuses on land onshore acquisition; has a data processing arm; now can be considered a partner of ION’s with their joint venture INOVA for land equipment which was formed in 3/10. We’ve pooled our land technologies with BGP’s global operating footprint of the world’s largest land seismic contractor. BGP has announced they intend to get into marine acquisition in a bigger way with their first multi-streamer vessel soon to launch most likely with technology from ION. They have a data processing arm (to date, they have shy’d away from multi-client programs that deliver data libraries primarily because this model is more applicable off-shore.

TGS – 3% - focuses on multi-client seismic data programs which they feed into a global data library portfolio. They are a marine acquisition specialist. They don’t own or operate their own vessels, but use a virtual model based on long-term charters to acquire the data for programs that they process and feed into their libraries.

ION – 3% - $420 m in revenues in ’09 – historically a small portion of overall revenue in the industry because of their avoidance of acquisition services and a focus on technology.

Others – 42% - comprised of a series of smaller players, especially in land acquisition and data processing) They compete all over the world but especially in Russia, SE Asia, and N. America)

Fool On!

Bryan

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Author: TMFCaccamise Big red star, 1000 posts CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 5 of 11
Subject: Re: ION Date: 11/19/2010 12:26 PM
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RHinCT,

Bolt Technology is a very small competitor in the marine or offshore portion of the seismic business. They do not appear to have a land business. They have about $30 million in TTM revenue and are more of a niche competitor than anything.

Investors would really need to do some serious due diligence before pulling the trigger on Bolt. The same general thesis I have with ION applies here though. Oil services is an attractive industry for investment over the next 2-3 years. The big difference would be the partnership ION has with CNOOC via its joint venture with BGP. Unlike ION, I don't see any real stable cash flow sources over the next 3-5 years for Bolt. That said, a rising tide for the industry could easily lift all boats.

Fool On!

Bryan

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