August 16, 2020
#1 Tesla knocking on S&P 500 door - becomes the most valuable automotive company in the world
Tesla became the most valuable automotive company in the world, surpassing Toyota and claiming a market cap of over $ 190 billion and is continuing its climb. Toyota sold almost 25 times more vehicles than Tesla in 2019, therefore the reason for Tesla’s meteoric rise isn’t based on its basic fundamentals. The reason for this are many, and would require a separate story. But in short, one of the main reason is investor enthusiasm for CEO Elon Musk. By looking at Tesla’s journey and its initial struggles, the company was saved from the jaws of bankruptcy when Elon put in his last bit of savings to keep it afloat. The car manufacturer was facing several problems with delays in delivery of its cars, focus on a fully automated manufacturing and supply chain system, and financial targets. The turning point came in mid November 2019, when Tesla unveiled a radically designed pick up truck. In the coming weeks Tesla’s stock started climbing owing to Tesla meeting its delivery goals of 360,000 in a year and Tesla fulfilling its production goals of China factory. Many view China as the biggest market in the world for electric vehicle, and this boosted investor expectations.
Another key reason for Tesla’s rise is that the company posted a profit for a second quarter in a row, and the company has told investors that the company should be profitable going forward.
An interesting component of Tesla’s stock rise is investors betting against the Tesla (read shorting the stock). When a stock goes up its painful for the people who are shorting the stock, sometimes they cant hold onto in this money losing positions for long and they have to close their position by buying this stock. To simplify this unusual twisted logic, investors who think that they stock is going to go down, help in pushing the value of the stock higher buy this stock.
Tesla has not been immune to affects of the corona virus pandemic. It share price went down in March 2020, but quickly recovered as the Fed fuel led broader recovery in the stock market.
On April 29, 2020, Tesla recorded profit for a third quarter in a row. On June 10, 2020, investors pushed Tesla’s stock beyond $1,000 mark when Tesla announced the production of an all electric semi trailer truck. By July, 2020 Tesla overtook Toyota and its share price crossed $1,200 for the first time after Tesla beat delivery expectations and investors awaited Tesla’s introduction in the S&P 500 index.
#2 Gymshark valued at $1b billion - Fitness clothing company with a strong social media strategy
Gymshark was recently valued at $ 1 bn. The company was founded in 2011, by Ben Francis, a former pizza delivery boy, in his parents garage. Gymshark is a fitness clothing brand that gained traction on social media. The company received an investment by General Atlantic for a 21% stake and valuing Gymshark over $1 billion.
#3 Picasso of Microsoft Excel - Tatsuo Horiuchi
Tatsuo Horiuchi is a Microsoft excel artist. Tatsuo started his passion of painting post retirement. But there was a problem, he didnt want to spend money on paints and canvases. Tatsuo has an experimental mind and thus decided to start painting using his computer. But he didnt use Microsoft Paint, an application/ software that is usually taught to children when they first start using computers. Instead he used Microsoft Excel. He is hoping to sell his paintings soon.
#4 Steve Jobs Prank Calls Starbucks - A man who could sell an ice cream to an Eskimo
During the launch of the iPhone in 2007, Jobs was demonstrating the use of maps using the iPhone. To show the ease of use a touch screen, which was unseen before this, Steve Jobs searched the location of Starbucks on the iPhone, and the search highlighted the location along with the address and phone number of the nearest Starbucks. To showcase the excellent overall user experience of the iPhone, Jobs tapped on the phone number to make a call and ordered 4,000 lattes to go. He then quickly added “Just kidding”.
The story showcases Steve Jobs’s skill of being a great presenter as he illustrated a user experience to the audience in a way that they could relate to, even though the audience members had personally never experienced it before.
#5 Danny Garcia - First Woman to own an entire sports league, XFL
Dany Garcia becomes the first woman to own an entire sports league. She is an American businessperson and producer. She is the founder, CEO and chairmwoman of The Garcia Companies and TCG Management. The company oversees brands such as Seven Bucks Companies (owned by the Rock), Teremana Tequila (associated again with The Rock), along with Project Rock Collection at Under Armour, VOSS, XFL etc. In august 2020, Garcia and Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) led the consortium that purchased the XFL (professional American Football League) out of bankruptcy.
#6 “Shokunin - the endless pursuit of perfection for some greater good”
Shokunin is a Japanese word that translates to mastery of ones profession. The word can also be translated as the endless pursuit of perfection for some greater good as described in the book “The Ride of a Lifetime” by the former CEO of Walt Disney, Robert Iger
#7 Foxconn’s Chairman - “China’s time a world’s leading manufacturing hub is over”
Foxconn, the world’s largest contract electronic manufacturer, recently claimed that China’s time as the world’s manufacturing hub is over. Young Liu, the co-chairman of the company, recently said that Foxconn the manufacturer of iPhone , Dell desktops and Nintendo Switches, is moving its manufacturing base out of China owing to the United States - China trade war. The company’s manufacturing outside of China was up by 5% to 30% from June 2019. This comes at the time, where Chinese apps such as TikTok, WeChat etc. along with 50 other apps have been banned in India, one of the largest markets for TikTok and these apps are facing the possibility of a ban in the United States.