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(#31) Disney's new strategy; Western Europe is getting poorer; 3D printing parts are coming to Apple (and after blue-collar jobs)
Everything that happens in the USA impacts everyone. Aaaa...and in China too.
Although it’s supposed to be a relaxing summer, as in the past, there are so many updates going on that this July feels more like a year's end. Ultimately, it’s about decisions, decisions, decisions. So, here are the main headlines:
👸 Disney is finally having a strategy
🚗 The Chinese companies won the EV local market
💻 Snap, Threads, Telegram, and others are reporting increasing in MAUs. Why? The market is getting fragmented because we are all different, fortunately.
🏭 What it means for the manufacturing industry that Apple will start using 3d printing for its next Ultra watch
📧 Steve Jobs’ email to his partner at Adode.
…and many more
Onto the update:
Disney needs a new strategy
If you have read this newsletter by now you already know that:
1/ Disney is losing many billions (with a ‘b’) from the streaming division and besides that, it needs a new strategy. Here was my prediction on the 6th of January 2023. LINK
2/ Disney is a conglomerate owning: movie film studios; cable television networks; publishing, merchandising, music, and theater divisions; direct-to-consumer streaming services, and amusement parks.
1/ ‘One strategy fits all’ was not the case. Now, Bob Iger realized it has to sell something and focus on what’s really important for the company: creativity. Great choice, I’d say.
2/ No matter how large is Dinsey is always somebody larger than them. So, probably they are looking for a partner (e.g. from content to distribution). Given the history of collaboration, the most probable partner for partnering will be Apple.
3/ At the end of the day as a CEO you have to take decisions and those decisions will be your legacy. LINK
Threads is receiving its first update
With reportedly 150m users the app is starting to look much more like Twitter.
1/ Final goal for the app is to limit Twitter’s growth, which will probably be achieved. It will kill Tweteer? Probably not.
2/ What’s next for Twitter: capitalizing on the top 1% of creators, expanding to video, sharing profits with the creators, and, overall, becoming a Super App. Easy to say, extremely hard to do for a company that didn’t deliver for +10 years. LINK
(Western & Southern) Europe is getting poorer
The Wall Street Journal has an extensive article on this topic. Now there is no surprise that this is happening:
1/ Overregulation (ie. Threads is not even present in the EU)
2/ Reliance on cheap energy from Russia
3/ Killing the nuclear sector
4/ High taxes on everything
So, Europe is turning into an open museum.
Note! The decline would have been larger without Eastern Europe's contribution. I remain bullish for CEE. LINK
Apple Watch Ultra will use 3D-printed parts
This is the kind of news that gets unnoticed maybe because we don’t understand the implications so here there are:
1/ Traditional manufacturing of any Apple product parts has multiple challenges: CO2 emissions, waste, and other hidden costs
2/ So, printing will solve many of these problems, which in the end will mean lower productions costs and hence keeping the same price for the final product or even increasing the profit margin
3/ Blue-collar jobs will be affected
4/ Partially, this method was used to make a successful transition from China to India/Vietnam. The latter have not reached the quality in the manufacturing of China. LINK
Germany has a ‘China strategy’
Briefly, one word: decoupling (Note! ‘De-risking’ is now a preferred word). I’m afraid it might be too late and too little. LINK
Apple’s Vision Pro will bring as much revenue as the Macbook; in 5 years.
1/ Well, that’s not bad at all
2/ The device will get multiple versions over the next years (e.g. Vision, Air, etc)
3/ There is hope that at some point this will replace the computer. (15-20 years away from that)
Harvard Business Review: The state of globalization in 2023. LINK
Work from home
For some businesses/positions is better to work from home. For most, probably not.
In the long term probably there are more disadvantages to working from home, so I’d think twice before settling to “work from home”.
Looking forward to reading some research in this area. LINK
Shein is building a marketplace
1/ One of my eleven business predictions at the beginning of 2023 was that Shein will reach $100bn in valuation. LINK
2/ It seems that from fashion alone is impossible to do that so is going after Amazon, Temu and others because…ads. Amazon made $38bn in ads last year. LINK
3/ Interview with Shein’s head of strategy. Interesting insight: they move from the production of 100 - 500 items per SKU to 10-100. So, testing, testing, testing. LINK
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Luxury Brand Management in Milan:
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The famous Y Combinator’s batch of start-ups will be 35% AI. most of them located in the Bay area. They received 24,000 applications (!). LINK
AI will eat your job
Do you remember Goldman Sach’s report from a few newsletters ago saying that close to 300m white-collar jobs will be eliminated? Some countries, especially Eastern Europe and S-E Asia, developed their middle class with exactly these kinds of jobs, so expect some pain. LINK
AI’s threads and opportunities (podcast)
An excellent 1h discussion on Spotify with Mo Gawdat, the former Chief Business Officer of Google [X]. Main topics discussed: the need to control our response to AI, how this technology is impacting society, and the four major threats he’s identified. Useful listening. LINK
5 ways AI can automate managerial tasks. LINK
Snap’s CEO says it has passed 750 million monthly active users (MAUs) and is expected to reach 1 billion in 2-3 years. That’s a pretty large number. Here are my thoughts:
1/ With the current business model they may never reach profitability. These are the exact words of Evan Spiegel - Snap’s CEO. So, the company should look elsewhere for revenue, besides the typical brand advertising revenue
2/ In 2017 and 2018 the most important ad client was…TikTok. That says a lot about Snap’s strategy
3/ Snapchat+, a service that costs 4$ per month, has reached 4 million subscribers. LINK
The company announced that it has 800 monthly active users. The communication ecosystem will become more and more fragmented over time with people using +5 communication apps. LINK
Tech layoffs may be over. LINK
China Influencer Industry Ecosystem. LINK
Coursera’s report on the Global Skills Report 2023. LINK
Future Telecoms | Challenges, growth opportunities, and new models in the era of ultra-high-speed broadband. (Roland Berger) - LINK
The Chinese EV market in 2022. (hint! dominated by local players) LINK
Steve Jobs’ email to Bruce Chizen from Adobe.
China prepares for war. Kyle Bass from Hudson Institute's China Center has a detailed presentation. LINK
Millions of US military sensitive data were sent for years to the wrong email address due to…a typo. LINK
There is a shortage of Sriracha and people are going crazy. LINK
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