2021-01-20 12:12:04 UTC
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  • All-time high
  • Important events
  • Lyft looks to go fully driverless by 2023
  • Lyft partners with driverless technology firm to launch a fully self-driving service across the US by 2023. It's the dream – but is it achievable?
  • Zoom expands into Singapore
  • It's time to let the lion roar - Zoom looks to Asia with a new R&D Center for Singapore. In other news, Christmas cheer is on the way, and the firm lifts call limits for the festive season.
  • It's time to let the lion roar - Zoom [url=https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/12/16/2145845/0/en/Zoom-To-Expand-Presence-In-Singapore.html]looks to Asia[/url] with a new R&D Center for Singapore. In other news, Christmas cheer is on the way, and the firm [url=https://www.techradar.com/uk/news/zoom-is-giving-users-an-early-christmas-present]lifts call limits[/url] for the festive season. Zoom decided to expand its presence in Singapore by opening a new Research and Development Center, and promised to hire hundreds of new engineers. The firm also confirmed plans to expand its co-located data center in the country, where it has had a presence for two years. “Singapore is pro-business, ranks as one of the friendliest countries to set up a company, and continues to be a favorite for regional headquarters as it boasts exceptional talent, strong infrastructure, and is a perfect gateway for engaging the wider APAC region,” said Velchamy Sankarlingam, President of Product and Engineering for Zoom. “We plan to immediately hire employees, leveraging Singapore’s highly-educated engineering talent pool. Our new R&D center and data center will play a critical role in Zoom’s continued international growth.” And as much of the world prepared for a virtual festive season, with Covid-19 putting the kibosh on big family gatherings, Zoom also [url=https://www.livemint.com/technology/apps/zoom-to-lift-40-minute-limit-on-calls-on-these-days-11608201434735.html]extended[/url] its former Thanksgiving generosity globally, lifting the 40 minute call limit on December 17-19 for Hanukkah, December 23-26 for Christmas, and December 30-January 2 for New Year's. It's not all good news though. The Facebook-owned messaging app Whatsapp started [url=https://www.techradar.com/news/watch-out-zoom-whatsapp-for-desktop-could-soon-support-video-conferencing]testing[/url] a new voice and video calling feature for its Mac desktop client, which could represent some major competition for Zoom. None of this did much to the share price though, which stayed robust at around $400 for most of early December.
  • Arming the rebels
  • Shopify has often been labeled the young disruptor compared to its giant rival, with an approach to business that champions independent brands and small businesses.
  • Shopify has often been labeled the [url=https://medium.com/@blakeir/arming-the-rebels-of-the-future-d61b3fe30515]young disruptor[/url] compared to its giant rival, with an approach to business that champions independent brands and small businesses. But in a [url=https://fortune.com/2020/12/11/shopify-holiday-shopping-ohi-amazon-fortune-brainstorm/]Fortune podcast[/url] in December, Shopify Plus General Manager Loren Padelford debunks the myth. "I don't consider us the anti-Amazon, I think that's a media narrative,” said Padelford. She did admit, though, that: “We want merchants to be front and center… That's a worldview difference." Way to be tactful, Loren. However, it doesn’t quite tally with what Founder and CEO Toby Lutke said back in 2019. When asked in a Twitter Q&A if Shopify was going to be the next Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url]), he was [url=https://twitter.com/tobi/status/1182697544167632898]pretty clear[/url] on the subject, saying: “Amazon is trying to build an empire and Shopify is trying to arm the rebels.”
  • “Amazon is trying to build an empire and Shopify is trying to arm the rebels.” Photo: Becky Fantham / Unsplash
  • Photo: Becky Fantham / Unsplash
  • Capital raising catapults Tesla into top tier
  • Tesla tempts investors with a $5bn new share sale, its first since May 2019 and the biggest in the past decade.
  • Tesla tempts investors with a new share sale, its first since May 2019 and its biggest in the past decade. In a [url=https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/0001318605/000119312520312194/d60067d8k.htm]December 8 filing[/url] to the SEC, it confirms plans to sell up to $5bn shares of common stock in the open market “from time to time” – a move likely to give the firm more control over the share price than if it went all out with a formal secondary offering. The share price dips slightly on the news, falling by about -1.33% in early trading. The sale follows the firm’s 5-for-1 stock split in August, and comes just a few weeks before its official inclusion in the S&P500 on December 21, giving it a [url=https://www.thestreet.com/investing/tesla-plans-5-billion-share-sale-on-record-run-to-s-p-debut]whopping war chest of cash[/url] to match its massive share price rise over the past year. The money might come in handy, given that Tesla promised to boost its production levels to above 500,00 units in 2020, and Musk is [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-tesla-production/tesla-has-a-shot-at-producing-500000-cars-this-year-musk-says-in-memo-idUSKBN26S2TN]sticking to that goal[/url] despite Covid chaos. And he might actually manage it – Tesla delivered 139,300 vehicles in Q3, an all-time record. In other news, sales in China soared to [url=https://electrek.co/2020/12/08/tesla-sales-surge-record-high-china/]record highs[/url] in November, with 21,604 Model 3s sold (according to data from the China Passenger Car Association), a massive 78% year-on-year increase that should go some way towards reassuring investors that jumped late onto the Tesla bandwagon this year as its stock shot up on the promise of Chinese success. Oh yeah, and Elon Musk has [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/elon-musk-to-discuss-teslas-banner-year-despite-pandemic-silicon-valleys-future-11607449988?mod=hp_lead_pos5]moved to Texas[/url], and he’s taking Tesla with him. Apparently, California is “too complacent” and wasn’t a “great use” of his time. A lot of it is probably to do with how mad he was about California’s treatment of tech firms during the pandemic. He [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1259162367285317633]threatened[/url] to move the Tesla HQ to Texas or Nevada back in May, and the firm is already [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/7/22/21334860/tesla-cybertruck-factory-austin-texas-location-model-y]building a factory in Austin[/url] to produce its futuristic new cybertrucks. You snooze, you lose, Cali.
  • Lower Q4 losses
  • Lyft say that Q4 losses are likely to be lower than expected, at less than $185m, citing improving margins and rigorous cost controls.
  • Lyft [url=https://www.thestreet.com/investing/lyft-sees-narrower-q4-loss-improving-margins-in-sec-update]says[/url] that Q4 losses are likely to be lower than expected, at less than $185m, citing improving margins and rigorous cost controls. It also predicts quarterly revenues to increase by up to 15%, and thinks rider numbers will increase by up to a million by the end of the year. Take that, COVID19.
  • Finally, some great news for Lyft with a forecasted 1m uptick in riders by the end of the year. Photo: Lyft.
  • $5bn Black Friday
  • The pandemic might be receding, but Shopify is still winning the retail game. In this year’s Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend (November 27-30 2020) the firm sees sales of over $5bn from more than one million Shopify-powered brands around the world.
  • The pandemic might be receding, but Shopify is still winning the retail game. In this year’s Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend (November 27-30 2020) the firm [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201201005650/en/Shopify-Merchants-Break-Records-with-5.1-Billion-in-Worldwide-Sales-over-Black-FridayCyber-Monday-Weekend]sees sales of over $5bn[/url] from more than one million Shopify-powered brands around the world. The market likes it too – the stock rises 5.41% over the weekend to close at $1,090.38 on the Monday. It looks like customers are voting with their wallets, and seeking to support smaller and independent brands (which Shopify has historically championed) over the Amazonian giants. In the week leading up to Cyber Monday, from November 23 through November 30, sales increased by 84% from 2019 – a pretty strong result. “This has been a transformative year for commerce globally,” said Harley Finkelstein, President of Shopify. “The record sales we saw on Shopify over Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend demonstrate the power of the independent and direct-to-consumer businesses on our platform. With the center of gravity in commerce shifting from in-store to online, the pandemic has accelerated a change we have long anticipated. This multichannel shopping phenomenon is the blueprint for the future of retail – and we couldn’t be more excited by it.”
  • Weaker Q3 results
  • Don’t get us wrong, Zoom is still doing great. Q3 results come out and it’s all rosy – total revenue are up 367% year-on-year to $777.2m, while GAAP income from operations is $192.2m, a heck of a lot better than the $1.7m loss it posted in the third
  • Don’t get us wrong, Zoom is still doing great. [url=https://investors.zoom.us/news-releases/news-release-details/zoom-reports-results-third-quarter-fiscal-year-2021]Q3 results[/url] come out and it’s all rosy – total revenue are up 367% year-on-year to $777.2m, while GAAP income from operations is $192.2m, a heck of a lot better than the $1.7m loss it posted in the third quarter of 2019. CEO Eric Yuan puts it down to “strong demand and execution,” which sounds about right. But although Zoom still beat analyst expectations for its Q3 earnings (99 cents per share versus 76), there are fears that its breakneck growth could finally be slowing down. The firm said that it expected 329% in revenue growth for Q1 2020, a slight slowdown compared with previous quarters. And it didn’t help that CEO Yuan didn’t actually join the earnings webcast, saying that he had “a personal conflict arise.” It translated into the share price, which dropped about 5% in after hours trading on the day of the results, and a further 15% by the close of December 1. According to [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/jonathanponciano/2020/12/01/billionaire-zoom-founders-net-worth-plunged-7-billion-since-october-as-explosive-pandemic-growth-slows/?sh=776a0107453c]Forbes[/url], that hit Eric Yuan’s personal fortune to the tune of about $2.8 billion. Ouch, that’s gonna sting. But don’t worry, he’s still got about 18 billion left, so we think he’ll be OK.
  • Market cap crosses $500bn
  • Tesla is now worth HALF A TRILLION DOLLARS. That’s right – on November 24 the share price crosses $555, up a whopping third since the S&P500 announcement the previous week.
  • Tesla is now worth HALF A TRILLION DOLLARS. That’s right – on November 24 the share price [url=https://www.ft.com/content/97c5c50c-b00d-4031-bd15-1c5767c24242]crosses[/url] $555, up a whopping third since the S&P500 announcement the previous week. As institutions and investment managers scramble to swallow up Tesla stock, seems like no one’s got a bad word to say about it. Wedbush Securities is [url=https://www.thestreet.com/investing/tesla-tsla-stock-bull-case-wedbush-daniel-ives]one of the most bullish[/url] – issuing a strong buy recommendation and predicting a possible 104% upside potential in a bull-case scenario, due to Tesla’s "sustained path to profitability.” Basically, the growing global demand for electric vehicles could push the stock up to $1,000. "New designs around Cybertruck and Model Y will further aid growth globally and thus enable Tesla to achieve its million delivery units likely by 2023," said Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives. He also highlighted the “Teflon-like demand” for the Model 3 in Europe and China, despite the Covid-19 pandemic Oh yeah and by the way, you know how Elon Musk is super rich? Well he just got super richer. According to the [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/billionaires/profiles/elon-r-musk/]Bloomberg Billionaire’s Index[/url], as of November 24 he’s sitting on a sweet $140bn. That means he’s got more wealth than Bill Gates. Musk is now the second-richest person in the world after Amazon’s Jeff Bezos (listed at [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/billionaires/profiles/jeffrey-p-bezos/]$187bn[/url] as of November 24), and he’s got less than $50bn to go. Anyone want to place a bet on Elon Musk securing the top spot by Christmas?
  • Government contract win
  • Lyft and Uber win a major government contract to provide transportation for up to 4m federal employees and their families. The five-year contract is worth $810m and the good news bumps the stock up by 3.28% to close at $39.35.
  • Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/11/23/21611553/uber-lyft-gsa-government-contract-amount]win[/url] a major government contract to provide transportation for up to 4m federal employees and their families. The five-year contract is worth $810m, and the good news bumps the stock up by 3.28% to close at $39.35.
  • Photo: Ellery Sterling / Unsplash
  • S&P500 inclusion sends Tesla through the roof
  • It’s finally happened: after five consecutive quarters of profit (and a stinging snub back on September 8 that sent stock tumbling over 21% in a single day) the S&P500 has finally accepted Tesla for inclusion. Crack open the champagne.
  • It’s finally happened: after five consecutive quarters of profit (and a stinging snub back on September 8 that sent stock tumbling over 21% in a single day) the S&P500 has finally [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/11/16/tesla-stock-jumps-on-news-company-is-joining-sp-500.html]accepted[/url] Tesla for inclusion. Crack open the champagne and get your big boy pants on, ‘cos Tesla has finally made it – now we’re playing in the major leagues. The carmaker was already more valuable than 90% of the existing companies in the index – and its debut on December 21 is expected to be the biggest on record. No prizes for guessing that the stock went soaring into outer space as a result. The share price, which closed at $408.09 on November 16, jumped more than 14% in after hours trading to open at $460.17 the next day. And although the following week saw some volatility, it just kept on climbing – a week later on November 23 it topped a high of $526 and was up more than six-fold on the year. It’s not all to do with Tesla though - global equities overall rallied this week (with the Dow Jones Industrial Average topping 30,000 for the first time ever) on the back of optimism around coronavirus vaccines, and the market’s relief that Trump conceded the Presidential election to Joe Biden (for now). This is nothing but good news for Mr Musk, whose personal wealth jumped by about $15bn the day after the news broke. So far this year, he’s made [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/elon-musk-wealth-rockets-billion-tesla-sp-500-inclusion-2020-11-1029809564]a cool $90bn[/url] on the back of the booming share price. Drinks are on Elon for, well, ever. In other news, anyone need a ride? On November 9, Tesla hit the mean streets of New York with the city’s [url=https://twitter.com/TeslaNY/status/1325953653598019584]first ever electric yellow taxi[/url], and plans to roll out hundreds more. It’s the first step towards the golden dream of a totally automated taxi fleet.
  • Photo: Tesla / Twitter
  • Q3 earnings bounce
  • Things are looking up, and Q3 earnings are better than expected. Revenues were around $460m while losses per share were down at $1.46. More promisingly, active riders were up at 12.5m, up 44% on the quarter.
  • Things are looking up, and [url=https://investor.lyft.com/financial-information/quarterly-results]Q3 earnings[/url] are better than expected. Revenues were around $460m while losses per share were down at $1.46. More promisingly, active riders were up at 12.5m, up 44% on the quarter and almost 4m more than the 8.7m it reported a year ago. “Lyft’s third quarter results reflect our focused execution and business resilience,” said CEO Logan Green. “We are encouraged by the ongoing recovery in ridesharing and the performance improvements we saw across bikes, scooters and fleet. We remain confident that demand will continue to return as we progress through the recovery.” The market was optimistic in advance, and shares jumped over 26% the day before the results were released (helped along the way by [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/11/09/covid-vaccine-pfizer-drug-is-more-than-90percent-effective-in-preventing-infection.html]positive coronavirus vaccine news[/url]). On the day though, prices were a little more subdued, losing -4.35% to close at $36.05. It didn’t slow Lyft down though, and the firm was already looking at how to build further revenues as the economy recovered: including a [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-lyft-results/lyft-seeks-slice-of-food-delivery-amid-slow-ride-hail-recovery-shares-rise-idUKKBN27Q39P]new service[/url] attempting to grab a slice of the food-delivery pie. It had already laid the groundwork in October, [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyftpink-adds-grubhub-perks]partnering with GrubHub[/url] to offer unlimited free food delivery for Lyft Pink members.
  • Vaccine hopes
  • Everyone wants a vaccine – and it looks like one is finally be on the way as drugs company Pfizer (PFIZER) claims on November 9 that its treatment is (in theory) 90% effective against the coronavirus.
  • Everyone wants a vaccine – and it looks like one is finally be on the way as drugs company Pfizer ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NSE-PFIZER/]PFIZER[/url]) [url=https://www.pfizer.com/news/press-release/press-release-detail/pfizer-and-biontech-announce-vaccine-candidate-against]claims[/url] on November 9 that its treatment is (in theory) 90% effective against the coronavirus. This poses a threat to stay-at-home stocks and Shopify shares have a turbulent few days. The stock declines by 13.6% on November 9 to $902.60 and falls another 2.3% to $885 by November 10 before rising 7% to $947 on November 11. Questions had already been raised by analysts about how long the momentum can be maintained for Shopify’s stock. It had been sitting pretty at above $1,000 for weeks but would it be as attractive once pandemic restrictions eased and people started going outside again? E-commerce sales rose [url=https://www.essentialretail.com/news/international-online-sales-grow/]135% annually[/url] between October 18 and 25. But would as many people shop online once it is safe to go outside and mix again or would we all need a break from our devices? Samad Samana, an analyst with Jefferies ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JEF/]JEF[/url]), joined the [url=https://www.bloombergquint.com/business/shopify-s-175-rally-sets-up-key-test-on-how-long-boom-can-last]chorus of questions[/url]. Samana said: “The looming question for Shopify and really all e-commerce related businesses is can they sustain that momentum that we’ve seen in the early half of the year into the second half, especially as stimulus is tapered off here in the United States.”
  • Photo: Daniel Schludi / Unsplash
  • Happy Thanksgiving, Zoomers
  • Aw, they’re such nice guys over at Zoom. After such a stormy year, those nice people decide that the world (or at least, Americans) could do with a break. So out goes the 40-minute time limit on all meetings for Thanksgiving.
  • Aw, they’re such nice guys over at Zoom. After such a stormy year, those nice people decide that the world (or at least, Americans) could do with a break. So on November 10 they [url=https://twitter.com/zoom_us/status/1326185441796661249]promise to lift[/url] the 40-minute time limit on all meetings for Thanksgiving on November 26, so that families can be with each other remotely even if they can’t meet up in person. The news met with a positive reaction – stock went up almost 10% the following day to close at $413.34.
  • Photo: Zoom
  • Photo: Greg Lippert / Unsplash
  • Teslaquilla, it makes me happy
  • Elon has always been keen on the idea of Tesla tequila, ever since 2018 when he joked about passing out on ‘Teslaquilla’ as part of an April Fool’s prank about Tesla going bankrupt.
  • Elon has always been keen on the idea of Tesla tequila, ever since 2018 when he joked about passing out on ‘Teslaquilla’ as part of an April Fool’s prank about Tesla going bankrupt. That one might have backfired (the stock lost 8% in a single day as people panicked that he was serious) but the booze idea stuck around – and in November 2020 he finally gets his wish, with the official launch of the [url=https://shop.tesla.com/product/tesla-tequila]$250 Teslaquilla[/url]. It’s in the shape of a lightning bolt. It’s 40% proof. And you can only buy two bottles per person. Unsurprisingly, people went nuts. Within a couple of hours of launch the website had sold out and bottles were being resold online for as much as $899 for – get this – [url=https://www.ebay.com/itm/Tesla-Tequila-Empty-Bottle-Stand-Only-Collectors-Item-SOLD-OUT-Pre-Sale/333790690878?hash=item4db779be3e:g:xHcAAOSwkTFfsafo]the empty bottle[/url]! Yes, that’s right, almost a thousand bucks and you don’t even get any tequila. That’s gonna make it harder to drink away the pain.
  • Teslaquila / Tesla
  • Prop 22 celebrations
  • They only went and did it! In a momentous win for Lyft and Uber, 58% of Californians vote in favor of Proposition 22 (and against upholding the previous appeals court ruling), meaning that drivers stay self-employed.
  • They only went and did it! In a [url=https://employeebenefits.co.uk/lyft-uber-classify-drivers-as-workers/]momentous win[/url] for Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]), 58% of Californians vote in favor of Proposition 22 (and against upholding the previous appeals court ruling), meaning that drivers stay self-employed. It’s the end to an epic battle, and the markets are delighted – Lyft stock jumps 7.06% on the news.
  • Photo: Lyft
  • TikTok partnership
  • Are you ready to dance? Shopify gets trendy by linking with social network TikTok so its stores can upload videos showcasing their products to sell to its 800m active users.
  • Are you ready to dance? Shopify gets trendy by [url=https://news.shopify.com/dancing-to-a-new-beat-shopify-brings-commerce-to-tiktok]linking[/url] with social network TikTok so its stores can upload videos showcasing their products to sell to its 800m active users. Investors are down with the kids and excited at the prospect of a partnership, sending the stock up 4.2% to $1,082.89 TikTok lets users posts minute long videos where they dance, twerk, sing, make jokes and now Shopify’s stores will be able to advertise directly to them. It soared in popularity in 2019 and jumped from 269th to 4th in global app downloads rank. The app is used by celebrities such as former wrestler The Rock and US dancer and social media personality Charli D'Amelio, who boasts more than 100m followers. The TikTok for Business Ads Manager was added to the range of Shopify apps in the US initially. It let Shopify stores create video ads through their own account where targeted viewers can click to make a purchase. That’s if they can stop lip-syncing for a minute. Helping users get on TikTok provided a [url=https://www.voguebusiness.com/consumers/gen-z-reinventing-social-media-marketing-tiktok-youtube-instagram-louis-vuitton]new global market[/url] beyond Facebook ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-FB/]FB[/url]), Instagram, and Twitter ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-TWTR/]TWTR[/url]). That was important as trends change and users shift platforms. Growth among young people aged 16-24 has slowed on Facebook and Twitter but is still rising on TikTok. After all, who wants to be on the same social media platform as their parents? Now Shopify users could reach potential customers on whichever social media platform they were on and whatever their age, meaning more opportunities for sales.
  • Free encryption, anyone?
  • Zoom launches free end-to-end encryption for everyone, both free and paid accounts, for all meetings up to 200 people.
  • Zoom launches free end-to-end encryption for everyone, both free and paid accounts, for all meetings up to 200 people. That’s a pretty big deal, and it all comes from the Keybase acquisition back in May. Smart move, guys. “We’re very proud to bring Zoom’s new end-to-end encryption to Zoom users globally today,” [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/10/26/2114354/0/en/Zoom-Launches-End-to-End-Encryption-for-Free-and-Paid-Users-Globally.html]said[/url] Zoom CISO Jason Lee. “This has been a highly requested feature from our customers, and we’re excited to make this a reality. Kudos to our encryption team who joined us from Keybase in May and developed this impressive security feature within just six months.” It didn’t do much to the share price though, which lost some ground over October amid excitement around new Covid vaccines and optimism that the pandemic could be slowing and people might be able to get back to work. It doesn’t bode well for Zoom’s 2021 performance once the worst of the crisis has passed, and investors agree – the stock lost almost 20% in the last 10 days of October.
  • Lyft and Uber defeated in court. Again.
  • In the latest plot twist of the epic battle between ride-sharing apps and their drivers, the California appeals court rules that yes, drivers must by law be classified as employees instead of private contractors – a massive blow for Lyft and Uber.
  • In the latest plot twist of the epic battle between ride-sharing apps and their drivers, the California appeals court rules that yes, drivers must [url=https://techcrunch.com/2020/10/23/ca-appeals-court-upholds-ruling-that-uber-and-lyft-must-classify-drivers-as-employees/amp/]by law[/url] be classified as employees instead of private contractors – a massive blow for Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]). But hold your horses, ‘cos it ain’t over yet. A little thing called [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_California_Proposition_22]Proposition 22[/url] is on the horizon – a state-wide ballot that allowed California voters to decide whether or not to uphold the changes to state law. If passed, it would keep drivers as self-employed contractors (but offering them with a bunch of sweeteners like minimum compensation and healthcare subsidies.) Heavily backed by Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]), the ballot was due to be voted on in early November, and the appeals court clearly wasn’t ruling out a corporate win, delaying the implementation of the new state law by 30 days to see which way the cookie crumbled. All this uncertainty isn’t great for the share price though – Lyft stock slumped by around 17% over the course of October.
  • Full Self Drive: promises, promises?
  • Tesla has been promising a properly self-driving, fully automated car for years and years. It hasn’t succeeded yet, despite repeatedly raising the price of its ‘full self drive’ (FSD) package – but it looks like it’s finally getting closer.
  • Tesla has been promising a properly self-driving, fully automated car for years and years. It hasn’t succeeded yet, despite repeatedly raising the price of its ‘full self drive’ (FSD) package – but it looks like it’s finally getting closer. In 2019 Musk promised that FSD would be “feature-complete” by 2020 and that by 2021 drivers would be able to fall asleep and wake up at their destinations without any human intervention. Sounds terrifying, but the [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1318678258339221505]latest FSD software[/url] upgrade has actually gone down pretty well with drivers. Not with investors though – the stock dropped over 2% the day of launch. Released in October 2020 to a select group of Tesla customers, Musk warned that rollout needed to be “extremely slow and cautious.” People seem to like it though, with users tweeting a ton of videos showing how much the upgrade has improved autopilot performance. Still not a good idea to close your eyes at the wheel though. We recommend staying awake for now.
  • Tesla Autopilot / Tesla
  • The future of telecommunications?
  • Zoom knows when it’s onto a good thing, and at the annual Zoomtopia conference in October it rolls out a whole bunch of cool new concepts and upgrades to make remote working even more snazzy.
  • Zoom knows when it’s onto a good thing, and at the annual Zoomtopia conference in October it [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/10/14/2108579/0/en/Zoom-Sets-the-Stage-for-the-Future-of-Communications-at-Zoomtopia-2020.html]rolls out[/url] a whole bunch of cool new concepts and upgrades to make remote working even more snazzy. Top of the list are Zapps, which let developers create apps that power workflows before, during, and after the meeting. Zoom says they will remove the need for users to switch between multiple applications on their desktop, allowing them to quickly streamline permissions, grant document accessibility, and collaborate on screen. They’re coming out by the end of 2020, and they’ll be available for both paid and free accounts. Onzoom is another big deal: a one-of-a-kind online events platform for Zoom users to create and host free, paid, and fundraising events. Hosts can grow their businesses, expand their reach into new audiences, and give back through native donation integration. Zoom users can discover these events and sign up for new experiences with additional functionality like gifting tickets and an attendee dashboard to keep tabs on favorite events and brands. Fun all the way. The market liked it too - stock jumped 5.33% the following day.
  • Raising the roof
  • The roof of a Model Y flies off randomly while owner Nathaniel Galicia Chien is driving down Interstate 280 with his parents just hours after buying the car.
  • The roof of a Model Y [url=https://twitter.com/TheNastyNat/status/1312959549268094976]flies off randomly[/url] while owner Nathaniel Galicia Chien is driving down Interstate 280 with his parents just hours after buying the car. It’s the latest in a long line of complaints about the new model, and people ain’t impressed.
  • Nathaniel Galicia Chien/Twitter
  • Data hack
  • Users are warned of a data breach that targets renowned Shopify celebrity user Kylie Jenner’s make-up company.
  • Users are warned of a [url=https://www.techradar.com/news/shopify-data-breach-hits-kylie-jenner-make-up-firm]data breach[/url] that targets renowned Shopify celebrity user Kylie Jenner’s make-up company. The stock falls 2.4% by the next day’s close to $1,028.99. Taking home a company pen or post-it notes from work might be ok, but everyone knows stealing data is a big no-no. That message didn’t get through to some Shopify staff though. A pair of rogue employees allegedly [url=https://techcrunch.com/2020/09/23/shopify-data-merchant-breach/]stole order records[/url] from Kylie Cosmetics and also thought to have targeted up to 200 other sellers on the platform in September. The employees were reported to the FBI after taking names, addressees and order details. It’s unlikely that they were looking for pen friends. Shopify was less worried about financial data being stolen, as it said the information hacked only contained the last four digits of payment cards. Technically that shouldn't put card details at risk – unless someone is really good at guessing.
  • Photo: pille dougats / Unsplash
  • Seattle adopts minimum wage
  • Good news for drivers, bad news for Lyft. In September, Seattle becomes the second major city in the US to vote that Uber and Lyft drivers must be paid a minimum wage.
  • Good news for drivers, bad news for Lyft. In September, Seattle becomes the second major city in the US to vote that Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft drivers must be paid a minimum wage. The new law forces ride-sharing apps to pay their drivers [url=https://durkan.seattle.gov/2020/08/mayor-durkan-proposes-fare-share-wage-ordinance-to-ensure-uber-and-lyft-drivers-are-paid-fairly/]at least $0.56 per minute[/url] while they have a rider in the car. New York was the first city to demand minimum wage for drivers, back in 2018. The story doesn’t have a great ending though – Lyft claims that prices increased and rides decreased following the legislation, which has been bad for drivers, forcing many of them to work even longer hours or even [url=https://www.vice.com/en/article/pkewqb/the-lockout-why-uber-drivers-in-nyc-are-sleeping-in-their-cars]sleep in their cars[/url]. The market doesn’t love the news either – the stock drops 3.24% to close at $27.14.
  • Photo: Patrick Hodskins / Unsplash
  • Zoom buddies up with Lumen
  • Zoom partners up with communications giant Lumen Technologies (LUMN, formerly CenturyLink) to extend its platform to all of Lumen’s millions of customers across the US and internationally.
  • Zoom [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/09/29/2100668/0/en/Zoom-and-Lumen-Partner-To-Deliver-Enhanced-Collaboration-Experience.html]partners up[/url] with communications giant Lumen Technologies ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-LUMN/]LUMN[/url], formerly CenturyLink) to extend its platform to all of Lumen’s millions of customers across the US and internationally. It’s a big deal, and one that both companies are delighted about. “Partnering with Zoom means we can offer our worldwide customers an industry leading edge enterprise video communications platform, and also provide Lumen’s highly connected global network infrastructure and white glove global service wrappers. This is a terrific addition to our Unified Communications portfolio that squarely addresses a growing demand in the Unified Communications space,” said Craig Richter, senior director of product management at Lumen. Zoom also recently partnered up with Oracle ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-ORCL/]ORCL[/url]) to integrate video into its workflow to enhance interactions with customers. Make friends, make friends never never break friends.
  • Photo: Lumen
  • Cashing in
  • Shopify launches a new stock placing but a discounted share price. Current investors react poorly to newcomers bundling in cheap, and the stock falls 23.2% from the start of the month to $870.76 on 17 September.
  • Shopify launches a [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-completes-offerings-of-class-a-subordinate-voting-shares-and-convertible-senior-notes-including-full-exercise-of-over-allotment-option-for-convertible-senior-notes]new stock placing[/url] but at a discounted share price. Current investors react poorly to newcomers bundling in cheap, and the stock falls 23.2% from the start of the month to $870.76 on 17 September. Shopify’s stock had already hit record highs of $1,134 and market sell-offs suggested that some investors might be cashing in on their profits. The September stock offering saw shares priced at $900 each on September 15 – a nice little gift to new investors, as the stock was actually trading at $929.39.
  • The power of a new product
  • Rumors start to circulate amongst hatchback aficionados that Tesla could be looking at a European city friendly hatchback, sending prices up almost 11%
  • Rumors start to circulate amongst hatchback aficionados that Tesla could be looking at a European city friendly hatchback, sending prices up almost 11%. A [url=https://twitter.com/mjkapkan/status/1281632423512625152] random Tweet[/url] claimed that Tesla cars were too big for European cities, and asked Musk if he’d consider making a small hatchback. Whether he was bored and having a bit of Twitter fun or not, Musk hinted that there could be plans for something along those lines in Germany. Ooh, exciting.
  • Canada rides recovering quickly
  • Lyft trips are up 7.3% in August compared to July, driven by operations in Canada recovering faster than in the US, says Lyft in a statement.
  • Lyft trips are [url=https://www.pymnts.com/news/ridesharing/2020/lyft-sees-7-percent-bump-ridership-august-canadian-market-strengthens/]up 7.3% in August[/url] compared to July, driven by operations in Canada recovering faster than in the US, says Lyft. The price jumped almost 4% from $28.23 to $30.10 in response. Overall, however, the pandemic is still pushing down demand. In total, August rides were [url=]https://investorplace.com/2020/09/lyft-stock-rides-recover-slightly-in-august-remain-down-53-from-last-year/down 53%[/url] compared to a year earlier, said the company.
  • S&P 500 snub
  • Tesla dreams about it, when it can’t sleep it screams about it, but finally its ambition of making S&P 500 Index is about to become reality. Unfortunately, at the very last the firm is passed over for entry.
  • Tesla dreams about it, when it can’t sleep it screams about it, but finally its ambition of making S&P 500 Index is about to become reality. Unfortunately, at the very last the firm is passed over for entry, and a lot of people are very, very disappointed. When news lands that it wouldn’t be included, the share price plummets 21.06% in the worst single day loss in the company’s history. But it’s always darkest before the dawn. The next day proved much more promising, perhaps as investors began to suspect shares had been oversold. Prices steadily rose, jumping around 11% on September 9. Even so, after its ground-breaking August, prices dropped from $2,510.70 on September 1 to $1,651.05 at closing on September 8.
  • The next big price jump
  • September sees the start of Zoom’s second massive bull run. The second quarter results make a lot of people very happy, and very rich – the price jumps 41% in a single day to reach an all-time high of $478, and continues to climb.
  • September sees the start of Zoom’s second massive bull run. The [url=https://investors.zoom.us/news-releases/news-release-details/zoom-reports-second-quarter-results-fiscal-year-2021#:~:text=Income%20from%20Operations%20and%20Operating,quarter%20of%20fiscal%20year%202020.&text=For%20the%20second%20quarter%2C%20GAAP,GAAP%20operating%20margin%20was%2041.7%25.]second quarter results[/url] make a lot of people very happy, and very rich – the price jumps 41% in a single day to reach an all-time high of $478, and continues to climb. Year to date the share price was up 595%, lifting the market cap to around $130 billion and making a whole bunch of Zoom millionaires (who, we presume, celebrated with a Zoom party). That’s a 1,228% gain since the firm went public at $36 back in April 2019. Fun Fact: Although Zoom isn’t actually included in the S&P 500 (yet), as of September 2020 it was bigger than around 85% of the firms included in the index. It’s only a matter of time...
  • The price jumps 41% in a single day to reach an all-time high of $478. Photo: Simon Alexander / Unsplash
  • Photo: Simon Alexander / Unsplash
  • Stock split resets price
  • Shares jump as Tesla announces its first ever stock split, designed as a nice little thank you package for retail investors by making shares cheaper and more easily accessible for the everyday folk to get involved with.
  • Shares jump as Tesla [url=https://ir.tesla.com/press-release/tesla-announces-five-one-stock-split]announces[/url] its first ever stock split, designed as a nice little thank you package for retail investors by making shares cheaper and more easily accessible for the everyday folk to get involved with. In a 5-for-1 split on August 28, the share price reset from $2,230 to a far more accessible $446. Prices surged by 13% the same day, making August a record-breaking month for Tesla.
  • Photo: Jonathan Petersson / Unsplash
  • BigCommerce bounces onto the market
  • An overweight analyst rating puts Shopify back on the bull run after investors wobble on rival BigCommerce’s IPO listing.
  • An overweight analyst rating puts Shopify back on the bull run after investors wobble on rival BigCommerce’s IPO listing. Shopify ends the month back above $1,000, finishing at $1,066.42. Shopify rival BigCommerce ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-BIGC/]BIGC[/url]) made its stock market debut on August 5 and it had a great opening day, rising 292% to $93.99 during trading. In contrast, Shopify’s stock rose by only 51% on its first day. BigCommerce’s impressive debut left Shopify investors green with envy and the stock fell from $1,094 on August 5 to $971.99 by August 11. However, Shopify got a burst of optimism on August 26 when Atlantic Equities analyst Kunaal Malde [url=https://www.streetinsider.com/Analyst+Comments/Atlantic+Equities+Starts+Shopify+%28SHOP%29+at+Overweight/17286763.html]initiated coverage[/url] of the stock with an overweight rating and a very generous $1,150 target price. Explaining his generosity, Malde said: "Shopify is significantly under-monetized, with product extensions, such as fulfillment, providing a significant upside opportunity. The stock’s valuation is the key hurdle, but the total addressable market is vast, there are increasing benefits to scale, and e-commerce acceleration has sustained as economies reopened.” His prophecy was almost complete when the stock hit a record high for 2020 at $1,134 after Walmart ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WMT/]WMT[/url]) announced the go-live data for its [url=https://www.retail-week.com/tech/walmart-to-launch-amazon-prime-like-subscription-service-this-month/7035263.article?authent=1]new subscription service[/url] that linked with Shopify. Shopify had already announced that it would partner with the retail giant on its Walmart+ service set-up to rival Amazon. It offered free delivery on its third-party marketplace on which some Shopify stores will be able to list. A start date was set for September 15 nationwide and investors were excited at the prospect of Shopify stores having a new route to sales and the ability to take on Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url]) while also boosting revenues for the company.
  • Appeals court grants extra time
  • Lyft reverses its decision to suspend service in California after a California appeals court gives it an extra time to comply with the previous order forcing it to reclassify drivers as employees.
  • Lyft reverses its decision to suspend service in California after a California appeals court gives it [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/20/appeals-court-grants-uber-and-lyft-a-temporary-reprieve-in-case-over-driver-classification.html]extra time[/url] to comply with the previous order forcing it to reclassify drivers as employees. Both Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft challenged the order, and the court gave them until October 2020 to appeal. Although its future in California was still uncertain, the stock recovered slightly on the news, gaining almost 6% to close the day at $29.76.
  • Lyft reverses its decision to suspend service in California.
  • Musk blings the big bucks
  • It’s official: Elon Musk is now the fourth-richest person in the world after an 11.2% stock surge on August 17.
  • It’s official: Elon Musk is now the [url=https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/aug/19/elon-musk-becomes-worlds-fourth-richest-man-on-tesla-boom#:~:text=Elon%20Musk%20has%20soared%20through,in%20two%20days%20of%20trading.]fourth-richest person[/url] in the world after an 11.2% stock surge on August 17. No particular market-moving news here, but Musk’s net worth grew by over 57% in 2020 alone, and with just $15bn to go he could soon take over Zuckerberg’s No.3 title.
  • Photo: Heisenberg Media / Unsplash
  • Problematic power outages
  • Zoom is struggling to keep up with demand, and the second half of August sees widespread outages across the network, starting on August 13 and picking up towards the end of the month across North America and Europe.
  • Zoom is struggling to keep up with demand, and the second half of August sees [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/8/24/21398900/zoom-down-outages-us-uk-meetings-webinars]widespread outages[/url] across the network, starting on August 13 and picking up towards the end of the month across North America and Europe. According to Down Detector, [url=https://downdetector.com/status/zoom/archive/2020/08/]19 outages[/url] were reported over the month, although the firm got things [url=https://twitter.com/zoom_us/status/1297930349087846400]up and running again[/url] pretty quickly each time. It didn’t stop the share price from climbing by around 27%, either. Zoom zoom zoom.
  • Better than expected Q2 results
  • Analysts expected tough times for Q2 earnings, but the radical cost-cutting measures seem to have worked and Lyft reports better-than-expected figures.
  • Analysts expected tough times for Q2 earnings, but the radical cost-cutting measures seem to have worked and Lyft reports [url=https://investor.lyft.com/news-releases/news-release-details/lyft-announces-second-quarter-results#:~:text=Second%20Quarter%202020%20Financial%20Highlights,percent%20year%2Dover%2Dyear.]better-than-expected figures[/url]. Revenues were down by 61% year-on-year, as expected, but net losses were just $437.1 million, compared to $644.2 million in the same period of 2019. CFO Brian Roberts also predicted that the company would still achieve profitability in Q4 of 2021, even with up to 25% fewer rides. But the company ducked the outlook for the rest of 2020, and declined to provide any predictions for Q3. Nor did the earnings didn’t do much for the share price, which barely moved, and continued to sit around $30 – less than half its IPO price.
  • Employee injunction
  • The legal saga rumbles on. At a hearing on August 9 the judge grants a preliminary injunction that would force Uber and Lyft to immediately classify their drivers as employees. Lyft gets pretty angry.
  • The legal saga rumbles on. Back in June, California Attorney General Becerra filed for a preliminary injunction that would force Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft to immediately classify their drivers as employees. At a hearing on August 9 the judge agrees, and [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/10/judge-grants-preliminary-injunction-requiring-uber-and-lyft-to-stop-classifying-drivers-as-contractors.html]grants the order[/url]. Both firms were outraged, claiming that the injunction would mean huge job losses. “The proposed injunction would cause irreparable injury to Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]), and would actually cause massive harm to drivers and harm to riders,” Rohit Singla, counsel for Lyft, said at the hearing. Lyft got pretty angry, threatening to cease operations in California completely if the injunction went into effect as planned on August 20.
  • Revving up for rental
  • Lyft diversifies out into yet another new area, partnering with Sixt to let users access rental cars through the Lyft app.
  • Lyft diversifies out into yet another new area, [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-rentals-sixt]partnering with[/url] Sixt ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/SIX-SIX2/]SIX2[/url]) to let users access rental cars through the Lyft app.The program began as [url=https://www.lyft.com/rider/rentals]Lyft Rentals[/url] in 2019, with Lyft owning and operating its own rental fleet in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The new commission-based partnership model is a hit with investors, and the price jumps by almost 5% to reach $32.34.
  • Softly, softly, cautious recovery
  • Signs of recovery are emerging, and monthly rideshares increase by 78% for Lyft in July, compared to April.
  • Signs of recovery are emerging, and monthly rideshares increase by [url=https://www.pymnts.com/earnings/2020/lyft-highlights-improving-july-figures-after-q2-ridership-plunges/]78% for Lyft[/url] in July, compared to April. “While rideshare rides in the quarter were down significantly year over year, we are encouraged by the recovery trends we are beginning to see,” said CEO Logan Green. The July gains came after active ridership [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/lyft-ridership-revenue-drop-drastically-amid-rising-coronavirus-infections-11597262925#:~:text=The%20San%20Francisco%2Dbased%20ride,at%20home%20and%20disrupting%20travel.]fell to 8.7 million during Q2[/url], compared to 21.8 million in Q2 2019.
  • Lyft CEO Logan Green. Photo: Noam Galai / Wikimedia
  • Bigger than eBay
  • More stock sells through the Shopify platform than on eBay (EBAY) for the first time as Shopify’s Q2 results show that it continues to benefit from the pandemic, even pulling in a small profit.
  • More stock sells through the Shopify platform than on eBay ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-EBAY/]EBAY[/url]) [url=https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2020/07/30/shopify-overtakes-ebay-for-the-first-time-as-its-revenues-rise-nearly-100-during-lockdown/]for the first time[/url] as Shopify’s [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200729005239/en/Shopify-Announces-Second-Quarter-2020-Financial-Results]Q2 results[/url] show that it continues to benefit from the pandemic, even pulling in a small profit. The stock rose 6.9% on the previous close to $1,053.59. eBay was the third-largest player in the [url=https://pattern.com/blog/walmart-surpasses-ebay-for-no-2-share-of-us-retail-ecommerce-sales/]US e-commerce market[/url] in 2019, behind Amazon and Walmart. But Shopify showed its strength. Its second quarter results showed sales through the platform rose 119% annually between April and June to $30.1 billion. This compared with $27.1 billion through eBay. An impressive achievement. Total revenue for the second quarter almost doubled, up 97% annually to $714.3m as it benefitted from online sales and was boosted by new users trying their hand at entrepreneurship now that they were stuck at home or had lost their jobs.. The number of new stores created on the Shopify platform grew 71% annually as more shops looked to take advantage of spending habits shifting online.
  • You win some, you lose some
  • Zoom loses -5.61% in a single day, falling back below $100 to close at $96.47 on July 29.
  • Zoom loses -5.61% in a single day, falling back below $100 to close at $96.47 on July 29. No real reason, and it doesn’t impact the overall performance of the share price, which has jumped around a bit but still closes July 12.2% up on the beginning of the month. It mirrored a wider growth trend for Software-as-a-Service stocks, which were [url=https://news.crunchbase.com/news/saas-stocks-near-record-highs-as-the-second-half-of-2019-kicks-off/]reaching record highs[/url], according to the BVP Nasdaq Emerging Cloud Index.
  • Virtual trial by jury
  • Cole, Scott & Kissane (CSK), the largest law firm in Florida, standardizes on Zoom to hold the first ever virtual trial by jury.
  • Cole, Scott & Kissane (CSK), the largest law firm in Florida, standardizes on Zoom to hold the first ever [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/07/23/2066730/0/en/Cole-Scott-Kissane-Standardizes-on-Zoom-to-Conduct-First-Virtual-Trial-by-Jury-in-Florida.html]virtual trial by jury[/url]. CSK attributed its ability to weather the COVID-19 pandemic without layoffs or pay cuts to its use of Zoom — some seriously good PR for the firm. “Zoom has been an essential part of keeping our business running,” said Jason Thomas, Chief Information Officer at CSK. “We needed to quickly pivot and change the way we work and Zoom fit our need for an intuitive and secure solution that our attorneys could start using right away. Zoom has the most robust security features out of any platform that we’ve used, and our users found it much easier than our legacy system — adoption and usage just skyrocketed.”
  • Dominance in Chinese EV market drives shares to record high
  • Between March and July 2020, Tesla’s market value grows by more than $210 billion – greater than Toyota’s total market cap ­– to become the world’s most valuable carmaker.
  • Between March and July 2020, Tesla’s market value grows by more than $210 billion – greater than Toyota’s total market cap ­– to become the [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-53257933]world’s most valuable[/url] carmaker. All hail the new Emperor. Why the jump? Massive demand as the EV market leader in China, where it sold 50,313 cars in the first six months of 2020 according to Citi ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-C/]C[/url]), +130% on last year. However, sales of Chinese all-electric vehicles actually fell 40% year-on-year to 67,000 units in June, despite Tesla growing to account for 23% market share, according to CPCA in July. So, is China all it’s cracked up to be? Investors still seem to think so. A few days later, better-than-expected [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/f41f4254-f1cc-4929-a0b6-6623b00475a6]Q2 results[/url] on July 22 send prices up even further, with revenues of $6.04bn and continued profitability making it finally eligible for a spot on the S&P500.
  • Photo: Macau Photo Agency / Unsplash
  • Health and...happiness?
  • Lyft doubles down on its commitment to user safety, rolling out partitions between drivers and riders to stop the spread of Covid.
  • Lyft doubles down on its commitment to user safety, [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-expands-health-safety-program]rolling out[/url] partitions between drivers and riders to stop the spread of Covid. The move expanded its [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-launching-health-safety-program]Health Safety Program[/url], launched on May 7 and based on CDC guidelines. The program included a personal health certification requiring all riders and drivers to self-certify that they are symptom-free, will wear face masks throughout the ride, and will follow CDC and local health official guidelines in order to request a ride or drive. Sounds good, but the whole mask-wearing thing was actually a bit of a sore point. In early June, Lyft had launched its own online store selling masks and protective gear to its drivers – something that a whole lot of people (not least the drivers themselves) kinda thought they should provide for free. Needless to say, the move [url=https://twitter.com/GigWorkersRise/status/1283797403414360064]did NOT go down well[/url] with some folk.
  • Zoom Home launched
  • In July Zoom takes a zig zag into Amazon territory with a hardware power play: launching Zoom for Home, a line of physical products for home use.
  • In July Zoom takes a zig zag into Amazon territory with a hardware power play: launching [url=https://blog.zoom.us/zoom-for-home-empower-remote-workers/]Zoom for Home[/url], a line of physical products for home use. The first product, launched in August 2020 with software by Zoom and hardware by DTEN, was called Zoom for Home - DTEN ME (catchy, right?) and consisted of a 27-inch screen with three wide-angle cameras and eight microphones, with Zoom software preloaded on the device. Other offerings include Zoom Rooms (combining a Zoom Cloud subscription, Zoom Room Licences, and meeting room hardware so that users can join Zoom meetings from actual meeting rooms, if some of them have ended up back at work). Its cloud phone system, Zoom Phone, also got a revamp. First launched in the US and Canada back in January 2019, it spread to the UK and Australia and as of August, covers over 40 countries with service starting at $8 per user per month. Think like Skype – it’s Zoom, but on demand, and people are excited. With a market of $43 billion by 2022, the Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) is big business, and Zoom wants to dominate 📱 The news went down well. By 20 July, the share price had hit a high of $271.35. But the best was yet to come.
  • Zoom Home / Zoom
  • $1,000 share club
  • Robert W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian helps drive Shopify’s share price through the $1,000 barrier with a glowing review and an “outperform” rating.
  • Robert W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian helps drive Shopify’s share price through the $1,000 barrier with a [url=https://www.barrons.com/articles/shopify-stock-record-territory-rally-will-continue-51593712832]glowing review[/url] and an “outperform” rating. The stock rises to $1,031 by July 10. Shopify was boosted by several days of positive analyst ratings. Sebastian reiterated an “outperform” rating and lifted his target price to $1,100 from $820. He said: “Shopify has made our list of favorite stocks each year since initiating coverage in early 2016. In our view, there are scarce few (if any) public software companies as closely tied to the enormous e-commerce share shift, with an established leadership position, and world-class product and engineering. Moreover, we see multiple incremental revenue drivers ahead from new paid services, new partnerships and a consumer facing technology app.” Similarly, analyst [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2020/07/01/why-shopify-stock-jumped-today.aspx]Jim Kelleher[/url] gave it a buy rating with a price target of $1,050. Justifying his generous viewpoint, he said: "Covid-19 has also placed limits on brick-and-mortar commerce and heightened the need for a multichannel go-to-market model. "Even as the pandemic recedes, we expect the many merchants who have converted to fully digital e-commerce to maintain a strong online retail presence."
  • Shorting the shorters with short shorts
  • Tesla launches a snazzy new range of red satin short shorts to poke fun at short-sellers after it becomes the most valuable car-maker in the world, and people want them so bad it basically breaks the internet.
  • Tesla launches a snazzy new range of [url=https://shop.tesla.com/product/tesla-short-shorts]red satin short shorts[/url] to poke fun at short-sellers after it becomes the most valuable car-maker in the world, and people want them so bad it basically [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1279868765212037120]breaks the internet[/url]. "Celebrate summer with Tesla Short Shorts. Run like the wind or entertain like Liberace with our red satin and gold trim design. Relax poolside or lounge indoors year-round with our limited-edition Tesla Short Shorts, featuring our signature Tesla logo in front with "S3XY" across the back. Enjoy exceptional comfort from the closing bell." Elon Musk famously [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1047979709898735617]hates[/url] Tesla short-sellers, whom he’s frequently accused of hurting the company in order to manipulate the stock. “They're jerks who want us to die," he told Rolling Stone in 2017. "They're constantly trying to make up false rumors and amplify any negative rumors. It's a really big incentive to lie and attack my integrity. It's really awful." In 2018 he tweeted that they “should be illegal,” and in August 2018 he sent billionaire short-seller David Einhorn a box of [url=https://twitter.com/davidein/status/1027906040283713537]short shorts[/url] to console him after he blamed Tesla’s price increase for his fund’s crappy performance in the first half of the year.
  • Tesla Shorts / Tesla
  • A good day for tech stocks
  • Investors are happy on June 30 after a lot of high-profile tech stocks make a recovery from a slump, and by the end of the day the market as a whole is up by between 1-2%.
  • Investors are happy on June 30 after a lot of high-profile tech stocks make a recovery from a slump, and by the end of the day the market as a whole is up by between 1-2%. Tesla stands out from the crowd with an end-of-quarter push towards profitability, ending the day at $1,079.81, up by almost 7%. Tesla had its sights on a spot on the S&P500 index for a while, and its profitability put the goal even closer within reach. To qualify, it needed to complete four consecutive quarters of making money, and by June 2020 it was three quarters (geddit?) of the way there. Even though profit during the pandemic wasn’t expected, Elon Musk sent an email on June 30 telling employees to work hard for the goal. Unfortunately, on September 8, the firm was [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/09/12/sp-500-snubs-tesla-etf-analysts-unpack-the-impact-on-the-market.html]passed over[/url] for entry at the last minute, and a lot of people were very, very disappointed. When the news landed that it wouldn’t be included, the share price plummeted 21.06% in the worst single day loss in the company’s history.
  • New Chief Security Officer
  • Zoom is taking its security issues seriously, and on June 29 it hires Jason Lee as Chief Information Security Officer.
  • Zoom is taking its security issues seriously, and on June 29 it [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/06/24/2052921/0/en/Zoom-Hires-Jason-Lee-as-Chief-Information-Security-Officer.html]hires[/url] Jason Lee as Chief Information Security Officer. Lee is a big hitter, formerly the Senior Vice President of Security Operations at Salesforce, and before that, Principal Director of Security Engineering at Microsoft.
  • Safety first
  • The firm adds a whole bunch of safety focused features to help customers feel safe. One of them is a new partnership with security giant ADT, where both riders and drivers can quickly get help if they feel unsafe by contacting ADT through the app.
  • Times might be tough, but Lyft isn’t lounging about – the firm adds a whole bunch of features over the summer to tempt users on board. One of them, released on June 25, is a new [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-and-adt-emergency-assistance-pilot]partnership[/url] with security giant ADT ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-ADT/]ADT[/url]), through which both riders and drivers can quickly get help if they ever feel unsafe by contacting a trained ADT ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-ADT/]ADT[/url]) professional directly through the Lyft app. . It was a smart move - safety had been a major issue for ride-sharing apps ever since they first started to get popular. In December 2019 Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) released its first ever [url=https://www.uber.com/us/en/about/reports/us-safety-report/]Safety Report[/url], which reported 3,045 sexual assaults and nine actual murders during Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) journeys in 2018. Out of 1.3 billion trips, that’s not actually that bad, but it doesn’t make for great publicity. Lyft doesn’t come out unscathed either – [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/05/business/lyft-sexual-assault-lawsuit.html]19 women sued the firm[/url] in December 2019 amid mounting allegations that the app was not doing enough to protect its users or enact basic safety measures. In such a tense climate, a security tie-up suddenly seems like a pretty good plan.
  • The bulls are back
  • Bullish analysts come out of the woodwork as RBC Capital’s Mark Mahaney gives Shopify a price target of $1,000 per share, pushing the stock up 5.6% to $863.56 in a day.
  • Bullish analysts come out of the woodwork as RBC Capital’s Mark Mahaney [url=https://www.barrons.com/articles/shopify-is-now-canadas-most-valued-stock-an-analyst-thinks-it-can-hit-1-000-51592496623]gives[/url] Shopify a price target of $1,000 per share, pushing the stock up 5.6% to $863.56 in a day. Shopify was already riding high after announcing some of its stores would be featured on Walmart ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WMT/]WMT[/url])’s [url=https://corporate.walmart.com/newsroom/2020/06/15/walmart-expands-its-ecommerce-marketplace-to-more-small-businesses]new third-party online marketplace[/url]. That would give both a big chance to compete against the giant that is Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url]). Mahaney helped the stock make gains after it provided the company with an “outperform” rating and increased its one-year price target from $825 to $1,000 per share. He noted how the pandemic had changed consumer buying patterns and moved transactions online, which benefits Shopify as more internet sales mean more fees from merchants, pushing up revenues and maybe even one day helping it make a profit.
  • The bulls are back. Photo: Steve Halama / Unsplash
  • Photo: Steve Halama / Unsplash
  • Zoom Phone gets US government approval
  • It’s another win for Team Zoom, as its cloud phone system Zoom Phone gets US Federal Government approval.
  • It’s another win for Team Zoom, as its cloud phone system Zoom Phone gets US Federal Government approval. “This addition of Zoom Phone to Zoom for Government will enable federal agencies to consolidate their costly and outdated legacy telephony systems onto a single modern cloud solution once the agencies individually authorize its use,” [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/06/15/2048406/0/en/Zoom-Phone-Added-to-FedRAMP-Moderate-Authorized-Zoom-for-Government.html]said Zoom[/url].
  • Tides changes and rides rise
  • Although estimates suggest that Lyft’s ride counts are down by around 70% for the year, some good news comes out in June when the company makes a regulatory filing that shows its ridership up by 26% in May, as customers gradually return.
  • Although estimates suggest that Lyft’s ride counts are down by [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/5/6/21249815/lyft-q1-earnings-coronavirus-rides-loss-layoffs]around 70%[/url] for the year, some good news comes out in June when the company makes a regulatory filing that shows its ridership [url=https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/lyft-improves-q2-view-on-26-rise-in-may-rides-stock-up-2020-06-03]up by 26%[/url] in May, as customers gradually return. Lyft also added that its adjusted EBITDA loss for the second quarter would probably stay below $325 million if average daily ride-share volume in June stayed similar to May. The share price bounced up on the news, to finish the day at $34.44. Yay.
  • Photo: Samuel Scrimshaw / Unsplash
  • One small step for Musk
  • Over the weekend another Musk company, SpaceX, sends two NASA astronauts to the International Space Station for the first time.
  • Over the weekend another Musk company, SpaceX, [url=https://www.nasa.gov/centers/marshall/about/star/star200603.html]sends[/url] two NASA astronauts to the International Space Station for the first time. Hard not to be impressed, and the markets feel the same way – Tesla stock jumps almost 8%.
  • Space X
  • Zoom boom
  • Security issues aside, Zoom had a seriously good year in 2020, and the first quarter results confirm what everyone already knew – the company is on a roll. Revenue is up 169% year-on-year and, as of June, Zoom is now worth well over $67 billion.
  • Security issues aside, Zoom had a seriously good year in 2020, and the first quarter [url=https://investors.zoom.us/news-releases/news-release-details/zoom-reports-first-quarter-results-fiscal-year-2021]results[/url] confirm what everyone already knew – the company is on a roll. Revenue was up 169% year-on-year at $328.2 million for the quarter, and as of June Zoom was worth well over $67 billion. Reassuringly, paid subscriptions were on the increase as were corporate clients – Zoom customers with over 10 employees working for them grew by 354% to 265,400. "We peaked at over 300 million daily participants, free and paid, joining Zoom meetings in April 2020, up from 10 million in December 2019,” said the company on its earnings call. The results pushed the price up faster than a rat up a drainpipe, and the stock soared by almost 14% on 1 June 2020 to break the $200 barrier for the first time, hitting a high of $205.87 and up 199% since the start of the year.
  • Valuation questions
  • Analysts question Shopify’s meteoric rise as it hits a new high of $825 on May 22.
  • Analysts question Shopify’s meteoric rise as it hits a new high of $825 on May 22. If you had purchased $1,000 worth of Shopify stock at its IPO in 2015, you would now be sitting on around $45,764. You can’t sniff at a 4,752% return. But analysts were starting to get fidgety and questioned the valuation, leading to a 6.7% drop by May 26 to $767.89. Craig Kirsner, president of Stuart Estate Planning Wealth Advisors, [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/shopify-stock-outlook-overpriced-analysts-ecommerce-outperformed-5-1029228548]said[/url]: "I 100% believe that companies like Shopify and Zoom are overpriced. They are based on the needs of the world right now and that need will go down once we are past coronavirus." “I do believe these companies will be more important going forward. However, they are probably overvalued currently, as most bubble-type investments are." No-one likes the word bubble being associated with their stock. Wedbush Securities analyst Ygal Arounian was [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/shopify-stock-outlook-overpriced-analysts-ecommerce-outperformed-5-1029228548]more optimistic[/url]. He said: “We are not going back to the pre-Covid normal. You are already seeing significant changes in the retail landscape. You are seeing bankruptcies for major retailers' department stores. It's a positive for e-commerce and Shopify. It's going to be a new normal and it's going to include a lot more online and omnichannel commerce.”
  • Getting back to work
  • Tesla really, really wants to get back to work. Unfortunately, not everyone is on the same page.
  • Tesla really, really wants to get back to work. The last major car manufacturer left in California, Covid-19 hit the firm (and its employees) pretty hard so on May 9, it launches its [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/getting-back-work?redirect=no]‘Getting Back to Work’[/url] restart plan, aimed at getting its factories going again. Unfortunately, not everyone is on the same page. Alameda County, the location of Tesla’s California factory, refused to allow Tesla to restart, because it decided to independently extend its own county-wide ‘shelter at home’ order, despite the State of California giving overall permission for manufacturing to resume. “Alameda County is insisting we should not resume operations. This is not for lack of trying or transparency since we have met with and collaborated on our restart plans with the Alameda County Health Care Services Agency. Unfortunately, the County Public Health Officer who is making these decisions has not returned our calls or emails,” Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/getting-back-work]complained[/url] in a May 9 press release. “The County’s position left us no choice but to take legal action." Tesla filed a lawsuit against the County on May 9 to force it to allow the Fremont factory to reopen. Two days after filing the lawsuit, Elon Musk reopened the factory in defiance of county orders, and on May 20 Tesla dropped the lawsuit.
  • Tesla Factory / Tesla
  • Keybase joins the party
  • Hurrying to fix all its security issues, Zoom takes the sensible decision to just throw money at the problem by buying end-to-end encryption start-up Keybase. It's the company's first ever acquisition.
  • Hurrying to fix all its security issues, Zoom takes the sensible decision to just throw money at the problem. In May it buys end-to-end encryption start-up Keybase, [url=https://techcrunch.com/2020/05/07/zoom-acquires-keybase-to-get-end-to-end-encryption-expertise/]its first ever acquisition[/url], as part of its promised 90-day plan to improve privacy. CEO Eric Yan called the 25-person New York-based start-up “the best tech and the best team” in video encryption. As face-to-face meetings were off the table due to Covid-19, the deal negotiations were conducted entirely through Microsoft Teams. Just kidding. The Keybase function allows Zoom users to choose an end-to-end encryption option for their meeting, which stops anyone from calling in by phone, and disables cloud-based recording of the chat. Other new security features rolled out in the 90-day plan included turning on meeting passwords by default, giving users the ability to choose which data centers calls are routed from, rolling out an improved bug bounty program, and doing more third-party security tests. Go Keybase team.
  • Largest stock in Canada
  • O Canada, our home and native land. Or so the national anthem goes. Shopify probably feels pretty patriotic round about now, as it briefly becomes the largest stock in Canada.
  • O Canada, our home and native land. Or so the national anthem goes. Shopify probably feels pretty patriotic round about now, as it briefly becomes the [url=https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/shopify-displaces-rbc-to-become-canada-s-most-valuable-company-1.1432436]largest stock in Canada[/url]. It comes as its [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200506005253/en/Shopify-Announces-First-Quarter-2020-Financial-Results#:~:text=Adjusted%20gross%20profit4%20grew,comparable%20period%20a%20year%20ago.]Q1 results[/url] are full of plenty of positivity despite the pandemic, sending its stock up 7% on the previous day’s close to $733.53. From Celine Dion to Justin Bieber, Shopify joined an illustrious list of successful Canadian exports. It overtook the Royal Bank of Canada ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-RY/]RY[/url])’s market capitalization for a day after reaching a valuation of $85.1bn. Shopify’s first quarter update showed the benefits of providing an online e-commerce service during a pandemic. The number of new stores was up 62% between March 13 and April 24 as transactions shifted online. It also reported more new merchants signed on to Shopify’s fulfilment network in the first quarter of 2020 compared to any previous quarter since its launch in June 2019.
  • Fat is trimmed, costs are cut
  • It’s been a long ol’ quarter but Lyft is putting on a brave face and powering on through – and its Q1 results actually aren’t all that bad. Revenues are actually up 23% and net losses aren’t too horrific either.
  • It’s been a long ol’ quarter but Lyft is putting on a brave face and powering on through – and its Q1 results [url=https://investor.lyft.com/news-releases/news-release-details/lyft-announces-first-quarter-results#:~:text=First%20Quarter%202020%20Financial%20Highlights,the%20same%20period%20of%202019.]actually aren’t all that bad[/url]. Revenues are up 23% ($955.7 million versus $776.0 million in 2019) and net losses aren’t too horrific either ($398.1 million compared to $1.1 billion the previous year.) A massive [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/uber-lyft-results-will-show-how-bad-coronavirus-is-for-sharing-economy-11588766412]cost-cutting exercise[/url] also helped to reassure investors. “While the COVID-19 pandemic poses a formidable challenge to our business, we are prepared to weather this crisis,” said CEO Logan Green. “We are responding to the pandemic with an aggressive cost reduction plan that will give us an even leaner expense structure and allow us to emerge stronger.” This included plans to cut $300 million in costs by Q4, which along with the earlier layoffs, gave the market a whole lot more confidence in the firm’s ability to weather the storm. Shares bounced up by over 20% the day after the results came out, hitting a high of $33.58.
  • Californian lawsuit lands
  • California Attorney General Xavier Becerra on May 5 files a lawsuit against Uber and Lyft, accusing them of unfair and unlawful competitive advantage by illegally classifying their workers as independent contractors.
  • California Attorney General Xavier Becerra on May 5 [url=https://oag.ca.gov/news/press-releases/attorney-general-becerra-and-city-attorneys-los-angeles-san-diego-and-san]files a lawsuit[/url] against Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft, accusing them of unfair and unlawful competitive advantage by illegally classifying their workers as independent contractors. The suit argued that the companies were depriving their workers of the right to benefits like minimum wage, paid sick leave, and unemployment insurance, and claimed $2,500 per driver. The markets did not like this move at all, and by the next day the share price was down to its lowest level in a month, closing at $26.12.
  • Elon tweet wipes $14bn off Tesla value
  • Tesla stock recovers strongly ahead of the main market, with more than 90,000 vehicles sold in Q2 – but a controversial tweet from Elon claiming the share price was too high blows up everything, wiping an estimated $14bn off the firm’s value.
  • Tesla stock recovers strongly ahead of the main market, with more than 90,000 vehicles sold in Q2 – but a [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1256239815256797184?lang=en]controversial tweet[/url] from Elon claiming the share price was too high blows up everything, wiping an estimated $14bn off the firm’s value. That’s 137 Sydney Opera Houses. The stock fell by almost 10% by midday, from a start of $781.88, to close at $701.32. With a stock split on the cards later in the year, there’s every chance Elon was teasing the market early. Having said that, there’s also every chance that he was just being a bit larger than life – especially as later in the day he claimed that he was going to sell almost all his physical possessions, including his house, because: “Don’t need the cash. Devoting myself to Mars and Earth. Possession (sic) just weigh you down.”
  • Zoom weddings are now legal
  • You can now get married on Zoom. On April 30, 2020 California’s Governor issues an order allowing people to obtain marriage licenses by videoconference, and (more importantly) to officially marry via videoconference.
  • You can now get married on Zoom. On April 30, 2020 California’s Governor [url=https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/04/30/governor-newsom-signs-executive-order-on-marriages/]issues an order[/url] allowing people to obtain marriage licenses by videoconference, and (more importantly) to officially marry via videoconference "as long as both parties are present, and have at least one witness who can join the live video." Zoom weddings were also made legal in New York, Colorado and Ohio, and fancy magazines like Town & Country began to run features with titles like ‘[url=https://www.townandcountrymag.com/the-scene/weddings/a32238538/how-to-plan-a-zoom-wedding/]How to Plan the Most Elegant Wedding on Zoom: A Step by Step Guide[/url]’. The publicity did the share price no harm at all, and it rose to a high of $141.63 on 1 May.
  • 1000 employees let go
  • Times are tough. Lyft makes the drastic decision to cut headcount by 17%, laying off almost 1,000 employees and furloughing a further 288.
  • Times are tough. Lyft makes the drastic decision to [url=https://www.ft.com/content/1e33730b-cefd-46d8-9121-76b19328d67a]cut headcount[/url] by 17%, laying off almost 1,000 employees and furloughing a further 288. Don’t forget that drivers don’t count as employees (yet) – this is just HQ staff. It cut salaries by 30% at the top leadership level, by 20% for vice-presidents, and 10% for everyone else, and cut the board of directors’ cash compensation for Q2 by another 30%. The company also committed $6.5 million to Covid-19 response efforts, focused on supporting drivers and vulnerable communities.
  • Zoom 101 – Please wear pants
  • For real. Earlier in the year, ABC reporter Will Reeve (incidentally, the son of Superman Christopher Reeve) is hilariously outed wearing a formal suit jacket and tie but NO PANTS while video-conferencing into Good Morning America.
  • For real. Earlier in the year, ABC reporter Will Reeve (incidentally, the son of Superman Christopher Reeve) is hilariously outed wearing a formal suit jacket and tie but [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zv0ELvPE_eo]NO PANTS[/url] while video-conferencing into Good Morning America, the Number 1 morning newscast in the US watched by over 3 million viewers. A few days later, Good Morning America [url=https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=240200210383998]bring him back[/url] for his very own segment… on how to behave during a videoconference. Yep, Zoom etiquette is now a thing – although perhaps Reeve isn’t quite the guy to be lecturing us on it. (We told you Zoom had a lot to answer for in the pants department.) In other news, Zoom reported a [url=https://cloudwars.co/covid-19/zoom-quarter-10-eye-popping-stats-from-techs-new-superstar/#:~:text=100%20billion%20to%202%20trillion,on%20April's%20annualized%20run%20rate.]stratospheric jump[/url] in monthly meeting minutes: from 100 billion in January 2020 to 2 trillion in April. That’s a lot of talking.
  • Black Friday every day!
  • It turns out a global pandemic is actually pretty good for a company that supports online sales and deliveries.
  • It turns out a global pandemic is actually pretty good for a company that supports online sales and deliveries. Who would have guessed it? A shift to online sales helps Shopify, and Chief Technology Officer Jean-Michel Lemieux gloats that [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-17/shopify-surges-after-cto-touts-black-friday-level-traffic-k94d2z4r]every day is now Black Friday[/url]. The market overlooks abandoned financial guidance to climb 63.7% since the start of the month, reaching $629.90 by April 20. Shopify issued a [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-provides-business-update-relating-to-covid-19]Covid-19 update[/url] in early April where, unsurprisingly and in line with many other firms, it said it was suspending its full year financial expectations. This didn’t dent investor confidence though, and the update also outlined how the firm was helping users to leverage and benefit from the shift to online services. It launched free trials to attract new users, and unveiled tools to help find government funding. Shopify supported curbside and in-store pickups so people could still shop while social distancing. The company showed its social conscience by [url=https://www.digitaltransactions.net/shopify-purges-thousands-of-merchants-for-price-gouging-and-making-false-covid-19-claims/]terminating thousands of users[/url] it said were charging unfair prices or making false claims about Covid-19-related items such as face masks or hand sanitizers. That was an important move, as some retailers faced criticism for hiking prices during the pandemic.
  • Photo: Artem Beliaikin / Unsplash
  • Surprise price surge
  • On April 13, whilst the broader market pulled back amid the developing Coronavirus crisis, Tesla stock soars by almost 14% to close the day at $650.95.
  • On April 13, whilst the broader market pulled back amid the developing Coronavirus crisis, Tesla stock soars by almost 14% to close the day at $650.95. There isn’t really any market-moving news, but the combo of some positive analyst targets the previous Friday, plus news on the expansion of Tesla’s Shanghai factory, and a [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1249612849866887170]surprise tweet[/url] from Musk hinting that the company’s upcoming talk with analysts would be about batteries. Whatever floats your boat. Things kept getting better the next day, with two analyst upgrades sending prices up 9%. April turned out to be a pretty good month for Tesla overall, and prices increased almost 50% from $504 to $781.88.
  • Can foreign spies hijack Zoom?
  • On April 9, TIME Magazine breaks a story claiming that spies from China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea are attempting to spy on Americans’ video chats.
  • On April 9, TIME Magazine [url=https://time.com/5818851/spies-target-americans-zoom-others/]breaks a story[/url] claiming that spies from China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea are attempting to spy on Americans’ video chats. According to US intelligence officials, China is the biggest threat and the fastest mover, and Zoom is one of the most vulnerable platforms they were keeping an eye on. The article cited a recent report from [url=https://citizenlab.ca/]The Citizen Lab[/url], a research organization at the University of Toronto, which had highlighted several key security issues on the Zoom platform, including some that made it particularly vulnerable to China. These included “significant weaknesses” in its encryption scheme, which actually routed some encryption keys through Chinese servers. The report also warned that the firm’s ownership structure and reliance on Chinese labor (Zoom owns three companies in China, with around 700 software developers) could “make Zoom responsive to pressure from Chinese authorities.” The story was picked up by newspapers across the world, splashing headlines of potential corporate espionage via Zoom, and several US lawmakers called for investigations into its security protocols. The story didn’t do much to the share price though, possibly because traders had already priced in the security risks. The stock opened at $117.80 on April 9 and actually rose by 8% over the weekend: opening on April 13 at a strong $127 and gaining a further 9.16% during the day to hit $141 by April 14.
  • Daily users top 200 million
  • Daily meeting participants top 200 million by the end of March, up from just 10 million at the start of the year, says CEO Eric Yuan in a letter on April 2.
  • Daily meeting participants [url=https://venturebeat.com/2020/04/02/zooms-daily-active-users-jumped-from-10-million-to-over-200-million-in-3-months/]top 200 million[/url] by the end of March, up from just 10 million at the start of the year, says CEO Eric Yuan in a letter on April 2. Education is becoming a major revenue stream, with 90,000 schools across 20 countries using Zoom to conduct classes remotely. But Zoom had competition. Microsoft Teams had 44 million daily active users as of March 19, while Cisco’s WebEx (remember Cisco, the company Yuan abandoned to start Zoom?) held over 50 million online meetings throughout the month of March as well. But there’s plenty to go round – according to [url=https://news.stanford.edu/2020/06/29/snapshot-new-working-home-economy/]Stanford University,[/url] about 42% of the US labor force are now working from home full-time. That’s 67.3 million people. It’s a lot of Zoom meetings.
  • Photo: Gabriel Benois / Unsplash
  • Lyft cancels personal credit scheme
  • Ride-share schemes are struggling, and Lyft is no exception. In a further bid to cut costs, it cancels a key promotion that gives $5 in Lyft personal credit for every five business rides.
  • Ride-share schemes are struggling, and Lyft is no exception. In a further bid to cut costs, it cancels a key promotion that gives $5 in Lyft personal credit for every five business rides. Seems like a small thing, but it’s a big step for a firm that relies heavily on its promos to keep business rolling. It was also an odd choice at a time when most travel loyalty programs were upping their game to try and keep customers during a period when business travel was trickling to a halt. The Lyft promotion was specifically designed to keep customer loyalty by allowing users to toggle between their personal and business rides within a single account – and removing it, [url=https://thepointsguy.com/news/coronavirus-disrupts-ride-shares/]some feared[/url], could push customers towards other options, like Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]). It didn’t have a great impact on the share price either, which lost -12.48% to close at $23.50, it’s biggest single day loss in two weeks.
  • Zoombomb explodes
  • It was always a ticking time bomb, and in March it finally explodes. Zoombombing hits the headlines after a bunch of school Zoom meetings gogett hijacked by trolls shouting hate speech, streaming porn and just generally being idiots.
  • It was always a ticking time bomb, and in March it finally explodes. Zoombombing hits the headlines after a [url=https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/03/30/nation/two-online-classes-mass-disrupted-by-offensive-zoom-bombing/]bunch of school Zoom meetings[/url] get hijacked by trolls shouting hate speech, streaming porn and just generally being idiots. It exposed some major cybersecurity flaws in the Zoom protocol, especially the absence of a required password. In a disastrous move for the company, on 30 March the FBI [url=https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices/boston/news/press-releases/fbi-warns-of-teleconferencing-and-online-classroom-hijacking-during-covid-19-pandemic]issued[/url] a formal warning, warning all Zoom users not to make meetings public or share links. “As individuals continue the transition to online lessons and meetings, the FBI recommends exercising due diligence and caution in your cybersecurity efforts,” it posted. Things escalated pretty quickly. The day after the FBI warning, Elon Musk’s rocket company SpaceX [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-spacex-zoom-video-commn-idUSKBN21J71H]banned all its employees[/url] from using Zoom over security concerns. Google ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-GOOGL/]GOOGL[/url]) [url=https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/pranavdixit/google-bans-zoom]followed[/url] a few days later, telling all its staff to use its own video chat app, Duo, instead. That was [url=https://www.techrepublic.com/article/who-has-banned-zoom-google-nasa-and-more/]just the start[/url]. NASA banned it, the US Senate asked its members to choose other video platforms, the German Foreign Ministry restricted access to Zoom, Taiwan banned it altogether for government use, and the Australian army banned it for all of its members. Tough times. But the company swung into action, and pushed back with a strong response. On April 2, Zoom announced a 90-day feature freeze to fix privacy and security issues, and promised that passwords and waiting rooms would be turned on by default. It also admitted the issue and was vocal in outlining its plans to improve – a stance that reassured the market and met with widespread approval. “We recognize that we have fallen short of the community’s – and our own – privacy and security expectations,” [url=https://blog.zoom.us/a-message-to-our-users/]said Yuan[/url]. “For that, I am deeply sorry.” Zoom also hired former Facebook security chief Alex Stamos as a consultant in April to help bump up its protection efforts. The price did what you’d expect though, and the stock lost a third of its value, falling from a high of $161.69 on 30 March to a low of $108.53 a week later. It didn’t take long to rebound though. Fun Fact: On March 31 the UK Prime Minister hosted his [url=https://twitter.com/BorisJohnson/status/1244985949534199808]first ever digital cabinet meeting[/url]. On Zoom. That’s some pretty serious kudos right there.
  • Zoom Technologies identity crisis
  • Remember Zoom Technologies, who got investors all confused back when Zoom Video went public? On March 26, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority halts trading because its symbol (ZOOM, compared to ZM for Zoom Video) was confusing folks.
  • Remember Zoom Technologies, that company that got investors all confused back when Zoom Video went public? Well, its troubles aren’t over. On March 26 the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority [url=https://www.finra.org/sites/default/files/2020-04/UPC_12-2020_ZOOM-ZTNO.pdf]halts trading[/url] of its shares, saying that its symbol (ZOOM, compared to ZM for Zoom Video) was confusing too many people. Poor old Zoom Technologies was forced to change its symbol to ZTNO instead. But don’t feel too bad – since the Zoom Video IPO back in April, Zoom Technologies’ share price had risen by more than 240%, despite [url=https://fortune.com/2020/03/26/zoom-stock-halt-zm-ticker/]not making any public disclosures[/url]. That’s a lot of people making a lot of mistakes.
  • Zoom Technologies sus. Photo: Among us / Innersloth
  • Photo: Among us / Innersloth
  • Could Shopify benefit from the pandemic?
  • Coronavirus infections are out of control and much of the world’s population is on lockdown.
  • Coronavirus infections are out of control and much of the world’s population is on lockdown. Most businesses close their doors – no-one can go to shops anymore because there is a virus waiting outside for them. It’s hard to run a physical shop without customers. But could this actually be good for Shopify? Online sales in the US [url=https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/2020/04/01/us-ecommerce-sales-rise-25-since-beginning-of-march/]went up 25%[/url] between March and April, including a 100% increase for online groceries and 62% for buy online pick up instore, so there was a big opportunity. It was also a chance for Shopify to earn extra fees from its payment services and fulfilment center as more people turned to contactless payments and deliveries. Investors saw the upside and the possibility of Shopify becoming a positive pandemic stock, sending it up 14.5% to $430 on March 24 at the same time that the US government and others proposed stimulus measures such as loans and tax cuts to support and save their economies.
  • Could Shopify benefit from the pandemic? Photo: Anastasiia Chepinska / Unsplash
  • Photo: Anastasiia Chepinska / Unsplash
  • Lockdown bonanza
  • In the US, California issues the first state-wide Stay-at-Home Order on March 19, with 41 other states following suit.
  • In the US, California issues the first state-wide [url=https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6935a2.htm]Stay-at-Home Order[/url] on March 19, with 41 other states following suit. Europe is already pretty much closed, as is most of Asia and the Middle East. Sucks for business, great for Zoom. On March 23, Zoom is downloaded 2.13 million times in a single day – up from just 56,000 downloads a month earlier – and daily users [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/zoom-microsoft-cloud-usage-are-rocketing-during-coronavirus-pandemic-new-data-show-2020-03-30]are up 380%[/url] on 2019. The share price reflected the gains, up 140% since the start of the year to hit a March high of $164.94. That was a major buck in the wider market, with both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq losing around 30% over the same timeframe, ending the longest bull run on record. The unicorn had grown wings. It’s basically Pegasus. But is it sustainable? “The real question will be how much of this activity will convert to paid users over the short and long term,” warned JP Morgan ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JPM/]JPM[/url]) in a client note. And it wasn’t all plain sailing, either. Zoom got a [url=https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2020/04/06/zoom-execs-sold-millions-stock-coronavirus-pumped-share-price/]bit of bad press[/url] in March when a bunch of its senior execs (including CEO Eric Yuan) offloaded a ton of shares in the open market and made millions off the company’s meteoric 2020 rise. Eric Yuan personally sold $10.5 million in January (and a further $12.5 million in February, and $15.5 million in March) while director Santiago Subotovsky sold stock worth $16.8 million in March, and CFO Kelly Steckelberg unloaded almost $3.4 million in the first quarter. CMO Janine Pelosi led the pack, selling a bunch of Zoom shares every fortnight since the end of October 2019 and making around $1 million each time. Between February and March she sold almost 130,000 shares, making a cool $12.9 million in a single month. That’s $430,000 per day. Zoom [url=https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2020/04/06/zoom-execs-sold-millions-stock-coronavirus-pumped-share-price/]said[/url] that the sales were made as part of pre-arranged trading plans. “Each of these individuals still own a significant amount of Zoom’s stock and are extremely optimistic about the company’s future.” Looks like not everyone believed them though – the share price dropped by over 15% on March 24, to $135.18.
  • Musk makes noise over Covid-19
  • Mr Tesla CEO has had a problematic Twitter journey on the Covid19 front, starting with a March 6 Tweet claiming that “the coronavirus panic is dumb” which, astonishingly, is the most-liked Tweet on the platform that week.
  • Mr Tesla CEO has had a problematic Twitter journey on the Covid-19 front, starting with a March 6 Tweet claiming that [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1236029449042198528]“the coronavirus panic is dumb”[/url] which, astonishingly, is the most-liked Tweet on the platform that week. Despite claiming to have actually had treatment for coronavirus, on March 19 he doubles down, dropping a whole bunch of truthbombs that send the Twitterverse crazy. First he warned that the “danger of panic still far exceeds danger” of coronavirus itself. Then he promised that Tesla would repurpose its factory to make ventilators if there was a shortage – a claim that the Mayor of New York later took him up on. Finally, he predicted that based on current trends, there would likely be no new cases in the US by the end of April. Clearly, it didn’t play out that way (20,517 [url=https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/situation-reports/20200430-sitrep-101-covid-19.pdf]new daily cases[/url] as of April 30, 2020, and 1,936 new daily deaths). Luckily, the same day Tesla received a bullish review from a Morgan Stanley analyst, who wrote that the sharp share price decline amid Covid gave the stock a great risk-reward profile. Prices jumped up almost 19% on the back of the call.
  • Pandemic causes challenges
  • Covid-19 crashes in, and while some tech firms benefit from the pandemic (Zoom, we’re looking at you), now is not a good time to be in transportation.
  • Covid-19 crashes in, and while some tech firms benefit from the pandemic (Zoom ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-ZM/]ZM[/url]), we’re looking at you), now is not a good time to be in transportation. Whole countries lock down, remote working shoots up, and people stop going, well, anywhere. On March 17 Lyft [url=https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2020/03/17/561401.htm]cancels[/url] its “shared ride” option to try and stop the spread, but it’s still a tough month. Figures are hard to find, but about 81% of Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft drivers in the US reported a decrease in demand since coronavirus measures began to be enforced, according to a survey [url=https://therideshareguy.com/uber-drivers-can-survive-the-coronavirus/]from The Ride Share Guy[/url]. Lyft itself was tight-lipped about the impact of the virus on its operations, but some analysts estimated numbers for both Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) to be down about 60% on Q1 2018, while data from SuperFly (a firm that tracks spending patterns) predicted that its revenue could have fallen by up to 90% since the start of the year. Lyft was at a bit of a disadvantage to Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) in this situation, because most of its operations were centered on its core business of ride-hailing. By contrast, Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) had its fingers in all sorts of pies, including an already successful food delivery business. Lyft had to race to catch up, and on March 20 launched its own grocery delivery app, alongside projects working on delivering medical supplies and meals to medical professionals. The situation took its toll on the share price, which fell to a low of $16.05 on March 18, a loss of -58% since the start of the month. But this was its lowest point - from here, it would enter a reassuringly steady period of recovery. In fact, the very next day, it jumped 28.97% day to take it back up above $20, piggybacking on an [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/19/uber-stock-pops-after-saying-worst-of-coronavirus-fallout-is-behind-it.html]announcement[/url] from Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi that the company had plenty of cash to see it through the crisis.
  • Covid19 sucks. Photo: Jusdevoyage / Unsplash
  • Photo: United Nations / Unsplash
  • Zoom tops app charts
  • The ZOOM Cloud Meetings app tops the free charts in both Apple and Google mobile app stores in the US this week.
  • A privacy disaster waiting to happen?
  • It’s not all sunshine and rainbows. The writing is already on the wall when it comes to privacy problems, and Mashable is one of the first (but definitely not the last) to warn about that particular can of worms.
  • It’s not all sunshine and rainbows. The writing is already on the wall when it comes to privacy problems, and Mashable is one of the first (but definitely not the last) to warn about that particular can of worms. On March 13 it published an [url=https://mashable.com/article/zoom-conference-call-work-from-home-privacy-concerns/?europe=true]article[/url] calling Zoom a “working-from-home privacy disaster waiting to happen,” pointing out a whole bunch of potential flaws in the system. In response, the price fell 1.83% to $107.47. It was the first rumbling of an issue that was gonna come back and bite Zoom firmly in the butt. Watch this space.
  • Coronavirus continues
  • March was a lot.
  • March was a lot. For everyone. And even the best tech in the world couldn’t stop the pandemic from taking a toll on Tesla. Shares of the company fell almost 12% on March 12, mostly because of yet another sell-off in the overall market and a price target downgrade from Morgan Stanley ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MS/]MS[/url]). This was the start of a pretty bad couple of days, and by March 18, prices had dropped to $361.22. There was turmoil in the overall market after Donald Trump announced his (limited) anti-Covid measures, the details of which weren’t quite rigorous enough to calm investor nerves. CEO Elon doesn’t help with Tweets [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1237113508610924545]warning[/url] that the market was “a bit high anyway” and “due for a correction”. Two days later, on March 18, COVID struck again. Tesla was ordered by the California County Sheriff to close its main factory for a three-week lockdown. Shares tumbled a further 16% on the news, taking prices down to $361.22 from $711.26 at the start of March. The factory finally closed its doors, Willy Wonka-style, on March 24. Even after the slip and price slide journey of the past few weeks though, shares were still up 56% over the past six months.
  • Saudi slump sees stock slide
  • Plunging oil prices and Coronavirus fears are starting to stress investors out, and on March 9 Tesla’s price dips almost 14%. The ongoing oil price battle between Saudi Arabia and Russia didn’t help either
  • Plunging oil prices and Coronavirus fears are starting to stress investors out, and on March 9 Tesla’s price dips almost 14%. The ongoing oil price battle between Saudi Arabia and Russia didn’t help either. Historically, when gas and crude oil prices are low, electric vehicle sales tend to slide, as it becomes cheaper to drive the old-style gas-guzzling world-destroyers. Bummer.
  • Covid19 hits. Earth runs on Zoom
  • The world is on fire. Coronavirus has swept the globe, and whole countries are shutting down. Enter, Zoom.
  • The world is on fire. Coronavirus has swept the globe, and whole countries are shutting down. The stock market is slumping, economies are tanking, and everyone’s locked indoors going slowly crazy. Before, your biggest fear at a company meeting might be bad biscuits, or cheap coffee. Now, meeting in person might actually kill you, so everyone is working from home and no one wears pants anymore. Why bother, when Zoom can only see your top half? (Seriously – it’s a real thing. According to Adobe Analytics, between March and April 2020, [url=https://edition.cnn.com/2020/05/12/business/coronavirus-online-shopping/index.html]pants sales in the US fell by 13%[/url], while pajama sales rose by 143%. Zoom has a LOT to answer for.) Zoom benefitted. "We have never witnessed this level of continued operating leverage expansion and that is driving significant upside in cash flow," said [url=https://twitter.com/thenotablecalls/status/1235544509360099335?source=content_type:react|first_level_url:news|section:main_content|button:body_link]JPMorgan[/url], which on 10 March boosted its price target on Zoom to $150 from $125. That’s a 38% upside on the closing price of $108.39. One small step for Zoom, one giant leap for the continued running of Planet Earth.
  • Photo: Elena Mozhvilo / Unsplash
  • Coronavirus hits production
  • Infection rates go up, stocks go down, and three quarters of the workforce are cut from Tesla’s Nevada battery site.
  • Infection rates go up, stocks go down, and three quarters of the workforce [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/3/27/21196879/tesla-gigafactory-shelter-in-place-nevada-coronavirus-covid-19]are cut[/url] from Tesla’s Nevada battery site. Things aren’t looking good. Sounds obvious, but the problem is that if people can’t drive, they tend not to buy cars. As expected, the company’s cash flow dried up. This led to fears of a tough 2020 and a share price wobble that lost over 50% – falling from $901 on 18 February to $427.53 on 16 March. It didn’t help that February was a tough month. Tesla stock took a beating, dipping almost 13% in a single day on February 27 as signs of weak Chinese sales started to appear. Sales numbers in China had been decreasing since December, with registrations of new Tesla cars down 46% between December and January. Chinese EV sales dropped a steep 34.6% in the fourth quarter of 2019, investment bank Cowen said in an early February report. Given that Chinese demand had been the driving factor in the stock’s stratospheric 2020 rise, the news unsurprisingly spooked investors.
  • Photo: Brian McGowan / Unsplash
  • Photo: Michael Amadeus / Unsplash
  • User numbers explode
  • Zoom has added more users so far in 2020 than throughout the whole of 2019, estimates Bernstein Research.
  • Zoom has added more users so far in 2020 than throughout the whole of 2019, [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/26/zoom-has-added-more-users-so-far-this-year-than-in-2019-bernstein.html]estimates[/url] Bernstein Research. Active monthly users were up at 2.22m, compared to 1.99m for the previous year. And it’s going down well with the market – Zoom’s share price went up by 35% between February 1-28.
  • Covid cancels conference
  • The pandemic starts to hit the Western world, raising fears of a global economic downturn. Shopify’s annual Unite conference is cancelled to protect everyone’s health.
  • The pandemic starts to hit the Western world, raising fears of a global economic downturn. Shopify’s developer conference becomes an [url=https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-shopify-cancels-annual-conference-due-to-fears-over-coronavirus/]early casualty[/url]. The markets seem to like its cautious approach as the stock rises 5.7% during trading to $463.30. Shopify’s annual Unite conference brought together its developers and users and made its founders rockstars as they outlined new developments each year. Toronto was set to be the venue for the 2020 event. But as cases started to rise in Canada, the Ottawa-based company said it was best to cancel its conference to protect everyone’s health. The company’s stock later fell along with most markets in the first couple of weeks of March , dropping 17.5% in a day to a four-month low of $322.29 by March 16.
  • Chinese market cracks
  • Tesla stock takes a beating, dipping almost 13% as signs of weak sales in China start to appear, worsening amid a softening economy and the spread of the Coronavirus. Shares fall from $730 on February 27 to end the day at $679.
  • Tesla stock takes a beating, dipping almost 13% as signs of weak sales in China start to appear, worsening amid a softening economy and the spread of the Coronavirus. Shares fall from $730 on February 27 to end the day at $679. Sales numbers in China had been decreasing since December, with registrations of new Tesla cars down 46% between December and January. Chinese EV sales dropped a steep 34.6% in the fourth quarter of 2019, investment bank Cowen said in an early February report. Given that Chinese demand was a massive factor in the stock’s stratospheric rise in 2020, the news unsurprisingly spooks investors.
  • Pollution problems
  • It’s not been a good month, with Lyft stock losing about 20% over the course of February. And it ends badly, with the Union of Concerned Scientists claiming that ride-hailing trips produce almost 70% more pollution by displacing low-carbon options.
  • It’s not been a good month, with Lyft stock losing about 20% over the course of February. And it ends badly, with the [url=https://www.ucsusa.org/resources/ride-hailing-problem-climate]Union of Concerned Scientists claiming[/url] that ride-hailing trips produce almost 70% more pollution by displacing low-carbon options like biking, walking, or public transport. The news hits the headlines and pushes the stock down by almost 5% to breach the $40 barrier, ending the day at $39.86. The scientists’ report recommended that ride-sharing apps like Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft should try harder to electrify their fleets, and push customers to take more pooled rides. To be fair though, both firms have already worked hard to reduce their carbon footprint, through projects like bike and scooter-sharing services, and incentive programs to switch drivers over to electric cars. Lyft has been especially keen on the green, rolling out a multi-million dollar investment program back in 2018 to become [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-commits-to-full-carbon-neutrality-and-100-renewable-energy]completely carbon neutral[/url] through the mass purchase of carbon credits (investments in environmental projects that balance out its own emissions). In June 2020, it made an [url=https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/lyft-aims-for-an-all-electric-fleet-by-2030-is-that-possible/]ambitious commitment[/url] to become a fully electric fleet by 2030. “Now more than ever, we need to work together to create cleaner, healthier, and more equitable communities,” said Co-Founder and President John Zimmer. “Success breeds success, and if we do this right, it creates a path for others. If other rideshare and delivery companies, automakers and rental car companies make this shift, it can be the catalyst for transforming transportation as a whole."
  • Photo: Kennedy Jerome Jome / Unsplash
  • Another day, another billion dollars
  • Tesla stock continues to roar. On February 13 Tesla announces a secondary stock offering with the intent to raise around $2bn at $767 a share, which boosts the share price by 10% over the week.
  • Tesla stock continues to roar. On February 13 Tesla [url=https://ir.tesla.com/press-release/tesla-announces-offering-common-stock#:~:text=PALO%20ALTO%2C%20Calif.%2C%20Feb,an%20underwritten%20registered%20public%20offering.]announces[/url] a secondary stock offering with the intent to raise around $2bn at $767 a share, which boosts the share price by 10% over the week to close at $901 on February 21. This little update came about two weeks after Musk declared that Tesla was done with raising capital for the foreseeable future, which might make him a little bit of a fibber, but a damn rich one – the move boosted his net worth (already 19th in the world) by a sweet $3.1bn to hit $43.3bn. The offering met the high end of Tesla’s expectations, and Musk himself purchased $10 million worth of shares on Valentine’s Day. The offering, which finally closed on February 19, raised $2.31 billion in net proceeds.
  • Financial results and Facebook
  • Shopify beats analyst expectations with its Q4 and full year results for 2019, sending the stock up 8% on the previous close to $531.25, while Shopify also joins Facebook on its new Libra cryptocurrency.
  • Shopify beats analyst expectations with its Q4 and full year [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-fourth-quarter-and-full-year-2019-financial-results]results[/url] for 2019, sending the stock up 8% on the previous close to $531.25. It even hit $593 during peak trading. No-one likes being underestimated and Shopify proved the doubters wrong when its fourth quarter revenue was up 47% annually to $505.2m. This was above analysts' average forecasts for revenue of $482m and the markets were also impressed to see the rate of growth increased from 45% in the previous quarter. It still posted an operating loss for the fourth quarter of -$30.1m. Total revenue for the full year 2019 was $1.57bn, which beat even Shopify’s own forecasts, but that profit remained elusive, with another reported operating loss for 2019 of -$141.1m. Later in the month, on February 21, [url=https://techcrunch.com/2020/02/21/shopify-libra/]Shopify went all crypto[/url] and joined the Libra Association. Facebook ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-FB/]FB[/url]) was working on its own digital currency unconnected to the banking system – didn’t want to let Bitcoin ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/CRYPTOCAP-BTC/]BTC[/url]) have all the fun. Libra would help those without easy access to a bank account or stable financial systems make digital payments, designed to move between wallets with low or even no fees. That would ultimately save money for Shopify and its users, so it was worth one of those big weird blue Facebook thumbs up.
  • Losing ground to Brother Uber
  • The share price climbs ahead of Q4 results. But it’s swings and roundabouts, and disappointment over Lyft's failure to turn a profit sends the stock tumbling. Disappointed investors punish the firm by selling out – and in many cases, buying Uber.
  • The share price climbs by 7.61% up to $53.72 on February 10 ahead of Q4 2019 results, which the market is expecting to be good. But it’s swings and roundabouts, and disappointment over its [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/lyft-q4-2019-earnings-profit-loss-revenue-uber-2020-2?r=US&IR=T]failure to turn a profit[/url] sends the stock tumbling. Shares dropped [url=https://www.investopedia.com/lyft-stock-drops-5-despite-upbeat-quarter-4795915]more than 5%[/url] in extended trading, and by the end of February 12 had fallen a further 10.16% to close at $48.46. But why so mad, bro? Well, Lyft reported a revenue jump of 52% to top $1 billion for the first time, while net losses also shrank yet again, to $356.0 million. So in theory, good news. The problem was that the company didn’t provide any updated guidance on when it expected to turn a profit – which really pissed people off, after they’d made a big song and dance about becoming profitable a year early back in September. Disappointed investors punished the firm by selling out – and in many cases, buying Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) instead, which a few days earlier had released some seriously good quarterly numbers and [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/2/6/21126965/uber-q4-earnings-report-net-loss-revenue-profit-2019]forecast its first quarterly profit[/url] by the end of the year. The race just got real.
  • And so coronavirus begins
  • By February things are starting to heat up like an egg in a microwave. The worst of the Covid crisis was yet to hit, but governments are already advising remote working and school/workplace closures are hitting people hard.
  • By February things are starting to heat up like an egg in a microwave. The worst of the Covid crisis is yet to hit, but governments are already advising remote working and school/workplace closures are hitting people hard in countries like China, Japan, South Korea and northern Italy. With [url=https://www.pharmaceutical-technology.com/news/china-novel-coronavirus-deaths-25-feb/]2,700 deaths[/url] and more than 80,000 cases worldwide, companies are scrambling to handle the impact on their workforce – and like a superhero, Zoom steps in to save the day. The sudden surge in demand had an obvious impact – on 3 February the price spiked almost 15% in a single day to close out at $87.66. And it just kept on going. By the end of February Zoom had signed up [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/26/zoom-has-added-more-users-so-far-this-year-than-in-2019-bernstein.html]2.22 million new users[/url] for 2020. That’s more than the 1.99 million it gained during the whole of 2019. On 28 February the stock hit an all-time high of $121.93.
  • We have lift-off. Oh, wait
  • Elon Musk has got a shiny new rocket ship: Tesla stock. In its biggest one-day jump since May 2013, Tesla gains a whopping 19.89% on February 3, after Argus Research raises its price target.
  • Elon Musk has got a shiny new rocket ship: Tesla stock. In its biggest one-day jump since May 2013, Tesla gains a whopping 19.89% on February 3, after Argus Research raises its price target. This was just the beginning of a pretty volatile period for Tesla though, with prices shooting up by up to 50% over the next few days, though it settled down to end the week around 15% up. February 4 saw an especially wild ride, with prices hitting a high of $968.99, a low of $833.88, and closing the day up by almost 14%. The gains were helped along by long-time Tesla bull Ron Baron, who suggested that this was, as he'd predicted, just the beginning for the firm’s potential price growth. Fast forward about 24 hours though, and prices actually sank more than 17% on February 5, in part impacted by the spreading Coronavirus in China, which was already beginning to severely impact delivery schedules and production. The week closed at decent enough $748.07.
  • Stock starts to soar in Tesla’s biggest ever bull run
  • Here begins the stratospheric rise of Tesla’s stock, mainly down to optimistic expectations of Chinese demand, with the new Shanghai Gigafactory and the start of Model Y production supporting a strong trading outlook.
  • Here begins the stratospheric rise of Tesla’s stock, mainly down to optimistic expectations of Chinese demand, with the new Shanghai Gigafactory and the start of Model Y production supporting a strong trading outlook. In April 2020, Elon said the Shanghai Gigafactory would achieve a production rate of 4,000 per week, or 200,000 units per year, by mid-year, as part of an annual goal to deliver 500,000 vehicles globally. The expansion in capacity supported a strong trading outlook, with shares topping $650 as of January 31, 2020.
  • Early riser
  • Everyone thinks that it was coronavirus that catapulted Zoom into the stratosphere but actually, the share price started creeping up even before the pandemic hit.
  • Everyone thinks that it was coronavirus that catapulted Zoom into the stratosphere but actually, the share price started creeping up even before the pandemic hit. Between December 31 2019 and January 31 2020 the share price sneaks up by 12% to reach $76.30 – its highest point in three months. But it was only the beginning…
  • Photo: Ray Hennessy / Unsplash
  • Shooting for the stars
  • Tesla is nothing if not ambitious. January was its best month since 2013 and on the back of better than expected earnings and revenue, released on January 29, it predicts sales of more than half a million cars this year.
  • Tesla is nothing if not ambitious. January was its best month since 2013 and on the back of better than expected earnings and revenue, [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/b3cf7f5e-546a-4a65-9888-c928b914b529]released[/url] on January 29, it predicts sales of more than half a million cars this year. Prices are quick to respond, surging almost 7% in after hours trading and closing up more than 10% on January 30. The company made a profit of $105m in Q4 2019 on revenues of $7.38bn, both better than expected, continuing a remarkable streak for Tesla, whose shares had surged almost 120% since the its third-quarter earnings release in October 2019. The company delivered about 367,500 vehicles in 2019, a 50% rise from 2018, and claimed to feel “comfortable” that it would reach its car-sale goals for 2020. CEO Elon Musk also told investors that the company had no intention of raising capital, maybe ever again (spoiler alert: that promise would last about two weeks). This was the start of a stratospheric surge in stock price, mainly down to optimistic expectations of Chinese demand, with the new Shanghai Gigafactory and the start of Model Y production supporting a strong trading outlook. In April 2020, Elon said the Shanghai Gigafactory would achieve a production rate of 4,000 per week, or 200,000 units per year, by mid-year, as part of an annual goal to deliver 500,000 vehicles globally. The expansion in capacity supported a strong trading outlook, with shares topping $650 as of January 31.
  • Photo: Greg Rakozy / Unsplash
  • Lyft cuts 2% of staff
  • Desperately trying to staunch the flow of losses, and with its promise of profit by 2021 looming overhead, at the end of January Lyft makes the radical decision to cut 2% of its staff in a cost-cutting exercise.
  • Desperately trying to staunch the flow of losses, and with its promise of profit by 2021 looming overhead, at the end of January Lyft makes the radical decision to [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-lyft-restructuring-idUSKBN1ZS2QB]cut 2% of its staff[/url] in a cost-cutting exercise. This isn’t as drastic as it sounds – it equated to [url=https://www.autonews.com/mobility-report/lyft-cut-2-staff-pursuit-2021-profit]about 90 jobs[/url], a heck of a lot less than the 1,000 staff that Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) let go the previous year when it embarked on a similar slash and burn. But those 90 people probably weren’t too happy about it. Nor was the market, which dropped -2.84% on January 29 to close at $46.84, although it bounced back pretty quick the next day.
  • Shopify launches starter loans
  • Shopify steps up its support for businesses with the launch of starter loans to help entrepreneurs get their ideas off the ground.
  • Shopify steps up its support for businesses with the launch of starter loans to help entrepreneurs get their ideas off the ground. The stock climbs 1.8% to $448.5 but finishes the month on a high. Starting a business can be pricey. You need to pay to register your company, get a website, buy stock. Unfortunately, money doesn’t grow on trees, but Shopify wanted to help firms get started. It [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/donnafuscaldo/2020/01/14/shopify-wants-to-launch-millions-of-small-businesses-and-thinks-200-loans-is-the-way/?sh=7bc0a63c1e41]launched[/url] loans of $200 through Shopify Capital to give new businesses a cash boost. Every little helps. Bruce Murray, CEO of the Murray Wealth Group, also paid what seemed to be a compliment to the stock. He told Bloomberg: “Shopify is one of the [url=https://www.cantechletter.com/2020/01/is-shopify-one-of-the-most-expensive-stocks-on-the-face-of-the-earth/]most expensive stocks on the face of the earth[/url] but it’s one of the fastest-growing stocks on the face of the earth and that’s what you get. “We bought Shopify around $170 and we sold half of our position in the $400 range to take our money out. I believe Shopify’s outlook for the business is great and that probably will transfer into the stock over the next few years.” The stock finished the month at $465.66. That’s a massive 1,713% higher than its IPO day closing price of $25.68.
  • Tesla gonna talk
  • Musk tweets that “Teslas will soon talk to people if you want.
  • Musk [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1216198285792358400]tweets[/url] that “Teslas will soon talk to people if you want. This is real.” Guess it depends what they say. A car that did yo momma jokes would be pretty rad.
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey. MGM
  • Props to immigration
  • Zoom CEO Eric Yuan is featured on Fox Business, promoting the importance of immigration for tech innovation.
  • Zoom CEO Eric Yuan is featured on [url=https://www.foxbusiness.com/technology/zoom-founder-immigrant-tech-ceos-embrace]Fox Business[/url], promoting the importance of immigration for tech innovation. He pointed to examples such as Microsoft CEO Satya Narayana Nadella, who is originally from India, and urged the US to “double down” on improving immigration law. Don’t forget, this guy applied for a US visa NINE times before he was finally accepted. Imagine where we’d be now if he hadn’t kept trying. We’d have to wear pants to all our meetings.
  • Lawsuit looms
  • The Assembly Bill 5 comes into effect on January 1, 2020, and all drivers in California are in theory now supposed to be classified as employees in California. Lyft is not happy.
  • The [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesfinancecouncil/2020/01/10/how-california-assembly-bill-5-affects-the-gig-economy/]Assembly Bill 5[/url] comes into effect on January 1, 2020, and all drivers in California are in theory now supposed to be classified as employees in California. Lyft is not happy, and joins forces with Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]), Postmates, and Doordash ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-DASH/]DASH[/url]) in a lawsuit challenging the rule as unconstitutional. Interestingly though, the law doesn’t do much to the share price, probably because traders had already priced in the impact.
  • Photo: Mike Tsitas / Unsplash
  • Tesla delivers first Chinese-made cars
  • The first 15 Model 3s made at the firm’s Chinese Gigafactory are delivered to Tesla employees in a fancy ceremony.
  • The first 15 Model 3s made at the firm’s Chinese Gigafactory are [url=https://www.theverge.com/2019/12/30/21042493/tesla-chinese-model-3-cars-gigafactory-3-shanghai]delivered[/url] to Tesla employees in a fancy ceremony. And it’s a big deal. The Chinese market is the holy grail for electric cars, and Tesla’s foothold is about to send its share price higher than a Falcon 9 rocket.
  • Great wall of China. Photo: Hanson Lu / Unsplash
  • Working 9-5, what a way to make a living
  • Shopify founder and CEO Tobias Lutke delivers an upbeat message to followers over the festive period, telling them to not work so hard.
  • Shopify founder and CEO Tobias Lutke delivers an upbeat message to followers over the festive period, telling them to not work so hard. He revealed in a [url=https://twitter.com/tobi/status/1210242184341000192]Twitter thread[/url] that he needs at least eight hours of sleep at night and is always home by 5.30pm. He’s managed to build a $48bn business being this laid back, so he probably knows what he is talking about. Lutke said: "I'm home at 5:30pm every evening. I don't travel on the weekend. I play video games alone, with my friends, and increasingly with my kids. My job is incredible, but it's also just a job. Family and personal health rank higher in my priority list.” The stock just misses ending the year above $400 but still finished up 188% annually to $397.58. Its price was helped by analysts and fund managers who continued to love the stock. [url=https://www.cantechletter.com/2019/12/hold-your-nose-and-buy-shopify-this-fund-manager-says/]James Telfser of Aventine Asset Management[/url] noted that Shopify was behind almost every brand you see. He meant that in a good way, we think, rather than like a creepy illuminati conspiracy. “It’s a fantastic business when we talk about retail and what’s hurting retail,” he said. “Shopify is behind every brand that you see and you want to buy that doesn’t have bricks-and-mortar. They’re doing great things and they’re really expanding into being the full-service solution on the shipping side and everything. You’re never going to get this stock at a cheap valuation because their revenue growth has been at nosebleed levels, but they continue to do that year over year.”
  • Working 9-5, what a way to make a living. Dolly Parton / Wikimedia
  • Dolly Parton / Wikimedia
  • Official rideshare app for Capitol Records
  • Car journeys just got cool. Lyft signs up as the official rideshare app for Capitol Records, home to artists like Katy Perry and Jennifer Lopez. Pretty sweet PR stunt, and it seems to work – the stock hits a high of $46.09.
  • [url=https://themusicuniverse.com/capitol-music-group-announces-partnership-with-lyft/]Car journeys just got cool[/url]. Lyft signs up as the official rideshare app for Capitol Records ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/EURONEXT-VIV/]VIV[/url]), home to artists like Katy Perry and Jennifer Lopez. It kicks off the partnership with a huge party and exclusive Beck performance at the label’s Capital Studios in LA, inviting around 100 selected customers to the show. Pretty sweet PR stunt, and it seems to work – the stock hits a high of $46.09.
  • Ending the year on a high
  • Zoom romps home with third quarter total revenue of $166.6 million, up by 85% year-on-year.
  • Zoom romps home with third quarter total revenue of $166.6 million, up by 85% year-on-year. The market wasn’t keen though, mainly due to continued concerns around over-valuation, and the stock lost almost 10% of its value between the release of its earnings report on December 5 and market close on December 6. But Forbes called it the [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/tomtaulli/2019/12/28/tech-ipos-were-kind-of-weak-in-2019/?sh=7567f3603063]highest-performing tech IPO of 2019[/url]... and the next year was about to change EVERYTHING.
  • Lyft Pink launches
  • Lyft debuts its all-singing, all-dancing new member scheme, Lyft Pink. It doesn’t do much for the stock though, which stays hovering around $44.
  • Lyft [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/introducing-lyft-pink]debuts[/url] its all-singing, all-dancing new member scheme, Lyft Pink. Offering discounted fares, free bike and scooter rides, priority airport pickups, 15% off rides and a ton of other perks, the program is immediately popular. It doesn’t do much for the stock though, which stays hovering around $44.
  • Photo: Thought Catalog / Unsplash
  • Black Friday sales boom again
  • Black Friday sales through Shopify stores reach almost $3bn, peaking at $1.5m per minute during the post-Thanksgiving shopping bonanza.
  • Tesla smashes up Cybertruck at launch
  • Yeah, you read that right.
  • Yeah, you read that right. Tesla launches its long-awaited, supercool, futuristic and supposedly indestructible Cybertruck and, well, turns out it isn’t. Lead designer Franz von Holzhausen [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7atGkba-Z8]smashes[/url] two of its armored glass windows onstage with a metal ball to prove their strength and they fracture in dramatic fashion. Not supposed to do that. Called everything from edgy to wedgy, production of the Cybertruck is due to begin in 2021 with a starting price of $39,900. This love child of the DeLorean and the Halo franchise’s warthog was first unveiled in November 2019 and is Tesla’s attempt to break into the massively profitable pick-up truck market. Pegged as a light commercial utility vehicle, it’ll come in three versions (single motor, dual motor and tri-motor) with an estimated range of 250–500 miles and an estimated 0–60 mph time of 2.9–6.5 seconds. Two more expensive versions, with bigger batteries and better motors, are on course for 2022. Hopefully by this time they’ll have stronger windows. Oh and don’t worry about the poor smashed-up prototype, because some guy called Dan Milano and his brother built a new version out of potato and [url=https://twitter.com/i/events/1200353209962782720?lang=en]posted[/url] their journey on Twitter, and it’s awesome. The windows were, of course, mashed.
  • Cybertruck / Tesla
  • Rival rideshare goes to big start-up heaven in the sky
  • Shares are up as rival New York ridesharing service Juno bites the dust. Lyft is up 4.23% to hit $44.86.
  • Shares are up as rival New York ridesharing service Juno [url=https://techcrunch.com/2019/11/18/juno-shuts-down-its-operations-in-nyc-as-owner-gett-signs-strategic-partnership-with-lyft/]bites the dust[/url]. Lyft is up 4.23% to hit $44.86. It was a win/win for the firm, which agreed a strategic partnership with Juno’s owners, the Volkswagen ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/XETR-VOW/]VOW[/url])-backed Gett, to transfer over Juno’s customers. The gains continued as Lyft got a bullish note from JMP Securities ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JMP/]JMP[/url]), and an [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/lyft-stock-gets-an-upgrade-due-to-competitive-positioning-2019-11-25]upgrade to a buy[/url] from Loop Capital Markets. Analyst Jeffrey Kauffman said: "The US rides business is showing competitive rationality, allowing Lyft's share gain and margin expansion to continue."
  • Slightly short-sighted short-sellers
  • The share price keeps bouncing around – possibly because of the high volume of short-sellers, many of whom are betting the stock falls over the next year.
  • The share price keeps bouncing around – possibly because of the high volume of short-sellers, many of whom are betting the stock falls over the next year. As of November 15, 41% of Zoom stock was [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/petercohan/2019/12/09/with-41-of-shares-sold-short-4-reasons-zoom-videos-dip-is-a-buying-opportunity/?sh=4c412c8e5e1b]sold short[/url]. Yeah, good move guys. That stock’s definitely gonna fall in 2020. Oh, wait…
  • Photo: Thiago Carlos Machado / Unsplash
  • Scooter business scoots down in six markets
  • Lyft confirms the closure of its scooter business in six markets: Nashville, San Antonio, Atlanta, Phoenix, Dallas and Columbus. It’s not a popular move, and the stock falls over 3% during the day to hit a low of $40.65.
  • Lyft confirms the [url=https://techcrunch.com/2019/11/14/lyft-is-ceasing-scooter-operations-in-six-cities-and-laying-off-20-employees/]closure of its scooter business[/url] in six markets: Nashville, San Antonio, Atlanta, Phoenix, Dallas and Columbus. It’s not a popular move, and the stock falls over 3% during the day to hit a low of $40.65. But it’s not the end of the scooter business, first launched in Denver in 2018 as one of Lyft’s first big bids to expand beyond ride-hailing. In June it released a [url=https://www.theverge.com/2019/6/14/18678281/lyft-scooter-share-design-specs]cool new fleet[/url] of Segway scooters, and claimed that riders were up about 20% in key markets like Denver and Miami. Looks like Lyft scooters might live to scoot another day.
  • Coming soon: Giga Berlin
  • Tesla makes tracks for Europe by announcing plans for a bold new Gigafactory in Berlin. Musk is also ready to party, hinting that there'll be an “indoor/outdoor rave space” on its roof.
  • Tesla makes tracks for Europe with a bold new [url=https://electrek.co/2020/09/14/tesla-gigafactory-berlin-progress-drone-flyover/]Berlin Gigafactory[/url], and Musk is ready to party. The Model Y is expected to be the initial focus for the factory, which is set to open Summer 2021, although it looks like partying will also be a priority – in July 2020 Musk [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1283275615638925313]hinted[/url] at an “indoor/outdoor rave space” on the roof. “Everyone knows that German engineering is outstanding, for sure,” he said at the 2018 Golden Steering Wheel Awards in Germany. “That’s part of the reason why we are locating our Gigafactory Europe in Germany. We are also going to create an engineering and design center in Berlin, because Berlin has some of the best art in the world.”
  • 1m mark
  • Shopify hits new heights, passing one million users as it reveals its Q3 results. The stock hit $319.85 during trading but closed at $313.57.
  • Shopify hits new heights, passing [url=https://news.shopify.com/now-powering-over-1-million-merchants-shopify-debuts-global-economic-impact-report-271485]one million users[/url] as it reveals its [url=https://investors.shopify.com/news-and-events/press-releases/news-details/2020/Shopify-Announces-Third-Quarter-2020-Financial-Results/default.aspx#:~:text=Gross%20Payments%20Volume3%20(%22GPV,the%20third%20quarter%20of%202019.]Q3 results[/url]. The stock hit $319.85 during trading but closed at $313.57. The company has not only created millionaires and passed its millionth user, but it’s helped to support more than 1.4 million jobs around the world. The online sales growth of all its stores was 59% in 2018, more than double the growth of the global e-commerce market. The numbers do the talking. Its user milestone came as the company revealed total revenue for the third quarter was $390.6m, up 45% annually and beating analyst estimates of $384.5m.
  • Photo: CHUTTERSNAP / Unsplash
  • Shares jump 9.5%
  • On the back of excellent Q3 earnings and an unexpected profit report, the stock jumps up 9.5% to close at $328.13.
  • On the back of excellent [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/47313d21-3cac-4f69-9497-d161bce15da4]Q3 earnings[/url] and an unexpected profit report, the stock jumps up 9.5% to close at $328.13. Bearish analysts lifted their outlooks, boosting the price. Brian Johnson of Barclays ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/LSE-BARC/]BARC[/url]) increased his target from $150 to $200; while Credit Suisse ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-CS/]CS[/url]) analyst Dan Levy bumped his up from $189 to $200.
  • October, what a shi*tty month
  • The party’s over and the hangover’s kicking in – in October Zoom drops to $62, its lowest point since first going public.
  • The party’s over and the hangover’s kicking in – in October Zoom drops to $60.97, its lowest point since first going public. It’s still not entirely clear why, because things were actually going pretty well. The firm released a whole new program of hardware and software features at [url=https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLKpRxBfeD1kH7-2omuLnnIsXTSsd3dhjW]Zoomtopia[/url] (its annual event and possibly the coolest name in conferencing) taking in artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, proximity and location-based services, face detection, an interactive white board for meetings, and personalized company logos. Excitingly, CEO Eric Yuan made a rare appearance at the 2019 event – sounds normal, but actually stranger than snow in the desert. The Zoom CEO is legendary for his absence – on Zoom’s pre-launch roadshow he only showed up to one single investor lunch, and his trip to New York for the IPO was just his eighth work trip in five years. That’s not to say the man doesn’t have a crazy work ethic though, and it’s shaped the way that Zoom operates. After moving to the US in the early 90s he could barely [url=https://www.glassdoor.com/blog/eric-yuan-zoom/]speak English[/url], could only write software code – and it took him [url=https://techstartups.com/2020/08/12/zoom-founder-eric-yuans-visa-application-denied-8-times-came-u-s-today-worth-12-billion/]nine tries[/url] to get a visa so that he could stay in the US. But he didn’t give up – in fact, he later said he was willing to apply 20-30 times if he had to. He got game. Eric’s most famous quirk however is to conduct [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/meet-zoom-billionaire-eric-yuan-career-net-worth-life?r=US&IR=T]almost every meeting[/url] on Zoom. He says he always offers to meet in person later, but asks for a Zoom meeting first – and usually that’s all that’s needed. That’s a strong sales technique, right there. But apparently it actually all started because of his basketball obsession – he only insisted on taking virtual meetings so that he didn’t have to miss any of his kids’ games 🏀 📚 Fun Fact: Did you know that Zoom employees get [url=https://www.facebook.com/theceolibrary/posts/how-eric-yuan-ceo-of-zoom-interviews-candidatesthe-first-question-i-ask-is-what-/977137886009983/]reimbursed[/url] for any book they purchase for themselves, their families, or their kids? “We want to hire people who are self-learners,” says Yuan 🤓. The perks seem to work – in 2018 he was named [url=https://www.glassdoor.com/blog/top-ceos-2018/]CEO of the Year[/url] by Glassdoor, with a 99% employee approval rating.
  • Did you know that Zoom employees get reimbursed for any book they purchase for themselves, their families, or their kids? Photo: Susan Yin / Unsplash
  • Possible profit?
  • Big news! Co-Founders Logan Green and John Zimmer reveal at the WSJ Tech Live conference that they expect to turn a profit a year early, and Lyft stock jumps 6.56% to close at $43.56.
  • Big news! Co-Founders Logan Green and John Zimmer reveal at the [url=https://lyft.gcs-web.com/events/event-details/wsj-tech-live]WSJ Tech Live conference[/url] that they expect to [url=r]turn a profit[/url] a year early, and Lyft stock jumps 6.56% to close at $43.56. A week later on October 30 the firm kept the positive momentum going with its [url=https://investor.lyft.com/news-releases/news-release-details/lyft-announces-record-third-quarter-results]Q3 results[/url], which saw a 63% uptick in revenues and, more importantly, a much lower net loss of $463.5 million – a lot better than the $644.2 million the company lost in Q2, and the second quarter in a row that its losses had declined. This quarter, the headline news was all about the holy grail of profitability. “Our third quarter results demonstrated the significant progress Lyft has made on our path to profitability,” said Green. “Importantly, we now expect to be profitable on an Adjusted EBITDA basis in the fourth quarter of 2021”. That’s a year earlier than analysts had predicted.
  • Share price drops by 50%
  • Lyft hits a low of $37.07, a loss of almost 50% on its $72 IPO price. The company is worth half what it was, and the shine has well and truly rubbed off the coin.
  • Stormy weather as investors look elsewhere
  • September is a turbulent month. Between September 6-9, the price drops from $92 to $78.65, and it hovers around the $70-80 mark for most of the month.
  • Overall the stock loses about 17% during the month of September, despite another strong Q2 earnings report posted on September 5. Why? Mainly because of ongoing concerns around overvaluation. It followed a wider decline in cloud stocks, which [url=https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/why-zoom-video-stock-fell-17-last-month-2019-10-08]Nasdaq[/url] put down to investors turning away from high-growth holdings towards value stocks like energy and retail.
  • Major software update sees big tech tie-ups
  • Tesla rolls out its biggest software update ever, linking up with Spotify Premium, Netflix, YouTube, and Hulu – although they only work when the vehicle is parked.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/introducing-software-version-10-0?redirect=no]rolls out[/url] its biggest software update ever, linking up with Spotify ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-SPOT/]SPOT[/url]) Premium, Netflix ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-NFLX/]NFLX[/url]), YouTube ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-GOOG/]GOOG[/url]), and Hulu ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-DIS/]DIS[/url]) – although they only work when the vehicle is parked. Possibly more excitingly, they also introduce “Caraoke” – which “lets you sing your heart out with friends on a road trip — or by yourself.” All together now...
  • Spotify
  • WeWork chaos causes investor reassessment
  • Disaster strikes – for someone else. Shared workspace unicorn The We Company goes into meltdown and cancels its upcoming IPO. It looks like the party is also over for big-name, high-value, loss-making tech unicorns.
  • Disaster strikes – for someone else. Shared workspace unicorn The We Company [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/wework-ipo-fiasco-adam-neumann-explained-events-timeline-2019-9?r=US&IR=T#:~:text=Ultimately%2C%20WeWork%20delayed%20its%20IPO,the%20company%20on%20October%2022.]goes into meltdown[/url] and cancels its upcoming IPO. Big-spending, hard-partying CEO and Co-Founder Adam Neumann resigns, and it looks like the party is also over for big-name, high-value, loss-making tech unicorns. The We Company, which was planning a $20 billion IPO despite heavy losses, came to represent the worst of the tech boom excess. Forbes called it [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2019/08/27/wework-is-the-most-ridiculous-ipo-of-2019/]“the most ridiculous IPO of 2019,”[/url] and the financial concerns flagged up by its initial IPO prospectus sent investors running for the hills. But what does that have to do with Lyft, we hear you ask? Unfortunately, more than you’d think. The We Company failure marked the end of an era for high-profile but unprofitable IPOs, of which Lyft had become the reluctant poster child. It had nothing to do with them, but it hit them hard anyway. On the day Neumann stepped down, Lyft stock lost over 7.5% to hit a low of $41.70. Life’s not fair sometimes.
  • September slump
  • Shopify goes all robocop with its latest acquisition of 6 Rivers, but a stock placing fails to impress the markets and the price declines 23% across the month to $311.66.
  • Shopify goes all robocop with its latest acquisition of 6 Rivers, but a stock placing fails to impress the markets and the price declines 23% across the month to $311.66. There were plenty of announcements that should have been good for Shopify in September. It announced the [url=https://venturebeat.com/2019/09/09/shopify-acquires-6-river-systems-for-450-million-to-expand-its-ai-powered-fulfillment-network/]acquisition[/url] of software and robotics firm 6 Rivers for $450mn, to integrate AI into its new fulfilment centres so it could keep track of stock and get robots to help with the picking and the packing. Who needs humans anymore. Robots failed to impress investors though, as the markets reacted badly to another stock placing. Shopify on September 19 [url=https://marketrealist.com/2019/09/shopify-stock-fell-for-six-straight-days-whats-next/]closed on the sale[/url] of 2.1m shares priced at $317.50 each to raise $694m. The money would be used to boost its balance sheet and fund its growth but it meant investors again faced their shareholding being diluted.
  • Zoomtopia looking hot
  • Zoomtopia is a massive deal for Zoom Video. It brings together all the firm’s biggest fans and favorite clients each October for a big customer love-in celebration where a bunch of cool stuff is always revealed.
  • Zoomtopia is a massive deal for Zoom Video. It brings together all the firm’s biggest fans and favorite clients each October for a big customer love-in celebration where a bunch of cool stuff is always revealed, and a bunch of cool people usually attend. This year is no different, and the line-up ([url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/09/04/1910856/0/en/Zoomtopia-2019-Lineup-to-Feature-Sir-Richard-Branson-and-Major-Zoom-Platform-Announcements.html]announced in September[/url]) includes Sir Richard Branson of Virgin fame, NASA astronaut Mike Massimino, and the Zoom Innovation Awards recognizing “unique, innovative, and impactful uses” of the Zoom platform. It’s a weird month for the share price though, which goes a bit kooky over the next few days, losing -7.85% on September 6 and another -7.91% the next day to fall back below $80, starting it on a steady decline for about the next month that bottoms out on October 23 at a record low of $60.97, its lowest point since going public.
  • New law paves the way for driver unions
  • Fears of a new labor law push shares of Uber and Lyft to record lows on September 3. Lyft loses 7.25% during the day to close at $45.42, as well as hitting a new intraday low of $45.40. It’s not good news.
  • Fears of a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/11/california-passes-assembly-bill-5-for-gig-workers.html]new labor law[/url] push shares of Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft to record lows on September 3. Lyft loses 7.25% during the day to close at $45.42, as well as hitting a new intraday low of $45.40. It’s not good news. The Law, [url=https://ballotpedia.org/California_Assembly_Bill_5_(2019)#:~:text=California%20Assembly%20Bill%205%20(AB,case%20Dynamex%20Operations%20West%2C%20Inc.&text=On%20September%2018%2C%202019%2C%20California,Gavin%20Newsom%20signed%20AB%205.]Assembly Bill 5[/url], would force ride-sharing apps to class their drivers as employees instead of freelancers, adding massive costs to the companies in terms of benefits, pensions, sick days and so on. Good for drivers, but bad for business. It passed the California Assembly in May 2019 and California Governor Gavin Newson wrote an [url=https://www.sacbee.com/opinion/article234624897.html]article[/url] voicing his support for the bill on September 2, hence the stock plunge. In a major blow to both Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]), the State Senate approved it on September 10.
  • Tesla launches new insurance product
  • Tesla looks to capture yet another slice of the auto pie with the launch of its own insurance product offering “competitively priced insurance offering designed to provide Tesla owners with up to 20% lower rates, and in some cases as much as 30%.”
  • Tesla looks to capture yet another slice of the auto pie with the [url=https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/28/tesla-promises-up-to-30-lower-rates-with-new-car-insurance-play/#:~:text=Tesla%20said%20Wednesday%20it%20has,available%20to%20owners%20in%20California.]launch[/url] of its own insurance product offering “competitively priced insurance offering designed to provide Tesla owners with up to 20% lower rates, and in some cases as much as 30%.” There are a few teething problems with the website though, which went down within a few hours of launch.
  • Q2 = lower losses
  • Things are looking up. Well, they aren’t looking quite so down, anyway. Lyft’s Q2 results saw net losses back down to $644 million for the quarter – half of the Q1 level.
  • Things are looking up. Well, they aren’t looking quite so down, anyway. Lyft’s [url=https://investor.lyft.com/news-releases/news-release-details/lyft-announces-record-second-quarter-results]Q2 results[/url] saw net losses back down to $644 million for the quarter – half of the Q1 level – while revenues were up 72% to $867 million. “Lyft’s second quarter was marked by strong execution and important advances in our product and platform. This translated to record revenue driven by better than expected Active Rider growth and Revenue per Active Rider monetization,” said Logan Green, co-founder and chief executive officer of Lyft. “We anticipate 2019 losses to be better than previously expected.” The market liked these odds, and the share price jumped by almost 3% to $60.29.
  • New Chief Revenue Officer
  • Zoom appoints Ryan Azus as Chief Revenue Officer. Doesn’t do much to the share price, but it’s a smart move – Azus is a Cisco WebEx veteran, former VP of sales at RingCentral (a Zoom partner company), and he’s super excited about the role.
  • Zoom [url=https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/08/05/1896878/0/en/Zoom-Appoints-Ryan-Azus-as-Chief-Revenue-Officer.html]appoints[/url] Ryan Azus as Chief Revenue Officer. Doesn’t do much to the share price, but it’s a smart move – Azus is a Cisco WebEx veteran, former VP of sales at RingCentral (a Zoom partner company), and he’s super excited about the role. “What a thrill to come on board team Zoom!” said Azus. “Zoom’s vision for the future of communication and collaboration, customer-focused culture, distinct brand, and world-class team have come together to create an incredible company. It’s an exciting opportunity to use my expertise in building enterprise go-to-market programs to help Zoom continue to grow rapidly at scale.” Maybe a little louder, Ryan, they might not have heard you at the back.
  • CRO Ryan Azus / Zoom
  • Second quarter strength
  • Shopify is hitting the stratosphere - its market cap has overtaken eBay.
  • Shopify is hitting the stratosphere - its [https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2020/07/30/shopify-overtakes-ebay-for-the-first-time-as-its-revenues-rise-nearly-100-during-lockdown/]market cap has overtaken eBay[/url]. The soaring share price gets another boost from its [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200729005239/en/Shopify-Announces-Second-Quarter-2020-Financial-Results#:~:text=Gross%20profit%20dollars%20grew%2083,the%20second%20quarter%20of%202019.]Q2 results[/url] and climbs 7.7% to $341.39 when they are released on August 1. Shopify’s market capitalization hit $40bn during 2019 and thundered up to $130bn in the first half of 2020 as its shares shot up. In comparison, eBay’s valuation was $28.7bn in 2019, despite listing all the way back in 1998. Shopify also saw Gross Merchandise Sales (GMV) overtake eBay in Q2, rising 119% to $30.1bn compared to $27.1bn for eBay's second quarter GMV. The prospect of new features, including its much-praised Amazon-style fulfilment centres, gave the company enough confidence to increase its full year revenue forecasts to the range of $1.51bn and $1.53bn. This was up from a range of $1.48bn to $1.5bn predicted in the previous quarter.Investor confidence helps the stock hit $406 by the end of the month. If you had purchased £10,000 of the stock at its IPO for $17 you would have a tidy return of 2,288% or almost $230,000. That could get you a 2019 Ferrari Portofino with some change to spare. [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&v=j5g9wwaJc80]Broom broom[/url].
  • CTO says bye-bye
  • July sees more bad news including weak revenues, larger-than-expected losses and worryingly high costs for the second quarter knocking the stock back below $200.
  • July sees more bad news including weak revenues, larger-than-expected losses and worryingly high costs for the second quarter knocking the stock back below $200. Chief Technology Officer, co-founder, and allegedly all-round legend J.B. Straubel made things worse by [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/27/with-jb-straubel-departure-tesla-is-losing-much-more-than-just-a-cto.html#:~:text=Tesla%20announced%20that%20CTO%20JB,the%20role%20of%20Tesla%20CTO.]leaving the firm[/url]. July 25 saw Tesla’s poorest trading day of 2019, with losses topping 13%. Bad Mr Straubel.
  • J.B. Straubel leaves Tesla. Photo: RudolfSimon / Wikimedia
  • Lyft gets an Emmy
  • They’re famous! Lyft’s Entertainment division gets an Emmy nomination for its co-production of Billy on the Street, a hugely popular New York-based comedy series hosted by Billy Eichner.
  • They’re famous! Lyft’s Entertainment division [url=https://www.emmys.com/shows/billy-street]gets an Emmy nomination[/url] for its co-production of [url=https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCc81WI54KgJoei06f_3mWgQ]Billy on the Street[/url], a hugely popular New York-based comedy series hosted by Billy Eichner. It also won brownie points by donating [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/immigration-rights]$150,000 in ride credits[/url] to support immigration groups across the US, as well as partnering with Raices, a charity providing legal services to immigrants. The PR people must have been working extra hard that month – good PR team, well done.
  • ® Television Academy
  • Sachs sell-off
  • At the start of July Goldman Sachs issues a sell warning on Zoom – with a market cap in excess of $25 billion based on expected 2019 revenues of around $540 million, people are starting to worry it might be a bit overvalued.
  • At the start of July Goldman Sachs ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-GS/]GS[/url]) [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/zoom-video-stock-falls-after-goldman-cuts-to-sell-2019-07-01]issues a sell warning on Zoom[/url] – with a market cap in excess of $25 billion based on expected 2019 revenues of around $540 million, people are starting to worry it might be a bit overvalued. But the price recovered quickly and by July 15 was heading strongly back up towards the $100 mark, climbing 7% to $99.80. In other good news, early July saw Zoom [url=https://www.theverge.com/2019/7/9/20688113/zoom-apple-mac-patch-vulnerability-emergency-fix-web-server-remove]fix a major security flaw[/url] for Mac users that could expose them to potential attack – a bit of a U-turn for the firm, which had previously categorized the issue as “low-risk.” Security is gonna become a bit of a hotspot for Zoom in the future, so watch this space.
  • Early success with robotaxis
  • Toward the end of June Lyft’s robotaxi pilot program with Waymo in Phoenix officially kicks off. The market likes this self-drive stuff, and the stock hits a high of $66.64.
  • Toward the end of June Lyft’s [url=https://www.theverge.com/2019/5/7/18536003/waymo-lyft-self-driving-ride-hail-app-phoenix]robotaxi pilot program[/url] with Waymo in Phoenix officially kicks off. The market likes this self-drive stuff, and the stock hits a high of $66.64 on June 28, its highest since April 10, to finish the month up 14%. Self-driving cars are the Holy Grail 🏆 for Lyft and the company has put a ton of effort into it. It first [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/gm-lyft-to-test-self-driving-electric-taxis-1462460094]partnered with[/url] General Motors ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-GM/]GM[/url]) to develop autonomous cars back in January 2016, and since then has signed up with a whole host of other pilots including partnerships with [url=https://medium.com/self-driven/how-ford-and-lyft-are-teaming-up-to-take-self-driving-cars-mainstream-9bf2974a912a]Ford Motor Company[/url] ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-F/]F[/url]) and Boston-based self-driving start-up [url=https://techcrunch.com/2017/06/06/lyft-and-nutonomy-partner-to-bring-first-self-driving-lyft-service-to-boston/]NuTonomy in 2017[/url]. In March 2018 it [url=https://www.magna.com/company/newsroom/releases/release/2019/01/14/news-release---magna-highlights-lyft-partnership-milestones-at-2019-north-american-international-auto-show]signed up[/url] with Canadian mobility tech giant Magna International ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MGA/]MGA[/url]) to co-fund, develop, and manufacture autonomous vehicle systems, and in October 2018 it [url=https://news.crunchbase.com/news/lyft-acquires-blue-vision-labs-to-elevate-its-moves-in-self-driving/]acquired Blue Vision Labs[/url], a UK-based augmented reality start-up, to help its self-driving cars to extract information from street-level images. A year on, the company’s autonomous vehicle initiative had around 400 engineers working exclusively on two self-driving projects: an ‘open-platform’ model where Lyft connects its users with partners like Waymo, along with its own highly secretive self-driving development program conducted out of its giant [url=https://techcrunch.com/2020/02/28/lyft-ramps-up-self-driving-program/]Level 5 Lab[/url] in Palo Alto, California. As of 2019, Lyft was testing 19 self-driving vehicles on public roads in California.
  • A Waymo self-driving car. Photo: Grendelkhan / Wikimedia
  • First big drop
  • Zoom loses 11% in a single day, dropping from $100.85 to close at $85.41. No real reason other than market jitters around other high-profile IPOs, and it regains the ground quickly.
  • Zoom loses 11% in a single day, dropping from $100.85 to close at $85.41. No real reason other than market jitters around other high-profile IPOs, and it regains the ground quickly. Almost every other emerging tech stock also crashed, including Lyft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-LYFT/]LYFT[/url]), Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]), PagerDuty ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-PD/]PD[/url]), CrowdStrike ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-CRWD/]CRWD[/url]), Fastly ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-FSLY/]FSLY[/url]), Pinterest ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-PINS/]PINS[/url]), and Slack ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WORK/]WORK[/url]). Like the morning after a bad party.
  • Competing with Amazon
  • Is Shopify becoming the new Amazon (AMZN)? It unveils plans to launch a new Amazon-sounding fulfilment network and the stock hits a new high for 2019 as it climbs to $328.01, up 138% from the start of the year.
  • Is Shopify becoming the new Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url])? It unveils plans to launch a new Amazon-sounding fulfilment network and the stock hits a new high for 2019 as it climbs to $328.01, up 138% from the start of the year. If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck…? [url=https://www.theverge.com/2019/12/13/21020938/amazon-logistics-prime-air-fedex-ups-package-delivery-more-than-50-percent#:~:text=At%20the%20current%20rate%2C%20Amazon,4.7%20billion%2C%20Morgan%20Stanley%20says.]Amazon delivers 2.5bn packages a year[/url] and is becoming a serious competitor to incumbents like FedEx ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-FDX/]FDX[/url]) (3bn) and UPS ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UPS/]UPS[/url]) (4.7bn), so why not follow its own example? Shopify launched its own warehouses where users could store stock and arrange for it to be delivered. Shopify showed it had a smaller ego than Amazon though, by letting sellers put their own branding on the packaging. Centers were set up with third parties in California, Georgia, New Jersey, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas. The company also introduced 11 new language capabilities so shops could sell internationally in the local dialect and take different currencies. C’est magnifique!
  • Musk deletes Twitter. Jk.
  • Musk tweets that he’s deleting his Twitter account. Media goes mad. Spoiler alert: he doesn’t.
  • Musk [url=https://www.theverge.com/tldr/2019/6/17/18682409/elon-musk-twitter-account-delete-tweet]tweets[/url] that he’s deleting his Twitter account. Media goes mad. Spoiler alert: he doesn’t.
  • Profits pull in the public
  • In June, Zoom tops $100 for the first time: starting the day at $98.51 and hitting a high of $105.99 before closing out at $102.
  • On June 10, Zoom tops $100 for the first time: starting the day at $98.51 and hitting a high of $105.99 before closing out at $102. Investors are keen on the company not just because of the hype but because – unusually for a tech IPO – it was already profitable before going public, and its [url=https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1585521/000119312519083351/d642624ds1.htm]financials for 2018[/url] were on fire 🔥 The company posted $330 million in revenue in the year ending January 31 2019, with a net profit of $7.6 million (compared with a 2018 loss of $3.8 million on revenues of $151 million). That made it a rare breed – a [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/2019-the-year-of-ipo-disappointment-11577615400]Wall Street Journal investigation[/url] that year found that over 80% of tech IPOs that year were unprofitable: including big splashes like EventBrite ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-EB/]EV[/url]), SurveyMonkey ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-SVMK/]SVMK[/url]), and Lyft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-LYFT/]LYFT[/url]). Its Q1 2019 earnings report released on June 6 gave it [url=https://investors.zoom.us/static-files/926ae36b-4256-48b2-bf87-a58dcdd19fbc]another big boost[/url], showing revenues surging 103% to $122 million, way above expectations. Importantly, the report also showed sales to customers spending above $100,000 jumping by 120% – a seriously good sign, as it demonstrated that Zoom was making headway in the corporate space (as in, the people who actually pay money for their accounts.)
  • Sales to customers spending above $100,000 jumped by 120%. Photo: Zoom
  • Photo: Ben Collins / Unsplash
  • Shake hands, make friends
  • Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi suggests that the price war between Lyft and Uber could be coming to an end, and the shares of both companies jump.
  • Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) CEO Dara Khosrowshahi [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/uber-loses-more-than-1-billion-in-first-earnings-report-since-ipo-2019-05-30]suggests[/url] that the price war between Lyft and Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) could be coming to an end, and the shares of both companies jump. Lyft gains 5.09% to close at $57.62 on May 31 as investors hope that higher prices could mean lower losses or even – shock horror – those mythical profits that most of the recent tech IPOs were still chasing. “In the US, if you listen to the Lyft conference call, for example, they talked about competing more on brand and I think that competing more on brand and product is…a ‘healthier’ mode of competition than just throwing money at a challenge,” Khosrowshahi said on the firm’s [url=https://investor.uber.com/news-events/events-and-presentations/event-details/2019/Uber-Q1-2019-Earnings-Conference-Call/default.aspx]Q1 earnings call[/url]. In the latest chapter of their weird, linked and upside-down relationship, the Lyft price also benefited from Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url])’s poor Q1 results, which saw the firm losing over $1 billion over the quarter.
  • Zoom gains 10%
  • Nothing much happens in May, but Zoom gains 10% over the month anyway, as investors continue to pile into one of the few profitable tech unicorns out there.
  • Nothing much happens in May, but Zoom [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2019/06/05/why-zoom-video-communications-stock-jumped-10-in-m.aspx]gains 10%[/url] over the month anyway, as investors continue to pile into one of the few profitable tech unicorns out there. It’s a bit volatile over the month – losing over 8% in a single day on May 13, and shooting back up 9.05% to reach $79.76 just two days later before entering a bit of a trough in the last week. It still closes the month at $79.73, a gain of 9.6% over the month.
  • Big year for buying firms
  • 2019 is a big year for Tesla in terms of acquisitions. It’s pretty secretive about its activities – the only officially announced deal is its acquisition of Maxwell Technologies on May 16 – but there are a bunch of others on the radar.
  • 2019 is a big year for Tesla in terms of acquisitions. It’s pretty secretive about its activities – the only officially announced deal is its acquisition of Maxwell Technologies on May 16 – but there are a bunch of others on the radar. The [url=https://electrek.co/2019/05/16/tesla-completes-maxwell-acquisition-battery-technology/]Maxwell deal[/url] was a $218m all-stock deal designed to further scale up and improve Tesla’s battery production as the electric vehicle market becomes ever more competitive. Maxwell specializes in ultracapacitors but uses dry electrode technology, supposedly more efficient and cheaper than the more commonly-used wet electrode technology. Tesla hoped this would give it the edge it needed to stay ahead of the pack – and could lead to them producing their own battery cells in-house, rather than outsourcing, in yet another step up the supply chain. That might be a punch in the nose for Panasonic ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSE-6752/]6752[/url]), which currently produces battery cells at Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory and sells them onto the firm for inclusion in its battery packs. But it wasn’t just Maxwell. In a 2019 SEC filing, Tesla confirmed that it had made “various other acquisitions” for the sum of $96 million, specifically in the areas of technology and workforce. These are believed to include Canadian battery manufacturing specialist [url=https://electrek.co/2019/10/05/tesla-quietly-acquires-battery-manufacturer/]Hibar Systems[/url], along with Artificial Intelligence start-up [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/10/01/tesla-acquiring-deepscale-computer-vision-start-up-for-self-driving.html]DeepScale[/url], which focuses on Deep Neural Network (DNN) technology – perhaps to try and improve its Autopilot system as part of Elon’s long-term vision to develop a fleet of self-driving robotaxis.
  • Getting Saasy
  • Shopify suffers an identity crisis as Morgan Stanley (MS) raises questions over its valuation and the type of company it should be seen as.
  • Shopify suffers an identity crisis as Morgan Stanley ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MS/]MS[/url]) raises questions over its valuation and the type of company it should be seen as. Is it a bird, is it a plane, or is Shopify SaaS company? It was none of these according to Morgan’s Stanley’s Brian Essex. He downgraded the stock from equal weight to underweight, giving it a price target of $173, from $209 previously. He suggested Shopify’s stock growth was [url=https://ph.news.yahoo.com/morgan-stanley-says-shopify-doesnt-172529734.html]“unwarranted”[/url] as its income was more transaction-based than a typical SaaS company, which mostly has recurring sales.
  • Getting Saasy. Photo: Brooke Cagle / Unsplash
  • Photo: Brooke Cagle / Unsplash
  • Sinking through the $50 ceiling
  • Lyft stock breaches the $50 to close at $48.15. There’s no real reason behind it apart from market volatility, and it regains fairly fast.
  • Uber IPO looms
  • It’s the day before Uber’s April 9 IPO, and Lyft stock inevitably suffers pre-wedding jitters, dropping 10.84% to close at an all-time low of $52.91.
  • It’s the day before Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url])’s April 9 IPO, and Lyft stock inevitably suffers pre-wedding jitters, dropping 10.84% to close at an all-time low of $52.91. It doesn’t help that on the same day, rideshare drivers across the world [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/08/technology/uber-strike.html]go on strike[/url] to protest against Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) and Lyft dropping their ride prices. It’s the latest in the ongoing sage around drivers’ rights, and it’s only going to get worse. “The main demand here is Uber and Lyft pay drivers a living wage,” [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/may/08/uber-lyft-strikes-us-new-york-la-latest-news-updates]said Jeffrey Dugas[/url], an organizer with Driver United in Washington DC. “Drivers are fed up with the fact that Uber and Lyft executives are bringing home millions of dollars while many drivers cannot afford healthcare, cannot afford to feed their families, even when they’re driving full time.” But Lyft disagreed, claiming that over the last two years hourly earnings had actually increased, with drivers earning more than $10 billion on the Lyft platform. In some good news though (if you’re the sort of person who takes pleasure in someone else’s pain), Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) tanked on its own debut – shares closed down nearly 8% from the $45 initial public offering price in one of the worst debuts ever for a major US listing. This gave Lyft a nice little boost, with the share price jumping over 4% to top $55.18.
  • Zoom wins Fed status
  • Zoom gets approved for use by US Federal Government agencies and contractors.
  • Zoom gets [url=https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/05/07/1818906/0/en/Zoom-Achieves-FedRAMP-Moderate-Authorization.html]approved for use[/url] by US Federal Government agencies and contractors. It’s a big win, but doesn’t translate to the share price, which loses -6.28% over the day to close at $73.33, only a fraction above its closing IPO day price. Why? Your guess is as good as ours. Maybe the investors were Democrats.
  • First quarter results don't move mountains
  • First quarter results come out, and they’re a bit of a mixed bag. Revenues are up 95% on Q1 2018 to $776 million, but losses are almost five times higher at a whopping $1.14 billion.
  • [url=https://investor.lyft.com/news-releases/news-release-details/lyft-announces-first-quarter-results#:~:text=Lyft%20reported%20Q1%20revenue%20of,the%20same%20period%20of%202019.]First quarter results come out[/url], and they’re a bit of a mixed bag. Revenues are up 95% on Q1 2018 to $776 million, but losses are almost five times higher at a whopping $1.14 billion. Lyft puts a brave face on it though – CEO and Co-Founder Logan Green calls it “a strong start to an important year.” On a call with analysts following the report, Chief Financial Officer Brian Roberts [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/bizcarson/2019/05/07/after-11-billion-loss-lyft-says-2019-will-be-peak-loss-year/?sh=6d6918261cd0]also predicted[/url] that losses would peak in 2019 before starting to fall as the firm moved towards making a profit, and targeted total 2019 revenue at around $3.3 billion. The market wasn’t so sure though, and took the prediction with a big pinch of salt. The share price lost 2% over the day, closing at $59.34. In spite of that, the actual figures weren’t half bad. The company had 20.5 million active riders in Q1, up 46% from 14 million in 2018. It also saw increased revenue per active rider at $37.86 compared to $28.27 during the same quarter last year. “Transportation is one of the largest segments of our economy and we are still in the very early stages of an enormous secular shift from personal car ownership to Transportation-as-a-Service,” said Green. In the same week, Lyft also announced a [url=https://techcrunch.com/2019/05/07/waymo-and-lyft-partner-to-scale-self-driving-robotaxi-service-in-phoenix/#:~:text=Waymo%20is%20partnering%20with%20Lyft,up%20its%20commercial%20robotaxi%20service.&text=Once%20Waymo%20vehicles%20are%20on,Lyft%20app%20for%20eligible%20rides.]partnership[/url] with Alphabet-owned Waymo, Google’s self-driving car project, to use 10 of its self-driving cars in its Phoenix, Arizona fleet. Robotaxis are the dream for ride-sharing apps – it would save them a fortune if they didn’t have to pay their drivers. Didn’t make much of a dent on the share price though, which was still reeling from the Q1 losses.
  • Major losses lead to loss of faith
  • Early 2019 is a terrible time for Tesla. Amazon invests $700m into rival Rivian, Consumer Reports retracts its recommendation of the Model 3 citing safety concerns, and the firm admits it could “face difficulties meeting sales and delivery goals".
  • Early 2019 is a terrible time for Tesla. Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url]) invests [url=https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a26357290/rivian-amazon-investment/]$700m[/url] into rival electric vehicle manufacturer Rivian, Consumer Reports retracts its recommendation of the Model 3 citing safety concerns, and the firm admits in its [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/0b913415-467d-4c0d-be4c-9225c2cb0ae0]2018 Annual Report[/url] that it could “face difficulties meeting sales and delivery goals in both existing markets as well as new markets” over the coming year. The federal tax credit available to Tesla customers in the US fell to $3,750 from $7,500 in January, effectively increasing the cost of its cars and causing sales to slow. In March, Tesla also stumped up the cash to pay off a $920 million convertible bond obligation in cash, which raised concerns over the health of its balance sheet, exacerbated by a heavy round of layoffs. A surprise announcement (later retracted) that it’d close its retail outlets and move all sales online made the market jittery, while the reveal of its new Model Y crossover SUV failed to get anyone excited. In April, Q1 results showed that delivery targets were still being missed by over 30%, leading to a higher-than-expected $702m loss, while in May the firm announced a radical cost-cutting exercise. Morgan Stanley cut its worst-case scenario valuation from $97 down to just $10. In total, the firm’s market value fell by almost 50% in the first six months of the year. Another ouchie. On May 1, Tesla’s share price was at its lowest since 2017. An equity and notes sale on May 3 to raise cash was increased to $2.7bn from $2.3bn due to high demand, which saw the share price jump to $255. But the gains didn’t last long.
  • Amazon invests $700m into rival electric vehicle manufacturer Rivian. Photo: Rivian
  • Rivian R1T / Rivian
  • Revised forecasts
  • Shopify grows its real-life presence with the launch of a new branded hardware to help users take payments and manage stock in stores.
  • Shopify grows its real-life presence with the launch of a new branded hardware to help users take payments and manage stock in stores. Its share price climbs 18% over the month, boosted by the impressive first quarter results. Selling online is all well and good, but shoppers tend to actually [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/gregpetro/2019/03/29/consumers-are-spending-more-per-visit-in-store-than-online-what-does-this-man-for-retailers/]spend more in a physical store[/url]. Research by consumer group First Insight found 71% of shoppers spend $50 or more when shopping in-store. This compared with only 54% of respondents spending more than $50 when shopping online. Shopify said many of its members start online with the aim of eventually [url=https://techcrunch.com/2019/04/25/shopify-retail-hardwre-colelction/]growing into physical retail[/url] or even just operating a pop-up. The company didn’t want to miss out on the trend so it launched a new [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-launches-new-retail-hardware-to-transform-in-store-shopping-229057]branded chip reader[/url] and a digital portable till where users could manage orders and control stock that would be linked to their Shopify account. Shopify had become a real live boy, as Pinocchio would say. Shopify also upped its revenue expectations for 2019 to a range of $1.48bn to $1.5bn when it released its [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-first-quarter-2019-financial-results#:~:text=Gross%20profit%20dollars%20grew%2046,comparable%20period%20a%20year%20ago.]Q1 results[/url] on April 30. That was above the range of $1.01bn to $1.02bn previously predicted. This was enough to impress investors despite revenue only rising 50% annually to $320.5m in the first quarter, along with an even bigger operating loss, hitting -$35.8m compared with a loss of -$20.3m a year before.
  • Shopify grows its real-life presence with the launch of a new branded hardware.
  • Analysts look on the bright side of Lyft
  • Wall Street is upbeat despite the recent hiccups – 14 rate it a “buy” including IPO underwriters JP Morgan, Credit Suisse, and Jefferies. Another eight class it as “neutral” with only one suggesting “sell.”
  • Wall Street is upbeat despite the recent hiccups – 14 rate it a “buy” including IPO underwriters JP Morgan ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JPM/]JPM[/url]), Credit Suisse ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-CS/]CS[/url]), and Jefferies ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JEF/]JEF[/url]). Another eight class it as “neutral” with only one suggesting “sell.” The ratings were published in a [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-22/lyft-looming-results-don-t-inspire-high-confidence-at-guggenheim]Bloomberg report[/url] following the end of the “quiet period” (when the underwriters of the IPO hold off on buying or rating the stock, so that they don’t get accused of unfairly promoting the deal) on April 23. Lots of analysts were still enthusiastic about the stock in spite of its ups and downs – John Blackledge of Cowen & Co ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-COWN/]COWN[/url]) gave it an “outperform” and a $77 price target. Jefferies’ ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JEF/]JEF[/url]) Brent Thrill went even further, targeting $86 and writing: “We expect [the] stock to recover as Lyft executes and misconceptions clear. Although bears argue Lyft will never make money, our analysis shows improving margins and per ride metrics.” Didn’t do much for the stock though, which stayed below $60 for the rest of the month. It also didn’t help that Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) [url=https://uk.reuters.com/news/picture/uber-takes-ipo-roadshow-to-new-york-as-d-idUKKCN1S62JE]launched its own roadshow[/url] on April 30, valued at around $90-120 billion (four times that of Lyft’s public offering).
  • Photo: Robert Bye / Unsplash
  • “A new game starts today”
  • So says CEO Eric Yuan as he rings the opening bell at Nasdaq New York to launch Zoom Video onto the open market.
  • So says [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/alexkonrad/2019/04/19/zoom-zoom-zoom-the-exclusive-inside-story-of-the-new-billionaire-behind-techs-hottest-ipo/?sh=2217cc614af1]CEO Eric Yuan[/url] as he rings the opening bell at Nasdaq New York to launch Zoom Video onto the open market. The IPO prices at [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/17/zoom-prices-ipo-at-36-per-share-source.html]$36 per share[/url], valuing the company at a whopping $9.2 billion – the biggest IPO of the year to date. But it didn’t end there. The stock jumped 72% on its first day of trading to end the day at $62 – boosting its market cap to $16 billion and making CEO Eric Yuan (who owns 20%) a billionaire several times over. And you? Well, if you’d bought $100 of Zoom shares at launch, a year later you’d have a respectable $1,271.36. That’s just about enough to buy a [url=https://www.montblanc.com/en-gb/rollerball-pens_cod34480784411778627.html]Montblanc Meisterstuck Geometry Solitaire Champagne Gold LeGrand Fountain Pen[/url] (to sign all your fancy checks with, obviously). It’s not all happy endings though. Some people got a bit confused, and bought stock in mobile communications company [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/publicly-listed-zoom-video-communications-traders-buying-zoom-technologies-2019-4-1028122561]Zoom Technologies[/url] by mistake. Back then, Zoom Technologies (which had a market cap of about $13.5m and was traded over the counter) had a symbol of ZOOM, compared to ZM for Zoom Video Communications. It worked out well for the smaller firm – shares bounced from almost zero to well over $5 the day after Zoom Video filed its IPO paperwork. Didn’t work out so well for the folks who missed out on the tech IPO of the year though. Bummer. Always read the label. Fun Fact: Zoom is all about [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/zoom-video-ipo-5-things-to-know-about-the-videoconferencing-company-2019-04-12]happiness[/url] 🎉. In its [url=https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1585521/000119312519083351/d642624ds1.htm]S-1 filing[/url] for the IPO, “happy” appears 17 times and “happiness” 34 times. On the other hand, “unhappy” only occurs twice (both in relation to Cisco). “Delivering happiness is what we do at Zoom,” said the filing. “Delivering happiness” became Zoom’s motto. Do you feel all warm and fuzzy yet?
  • Investors start suing
  • Investors are seriously ticked off about the poor performance of the share price, and two groups actually decide to sue the company, claiming it lied to them in its pre-IPO prospectus.
  • The mob gets angry, and the flaming torches come out. Not literally, of course – but investors are seriously ticked off about the poor performance of the share price, and two groups actually [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-18/lyft-investor-sues-over-stock-slump-claiming-ipo-was-overhyped]decide to sue the company[/url], claiming it lied to them in its pre-IPO prospectus. Astonishing, but true. Investors really did [url=http://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/05/17/1827084/0/en/Lyft-Inc-Sued-For-Violations-of-the-Securities-Act-in-Action-Filed-By-Block-Leviton-LLP.html]file[/url] two separate class-action complaints in San Francisco’s state court, claiming that Lyft and its directors exaggerated its market position before it went public, which resulted in the sharp fall in its share price post-launch. In a long list of complaints, they alleged that: “Defendants made false and misleading statements in Lyft’s registration statement and prospectus issued in connection with the company’s March 29, 2019 initial public offering. The alleged misstatements involve Lyft’s claims about its domestic market share, failure to disclose issues surrounding the safety of the company’s bike sharing program, and labor issues.” But the price stayed pretty stable, gaining over 5% to close at $59.51 – possibly because a lot of people actually thought the lawsuits were pretty dumb. “Oh, Lyft wasn't maybe totally clear that the labor structure of the ridesharing sector is a famously terrible hellscape of uncharted legal nightmares? And there was perhaps some obfuscation about what a financial clusterfuck the business of renting out electric bicycles to the anonymous public might be?” demanded [url=https://dealbreaker.com/2019/05/lyft-investors-sue-lyft-for-not-reading-lyft-prospectus]Dealbreaker[/url]. “Hiring a lawyer to pretend that you were lied to after buying depreciating stock in an obviously untested business model that openly lost almost a $1 billion last year is the worst kind of venal laziness.” As of April 17 the share price was down 17% since IPO.
  • Broken bikes highlight diversification headaches
  • Lyft has to pull thousands of electric bikes out of its bike-sharing programs in New York, Washington, and San Francisco because of a braking problem.
  • Lyft has to pull [url=https://siliconangle.com/2019/04/15/lyft-recalls-thousands-electric-bikes-braking-problems-cause-injuries/]thousands of electric bikes[/url] out of its bike-sharing programs in New York, Washington, and San Francisco because of a braking problem. It’s not a major deal, but it spooks investors already worried about the firm’s lack of diversification in a competitive market. The news came less than a month after the IPO, always a price-sensitive period, and the stock suffered: falling to a new low of $56.11.
  • Uber fears spark sell-off
  • The price falls by over 5% on April 9 and a further 11% the following day (from $67.25 to $60.12) as investors get nervous over the upcoming Uber IPO
  • Unfortunately things don’t get much better. The price falls by over 5% on April 9 and a further 11% the following day (from $67.25 to $60.12) as investors get nervous over the upcoming Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) IPO, which would give traders another, and much bigger, ride-sharing stock to bet on. There were still some bulls out there fighting Lyft’s corner though. CNN’s Paul La Monica [url=https://twitter.com/LaMonicaBuzz/status/1115990690390007808]called the sell-off[/url] “silly,” pointing out that Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) wasn’t profitable either.
  • A rough morning-after as stock sinks
  • The day after the IPO sees the share price start to plummet, falling below its IPO price almost immediately in the start of an ongoing downwards spiral.
  • The day after the IPO sees the share price start to plummet, falling below its IPO price almost immediately in the start of an ongoing downwards spiral. The shares fell below $72 in early trading, wiping out all the gains made in its Friday debut and falling by almost 12% to end the day at $69.01. All the [url=https://www.vox.com/2019/3/6/18249997/lyft-uber-ipo-public-profit]warnings[/url] about profitability seemed to be coming true, and there were a lot of annoying “I told you so’s”. "This is staggering what we're seeing here. Staggering," [url=https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2019/04/01/lyft-stock-day-2-falls-below-ipo-price/]said[/url] Kathleen Smith, principal at Renaissance Capital, which manages IPO-focused exchange-traded funds. "The profitless prosperity model doesn't work in the public market."
  • Photo: Mishal Ibrahim / Unsplash
  • Lyft IPOs
  • Lyft raises $2.34 billion in its long-awaited IPO, pricing 32.5 million shares at $72, the top end of its target range, in the biggest public launch since Alibaba Group in 2014. It’s a big deal, and everyone’s talking about it. But is it overvalued?
  • Lyft [url=https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1759509/000119312519059849/d633517ds1.htm]raises[/url] $2.34 billion in its long-awaited IPO, pricing 32.5 million shares at $72, the top end of its target range, in the biggest public launch since [url=https://www.ft.com/content/0f97cc70-4208-11e4-a7b3-00144feabdc0]Alibaba Group[/url] ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-BABA/]BABA[/url]) in 2014. It’s a big deal, and everyone’s talking about it. But is it overvalued? There was massive hype around the IPO, which edged in just ahead of the rival Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]) launch in April and kicked off a surge of super high profile tech listings in 2019. The roadshow started at the beginning of March with a price range of $62-68 but this was quickly upgraded as interest flooded in, and the final $72 price valued the company at $24.3 billion – a strong showing, although less than a quarter of the $120 billion expected from Uber Uber ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-UBER/]UBER[/url]). But not all unicorns are created equal. Unlike its telecoms counterpart Zoom Video ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-ZM/]ZM[/url]), which [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/18/zoom-ipo-stock-begins-trading-on-nasdaq.html]listed[/url] around the same time, Lyft wasn’t profitable by the time it went public. In fact, although its revenues were growing well, it was reporting some serious losses ($911 million in 2019 compared to $2.1 billion in revenue) and some analysts were already nervous over its iffy financial performance and the rumbling legal issues facing ride-sharing apps around the way they treated their drivers. Most people didn’t want to miss out on the growth story of the year though, and ignored the uncertainty to pile in at the top. Their eagerness made the company launch with a massive splash, and gave a decent Lyft to other techie IPOs including Pinterest ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-PINS/]PINS[/url]), Slack ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WORK/]WORK[/url]), and Zoom ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-ZM/]ZM[/url]). The stock made modest gains during the first day of trading, finishing 8.7% up at $78.29.
  • A journey of a thousand miles begins by going from Park to Drive. Photo: Lyft
  • Musk tweets against the rules, says SEC
  • The SEC says Elon Musk is in “blatant violation” of his securities fraud settlement and has made no “good faith” attempt to comply, filing a new suit for him to be held in contempt of court.
  • The SEC says Elon Musk is in [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/sec-responds-to-elon-musk-in-contempt-of-court-claim-2019-3?r=US&IR=T#:~:text=The%20Securities%20and%20Exchange%20Commission%2C%20in%20a%20court%20filing%20on,to%20the%20company%20before%20publishing.]“blatant violation”[/url] of his securities fraud settlement and has made no “good faith” attempt to comply, filing a new suit for him to be held in contempt of court. Their issue is that although Musk’s tweets are supposed to be reviewed by a third party before publishing in order to avoid major share price impact, Musk is basically still churning out tweets by the buttload. Musk calls it an [url=https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/03/elon-musk-blasts-the-sec-unconstitutional-power-grab]“unconstitutional power grab.”[/url] In a tweet. So, that went well.
  • Sexy new Model Y unveiled
  • Tesla unveils the Model Y SUV, a lower-cost version of the Model X designed for mass-market consumption.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knaskUXb12A]unveils[/url] the Model Y SUV, a lower-cost version of the Model X designed for mass-market consumption. The car was expected to be Tesla’s best selling vehicle yet, as it sidestepped into the competitive affordable SUV market. It has a range of 300m, room for seven, and a starting price of just $39,000. Based on the Model 3, it comes in four different powertrains: Standard Range, Long Range, Long Range with Dual-Motor All-Wheel Drive, and Performance. The Long Range and Performance models started production in January 2020, with the first deliveries arriving in March, while the Standard version is expected in 2021, along with an optional third-row seat (with seating for two more people). The car made a big splash – by July 2020 it was the third best-selling electric car on the market (the Model 3 was number one) and the third best-selling electric car in the world, according to [url=http://ev-sales.blogspot.com/2020/08/global-top-20-july-2020.html]EV-Sales[/url].
  • Model Y / Tesla
  • Crossing $1bn mark
  • Shopify makes history, finally crossing $1bn in revenue. The markets show their appreciation for its annual update, pushing the stock up from $175.55 on results day on February 12 to grow 7.7% to $189.15 by the end of the month.
  • Shopify makes history, finally crossing $1bn in revenue. The markets show their appreciation for its annual update, pushing the stock up from $175.55 on results day on February 12 to grow 7.7% to $189.15 by the end of the month. [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-fourth-quarter-and-full-year-2018-financial-results]The firm reported impressive revenues[/url] of $1.07bn for 2018, up 59% annually. Lutke said: “We made history in 2018: no other software-as-service company (Saas) company has crossed the $1bn revenue mark at a faster growth rate than Shopify has.” Eat that, [url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-SHOP/history-timeline/#get-rich-quick-2017-10-02]Citron Research[/url]!
  • Happy New Year
  • Lights, camera, action! The opening of a new production studio and a high-profile appointment help the stock climb 22% during January.
  • Lights, camera, action! The opening of a new production studio and a high-profile appointment help the stock climb 22% during January. Shopify adds a new string to its bow with [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-launches-tv-and-film-production-branch-shopify-studios]Shopify Studios[/url], launched to develop entrepreneur-focused docu-series and feature-length documentaries. Who doesn’t love films about small businesses? Time to crack open the popcorn. Shopify also [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190124005240/en/Colleen-Johnston-Joins-Shopify%E2%80%99s-Board-of-Directors]appointed[/url] Colleen Johnston to its board of directors. She was a former chief financial officer (CFO) of Toronto-Dominion Bank and had previously been named CFO of the year by Financial Executives International Canada, PwC and Robert Half International. Johnston was also named among the 25 most powerful women in banking by American Banker three years in a row from 2009 to 2011. So not a bad name to have on the teamsheet.
  • Photo: Vincentas Liskauskas / Unsplash
  • Back-to-back profits
  • In good news, Tesla posts record revenues for 2018 and is profitable for a second consecutive quarter for the first time ever.
  • In good news, Tesla posts record revenues for 2018 and is profitable for a second consecutive quarter for the first time ever. Musk calls 2018 “the most pivotal year in Tesla’s history.” But in bad news a whole bunch of senior staff leave including [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/01/30/musk-says-tesla-cfo-deepak-ahuja-is-leaving-the-company.html]CFO Deepak Ahuja[/url], the firm is fined $29,365 for violating California labor laws, and it announces plans to lay off 7% of its workforce. Swings and roundabouts.
  • Larry Ellison joins the board
  • Tesla adds tech guru and Oracle founder Larry Ellison to its board of directors, along with former Kellogg's executive Kathleen Wilson-Thompson.
  • Tesla adds tech guru and Oracle ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-ORCL/]ORCL[/url]) founder Larry Ellison to its board of directors, along with former Kellogg's executive Kathleen Wilson-Thompson. The move was part of Tesla’s settlement with the SEC following its securities fraud investigation against Musk, which required the firm to hire two new independent board members. Ellison already owned around 3m shares and was rumored to be close friends with Musk. Keep your friends close after all.
  • Photo by Oracle PR / Hartmann Studios / Flickr
  • Photo: Oracle PR / Hartmann Studios / Flickr
  • Share placing
  • A new fundraising places pressure on the Shopify stock, as it falls 13% by the close of trading to $140.17.
  • A new fundraising [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/shopify-stock-falls-after-announcement-of-secondary-offering-2018-12-14]places pressure[/url] on the Shopify stock, as it falls 13% by the close of trading to $140.17. Shopify [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-prices-offering-of-class-a-subordinate-voting-shares]priced an offering[/url] of 2.6m shares at $154 a share and expected to raise $400m to boost its balance sheet and fund its growth. But investors weren’t happy at the prospect of their holdings being diluted, and the price fell to $134.39 by December 18 when the offering closed. You can’t please everyone.
  • Black Friday boost
  • Shopify sellers have a busy Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales period, with $1.5bn of sales between November 24 and November 26.
  • Shopify sellers have a busy Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales period, with [url=https://news.shopify.com/bfcm-2018#:~:text=news%2C%20Data%20Insights-,Over%20%241.5%20billion%20sold%20by%20Shopify,Black%20Friday%2FCyber%20Monday%20weekend&text=Share%20this%20story%3A,sales%20across%20the%20entire%20weekend.]$1.5bn of sales[/url] between November 24 and November 26. The stock also has a good day when the stats are released on November 28, rising 3.8% on the previous close to $149.90. Everyone is used to images of crowds filling supermarkets to get the so-called Black Friday bargains. Internet traffic was just as busy, but microchips are more polite. Shopify stores registered 10,978 orders per minute at its peak during the shopping days. There were more than $37 million sales per hour through the platform and 18.5% of all orders were shipped internationally. Packages travelled more than 30 billion miles in total - ten times the distance between the Earth and Pluto.
  • Robyn Denholm appointed Chairman
  • Tesla has finally found a new chairman, after the regulator insisted that it replace Musk after his 420 Twitter storm.
  • Tesla has finally [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/nov/08/tesla-names-new-chair-robyn-denholm-to-replace-elon-musk]found[/url] a new chairman, after the regulator insisted that it replace Musk after his 420 Twitter storm. She’s been a Tesla board member since 2014, and was previously the CFO of Australian telecoms giant Telstra ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/ASX-TLS/]TLS[/url]). The market received the news with wariness, and the stock falls 1.4%.
  • Is Tesla under investigation by the FBI?
  • The Wall Street Journal reports that FBI agents are investigating Tesla in a criminal probe over allegedly misstated information on production of its Model 3 sedans back in 2017.
  • The Wall Street Journal [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/tesla-faces-deepening-criminal-probe-over-whether-it-misstated-production-figures-1540576636]reports[/url] that FBI agents are investigating Tesla in a criminal probe over allegedly misstated information on production of its Model 3 sedans back in 2017. The share price then jumps over 5% to hit a high of $339.90. Can you explain this one? Because we can’t.
  • Getting physical
  • Shopify gets physical (no, not in that way: get your mind out of the gutter). The e-commerce platform opens its first-ever real-life store in Los Angeles
  • Shopify gets physical (no, not in that way: get your mind out of the gutter). The e-commerce platform opens its [url=https://www.365retail.co.uk/shopify-opens-first-physical-store-in-los-angeles/]first-ever real-life store[/url] in Los Angeles, providing in-person help and support to merchants and aspiring entrepreneurs. Businesses could get advice on using the platform and also connect with other members of the entrepreneurial community. The stock rose 5% by the following day’s close to $135.20.
  • Shopify gets physical, literally. Photo: Deon Black / Unsplash
  • Photo: Deon Black / Unsplash
  • Analyst boost
  • Wedbush analyst Ygal Arounian started coverage of Shopify by giving it an outperform rating, pushing the stock up almost 6% in a day.
  • Wedbush analyst Ygal Arounian [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2018/09/17/shopify-stock-just-did-something-it-hasnt-done-in.aspx]started coverage[/url] of Shopify by giving it an outperform rating, pushing the stock up almost 6% in a day. Arounian predicted Shopify had plenty more space to grow beyond 600,000 users and set a price target of $177. The stock rose from $153.63 on 17 September to increase by 5.6% to $162.28 the following day.
  • Global finance head steps down
  • Tesla isn’t having much luck with staffing, and in September Justin McAnear, VP of worldwide finance and operations, confirms he’ll step down next month.
  • Tesla isn’t having much luck with staffing, and in September Justin McAnear, VP of worldwide finance and operations, confirms he’ll step down next month. His departure came just days after the resignation of chief accounting officer Dave Morton, while head of HR Gabrielle Toledano also left the firm the same month.
  • And then I got high...
  • Hey, you know when your company is in trouble, several key staff members have left, and you’ve been banned from tweeting by the SEC? The logical response is obviously to go onto a super famous podcast and smoke weed live on air. Right? Right.
  • Hey, you know when your company is in trouble, several key staff members have left, you’ve been banned from tweeting by the SEC, and you’ve had to step down as Chairman? The logical response is obviously to go onto a super famous podcast and [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycPr5-27vSI]smoke weed live[/url] live on air whilst drinking whisky and tell people that we all just need to “relax and love each other.” Right? Right. On September 7, Elon appeared on the massively popular Joe Rogan Experience podcast. During a rambling 2.5hr conversation, he and Rogan not only drank a bunch of whisky but shared a joint live on air. Hey, it was California, so technically legal. Investors were emphatically not keen though, and coming hard on the heels of the 420 twitter storm back in August, it sent Tesla stock tumbling. The share price lost over 6% in a single day, and over 12% on the week, closing on the 7th at $263.24. At least they had a good time.
  • Elon smokes weed / The Joe Rogan Experience
  • Musk tweet explodes into regulatory firestorm
  • In August 2018, Elon famously tweets that he’d got the funds needed to take Tesla private at a price of $420 per share – a move that sparks a federal lawsuit and sees the SEC file a personal case against him for securities fraud.
  • In August 2018, Elon famously [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1026872652290379776?lang=en]tweets[/url] that he’d got the funds needed to take Tesla private at a price of $420 per share – a move that sparks a federal lawsuit and sees the SEC file a personal case against him for securities fraud. Oops. Although he later backtracked, his words had more than a grain of truth to them – Elon had long been livid at short-sellers whom he believed were deliberately damaging the Tesla brand for their own profit, and a few weeks earlier had emailed the Tesla Board with the suggestion of taking the firm private. Despite the $420 figure being selected as a joke due to its link with marijuana, the share price jumped 6% immediately, reaching almost $380 and forcing the firm to halt trading for 90 minutes until it could issue an official response, before swinging wildly over the next few weeks. Eventually, Elon reached a deal with the SEC including legal vetting of any tweets or public statements about the company’s finances. However, he and Tesla were still fined $20m each, and he was forced to step down as Chairman. That’s a lot of chaos packed into just 129 characters.
  • Photo: Daniel Oberhaus / Wikimedia
  • Shopify reaches a billion orders
  • The trumpets sound and confetti is released as the billionth order is processed through Shopify.
  • The trumpets sound and confetti is released as the [url=https://obj.ca/article/shopifys-q2-revenue-soars-above-analyst-estimates]billionth order is processed through Shopify[/url]. However, [url=https://betakit.com/shopify-hits-245-million-in-revenue-for-q2-2018-but-growth-is-slowing/#:~:text=July%2031%2C%202018-,Shopify%20hits%20%24245%20million%20in%20revenue%20for%20Q2%202018%2C%20but,over%2Dyear%20from%20Q2%202017.]second quarter results are also released[/url] and fail to rouse investors. Its stock fell 6.7% to $138.21 when its [url=https://s23.q4cdn.com/550512644/files/doc_financials/2018/Q2/Q2-2018-Press-Release.pdf]company filings[/url] were announced on July 31. Scientist Clifford Stoll famously said in 1995 that the [url=https://www.newsweek.com/clifford-stoll-why-web-wont-be-nirvana-185306]internet was just a fad[/url] and there was little use being online. He even wrote a book about it, called [url=https://www.amazon.co.uk/Silicon-Snake-Oil-Thoughts-Information/dp/0385419945]Silicon Snake Oil[/url], in case you’re short on some bedtime reading. But tell that to Shopify firms, who had managed to process a billion orders through the online superhighway. Shopify’s reported revenues were up 62% annually to $245m during the quarter but the company was still left with an operating loss of -$30.8m or 12.6% of revenue. This was a higher percentage than a year before when its operating loss was 10.5% of revenue. The stock was also pushed downwards as revenue growth remained slower than previous quarters.
  • Photo: Free To Use Sounds / Unsplash
  • Going mobile
  • Forget sitting at a computer for work, the world is getting increasingly mobile so Shopify launches an app to let users control their business via their fingertips.
  • Forget sitting at a computer for work, the world is getting increasingly mobile so Shopify launches an app to let users control their business via their fingertips. The stock rises 3.3% to $137.9. Let’s face it, we spend a lot of time on our mobiles these days. A new app for the company’s shops called [url=https://news.shopify.com/introducing-shopify-ping-a-new-way-to-run-your-store]Shopify Ping[/url] let users respond to messages from Facebook, emails or other online chat services in one place. You could be lying in bed, sitting on a train or in the bath – now there was no excuse not to respond to customers.
  • Whistleblower pays the price
  • Tesla files a $167m lawsuit against former employee Martin Tripp, claiming that he “unlawfully hacked the company’s confidential and trade secret information and transferred that information to third parties.”
  • Tesla files a $167m lawsuit against former employee Martin Tripp, claiming that he “unlawfully hacked the company’s confidential and trade secret information and transferred that information to third parties.” According to Tesla, Tripp placed “hacking software” in the computers of three of its employees to regularly export confidential data. Musk called it “sabotage” and accused Tripp of leaking negative stories to the media. In an email to Tesla employees, he may(?) have gone a bit overboard on the conspiracy theory angle, suggesting that “Wall Street short-sellers,” “oil & gas companies,” or “the multitude of big gas/diesel car company competitors” could have been behind the plot. “If they’re willing to cheat so much about emissions, maybe they’re willing to cheat in other ways?” But wait, the plot thickens. Later on June 20, the same day Tesla filed the lawsuit, the company received an anonymous call saying that Tripp was planning a mass shooting at its Nevada Gigafactory. When contacted by the police, Tripp reportedly burst into tears and claimed that it wasn’t him, but that Musk [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2019-03-13/when-elon-musk-tried-to-destroy-tesla-whistleblower-martin-tripp]might have done it himself[/url] in a quest to destroy him. On Twitter, Musk said that Tripp had admitted to taking bribes from Business Insider journalists in exchange for “valuable Tesla IP.” It seems like the courts agreed with him. In September 2020, Tesla [url=https://www.cnet.com/roadshow/news/tesla-lawsuit-whistleblower-hacks/]won[/url] the lawsuit.
  • Shopify rival Magento gets acquired
  • Shopify nemesis Magneto is snapped up by Adobe systems and the market likes the deal, bumping the share price up 16% through May to $148.09 as interest grows in the potential of cloud commerce now that the big boys are getting involved.
  • Shopify nemesis Magneto is snapped up by Adobe systems and the market likes the deal, bumping the share price up 16% through May to $148.09 as interest grows in the potential of cloud commerce now that the big boys are getting involved. Computer software company Adobe Systems [url=https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/2018/05/22/why-adobe-buying-magento/]took over e-commerce platform Magento[/url] for $1.68 billion. The deal gave Adobe Systems ammunition against its rival cloud software provider Salesforce as it could now enter the world of e-commerce. It’s not just about PDF documents anymore. Magento launched in 2008 and had previously been acquired by eBay in 2011. It later went private again in 2015 but had long battled Shopify for market share. Both offered vital e-commerce essentials such as website templates, sales and marketing tools and apps for a company to jazz up their online presence. Shopify was seen as [url=https://www.websitebuilderexpert.com/ecommerce-website-builders/comparisons/magento-vs-shopify/#section-1]more user-friendly and simple to use[/url] but Magento was good for those with more technical expertise as its platforms gave users more freedom to customize their online stores and build their own apps. Magento powered 315,000 websites by 2018 compared with 600,000 that used Shopify.
  • Nikola sues Tesla on truck patents
  • Hydrogen truck start-up Nikola Motor Company files a $2bn lawsuit against Tesla for infringing its patents with the new Tesla all-electric Semi. It's worth pointing out that Elon previously made all of Tesla’s own patents available to its competitors
  • Hydrogen truck start-up Nikola Motor Company ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-NKLA/]NKLA[/url]) files a [url=https://www.theverge.com/2018/5/1/17309430/tesla-lawsuit-nikola-motor-company-patent-trucks]$2bn lawsuit[/url] against Tesla for infringing its patents with the new Tesla all-electric Semi. Tesla says “it’s patently obvious there is no merit to this lawsuit.” At this point, it's worth pointing out that Elon previously made all of Tesla’s own patents available to its competitors. As of September 2020, the lawsuit was still grinding its way through the courts. In what must have come as no small satisfaction to Tesla though, Nikola ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-NKLA/]NKLA[/url]) later became embroiled in scandal, with short-selling firm Hindenburg Research accusing the firm of [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/press-release/nikola-under-pressure-after-hindenburg-research-labels-company-a-fraud-2020-09-21?tesla=y]fraud[/url] and claiming that its truck didn’t actually, um, work. Founder and former CEO Trevor Milton and Nikola ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-NKLA/]NKLA[/url]) itself then came under investigation by the Department of Justice.
  • Nikola Tre / Nikola
  • Another quarter, another loss
  • The markets look to be getting a bit tired of persistent losses, as the stock drops off the back of Shopify’s first quarter results in 2018.
  • The markets look to be getting a bit tired of persistent losses, as the stock drops off the back of Shopify’s first quarter results in 2018. [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-first-quarter-2018-financial-results]Revenues rose again in the first quarter[/url], up 68% annually, but it was still left with an operating loss of -$20.3m as it spent much of the three months building new features such as integrating Google Pay onto its platform. The company’s ‘Shopping on Instagram’ feature was also expanded during the quarter beyond the US to the UK, Australia, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, and Brazil. The results still [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2018/08/02/shopify-beat-expectations-but-investors-arent-impr.aspx]beat analyst expectations[/url] but the revenue growth was slower, below the 75% reported in the same quarter last year, which worried investors. The stock fell by 4.4% in a day to $127.68 on May 1 and fell further to $124.81 by May 2. Investors quickly regained their confidence though, and the stock bounced back to $135.17 by May 3.
  • Temporary halt of Model 3 production
  • Tesla briefly pauses production of its Model 3 electric car, claiming a long waiting list and a bottleneck at the factory.
  • April Fool’s fail
  • Mr Musk plays an April Fool, using his fave platform Twitter to have a laugh with his fanbase. Tough crowd this time though, and his joke wipes 8% of the share price.
  • Mr Musk plays an April Fool, using his fave platform Twitter to have a laugh with his fanbase. Tough crowd this time though, and his joke wipes 8% of the share price. He built up anticipation early in the day, [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/980518020358463489]tweeting[/url] “Important news in a few hours…” After its worst-performing month in seven years, people were understandably curious, but they got pretty freaked out when he tweeted that Tesla had gone bankrupt. “Despite intense efforts to raise money, including a last-ditch mass sale of Easter Eggs, we are sad to report that Tesla has gone completely and totally bankrupt,” he [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/980566116614291456]joked[/url]. “Elon was found passed out against a Tesla Model 3, surrounded by "Teslaquilla" bottles, the tracks of dried tears still visible on his cheeks.” People panicked. We thought it was funny.
  • Google it!
  • Shopify becomes the first commerce platform to offer Google Pay to its merchants, sending the stock up 5.1% by the close of the next day to $153.11.
  • Shopify becomes the first commerce platform to offer Google Pay to its merchants, sending the stock up 5.1% by the close of the next day to $153.11. Shoppers could already complete a purchase using Apple Pay but what about all those smug Android users who haven’t bitten into the iPhone craze? [url=https://www.merchantsavvy.co.uk/mobile-payment-stats-trends/]Google Pay[/url] had 39 million active users by 2018 and now Shopify sellers could make it easier for them to pay for items on an Android device. Take that Apple. The stock was also boosted on March 20 by a new [url=https://www.shopify.com/blog/shopping-on-instagram]“shopping on Instagram” feature[/url] allowing businesses to tag products in posts. That meant a business could post an image of their product such as a handbag or earrings and have it potentially viewed and clicked on to purchase by Instagram’s 500 million daily active users. The tool was used by brands such as [url=uk.gymshark.com]Gymshark[/url], a cool fitness apparel company. Some anti-social network news soon followed as Facebook faced investigation from the US Federal Trade Commission over claims that it gave Cambridge Analytica, the political consulting company that worked on Donald Trump's presidential campaign, unauthorised access to the data of 50 million users. What does this have to do with Shopify though? The problem is that short seller Citron Research dragged the company into the story, claiming that its own stores could be hit if the social network restricts how data is shared. [url=https://www.pymnts.com/big-data/2018/facebook-shopify-short-seller-andrew-left/]Citron claimed that Shopify stores were reliant on Facebook ads[/url], and if they couldn’t promote to as many people as before, where would all those sales come from? Citron Research’s Andrew Left warned: “Rocked to the core of its business model, Facebook has no choice but to take away Shopify’s punch bowl. As the scope of Facebook’s severe privacy problem gets exposed, Facebook has no choice but to drastically revamp how it sells data — data about you and your personal behaviors.” Citron said Shopify’s stock should be closer to $100. Shopify denied its users success was tied to Facebook ads. But the damage was done and the Citron Research analysis pushed the stock down 6% to $128.82 by the close of the next day on March 27.
  • Shares drop over 8% following fatal crash
  • A fatal crash of a Tesla car whilst on autopilot in California sends the stock spiralling, losing -8.22% to close at $279.18, its biggest single day loss in over a year.
  • A [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43604440]fatal crash [/url] of a Tesla car whilst on autopilot in California sends the stock spiralling, losing -8.22% to close at $279.18, its biggest single day loss in over a year.
  • Tesla bleeds as SpaceX soars
  • Just days after Elon Musk famously sent his cherry-red Tesla Roadster into orbit as part of the SpaceX rocket test launch, Tesla announces a net loss of $675.4m for Q4 2016, its largest yet.
  • Just days after Elon Musk famously [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qk6qxprCuGY]sent his cherry-red Tesla Roadster[/url] into orbit as part of the SpaceX rocket test launch, Tesla announces a net loss of $675.4m for Q4 2016, its largest yet. Perhaps they should have kept the car. Coming off the back of disappointing Model 3 sales and delays in production, the news pushed the stock down from $352.05 on 20 February to $266.13 on 26 March, wiping over a fifth of the company’s value. A slight bounce came when Elon announced that he’d [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/jan/23/elon-musk-aiming-for-worlds-biggest-bonus-40bn]work for free[/url] for the next 10 years.
  • Starman / Space X
  • Musk moves into flamethrowing. Sorta.
  • That's right, Elon legit manufactured and sold 20,000 "Not a flamethrower"s emblazoned with The Boring Company logo at $500 a pop, making a cool $10m in the process.
  • Remember The Boring Company, that tunnel business that Musk tweeted about back in 2016? Well, he actually went and did it. Or at least, he set up a company and a website. Not sure how well the tunnelling side is going but turns out that what the public really really wants? [url=https://www.boringcompany.com/not-a-flamethrower]Flamethrowers[/url]. That's right, Elon legit manufactured and sold 20,000 "not a flamethrower"s emblazoned with The Boring Company logo at $500 a pop, making a cool $10m in the process. Cue an avalanche of videos comparing them to [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuIVE7rh8zs]actual flamethrowers[/url]. Didn’t have anything to do with Tesla either but, as always, Musk’s flamboyant antics had a knock-on effect, and the share price took an upwards jump. In other news, Tesla unveils a unique new compensation plan for Elon: he’ll only get paid if he reaches certain massive milestones, including a Tesla market valuation of $650 billion. That’s bigger than Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url]), and more than 10 times Tesla’s current size. Good luck, dude.
  • Not a flamethrower / The Boring Company
  • High praise
  • An endorsement from Apple CEO Tim Cook sends the stock up from $124.9 on January 25 to rise 3.3% to $129.07 by the end of the next day.
  • An endorsement from Apple CEO Tim Cook sends the stock up from $124.9 on January 25 to rise 3.3% to $129.07 by the end of the next day. Praise doesn’t come much higher than the boss of Apple. [url=https://financialpost.com/technology/apple-ceo-tim-cook-shopify-augmented-reality]Cook visited the Shopify offices[/url] for a demo of a new augmented reality function that the companies were developing together to allow customers to see how a product would look in their home through their iPhone. Cook described himself as a big fan of Shopify. He said: “I love the fact that their focus is on democratising technology for entrepreneurs that are largely artisans and bringing their products to market so that these merchants can focus on what they are great at." The markets ate it up and the stock went beyond $130 during trading.
  • Apple CEO Tim Cook. Photo: Austin Community College / Unsplash
  • Photo: Austin Community College / Unsplash
  • Pepsi orders 100 Tesla trucks
  • In an early Christmas present (and a touching display of faith), PepsiCo slaps down a $2m deposit for 100 Semi all-electric trucks, the biggest order yet.
  • In an early Christmas present (and a touching display of faith), PepsiCo ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-PEP/]PEP[/url]) slaps down a [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pepsico-tesla-orders-idUSKBN1E61FB]$2m deposit[/url] for 100 Semi all-electric trucks, the biggest order yet. Is there a rival all-electric alternative to Coke ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-KO/]KO[/url])’s famous [url=https://www.coca-cola.co.uk/our-business/history/holidays-are-coming-the-history-of-coca-cola-and-christmas]Christmas trucking ad[/url] on the way? We sincerely hope so.
  • Back in black
  • A busy Black Friday helps push the stock up after the weekend. Shopify reports more than $1bn of sales through its platform on the consumer day of madness.
  • A busy Black Friday helps push the stock up after the weekend. Shopify [url=https://www.shopify.co.uk/blog/black-friday-cyber-monday-2017-recap]reports[/url] more than $1bn of sales through its platform on the consumer day of madness. More than $1m in sales went through the platform per minute at the peak. This gave the stock a bounce once the market reopened on Monday, rising 1.8% by the close of trading to $113.36 off Friday’s close.
  • Sexy new Roadster rolls onto the stage
  • Tesla goes back to its roots with the all-new Roadster, revealed at the same launch party as the Semi, and it’s pretty damn cool.
  • Tesla goes back to its roots with the all-new Roadster, revealed at the [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RRmepp7i5g&list=PLxXzyoS1l5IGzvUpRbBMwW61a34vrJSVd&index=21&t=0s]same launch party[/url] as the Semi, and it’s pretty damn cool. The new prototype Roadster model takes Tesla full circle to tap back into the luxury sports car market again, with a swanky new version of its original sports car. Expected to start at around $200,000 ($250,000 for the 1,000 limited edition ‘Founder’s Series’ models), Tesla promises an ambitious 620m range and an acceleration speed of 0-60mph in just 1.9s – which would make it the fastest road-legal car in the world. In fact, on its website Tesla is already calling the new four-seater “the quickest car in the world.” Originally scheduled to go live in 2020, deliveries were delayed to 2022 due to Covid-19. The marketing drive has already gone up a gear though. Following on from its first public reveal at the Grand Basel Motor Show in 2018, the new Roadster has been hawked about all over the place as Tesla looks to drum up publicity for its flagship new motor. In November 2020 it was even featured on The Simpsons, owned by Leo diCaprio and with a license plate reading ‘King of the World.’ Musk is also getting all competitive with Porsche ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/XETR-PAH3/]PAH3[/url]), which set a new record for the fastest electric car lap at Nurburgring in 2019. In September 2020, Musk [url=https://twitter.com/BabyTesla3/status/1307780883919765504]promised[/url] to bring a Roadster over to Germany to test its own performance at the legendary “green hell” track. What’s even more exciting are some of the new specs that are trickling out as the car gets closer to production. In 2019, Musk [url=https://insideevs.com/news/428488/video-tesla-roadster-rockets-reality-explained/]teased[/url] the world with the optional Roadster ‘SpaceX’ package, which will include actual rocket thrusters to “dramatically improve acceleration, top speed, braking and cornering.” He also said that the thrusters would “maybe even allow a Tesla to fly.” Hot air? Maybe, but we can totally see Musk as Danny from Grease.
  • Tesla Roadster / Tesla
  • Tesla’s Semi revealed
  • The big reveal of November is Tesla’s Semi, sparking a lot of excitement over Thanksgiving.
  • The [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqYU6VA1Rmw]big reveal[/url] of November is Tesla’s Semi, sparking a lot of excitement over Thanksgiving. The Semi is Tesla’s bid to break into the freight market, and it’s a big step. The vehicle is a beast: a battery-powered Class 8 semi-truck, with four separate engines to boost power, and Autopilot as standard. First announced in 2016, production was expected to begin in 2020 but was delayed. According to Tesla, it will come in both a Standard and a ‘Founder’s Series’ version, at an estimated price of $150,000 and $200,000 respectively, and a range of between 300-500m. Online reservations have been available since 2017 and Tesla says that it has already received substantial pre-orders from corporates including Pepsi ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-PEP/]PEP[/url]), Walmart ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WMT/]WMT[/url]), and Anhauser-Busch ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-BUD/]BUD[/url]). Tesla says that when carrying an 80,000lb load the standard model will be able to accelerate from 0 to 60mph in 20s. However, some people have expressed doubts – in 2018, Daimler ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/XETR-DAI/]DAI[/url])’s head of trucks Martin Daum said that the Semi would “defy the laws of Physics.”
  • Tesla Semi / Tesla
  • Pushing up production with Perbix
  • Tesla ramps up its production process, buying up Minnesota-based factory automation firm Perbix to help it build “the factory of the future.”
  • Tesla ramps up its production process, buying up Minnesota-based factory automation firm [url=https://electrek.co/2017/11/07/tesla-tsla-perbix-owner-sell-shares/]Perbix[/url] to help it build “the factory of the future.” The share price doesn’t budge though. Terms weren’t disclosed, but the firm had already been a supplier to Tesla for almost three years, and was the logical next step in its bid to cut costs by automating the manufacturing process. “With the acquisition of Perbix, Tesla further advances its efforts to turn the factory itself into a product – to build the machine that makes the machine," it said.
  • Failing to impress
  • Shopify creates new jobs and reports strong third quarter results but investors are still smarting from the Citron Research warning and stock drops 9% from the previous day’s close to $99.49.
  • Shopify creates new jobs and reports strong [url=https://www.fool.com/earnings/call-transcripts/2017/11/01/shopify-inc-shop-q3-2017-earnings-conference-call.aspx]third quarter results[/url] but investors are still smarting from the Citron Research warning and stock drops 9% from the previous day’s close to $99.49. Total revenue in the third quarter was $171.5m, a 72% annual increase. Operating loss for the third quarter of 2017 was $12.7m, or 7.4% of revenue but this was still better than the year before when losses made up 9.5% of revenue. Shopify also announced during October that it planned to triple its Waterloo-based workforce, but this couldn’t prevent the stock dropping.
  • Citron Research weren't impressed.
  • Get rich quick?
  • Analysts at short seller Citron Research make a dent in the Shopify stock after describing it as a “get quick rich scheme” based on its ambitious claims to make its users millionaires.
  • Analysts at short seller Citron Research make a dent in the Shopify stock after [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-10-04/shopify-tumbles-as-citron-calls-company-get-rich-quick-scheme]describing it[/url] as a “get quick rich scheme” based on its ambitious claims to make its users millionaires. This kicks off a slump, with the stock priced at $119 at the close of trading on October 2 and hitting $92.57 by October 10, down 22%. There are plenty of stories and videos dotted around the internet that show entrepreneurs who claim to have [url=https://enrichjobs.com/the-most-successful-shopify-millionaires/]become millionaires through Shopify[/url]. The best known is Kylie Jenner, the youngest of the notorious Kardashian sisters (the one who isn’t married to Kanye West.) She may have started off with an advantage but the kid done good – she’s built a billion dollar cosmetics brand using Shopify tools to manage her online sales and presence. Now there’s something to aspire to. Others have made millions from dropshipping, where their sole business is taking orders for a popular product they find and passing them on to a third party supplier who sends it to the customer. Then in the middle there are some heartwarming homespun success stories. For example, Ben Francis founded UK fitness wear company Gymshark in his bedroom aged 19 and built the store using [url=https://www.shopify.co.uk/plus/customers/gymshark]Shopify to handle his website and order processing[/url]. It went on to become a billion dollar company after US private equity firm General Atlantic took a 21% stake in the business in August 2020. But is still a whole lot of scepticism out there about how easy it is to make a million. Andrew Left of [url=https://citronresearch.com/citron-exposes-the-dark-side-of-shopify/]Citron Research[/url] didn’t hold back when he warned that although Shopify was “the best e-commerce software” out there, it nevertheless misrepresented the earnings that merchants could make. He claimed most of those promoting the millions that could be made were in fact paid by Shopify. Something the brand vehemently denied. Left even urged the Federal Trade Commission to examine Shopify's claims about the money that users can make. Bet that took him off the company’s Christmas card list.
  • Are gasless gas stations the future?
  • Tesla CTO J.B. Straubel suggests that Tesla could turn some of its supercharging stations into convenience stores selling cold drinks and snacks while people wait.
  • Tesla CTO J.B. Straubel suggests that Tesla could [url=https://fortune.com/2017/09/23/tesla-superchargers-convenience-stores/]turn some of its supercharging stations[/url] into convenience stores selling cold drinks and snacks while people wait. Basically, a gas station without the gas. Everyone needs a bathroom break on a long journey, right?
  • Building better competition
  • A new mentoring competition setup by Shopify helps businesses generate more than half a billion dollars of orders.
  • A new mentoring competition setup by Shopify helps businesses generate more than half a billion dollars of orders. That’s enough to reach beyond the Earth’s stratosphere in single dollar bills. Its support for entrepreneurs sends the stock up 6.5% to from $110.67 on September 5 to $117.90 a week later on September 12. Shopify launched its first [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-winners-of-inaugural-build-a-bigger-business-competition]‘Build a Bigger Business’ competition in March[/url]. It gave entrants five months of training and mentoring support for those wanting to grow from $1m to $50m businesses. It attracted applicants from 70 different countries, spread over 750 cities and generated more than 8 million orders. The average growth for the businesses participating in the competition was 14% during the competition period. Not bad for five months of work. The winners got a fun day out to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange, received strategic and creative planning/support from brand-building agency Sid Lee and an exotic sounding trip to Namale Resort & Spa in Fiji for five further days of mentorship. And probably some sunbathing.
  • Photo: C Dustin / Unsplash
  • Tesla’s hyperloop pod breaks records
  • Did we mention that Elon Musk wants to build the world’s first hyperloop?
  • Did we mention that Elon Musk wants to build the world’s first hyperloop? Yeah, that’s a thing now. And in August 2017, his Tesla branded hyperloop pod (the thing you travel in) achieved a [url=https://www.theverge.com/2017/8/31/16231604/tesla-hyperloop-pod-set-speed-record]record 220mph[/url] in testing. What’s a hyperloop, we hear you ask? Basically, a sealed tunnel that can transport you at hypersonic speeds and – pay attention, this bit’s important – still deliver you alive to your destination. Musk first proposed it back in 2013 through SpaceX, and in July 2017 tweeted that he had received [url=https://www.theverge.com/2017/7/20/16003766/elon-musk-boring-company-hyperloop-nyc-philadelphia-baltimore-dc]“verbal [government] approval”[/url] to build a hyperloop between New York City and Washington, DC. Lucky he created that random tunnel-building company a while back then. Looks like your journey to Capitol Hill could soon get a whole lot quicker.
  • Hyperloop concept drawing / Tesla
  • Half a million users
  • Investors eagerly await Shopify’s second quarter results as its userbase powered past the half a million mark, sending the stock up 12.6% to $104.08 by the end of trading on the day of the announcement.
  • Investors eagerly await Shopify’s second quarter results as its userbase powered past the half a million mark, sending the stock up 12.6% to $104.08 by the end of trading on the day of the announcement. Shopify was by this point [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-now-powers-over-500-000-businesses-in-175-countries#:~:text=The%20Shopify%20platform%20was%20engineered,Kylie%20Cosmetics%2C%20and%20many%20more.]powering[/url] 500,000 businesses in 175 countries. That included the online presence and stores of major brands such as Tesla as well as one-man bands operating from their bedrooms. Since 2012, the number of merchants on the Shopify platform had grown annually at an average rate of 74%. That’s pretty big. The announcement was accompanied by the [url=https://techcrunch.com/2017/08/01/shopify-beats-on-big-revenue-jump-as-it-crosses-500k-merchants/#:~:text=Shopify%20reported%20results%20for%20its,the%20same%20quarter%20in%202016.]latest results[/url], which showed revenue in the second quarter up 75% to $151.7m. Its operating losses continued, hitting $15.9m, but that still beat analyst expectations. So all in all, things were looking up.
  • eBay integration
  • Sellers will soon be able to list and sell their products on eBay directly from their Shopify account.
  • Sellers will soon be able to list and [url=https://news.shopify.com/ebay-and-shopify-extend-merchant-reach-with-new-sales-channel]sell their products[/url] on eBay directly from their Shopify account. Auction site eBay isn’t just where old clothes are sold anymore, in fact [url=https://static.ebayinc.com/assets/Uploads/PressRoom/eBay-Q3-2020-FastFacts-10282020.pdf]79% of items[/url] sold on the site are new. Its 169m active users provide a pretty large potential customer base where billions of dollars-worth of transactions take place each year. Integrating with eBay meant Shopify users could upload and update listings and respond to messages through the e-commerce platform and get them automatically updated on the auction site. That’s a lot of potential buy-it-now clicks. The stock barely moves though.
  • Model 3 hits the mainstream
  • The first hotly anticipated Model 3 finally rolls off the production line on July 7, with the first deliveries taking place on July 28.
  • The first hotly anticipated [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6uK6BIVzcxU]Model 3[/url] finally rolls off the production line on July 7, with the first deliveries taking place on July 28. The most hair-raising move from Tesla in years, and one that the company has been gunning for since it started, the Model 3 was Tesla’s big push into the mainstream, affordable market, and its first car to be priced below $70,000. Codenamed ‘BlueStar’ by developers, it’s been in Tesla’s business plan since 2007, although it was only unveiled in 2016 and started production in 2017. The vehicle struggled at first with production problems and failed to hit the volumes it hoped for – not helped by over ambitious statements from Mr Musk, who promised up to 200,000 Model 3s in the second half of 2017 – four times as many as the firm actually managed to produce. Nevertheless, it’s been popular ever since launch, winning the highest number of advance orders ever. In February 2019 the new $35,000 Standard Range model was released, and as of 2020 the Tesla Model 3 was the world's [url=https://cleantechnica.com/2020/03/10/tesla-passes-1-million-ev-milestone-and-model-3-becomes-all-time-best-seller]best-selling electric car of all time[/url], with more than 500,000 units already delivered.
  • Model 3 / Tesla
  • Heavy shorting as bubble bursts
  • Tesla’s market value rose above $62bn in June, raising fears of the ‘b’ word – fears that seem real in July, when the firm releases Q2 results with further losses along with lackluster sales results and lower-than-expected pre-sales of the Model 3.
  • Tesla’s market value rose above $62bn in June, raising fears of the ‘b’ word – fears that seem real in July, when the firm releases Q2 results marking further losses along with [url=https://electrek.co/2017/08/02/tesla-tsla-q2-2017-earnings/]lackluster[/url] sales results and lower-than-expected pre-sales of the Model 3. By July, the firm had lost 20% of its June high, and was the second-most shorted stock on the market. But bear in mind, at the time legendary fund manager Ron Baron [url=https://www.cnbc.com/video/2017/06/13/ron-baron-tesla-could-hit-1000-by-2020.html]predicted[/url] Tesla’s stock could break $1,000 by 2020, which is exactly what it did. Wish you’d listened to him, right?
  • Photo: Lanju Fotografie / Unsplash
  • Strong first half results in record share price
  • Tesla shares jump 75% in H1 2017 to reach their highest. Level. Ever.
  • Tesla shares jump 75% in H1 2017 to reach their highest. Level. Ever. The surge was driven by strong results, a close relationship between Elon and President Trump, a doubling in size of the Gigafactory in Nevada, and the upcoming rollout of the new Model 3. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [url=https://techcrunch.com/2017/01/19/u-s-traffic-safety-agency-to-close-tesla-autopilot-investigation-without-recall-request/]closed its investigation[/url] into the firm’s autopilot technology in January, setting Tesla free from blame with a ruling that its software wasn’t responsible for the fatal crash in 2016. The same month, Morgan Stanley ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MS/]MS[/url])’s seer Adam Jonas upgraded the stock to buy, and by June analysts at Berenberg Bank were offering price targets of a [url=https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-tsla-upgraded-buy-berenberg-464-price/]whopping $464[/url], the goodest yet.
  • 400,000 users and 30,000 Beliebers
  • Shopify hits a record number of users and celebrates its Canadian heritage by highlighting key celebrity Canadian customers... such as one Justin Bieber.
  • Shopify hits a record number of users and celebrates its Canadian heritage by highlighting key celebrity Canadian customers... such as one [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kffacxfA7G4]Justin Bieber[/url]. The firm also [url=https://investors.shopify.com/news-and-events/press-releases/news-details/2017/Shopify-Announces-First-Quarter-2017-Financial-Results/default.aspx]unveils[/url] its first quarter results for 2017. The stock remains flat though at around $90. Tobi Lutke, CEO of Shopify said: “Our merchants include everyone from Justin Bieber and the Canadian Football League (CFL), to a craftsman who moved to Lunenburg, Nova Scotia for a slower pace of life and now creates and sells beautiful woodcraft goods.” Love it. Canada also [url=https://time.com/4828595/canada-day-150-years/]turned 150[/url] the same month. The birthday was a big deal for Shopify, which was born in the country and which has plenty of native celebrity users. The milestone coincided with Shopify’s [url=https://investors.shopify.com/news-and-events/press-releases/news-details/2017/Shopify-Announces-First-Quarter-2017-Financial-Results/default.aspx]first quarter results[/url], which showed the number of stores had passed the 400,000 mark: 30,000 of which were Canadian.
  • Shopify celebrates its Canadian heritage by highlighting key celebrity Canadian customers, including Justin Bieber.
  • Justin Bieber. Photo: Wikimedia
  • Tesla gets into the repairs gig
  • In its Q1 2017 earnings letter, Tesla announces plans to open its first self-owned body repair shops, which it says will “significantly improve the customer experience with out-of-warranty body repairs.”
  • In its [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/570f086b-3da9-48e4-8be0-2835eeec3d3b]Q1 2017[/url] earnings letter, Tesla announces plans to open its first self-owned body repair shops, which it says will “significantly improve the customer experience with out-of-warranty body repairs.” Gotta keep those cars shiny.
  • Photo: Enis Yavuz / Unsplash
  • Doing it old school, the chip and swipe way
  • Shopify expands its offering with a new card reader that impresses investors and helps the stock rise 4.8% to $76.06.
  • Shopify expands its offering with a new card reader that impresses investors and helps the stock rise 4.8% to $76.06. Why restrict your sales to online? There are still old fashioned customers who actually go into shops, or so we hear. So Shopify launched a free Chip and Swipe card reader for in-person selling. With Europay, MasterCard and Visa support, the new [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-new-emv-credit-card-reader-that-accepts-chip-and-pin-and-apple-pay]Chip and Swipe reader[/url] let any Shopify merchant in the United States take payments offline. Investors also got excited amid rumors that eBay might [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2017/05/05/is-ebay-shopping-for-shopify.aspx]make a bid[/url] for the company.
  • Photo; Paul Felberbauer / Unsplash
  • AutoNation CEO takes a swing at Tesla
  • Mike Jackson, CEO of AutoNation, the biggest car retailer network in the US, calls out Tesla’s 'inexplicably' high valuation.
  • Mike Jackson, CEO of AutoNation ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-AN/]AN[/url]), the biggest car retailer network in the US, [url=https://eu.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2017/04/11/autonation-ceo-mike-jackson-tesla-donald-trump/100323264/]calls out[/url] Tesla’s high valuation. Following a recent bull run, the company’s share price topped $313, making its market cap bigger than General Motors ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-GM/]GM[/url]), something Jackson said was “inexplicable” given that GM produced over 10m cars a year and brought in revenues of over $9bn. He called Tesla “either one of the great Ponzi schemes of all time or it’s gonna work out.” Speaking at an auto show in New York, he had some scathing words. “What would impress me about Tesla? Selling vehicles at a profit would be very impressive. Giving away vehicles at below what it costs you to make them is not very exciting.” Hmm.
  • Coachella effect
  • Festival-friendly Shopify stores get ready for one of the world’s largest musical festivals.
  • Festival-friendly Shopify stores get ready for one of the world’s largest musical festivals. [https://www.referralcandy.com/blog/coachella-marketing-strategy/]The Coachella Festival[/url], held over the first two weekends of April, attracts 250,000 people to watch live music, take selfies and generally kick back and go nuts. Brands love it for its eyecatching images, iconic fashion status and media buzz, and Shopify is no slouch when it comes to leveraging the appeal. “If your retail brand targets millennials and Generation Z, knowing how to attract festival-goers can be music to your ears,” urged the brand [url=https://www.shopify.co.uk/retail/the-coachella-effect-how-retailers-can-take-advantage-of-festival-season-sales]in its blog[/url]. “Learn the trends for this year’s festival season and brush up on some key marketing tactics to know how to reach this key demographic, courtesy of a handful of Shopify merchants who sell festival-friendly merchandise.”
  • Photo: Drew Ressler / Wikimedia
  • CFO leaves
  • CFO Jason Wheeler announces he’s leaving: shares go down.
  • CFO Jason Wheeler [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/cfo-jason-wheeler-depart-april-pursue-opportunities-public-policy]announces[/url] he’s leaving: shares go down.
  • Full year results
  • Shopify reports a record fourth quarter for new users, taking the total beyond 375,000, helping the stock rise 8.1% to $60.61.
  • Shopify [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-fourth-quarter-and-full-year-2017-financial-results]reports[/url] a record fourth quarter for new users, taking the total beyond 375,000, helping the stock rise 8.1% to $60.61. A lot of this was driven by booming Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales. The company said the level of activity on its platform reached a peak of almost 3 million requests per minute. That’s a lot of sales to process, and Shopify reported revenue for the fourth quarter of 2016 up 86% to $130.4m.
  • Autopilot saves lives, says NHTSA
  • Tesla’s crash rate dropped 40% after it launched the semi-autonomous Autopilot software, according to a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigating a May 2016 fatal accident involving a Tesla Model S.
  • Tesla’s crash rate dropped 40% after it launched the semi-autonomous Autopilot software, [url=https://www.theverge.com/2017/1/19/14326258/teslas-crash-rate-dropped-40-percent-after-autopilot-was-installed-feds-say]according[/url] to a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigating a May 2016 fatal accident involving a Tesla Model S. That’s good news.
  • Getting connected
  • Shopify confirms a long-awaited partnership with Amazon, sending its stock up 8.1% to $47.68.
  • Shopify confirms a long-awaited partnership with Amazon ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AMZN/]AMZN[/url]), sending its stock up 8.1% to $47.68. Amazon is still the place to be for online stores wanting to reach a mass audience. If you want to sell your product, you can’t get much better than the world’s largest retailer as a distribution line. [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-prime-members-spend-more-money-sneaky-ways-2019-9?r=US&IR=T]Amazon users spend on average $600[/url] through the site and it [url=https://www.bigcommerce.com/blog/amazon-statistics/]gets almost 200m visitors a month[/url]. That’s more than the entire population of Russia and a LOT of potential rubles. So it was good news for Shopify users when the company said they could connect their account to their Amazon store and manage sales and inventory all in place. That meant no more clicking through different websites to keep track of sales.
  • Elon promises tunnels to end traffic hell
  • Elon Musk gets sick of sitting in traffic, decides to build tunnels instead.
  • Elon Musk gets sick of sitting in traffic, [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/810108760010043392]decides to build tunnels instead[/url]. Is he joking, or is he serious? Hard to tell sometimes. The market seems to like him though – Tesla’s share price continues to rise throughout December. He says he’s going to call it [url=https://www.boringcompany.com/]“The Boring Company.”[/url] Tagline: “Boring. It’s what we do.”
  • Tesla in a tunnel. The Boring Company
  • Boring tunnel / The Boring Company
  • Keeping up with Kylie
  • Kardashian sister-turned-entrepreneur Kylie Jenner launches her own pop-up store with Shopify for the first time to sell her makeup range, and builds a fancy website through the platform.
  • Kardashian sister-turned-entrepreneur Kylie Jenner [url=https://fashionista.com/2016/12/kylie-jenner-cosmetics-merch-pop-up-shop]launches[/url] her own pop-up store with Shopify for the first time to sell her makeup range, and builds a fancy website through the platform. The share price barely moves, but it makes a massive media splash and brand recognition goes through the roof. Kylie Cosmetics was already an established Shopify brand. The celebrity’s makeup range was so popular that Shopify had to write its own software so it could manage a virtual queue in order to stop her website from crashing. Her new collections historically sold out in minutes, often because people would design sneaky bots to purchase the makeup in bulk and then sell elsewhere. So Shopify came up with an old-fashioned solution. It helped Kylie [url=https://www.shopify.com/blog/212483913-kylie-jenner-pop-up?shpxid=0aa76452-D097-4FA4-7025-944ADEA2D5CB]build an actual real life popup store[/url] in Westfield Topanga, launched on December 9, where people could see, touch and buy her products. They were then sold on her Shopify-powered website a day later on December 10. Kylie even turned up for selfies. The whole concept turned out to be such a barnstorming success that [url=https://hollywoodlife.com/2017/02/13/kylie-jenner-nyc-pop-up-shop-crowds-pics/]Shopify recreated the experience[/url] during New York Fashion Week, shutting down a whole Manhattan street two months later.
  • Kylie Jenner. Photo: Wikimedia
  • Black Friday boom
  • Talk about a hot minute. The Shopify platform processes more than half a billion of transactions in just 60 seconds during Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.
  • Talk about a hot minute. The Shopify platform processes more than half a billion of transactions in just 60 seconds during [url=https://www.shopify.com/blog/4-trends-that-defined-black-friday-cyber-monday-in-2016?utm_source=Shopify+Blog+Email+Updates&utm_campaign=18be3afaa9-shopify-daily-blog&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_1077797dad-18be3afaa9-285039205&mc_cid=18be3afaa9&mc_eid=b587e5299e]Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales[/url]. The increased sales fail to push through to the stock price though and it falls 2.31% between Black Friday on November 25 and Cyber Monday on November 28. Everyone loves a bargain though, and the post-Thanksgiving Black Friday sale has gone global, stretching across the UK, Europe and of course the US. At its peak, more than $555,716 of transactions occurred in a single minute during the festivities through Shopify, the company said. That’s a lot of new coffee machines.
  • SolarCity merger sees shares bounce
  • Tesla merges with SolarCity in August as part of its long-held plan to extendo-reach its supply chain and move further into sustainable energy.
  • Tesla [url=https://money.cnn.com/2016/11/17/technology/tesla-solarcity-merger/index.html]merges[/url] with SolarCity in August as part of its long-held plan to extendo-reach its supply chain and move further into sustainable energy. Shares initially drop, but bounce up again a few days later as the market absorbs the impact. The all-stock deal had an equity value of $2.6bn, valuing SolarCity common stock at $25.37 per share – a price some analysts complained was too high. Tesla got greater economies of scale from the deal, claiming cost savings of $150m in the first year alone. The stock rose despite concerns over what S&P Ratings called “significant risks related to the sustainability of the company’s capital structure,” which in corp-speak means they think Tesla might’ve paid too much for it. It’s not all bad though – the acquisition offered Tesla greater economies of scale, with the firm claiming cost savings of $150m in the first year alone. The company projected that the deal would add more than half a billion dollars in cash to its balance sheet within three years.
  • Tesla goes Deutsch with Grohmann acquisition
  • Tesla doubles down with the acquisition of Germany’s battery automation specialist Grohmann Engineering, now known as Tesla Grohmann Engineering, as part of its drive to scale up production to half a million cars a year.
  • Tesla doubles down with the [url=https://electrek.co/2017/05/10/tesla-acquisition-grohmann-engineering/]acquisition[/url] of Germany’s battery automation specialist Grohmann Engineering, now known as Tesla Grohmann Engineering, as part of its drive to scale up production to half a million cars a year. The share price jumps slightly to $194.94. The acquisition was turned into Tesla’s Advanced Automation facility in Germany, a subdivision focused on improving automation and streamlining its manufacturing process. Elon called it “our first acquisition of significance in our whole history” and expected it to achieve “exponential improvements” in the production process. The financial terms of the deal were never disclosed, but the buyout is widely seen as a smart move – especially in competitive terms. In January 2020, Daimler ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/XETR-DAI/]DAI[/url]) had to slash the production targets of its flashy new Mercedes-Benz by 50% due to a battery shortage – a problem it [url=https://insideevs.com/news/395392/tesla-grohmann-acquisition-taking-toll-mercedes/]blamed[/url] in part on Tesla’s earlier acquisition of Grohmann, which had previously been used by Mercedes to build batteries for its electric fleet.
  • Third quarter boost
  • Shopify squares up to the big boys, flexing its muscles by saying it would “rather buy Google than be bought” as it releases strong third quarter results to push the stock up 6.8% in a day to $43.57.
  • Shopify squares up to the big boys, flexing its muscles by saying it would “[url=https://betakit.com/shopify-would-rather-buy-google-than-be-bought-by-google/]rather buy Google than be bought[/url]” as it releases strong third quarter results to push the stock up 6.8% in a day to $43.57. Shopify was already rumored to be on Google’s shopping list and analysts and journalists were curious about the prospect. But Russ Jones was having none of this during an interview when Shopify’s third quarter results were released. The Shopify CFO [url=https://startupheretoronto.com/sectors/technology/shopify-would-rather-buy-google-than-be-bought-by-google/]said[/url]: “We would never talk about these things publicly. Our path is really to become a very important, independent public company. We see that there’s lots of room to grow and that’s the path we’re on. I mean, if you ask Tobi (Shopify CEO Tobias Lutke) at some time, he might even like to buy Google.” Its [url=https://investors.shopify.com/news-and-events/press-releases/news-details/2016/Shopify-Announces-Third-Quarter-2016-Financial-Results-Revenue-Grows-89-Year-on-Year-Gross-Merchandise-Volume-GMV-Grows-100-Year-on-Year/default.aspx]third quarter results[/url] showed revenues grew 89% annually to $99.6m and it reached more than 325,000 users. Operating losses for the third quarter of 2016 were -$9.5m, or 10% of revenue, versus $4.3m or 8% of revenue a year before. The results also showed Shopify’s stores were reaping the fruits of its Apple Pay integration, with users reporting that double the number of mobile customers were completing purchases on items they put in their checkout using the payment method.
  • Acquisition trail
  • Shopify dips into its war chest to make its first acquisition as a public company.
  • Shopify dips into its war chest to make its first acquisition as a public company. Way to flash the cash. The stock remains flat on the day of the announcement but climbs a week later on October 10 by 3% to $44.30. [url=https://techcrunch.com/2016/10/03/shopify-acquires-product-design-firm-boltmade-to-boost-shopify-plus/]The company went shopping[/url] in Canada and purchased Boltmade, a 21-person product-focused digital consulting and design company based in Waterloo, Ontario. The acquisition gave Shopify access to more expertise so they could help users customise their stores and attract more sales. Both already had plenty of experience working together as Boltmade had designed software for Shopify.
  • Hackers gonna hack
  • Researchers from Keen Security Lab, a division of the Chinese internet giant Tencent, found a remote vulnerability to hack into the Model S – a fault that could allow malicious hackers to take control of the car and cause some serious damage.
  • Researchers from Keen Security Lab, a division of the Chinese internet giant Tencent ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/HKEX-700/]700[/url]), [url=https://keenlab.tencent.com/en/2016/09/19/Keen-Security-Lab-of-Tencent-Car-Hacking-Research-Remote-Attack-to-Tesla-Cars/]found[/url] a remote vulnerability to hack into the Model S – a fault that could allow malicious hackers to take control of the car and cause some serious damage. “With several months of in-depth research on Tesla Cars, we have discovered multiple security vulnerabilities and successfully implemented remote, aka none physical contact, control on Tesla Model S in both Parking and Driving Mode,” they said. Don’t worry though – these are the good guys, and they had already worked with Tesla to patch the flaw before going public. All better now.
  • Fundraising
  • Shopify returns to the markets for more money for the first time since its IPO, raising $286m by selling 8.6m shares.
  • Shopify [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-launches-offering-of-class-a-subordinate-voting-shares]returns to the markets[/url] for more money for the first time since its IPO, raising $286m by selling 8.6m shares. The prospect of more money to expand its ever-popular offering helps to push the stock back past the $40 mark. It had already grown to more than 300,000 users including Tesla Motors ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-TSLA/]TSLA[/url]), Budweiser ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-BUD/]BUD[/url]) and the LA Lakers, who used the platform for their technology and online stores, but Shopify wanted a bigger war chest to offer even more features. It sold 6.1m of new shares and 2.5m from existing shareholders in a placing backed by Morgan Stanley ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MS/]MS[/url]), Credit Suisse ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-CS/]CS[/url]) and RBC Capital Markets ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-RY/]RY[/url]). The stock rose $42.47 on August 22 when the total fundraise was revealed, a 25% increase on the start of the month.
  • Strong sales
  • A high-profile celebrity user and a new sales milestone please the markets, sending the stock up 9.7% to $36.79.
  • A high-profile celebrity user and a new sales milestone please the markets, sending the stock up 9.7% to $36.79. Shopify’s celebrity following increased after it was [url=https://twitter.com/Shopify/status/756502309371277312?s=20]revealed[/url] on July 22 that singer Adele had joined Shopify to sell her latest album online. She even got a personal welcome on Twitter from chief platform officer Harley Finkelstein. The brand’s fourth quarter results, released on August 4, showed how Shopify was benefiting from more users signing up, including Adele, plus more payment options. More than $1bn was purchased through its platform on a quarterly basis for the first time. Revenues grew 93% to $86.6m. Things were looking up on the profit front as well, as operating losses also reduced on a quarterly basis to -$8.7m. Could it soon be [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYEDA3JcQqw&list=RDrYEDA3JcQqw]rolling in the deep (profit)[/url]?
  • Shopify’s celebrity following increased after it was revealed on July 22 that singer Adele had joined Shopify to sell her latest album online. Photo: Erin McCormack / Wikimedia
  • Photo: Erin McCormack / Wikimedia
  • SolarCity announcement
  • Tesla announces plans to buy solar energy firm SolarCity for $2.6bn. People aren’t sure about the move. The stock loses 2.04% to close the day at $230.01.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-and-solarcity-combine]announces[/url] plans to buy solar energy firm SolarCity for $2.6bn. People aren’t sure about the move. The stock loses 2.04% to close the day at $230.01.
  • Photo: BrokenSphere / Wikimedia
  • Fatal crash sends stock into freefall
  • A driver tragically dies in a crash involving a Tesla using self-drive software. Negative headlines spin up around the world, and America’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) launches an investigation.
  • A driver [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-36680043]tragically dies[/url] in a crash involving a Tesla using self-drive software. Needless to say, it’s not a good day at the company’s press office. Negative headlines spun up around the world, and America’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) launched an investigation. The Tesla PR team [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tragic-loss]responded[/url] with a somewhat-prickly statement pointing out that “autopilot is getting better all the time, but it is not perfect and still requires the driver to remain alert.” The response did little to support the share price, which went into a four-month spiral, plummeting back below the $200 mark.
  • Shopify adds Apple Pay
  • Apple Pay is added as the latest payment option for Shopify users, giving the stock a 3.7% boost by the close of the next day’s trading to $29.05.
  • Apple Pay is added as the latest payment option for Shopify users, giving the stock a 3.7% boost by the close of the next day’s trading to $29.05. Who actually pays with cash anymore? Apple Pay was helping speed up the shift to a cashless society, allowing iPhone users to register their debit or credit card on their device and pay by tapping or scanning with their phone. A fifth of iPhone6 users in the US reported using ApplePay at least once and it was [url=https://www.computerweekly.com/news/450294527/Apple-Pay-gets-a-million-new-users-a-week-but-profit-remains-elusive]gaining a million new users each week[/url]. Shopify allowed its stores to take a bite out of this trend and added ApplePay to its service, making it easier for shoppers to complete transactions. Shopify’s own data showed that while 60% of checkouts on its stores were on mobile, only 40% completed. Adding ApplePay would hopefully make it easier to get sales completed. The stock had already been boosted earlier in the month with the launch of a Shopify Plus partner program, which connected stores with high profile design agencies and app developers to get expert advice and help with their websites and marketing. Partners could develop their own apps and website designs that are then sol through Shopify’s platform. Big fans included design agencies such as Eastside Co, which includes singer Lady Gaga on its list of clients, having helped her reach the edge of glory by creating a Shopify store so she could sell her merchandise online. Reality TV star Kylie Jenner also used apps and tools on offer through Shopify Plus to sell make-up online through her self-named brand Kylie Cosmetics.
  • Fundraising to fuel Model 3 production
  • Tesla announces plans to raise $1.4bn through a secondary stock offering, with another 5.5m shares to be purchased by Elon Musk via a stock option exercise, in order to "accelerate the production ramp of Model 3.”
  • Tesla announces plans to raise [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2016/05/20/tesla-raises-146b-in-stock-sale-at-a-lower-price-than-its-august-2015-sale-ifr.html]$1.4bn[/url] through a secondary stock offering, with another 5.5m shares to be purchased by Elon Musk via a stock option exercise, in order to "accelerate the production ramp of Model 3.”
  • Mobile sales overtake desktop
  • Shopify reveals its platform now takes more mobile than desktop orders as it publishes its first quarter results for 2016.
  • Shopify reveals its platform now takes more mobile than desktop orders as it publishes its first quarter results for 2016. This technological shift doesn’t prevent the price from falling though. Shopify’s [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-first-quarter-2016-financial-results]first quarter results[/url], released on May 4, showed revenues kept rising and were up 95% annually to $72.7m, but it can’t shake off those operating losses. Gross profit grew 82% to $39.3m but it was left with an operating loss of -$9.7m. There was an interesting snippet in the results for computer geeks and sales departments though. Orders on mobiles overtook those on desktop for the first time ever in the first quarter of 2016, with a share of 62%. The markets weren’t feeling the love though, and the stock fell over several days, declining to a two-month low by May 16 to $26.10. That’s a big drop whether you are looking at it from a phone or desktop. The previous low was $25.80 on March 15, 2016.
  • Photo: Jonathan Kemper / Unsplash
  • Rise of the chatbots
  • Shopify becomes the first e-commerce platform to partner with a chatbot, giving it a 12% boost across the month to end April at $31.85.
  • Shopify becomes the first e-commerce platform to partner with a chatbot, giving it a 12% boost across the month to end April at $31.85. Who says customer service is dead? Shopping online may mean fewer chances to flirt with cashiers but Shopify users were given the chance to let their customers deal with a robot instead. The company announced it would integrate with [url=https://www.shopify.co.uk/messenger]Facebook Messenger[/url] to let users provide live customer support, automatically send order confirmations, shipping updates and push notifications. At least the chatbot doesn’t need a lunch break. Shopify also moved beyond offering web tools to providing cold hard cash as well. It launched [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-shopify-capital]Shopify Capital[/url] so firms in America could access loans to buy equipment and inventory, launch new products, hire more employees and add new channels and products. It would get paid back by taking a proportion of your sales each month. The aim was to make it easier to access cash within a few clicks rather than lengthy bank applications.
  • Mario Kart Easter egg discovered
  • Tesla makes it onto Mario Kart in a clever PR stunt that pulls attention away from a worrying Model X recall due to faulty seats.
  • Tesla makes it [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KirSugw_clA]onto Mario Kart[/url] in a clever PR stunt that pulls attention away from a worrying [url=https://money.cnn.com/2016/04/11/luxury/tesla-model-x-recall/index.html]Model X[/url] recall due to faulty seats. When the Model S or Model X is in Autopilot mode, the instrument cluster shows the car "driving" down a road. Normally it's a boring grey one, but engaging Autopilot four times in a row turns it into Rainbow Road from Mario Kart instead. I mean, it’s literally impossible to stay on that track, so here’s hoping the autopilot is a better driver than we are. More excitingly, did you know the Model S also has a [url=https://in.askmen.com/car-news/1102537/article/tesla-model-s-has-secret-james-bond-mode-that-turns-car-into-submarine]secret James Bond mode[/url]? An Easter egg discovered in January turns the car into a Bond-style Lotus Esprit S1 submersible onscreen. Musk has always been a fan – back in 2013 he [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/oct/18/tesla-elon-musk-james-bond-lotus-submarine-car]bought[/url] the real iconic submarine car with a bid of $866,000.
  • Rainbow Road / Mario Kart 64
  • Model 3 wins big to push back price
  • Generally speaking, 2016 doesn’t start well. In January, the world loses David Bowie whileTesla loses almost a third of its value. But March's Model 3 announcement meets with a doubleplusgood reaction from the market, upping the stock back over $240.
  • Generally speaking, 2016 doesn’t start well. In January, the world [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-35278872]loses David Bowie[/url] while Tesla loses almost a third of its value – partly due to an uncertain timeline for the Model 3 launch, and lingering doubts over production capacity. Morgan Stanley ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MS/]MS[/url])’s Adam Jonas cut his top price target from $450 to $333 while brokerage firm Stifel ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-SF/]SF[/url]) warned that heavy short-selling could cause yet more share price bleeding. But, the Model 3 announcement in March met with a [url=https://www.wired.com/2016/03/meet-teslas-model-3-long-awaited-car-masses/]doubleplusgood reaction[/url] from the market, upping the stock back over $240. With more than 300,000 pre-orders, things are looking up.
  • Stock soars
  • Shopify reveals just how much money is passing through its cloud during the company’s first Partner and Developer Conference – helping the stock end March up 24.3% at $28.21.
  • Shopify reveals just how much money is passing through its cloud during the company’s first Partner and Developer Conference – helping the stock end March up 24.3% at $28.21. CEO Tobi Lütke looked rockstar all the way in a cool flat cap as he [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XdbfXSA9xs&feature=youtu.be]revealed to a San Francisco audience[/url] at the company’s Unite conference that businesses had passed more than $10 billion of transactions through the Shopify platform. The stock also got a boost from a positive analyst rating and acquisitions rumors. Analysts at Pacific Crest gave Shopify a boost when they upgraded it to an “overweight”, with Brendan Barnicle praising its low customer acquisition costs and giving a price target of $45. There was also juicy gossip that [url=https://siliconangle.com/2016/03/21/google-eyes-triple-acquisition-of-shopify-namely-xactly-to-boost-cloud-portfolio/]Google was on the acquisition trail[/url] for cloud computing and workplace application companies to support its own e-commerce products. Shopify was rumored to be at the top of its shopping list.
  • Shopify stock soars as it reveals more than $10 billion of transactions passed through their platform. Photo: SpaceX / Flickr
  • Users double but losses deepen
  • Revenues keep rising but so do the losses. Shopify unveils its fourth quarter results for 2015, and it’s a double-edged sword.
  • Revenues keep rising but so do the losses. Shopify unveils its fourth quarter results for 2015, and it’s a double-edged sword. The number of users doubled since the previous quarter but operating profits are still nowhere in sight. Total revenue for the [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-fourth-quarter-and-full-year-2015-financial-results]fourth quarter of 2015[/url] increased 99% annually to $70.2m but running a rapidly expanding e-commerce plan is expensive and operating losses increased to -$6.5m from -$4.5m a year before. Key activities for the quarter included the development of new software to let users create a buy button for any website they control, and the launch of a chip reader for businesses to use in their own shops. The good news was that its customer base continued to grow, hitting 243,000 users and $7.7bn in transactions. Total revenue for the full year was also up 95% to $205.2m. On the other hand, it still reported an operating loss of -$17.8m, only a slight improvement from a loss of -$21.6m in 2014. The stock rose 9.1% to $22.37on results day compared with the previous close but then dropped 7.9% during trading the following day to $20.59. You just can’t please everyone.
  • Lesson: don’t piss off Elon Musk
  • I think everyone's figured out by now that Elon doesn’t take criticism lightly, everyone except a guy called Stewart Alsop, that is.
  • I think we’ve all figured out by now that Elon Musk doesn’t take criticism lightly. And oftentimes, he’s in a position to hit back. In February 2016 Californian venture capitalist Stewart Alsop learns this to his cost when he writes an [url=https://medium.com/@salsop/dear-elonmusk-you-should-be-ashamed-of-yourself-ca3d266882a4#.1jpmd9f8f]open letter[/url] to Musk criticizing a Model X launch event. His mistake? Not waiting until his new Model X was delivered. Musk is so mad that he goes ahead and cancels Alsop’s order. No new car for him.
  • New COO, but what about the CEO?
  • Shopify appoints its first chief operating officer, with the promotion of chief platform officer Harley Finkelstein.
  • Shopify appoints its first chief operating officer, with the [url=https://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/streetwise/finkelstein-promoted-to-coo-of-shopify/article28130976/]promotion[/url] of chief platform officer Harley Finkelstein. What does this mean for founder and chief executive Tobi Lutke though? Markets seldom look too fondly on the prospect of a respected senior exec stepping back, and the stock dropped by the close of the next day by 13% to $20.64. A reshuffle always sets tongues wagging and it wasn’t any different for Finklestein. He was a familiar face and regularly spoke on behalf of the Shopify brand, and people don’t like change. Lutke said the appointment would give him more time to focus on product, technology and people systems, while Finklestein would lead interactions and communications with the 200,000 merchants using Shopify.
  • COO Harley Finkelstein. Photo: Matthew Wiebe / Wikimedia
  • Go park yourself
  • In its software update 7.1, Tesla unveils a supercool new feature called ‘Summon’ that lets the car park itself kerbside.
  • In its software update 7.1, Tesla unveils a supercool new feature called [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/summon-your-tesla-your-phone?redirect=no]‘Summon’[/url] that lets the car park itself kerbside. Musk calls it "[url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/686277508212330496]just a baby step,[/url]" promising that a Tesla would be able to self-drive across the US by 2018. "Ultimately you’ll be able to summon your car anywhere … your car can get to you," he said.
  • Photo: Omer Rana / Unsplash
  • A millionaire maker
  • Shopify makes the bold claim that 2,700 people become millionaires each day, but even this temptation doesn’t move the stock.
  • Shopify [url=https://www.facebook.com/20409006880/posts/2700-people-become-millionaires-each-day/10153167684546881/ ]makes the bold claim[/url] that 2,700 people become millionaires each day, but even this temptation doesn’t move the stock. Everyone likes the thought of building the next Tesla or Virgin and becoming a millionaire or billionaire in the process. It takes hard work and unique ideas but a Facebook ad from Shopify suggested that its platform was doing exactly that. The ad suggested that 2,700 people were becoming millionaires each day, and that Shopify could help you get there. It then linked to a webpage describing itself as the online store for “someday millionaires.” It didn’t actually provide any examples of real Shopify millionaires, though, which might have helped. It just told people to sign up for a free trial. Don’t give up your day job, maybe.
  • Things go wrong in Hong Kong
  • Tesla’s all-singing, all-dancing Autopilot mode hits a speedbump in Hong Kong. The firm is asked to disable automatic steering and lane change functions by the Hong Kong Transport Authority due to safety concerns.
  • Tesla’s all-singing, all-dancing Autopilot mode hits a [url=https://cleantechnica.com/2015/11/19/tesla-pulls-plug-on-autopilot-in-hong-kong-due-to-regulator-demands/]speedbump[/url] in Hong Kong. The firm is asked to disable automatic steering and lane change functions by the Hong Kong Transport Authority due to safety concerns.
  • Sell-off fears
  • The markets react poorly to Shopify’s third quarter results released on November 5.
  • The markets react poorly to Shopify’s [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-third-quarter-2015-financial-results]third quarter results[/url] released on November 5. Losses continue and restrictions end on pre-IPO investors selling their stock, prompting concerns that early buyers might start selling. The stock had been dropping over the past couple of months anyway, and hit a low of $26.39 on November 17: worryingly near the closing price of the first day of trading post-IPO. In fact, Q3 results for 2015 still showed impressive revenue growth of $52.8m, up 93% as more businesses signed up, taking users past 200,000. But turns out designing buy buttons for Twitter and integrating with Facebook isn’t cheap, and Shopify ended the quarter with losses of -$4.3m, from -$4.1m a year before. It had also spent time and money introducing Shopify Shipping during the quarter, which let US-based customers print and buy USPS shipping labels for up to 60% off retail rates. But hey, you got to spend money to make money, right? The stock was also under pressure because investors who had backed the stock before its public listing were allowed to sell shares again from November 17 after restrictions, known as the lock-up period, ended.
  • Self-drive sends stock soaring
  • On September 29, Tesla finally begins deliveries of the delayed Model X, its first crossover utility vehicle, originally slated to launch back in 2014.
  • On September 29, Tesla finally [url=https://www.autoblog.com/2015/09/03/elon-musk-confirms-september-29-delivery-first-model-x/]begins deliveries[/url] of the delayed Model X, its first crossover utility vehicle, originally slated to launch back in 2014. Global Model S sales were also up 50% from the previous year, raising investor confidence. Despite a slight lull early in the quarter, the share price was given a kick up the butt in October by the confirmation of Tesla’s self-drive software, enabling Autopilot. Further gains followed news that the firm was [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2015/11/18/teslas-success-depends-on-china.html]in talks with China[/url] to produce its electric cars domestically. So what did the Model X look like? Basically a spaceship, especially given its crazy falcon wing doors. It was Tesla’s first attempt at an SUV, and Elon famously called it [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musk-says-teslas-new-suv-is-the-hardest-car-to-build-in-the-world-2015-8?r=US&IR=T]“the most difficult car in the world to build,”[/url] due to its blend of advanced technology, futuristic features (including the famous falcon-wing doors and a windshield claiming to be the largest single piece of glass ever installed on a car) and high-level performance. Although announced in 2012, full production was delayed until 2015, and the firm initially struggled to meet its 25,000 pre-orders. The car started at $139,000 for the top performance model, but subsequent trims reduced the price somewhat and in 2020 the Model X started at $84,990, going up to $104,990 for the Performance version. The only seven-seater EV in the market, the Model X initially struggled with range due to its size and bulk, but most of these kinks have since been worked out. The Long Range Plus model in 2020 had a range of around 350 miles, while the Performance version can manage 305 miles. The car comes with Autopilot as standard, as well as an optional Full Self Driving system.
  • Model X / Tesla
  • Amazon integration
  • Shopify rides to the rescue of small businesses abandoned after the closure of Amazon’s e-commerce product suite, sending its stock up by more than a fifth on the previous day’s close to $35.55.
  • Shopify rides to the rescue of small businesses abandoned after the closure of Amazon’s e-commerce product suite, sending its stock up by more than a fifth on the previous day’s close to $35.55. Amazon had offered small - and medium-sized enterprises e-commerce tools since 2010 but announced in 2015 that it was closing its Webstore business. No reason was given but users were given a year to transfer their website and any other details they had stored with it. This created a lot of hassle for businesses, who needed to get a whole new website, and new sales and marketing tools sorted, to make sure customers could still shop with them online. It was announced on September 17 that these stores could now be [url=https://www.shopify.co.uk/blog/52368069-shopify-and-amazon-partner-to-bring-amazon-services-to-merchants]migrated to Shopify[/url] and could still ship products stored by Amazon. Customers could also still use their Amazon accounts to buy the products. Now that’s what we call customer service. The stock was already buoyed a day before when Shopify launched a tool so users could showcase and sell their products in the new shop section on [url=https://www.zdnet.com/article/facebook-shopify-tighten-e-commerce-ties-with-merchant-page-shop-section/]Facebook Pages[/url]. [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20150930005220/en/Shopify-Introduces-Selling-on-Twitter-with-Buy-Now]Shopify added Twitter[/url] as another distribution option for its buy button on September 30, which pushed the stock up 6.4% to $35.81 compared with the day before. The deal meant any product tweeted from a US merchant’s store would automatically include a buy button. Online stores could encourage shoppers to buy products directly from tweets in their timeline.
  • Stock sale pressures price
  • A surprise stock sale raises $738m to pay for the new Model X production and ambitious $5bn Nevada battery factory — but worries over Tesla’s balance sheet place a further squeeze on the share price.
  • A [url=https://fortune.com/2015/08/20/tesla-stock-sale-cash/]surprise stock sale[/url] raises $738m to pay for the new Model X production and ambitious $5bn Nevada battery factory — but worries over Tesla’s balance sheet place a further squeeze on the share price.
  • Results day
  • Revenues are up 90% as Shopify releases its first results as a listed company on July 30, pushing the stock up an impressive 11.7% by the end of the day.
  • Revenues are up 90% as Shopify [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-announces-second-quarter-2015-financial-results]releases its first results as a listed company[/url] on July 30, pushing the stock up an impressive 11.7% by the end of the day. The stock keeps rising and hits a new high of $40.3 by August 3. Shopify reported total revenue for the second quarter of 2015 was $44.9m, up 90% on the previous year, and helped along by much higher subscriptions from businesses. The company still made operating losses of -$3.5m but this was an improvement on the -$7m of losses reported a year before. Investors were, however, fairly impressed that the brand had reached more than 175,000 merchants over the year – processing $1.6bn of transactions during the second quarter alone, up by 100% annually and taking the total to $10bn. That’s one hell of a shopping spree.
  • Maximum Plaid
  • “There is of course one speed faster than ludicrous, but that is reserved for the next generation Roadster in 4 years: maximum plaid.” Yes, the iconic Roadster is coming back, and it’s going to be a fast one.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/three-dog-day]announces[/url] the new $10k [url=https://www.wired.com/2015/07/teslas-new-ludicrous-mode-makes-model-s-supercar/]‘Ludicrous’[/url] speed upgrade for its Model S, and it’s awesome. But wait – there’s more. Buried in the press release is a throwaway sentence that is actually some of the biggest news the firm has come out with in years. “There is of course one speed faster than ludicrous, but that is reserved for the next generation Roadster in 4 years: maximum plaid.” Yes, the iconic Roadster is coming back, and it’s going to be a fast one. Why “maximum plaid?” Glad you asked. It’s a [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAWL8ejf2nM]homage[/url] to the Mel Brooks movie Spaceballs, in which after achieving Ludicrous Speed, the ship Spaceball One GOES INTO PLAID. “What have I done??? My brains are going into my feet!!!”
  • "It's Tesla. They've gone to plaid." / MGM
  • Going social
  • Shopify’s stock has a good first fortnight in June as it unveils a new ‘buy button’ that businesses can put on social media posts.
  • Shopify’s stock has a good first fortnight in June as it unveils a new ‘buy button’ that businesses can put on social media posts. This puts its shares up 41% from the start of the month, to $38.63. Forget sharing cat pictures or stalking exes: social media is for selling. A buy button was first launched with [url=https://investors.shopify.com/news-and-events/press-releases/news-details/2015/Shopify-Introduces-Selling-on-Pinterest-Using-Buyable-Pins/default.aspx]Pinterest on June 2[/url] and then [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-06-10/shopify-merchants-to-sell-directly-on-facebook-with-buy-button]Facebook on June 10[/url], allowing customers to make purchases directly through social posts. The news clicked well with investors, and sent the stock soaring. Facebook and Pinterest were the top two referral sources for traffic to Shopify stores.
  • Battery swapping idea dead in the water
  • At the Tesla shareholders meeting, Elon Musk admits that the battery swap idea (technology that allowed batteries to be swapped over for seamless charging) is probably dead in the water.
  • At the Tesla shareholders meeting, Elon Musk [url=https://www.roadandtrack.com/new-cars/car-technology/news/a25872/elon-musk-tesla-battery-swap/]admits[/url] that the battery swap idea (technology that allowed batteries to be swapped over for seamless charging) is probably dead in the water. “What we're seeing is a very low take rate for the pack swap station. So we did an initial round of invitations, where we did basically like 200 invitations, and I think there were a total of four or five people that wanted to do that, and they all did it just once. So, okay, it's clearly not very popular,” he said. The people want what the people want, Elon. And apparently, what they want is supercharging, not swapsies.
  • IPO day
  • Shopify storms onto the New York Stock Exchange at $17 a share to raise $130m and is valued at $1.27bn.
  • Elon becomes used car salesman
  • Tesla quietly launches a pre-owned vehicle program offering older versions of its Model S for lower prices than new models.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.theverge.com/2015/5/4/8548463/tesla-used-car-pre-owned-model-s-program]quietly launches[/url] a pre-owned vehicle program offering older versions of its Model S for lower prices than new models.
  • Elon tweet boosts market cap
  • In February 2015 the Model X SUV prototype premiers at Tesla’s design studios in Hawthorne, California – but the grand unveiling does little to the share price. What does though, is a teaser tweet from Musk at the end of March.
  • In February 2015 the Model X SUV prototype premiers at Tesla’s design studios in Hawthorne, California – but although critics like the look of it, the grand unveiling does little to the share price. What did though, was a [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/582581865682350080]teaser tweet[/url] from Musk at the end of March (can you spot a trend developing here?). “Major new Tesla product line – not a car – will be unveiled at our Hawthorne Design Studio on Thurs 8pm, April 30.” The launch of the battery line sparked a buying frenzy, with the share price climbing steadily over the next few months to peak at $268 on June 1, its longest consecutive rise in over two years.
  • Tough earnings call
  • Tesla stock falls by 4.76% on the back of a tough earnings call in which it says over 1,000 Model X shipments slipped back into 2015 because of "a combination of customers being on vacation, severe winter weather and shipping problems."
  • Tesla stock falls by 4.76% on the back of a tough earnings call in which it says over 1,000 Model X shipments slipped back into 2015 because of "a combination of customers being on vacation, severe winter weather and shipping problems (with actual ships)." Musk is still confident though – he predicts the stock will go into [url=https://money.cnn.com/2015/02/12/investing/tesla-apple-elon-musk/]“insane mode”[/url] over the next decade. Dammit, we hate it when that dude is always right.
  • "The stupidest car in the world"
  • Elon Musk’s kid calls the Model S “the stupidest car in the world” because it doesn’t have reading lights in the back. Musk shrugs, takes it on board, installs reading lights. Good to know he can accept constructive criticism.
  • Elon Musk’s kid calls the Model S [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musks-kid-calls-tesla-stupidest-car-2015-1?r=US&IR=T]“the stupidest car in the world”[/url] because it doesn’t have reading lights in the back. Musk shrugs, takes it on board, installs reading lights. Good to know he can accept constructive criticism.
  • Model S, "The stupidest car in the world" Photo: Tesla
  • Battery swaps, upgrades
  • Tesla says that it'll finally start offering battery swaps for the Model S as a quicker alternative to charging.
  • Tesla says that it'll finally start offering [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/blog/battery-swap-pilot-program]battery swaps[/url] for the Model S as a quicker alternative to charging. In other news, it also launches a [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/Blog/roadster-30]massive upgrade[/url] for existing Roadster owners, which makes them all very happy.
  • Model X launch delayed
  • Originally scheduled for delivery in 2013, Tesla announces in November that the long-awaited Model X launch will be pushed back yet again, now due in Q3 2015, because it needs to do more testing.
  • Originally scheduled for delivery in 2013, Tesla announces in November that the long-awaited Model X launch will be [url=https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a15359328/not-a-shocker-tesla-pushes-back-model-x-crossover-to-late-2015/]pushed back[/url] yet again, now due in Q3 2015, because it needs to do more testing. The firm is kinda defensive about the whole thing, calling the delay "a [url=https://time.com/3559641/tesla-earnings-model-x/]legitimate criticism[/url]" of the company but only because it would rather "forgo revenue... than bring a product to market that does not delight customers." Well, it’s hard to argue with that. Unless you’re a shareholder.
  • Auto-parking, all wheel drive and South Park
  • Tesla takes its first step toward automated driving, with a teaser for new features for the Model S that allow the car to park itself and sense dangerous situations. Tesla also gets featured on an episode of South Park, and Elon is delighted.
  • Tesla takes its first step toward automated driving, with a [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-tesla-motors-launch/tesla-unveils-all-wheel-drive-model-s-autopilot-features-idUSKCN0HZ07O20141010]teaser[/url] for new features for the Model S that allow the car to park itself and sense dangerous situations. The firm also announced plans for an all-wheel drive option of the Model S sedan that can go from zero to 60 miles per hour in 3.2 seconds yet doesn’t compromise the vehicle’s efficiency. Like having a “personal roller coaster,” promised Elon Musk. In other news, Tesla [url=https://www.theverge.com/2014/10/16/6988413/south-park-turns-uber-lyft-and-tesla-into-wacky-races]gets featured[/url] on an episode of South Park, and [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/522619616661880832]Elon is delighted[/url].
  • Elon gets featured on South Park in S18 E4: "Handicar"
  • South Park / Comedy Central
  • Ring ring… who’s there? It’s your car
  • The new Model S upgrade now allows you to start your car and drive it with your iPhone. That’s some space age stuff right there.
  • The new Model S upgrade [url=https://techcrunch.com/2014/08/21/tesla-model-s-software-update-brings-iphone-unlocking-and-ignition-start/]now allows you[/url] to start your car and drive it with your iPhone. That’s some space age stuff right there.
  • Photo: Bram Van Oost / Unsplash
  • Panasonic power
  • Tesla and long-standing partner Panasonic sign an agreement to cooperate on the construction of Tesla’s first large-scale battery manufacturing plant in the US (the Gigafactory).
  • Tesla and long-standing partner Panasonic ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSE-6752/]6752[/url]) [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/blog/panasonic-and-tesla-sign-agreement-gigafactory]sign an agreement[/url] to cooperate on the construction of Tesla’s first large-scale battery manufacturing plant in the US (the Gigafactory). The agreement laid out that Tesla would prepare, provide and manage the land, buildings and utilities, while Panasonic ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSE-6752/]6752[/url]) would manufacture and supply cylindrical lithium-ion cells and invest in the associated equipment, machinery, and other manufacturing tools. It was a pretty big deal, because making its own batteries was a crucial step in scaling up to mass market production levels.
  • Gigafactory 1. Photo: Smnt / Wikimedia
  • Share and share alike
  • In a bold move, Elon Musk promises to share all Tesla’s patents with anyone that wants them, in a bid to boost the growth of the EV market.
  • In a bold move, Elon Musk promises to [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/all-our-patent-are-belong-you?redirect=no]share all Tesla’s patents[/url] with anyone that wants them, in a bid to boost the growth of the EV market. He also says he doesn’t see other manufacturers’ electric cars as competition – which could be taken as both a compliment and an insult, to be honest. "Tesla Motors was created to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport," he said in a blog post. "If we clear a path to the creation of compelling electric vehicles, but then lay intellectual property landmines behind us to inhibit others, we are acting in a manner contrary to that goal. Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology."
  • Attack is the best form of defence
  • Sales are booming. Tesla’s first quarter shareholders’ letter reported “the most rapid expansion in Tesla’s history” with a record 7,535 Model S vehicles produced for global delivery.
  • Sales are booming. Tesla’s [url=https://ir.teslamotors.com/static-files/a6276682-8422-4150-bb10-c9d701220537#:~:text=May%207%2C%202014%20Dear%20Fellow,S%20vehicles%20for%20global%20delivery.&text=We%20are%20expanding%20our%20factory,of%20Model%20X%20next%20year.]first quarter shareholders’[/url] letter reported “the most rapid expansion in Tesla’s history” with a record 7,535 Model S vehicles produced for global delivery. The firm also confirmed plans to expand its factory capacity to boost Model S production and kick off the hotly anticipated Model X, for which production design prototypes are already underway. New stores, new service centers and new Superchargers were also kicking off, and the Shareholder Letter also announced the planned construction of the exciting new Gigafactory. “2014 is already a very busy year,” said Musk.
  • New Jersey ban
  • Musk gets into yet another fight, this time with New Jersey and its car salesmen. Why? Because New Jersey decides to ban direct car sales by manufacturers in order to protect car retailers, a move that basically decimates Tesla’s business there.
  • Musk gets into yet another fight, this time with New Jersey and its car salesmen. Why? Because New Jersey decides to ban direct car sales by manufacturers in order to protect car retailers, a move that basically decimates Tesla’s business. Musk hits back with a furious [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_IE/blog/people-new-jersey?redirect=no]blog post[/url] ‘To the people of New Jersey’ that is, um, less than tactful, accusing the state’s lawmakers of brokering a backroom deal with car dealerships and calling it “mafia” tactics. This went down, unsurprisingly, like a ton of bricks with the state legislature and the car dealers themselves. “He needs to stop and take a breath," Jim Appleton, the president of the New Jersey Coalition of Automobile Retails, told The Verge. "If you’re an internet billionaire, maybe you think the world revolves around you, and the world springs from your laptop. Well, I got news for him... With all due respect, his legal opinions are about as sound as my programming abilities." The story has a happy ending though. In 2015, the state granted Tesla an exemption, allowing it to sell its own cars through four showrooms. All’s well that ends well.
  • The Flag of New Jersey. Apparently its official color is buff
  • The flag of New Jersey
  • Shares rocket on record Q4 sales
  • While Elon’s other company, SpaceX, is busy smashing through the stratosphere in F9 rockets, Tesla breaks through a ceiling of its own on February 14: shares push past the $200 mark on the back of record Model S sales.
  • While Elon’s other company, SpaceX, is busy smashing through the stratosphere in F9 rockets, Tesla breaks through a ceiling of its own on February 14: shares push past the $200 mark on the back of [url=https://money.cnn.com/2014/02/25/investing/tesla-record-high/]record Model S sales[/url]. Happy Valentine’s Day ❤️ Consumer Reports called the Model S [url=https://time.com/9697/tesla-model-s-consumer-reports/#:~:text=Tesla%20Model%20S%20landed,bullish%20forecast%20catapulted%20shares%20upward.]“the best car of 2014”[/url] and celebrated its “blistering acceleration, razor-sharp handling, compliant ride, and versatile cabin” as “a glimpse into the future.” A 26% jump in revenue, annual sales of over $2bn, and a major increase in sales targets saw the share price shoot up. Meanwhile, a glowing note from Morgan Stanley ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MS/]MS[/url]) analyst and well-known Tesla bull Adam Jonas brought investors piling back into the car company with a price target of $320 – due in part to fervent belief that the firm would disrupt the electrical grid storage biz with its new battery factory.
  • Photo: Space X / Flickr
  • Inroads made into premium auto market share
  • In an investor presentation released in January, Tesla claims about 2-3% of the US premium auto market, along with 1% of the global premium auto market, and 0.02% share of the overall global automobile market.
  • In an [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/e768168d-076e-4705-9751-e7872b1982bc]investor presentation[/url] released in January, Tesla claims about 2-3% of the US premium auto market, along with 1% of the global premium auto market, and 0.02% share of the overall global automobile market. That might sound small, but in 2019 the global premium auto market was worth about $351bn, giving Tesla a $3.5bn market share. Around about this time, it’s market cap hit a record high, topping $22bn.
  • Tax break boosts confidence
  • The California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority confirms that Tesla will not have to pay sales and use taxes on new equipment worth almost $500m.
  • The California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority confirms that Tesla will [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2013/12/18/tesla-primed-to-expand-following-tax-break.html]not have to pay[/url] sales and use taxes on new equipment worth almost $500m. This equates to a $34.7 million tax break. Good times.
  • Model S accidents send shares crashing
  • Three high-profile Model S accidents do some major brand damage, while heavy Q4 losses push the share price to $121.58, its lowest point since July.
  • Three high-profile [url=https://money.cnn.com/2013/11/07/autos/tesla-fire/]Model S accidents[/url] do some major brand damage, while heavy Q4 losses push the share price to $121.58, its lowest point since July.
  • Short-sellers get stung
  • Tesla’s share price almost quadruples between April and September 2013, backed by A++ reviews of the Model S and five-star safety ratings in federal crash tests.
  • Tesla’s share price almost quadruples between April and September 2013, backed by A++ reviews of the Model S and five-star safety ratings in [url=https://www.mercurynews.com/2013/08/20/2013-teslas-model-s-aces-federal-crash-tests/]federal crash tests[/url]. Confidence was up due to the firm’s newfound profitability, which created a whole new class of ‘Teslanaires’ – investors who took $1m+ to the bank from betting on the company. But not everyone wins; short sellers trying to squeeze the stock got badly burned as it continued to rise (making Elon very happy – he’s [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/159396536621596672]long been tweeting[/url] on how damaging short sellers are to Tesla).
  • Goldman Sachs gives a thumbs down
  • Goldman analyst Patrick Archambault issues a price target of $84, a 34% discount to the previous close of $127.26, and the market listens.
  • Goldman Sachs ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-GS/]GS[/url]) analyst Patrick Archambault [url=https://www.cnbc.com/id/100890550]issues[/url] a price target of $84, a 34% discount to the previous close of $127.26, and the market listens. The stock bottoms out, losing 14.3% over the day to close at $109.05. Archambault suggested three scenarios for Tesla: based on how many cars it would sell, market share and operating margin. The best case scenario had the company reaching 3.5% global market share with a 15.2% operating margin, but even then he only predicted a share price of $113. Oh, how wrong he was. Looks like a lot of people took his predictions with a pinch of salt anyway – the rapid fall presented a toothsome buying opportunity, and the stock jumped by 10% the very next day.
  • Confirmed profit pushes price
  • Tesla already has a diehard fanboy and fangirl following as one of the most volatile stocks on Nasdaq – and May 2013 sees the first big jump in which early investors can start cashing out.
  • Tesla already has a diehard fanboy and fangirl following as one of the most volatile stocks on Nasdaq – and May 2013 sees the first big jump in which early investors can start cashing out. On May 8 the [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/26b677b6-a22c-4222-a3c6-4bb516bfdac8]confirmation[/url] of a Q1 profit of $11m, its first ever quarterly profit, saw the price jump 24% the next day and a massive 40% by the end of the week. Fortune favors the brave, after all.
  • Photo: Saketh Garuda / Unsplash
  • Coming soon: profit
  • Stock surges to all-time high as Tesla announces that the upcoming Q1 earnings report would show a quarterly profit for the first time in its 10-year history.
  • Stock surges to all-time high as Tesla [url=https://ir.tesla.com/static-files/26b677b6-a22c-4222-a3c6-4bb516bfdac8]announces[/url] that the upcoming Q1 earnings report would show a quarterly profit for the first time in its 10-year history. Stock jumps 15.94% to a record $43.93.
  • Musk tweet drives share jump
  • “Am going to put my money where my mouth is in a v major way,” Elon tweets on March 25, causing the share price to jump 2.4% to close at $37.51.
  • “Am going to put my money where my mouth is in a v major way,” Elon [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/316260319360061440]tweets[/url] on March 25, causing the share price to jump 2.4% to close at $37.51. At the time, he had 167,000 Twitter fans, less than half of the following of a [url=https://twitter.com/Number10cat]famous cat[/url], and compared to the 37.5m he’d command seven years later. Still, the rise jumpstarted Tesla’s first big bull run - helped along by the debut in March of the prototype Model X at the Geneva Motor Show.
  • New York Times 'disaster' drive
  • It’s another war of words, as Elon Musk takes massive objection to a disastrous review in the New York Times of a Tesla test drive.
  • It’s another war of words, as Elon Musk takes massive objection to a [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/10/automobiles/stalled-on-the-ev-highway.html?]disastrous review[/url] in the New York Times of a Tesla test drive. The newspaper had a few nice things to say – calling the Model S “a technological wonder” – but on the whole the review is appalling and Musk, in his usual calm, considered manner, hits back with insults and accusations. NYT journalist John Broder claimed that he had a terrible experience with the Model S, which consistently performed below the promised range, leaving him limping along with no heating in freezing temperatures, and requiring multiple recharges and technician calls. According to the article, the car eventually ran out of charge altogether and needed to be towed away. Musk was furious, taking to Twitter, TV and a Tesla blog to call the article a fake story, and attacking Broder personally. “Our Model S never had a chance with John Broder … he simply did not accurately capture what happened and worked very hard to force our car to stop running,” he insisted. The NYT stood by its journalist, but Tesla wouldn’t let it drop. Why? Possibly because back in 2008, legendary UK motor show Top Gear had also claimed that the car had run out of charge during a test drive – an accusation that enraged Musk so much that he actually sued for libel. The case was dropped by a British court in 2012, but the Broder saga obviously touched a raw nerve. Musk eventually hit back by [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_IE/blog/most-peculiar-test-drive?redirect=no]publishing[/url] reams of data that he claimed was from Broder’s drive, and which contradicted many of the claims made in the article. “While the vast majority of journalists are honest, some believe the facts shouldn’t get in the way of a salacious story,” he sniped. General unpleasantness ensued, resulting in an awkward statement from the NYT public editor Margaret Sullivan concluding that there were “problems with precision and judgement, but not integrity.” But more importantly for traders was the impact on the share price. Musk claimed in a Bloomberg TV interview later that month that the negative review had wiped $100m off Tesla’s stock market value in just a matter of days, and that the firm had seen several hundred order cancellations as a result of the article. He might have a point. The share price fell from $39.48 the day before the story was published (February 7) to $37.04 a week later, a loss of $2.44 per share, and a 6.2% overall decline – which would equate to around $278m lost from its overall market cap. It wasn’t just the bad article that made February a bad month though. The following week on February 20, Tesla released some pretty dire financial results (including a $396 million loss for 2012, around 56% worse than the previous year) which saw its shares drop 8.8% the following day.
  • European distribution center opens
  • Tesla announces a major new European distribution center in Tilburg to serve as its European service and parts headquarters, as well as the final assembly and distribution point for Model S vehicles sold in Europe.
  • Tesla announces a major new [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-motors-announces-major-european-distribution-center-netherlands]European distribution center[/url] in Tilburg to serve as its European service and parts headquarters, as well as the final assembly and distribution point for Model S vehicles sold in Europe. General production of European left-hand drive Model S is due to begin in March 2013. Great news for everyone, except the British.
  • Superpowered supercharging
  • Tesla unveils its highly anticipated Supercharger network. The market likes it – stock jumps 2.13% to end the day at $30.66.
  • Tesla unveils its highly anticipated [url=https://www.engadget.com/2012-09-24-tesla-supercharger.html]Supercharger network[/url]. The market likes it – stock jumps 2.13% to end the day at $30.66. Constructed in secret, Tesla in September 2012 revealed the locations of the first six Supercharger stations, which would allow the Model S to travel long distances with ultra fast charging throughout California, parts of Nevada and Arizona.
  • Photo: John Cameron / Unsplash
  • Limited edition red Model S launches
  • Tesla ships its limited edition US Signature Series Model S series, with just 1,000 available, including a never before or after seen, optional Signature Red exterior coloring.
  • Tesla ships its limited edition [url=https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1079967_2012-tesla-model-s-signature-series-is-it-worth-the-premium]US Signature Series Model S series[/url], with just 1,000 available, including a never before or after seen, optional Signature Red exterior coloring. You know you want it.
  • Photo: Steve Jurvetson / Flickr
  • New models, little impact
  • The first all-electric Tesla sedan, the Model S, launches on 22 June 2012 and by and large, people like it.
  • The first all-electric Tesla, the Model S, [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKq9PIM5ozk]launches[/url] on 22 June 2012 and by and large, people like it. The Model X SUV was unveiled a few months earlier, although production wouldn’t get going till 2015. Both did little to the share price, which ticked along below $40 for the rest of the year. Investors seemed confused whether this was a car company or a high growth tech stock. People still ask this. But let’s talk some more about the Model S, because it’s pretty cool. Designed for the luxury consumer market, the model (development codename: Whitestar) was Tesla’s first big push into the mainstream. A five-door sedan with a range of over 300m and a significantly reduced charging time compared to the Roadster, the car was a hit, voted Car of the Year by well-known US magazines Motor Trend and Automobile in 2013, ranked the top-selling electric vehicle in the world for 2015 and 2016, and passing 250,000 units sold in September 2018. From 2014, the Model S has included Autopilot self-driving software. In August 2016, Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/blog/new-tesla-model-s-now-quickest-production-car-world]introduced[/url] the Model S P100D with ‘Ludicrous mode’ – the third fastest accelerating production car ever produced, with a 0-60 mph time of 2.5 seconds, second only to the LaFerrari and the Porsche 918 Spyder. The Performance 200D model of 2017 can accelerate from 0 to 60mph in around 2.28s. The Model S comes in numerous different versions, differing in terms of battery size, power, and internal equipment. As of 2020 the price starts at around $85,000 – going up to $119,000 for the Performance model. “It is obviously an expensive vehicle…[but] without customers willing to buy the expensive Model S and X, we would be unable to fund the smaller, more affordable Model 3 development,” points out Tesla.
  • Model S. Photo: Tesla
  • Photo: Tesla
  • Abu Dhabi dumps Tesla stock
  • Abu Dhabi State energy firm TAQA sells a 7% stake in Tesla, reportedly because they got spooked after Elon Musk said that 2011 might be a tough year.
  • Abu Dhabi State energy firm TAQA [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17649821]sells[/url] a 7% stake in Tesla, reportedly because they got spooked after Elon Musk said that 2011 might be a tough year. They made an estimated $113m profit on the deal so 👏👏👏. But given that they sold at just over $34 and as of August 31 2020 the share price was up at $2,500, they might possibly wish they’d hung on to it.
  • Want to rent a Tesla? Now you can
  • Tesla announces its first leasing program in partnership with Athlon Car Lease, introducing the Model S into corporate fleets across Europe.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/blog/tesla-motors-and-athlon-car-lease-announce-first-model-s-leasing-program]announces[/url] its first leasing program in partnership with Athlon Car Lease, introducing the Model S into corporate fleets across Europe. Great news for those of us who can’t (yet) afford a Tesla of our very own.
  • No more Roadsters
  • Tesla ceases production of the Roadster, its iconic first car. The world mourns its passing.
  • Tesla ceases production of the Roadster, its iconic first car. The world [url=https://money.cnn.com/2011/06/21/autos/tesla_roadster_selling_out/index.htm]mourns[/url] its passing. Launched in February 2008, the Roadster was Tesla’s first flag-plant in the world of electric cars: its first ever highway-legal, entirely electric vehicle. Able to travel over 200m (320km) per charge, the car used a standard lithium-ion battery that could be recharged in a standard wall outlet, although it’d take you about two days to do so. With chassis and body design from British race car company Lotus, at its launch it cost just over $100k – making it out of reach for all but the wealthiest buyers (or lottery ticket winners). Upgrades included the Tesla Sport (a souped-up version that could accelerate from 0 to 60mph in 3.7s, compared to 3.9s for the standard Roadster), the Roadster 2010 model (its first major product upgrade, with a new luxury interior, better suspension, and various other features), and the Roadster 2.5 (which had a jazzed up image and new power control hardware). By the time it ceased production, Tesla had sold about 2,450 Roadsters across 30 countries. However, the firm didn’t abandon the model (or its owners) completely. In December 2014 it offered an optional upgrade to existing cars, including new tires and a battery upgrade that boosted capacity by 50%. Way to repay early loyalty.
  • Photo: Wikimedia
  • Panasonic partnership
  • Panasonic, the world’s leading battery cell manufacturer, signs a supply agreement with Tesla to use its automotive grade lithium-ion battery cells in the Model S.
  • Panasonic ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSE-6752/]6752[/url]), the world’s leading battery cell manufacturer, signs a [url=https://news.panasonic.com/global/topics/2011/6971.html]supply agreement[/url] with Tesla to use its automotive grade lithium-ion battery cells in the Model S. In 2009, Panasonic ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSE-6752/]6752[/url]) and Tesla initially entered into a supply agreement and in 2010, Panasonic ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSE-6752/]6752[/url]) invested $30m in Tesla to deepen the partnership. The Model S deal was just the next step in their beautiful friendship.
  • First showroom opens in the Netherlands
  • Tesla opens a new showroom in the Netherlands.
  • Tesla opens a [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-opens-showroom-and-service-center-eindhoven-netherlands?redirect=no]new showroom[/url] in the Netherlands. This electric vehicle gig is going global.
  • Tesla launches Hong Kong service center
  • Tesla launches a service center in Hong Kong, bringing the Roadster to the South Asian market.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.autoblog.com/2011/09/21/tesla-motors-opens-service-center-in-hong-kong/]launches[/url] a service center in Hong Kong, bringing the Roadster to the South Asian market.
  • Central Hong Kong. Photo: Florian Wehde / Unsplash
  • “Phenomenal” results across the board...apparently?
  • Tesla announces $72m in revenue in the first 6 months of 2011 with a net loss of $107m. Elon calls it "phenomenal across the board" but the market emphatically does not agree, and the stock loses 9.01% the next day, closing out at $24.75.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/teslas-q2-results]announces[/url] $72m in revenue in the first 6 months of 2011 with a net loss of $107m. Elon calls it "phenomenal across the board" and the "best quarter" in the company's history. The market emphatically does not agree, and the stock loses 9.01% the next day, closing out at $24.75.
  • Capital raising
  • Tesla prices its follow-on offering of 5.3m shares of common stock at a price to the public of $28.76 per share, the closing price for Tesla shares on June 2, 2011.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-motors-inc-announces-pricing-its-followon-offering]prices[/url] its follow-on offering of 5.3m shares of common stock at a price to the public of $28.76 per share, the closing price for Tesla shares on June 2, 2011. It raises $152.4m to finance the development of the Model X. Also known as a secondary offering, a follow-on offering is another issuance of stock after the IPO. Tesla also offered its underwriter a 30-day option to buy another 795,000 shares, and separately sold another 1.41 million shares to CEO Elon Musk and privately placed 637,475 shares with Blackstar Investco, an affiliate of minor investor Daimler. The total raised in the end amounts to about $234 million. Not bad.
  • Design studio gives customers what they want
  • Tesla takes auto retail hi-tech with a new digital design studio. Consumers can now customize, view and share their own Tesla electric vehicles on the web, on their smartphones and iPads, and at Tesla stores.
  • Tesla takes auto retail hi-tech with a [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-takes-auto-retail-hightech-digital-design-studio?redirect=no]design studio[/url] that allows consumers to customize, view and share their own Tesla electric vehicles on the web, on their smartphones and iPads, and at Tesla stores. “The Design Studio’s goal is to personalize the Tesla experience,” said George Blankenship, Tesla’s VP of Sales and Ownership Experience. “It’s the most advanced configurator any automaker has come up with, letting you choose exactly what you want, look at it from every angle, and see it in the wild.”
  • Strong Q4 results
  • Revenues for Q4 2010 are $36.3m, up 16% from Q3. Looking at all of 2010, gross margin improved to 26% up from 9% the year before. Slow, but steady progress.
  • [url=https://ir.tesla.com/press-release/tesla-motors-reports-fourth-quarter-and-full-year-2010-results]Revenues[/url] for Q4 2010 are $36.3m, up 16% from Q3. Looking at all of 2010, gross margin improved to 26% up from 9% the year before. Slow, but steady progress.
  • Toyota tie-up
  • Tesla expects to get about $60m in revenue from building the electric guts of the upcoming RAV4 sport-utility vehicle for minority stakeholder Toyota.
  • Tesla expects to get about $60m in revenue from building the electric guts of the upcoming RAV4 sport-utility vehicle for [url=https://money.cnn.com/2010/05/20/autos/tesla_announcement/index.htm]minority stakeholder Toyota[/url] ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-TM/]TM[/url]). Market likes the news. Stock up 4.09%.
  • Photo: Toyota
  • First showroom opens in France
  • Vive La France! Share price closes at $20.41.
  • [url=https://www.autoevolution.com/news/tesla-opening-paris-store-on-september-30-24585.html]Vive La France![/url] Share price closes at $20.41.
  • Tag Heuer World Tour ends in Paris
  • The company might not run ads, but in September 2010 the TAG Heuer Tesla Roadster arrives in Paris at the conclusion of its historic world tour, the Odyssey of Pioneers, which saw it circumnavigate the entire globe. Epic PR stunt, amazing publicity.
  • Tesla famously has a “$0 marketing budget” these days, but it wasn’t always like that. The company might not run ads, but in September 2010 the TAG Heuer Tesla Roadster arrives in Paris at the conclusion of its historic world tour, the [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-roadster-arrives-paris-conclusion-historic-world-tour?redirect=no]Odyssey of Pioneers[/url], which saw it circumnavigate the globe in celebration of TAG Heuer ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/MIL-LVMH/]LVMH[/url])’s 150th anniversary, arriving in Paris the day before the launch of Tesla’s new showroom. Epic PR stunt, amazing publicity. And, we bet, a pretty awesome party. “This trip was about showing people the boundaries of an electric car’s performance, durability and efficiency,” Musk said. “This tour demonstrates that the Roadster can go the distance – whether you are commuting to work or embarking on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure.”
  • First loss since launch
  • Tesla announces its Q2 results (up to June 30, 2010) and it doesn’t make for great reading. Everyone knew the firm wasn’t profitable but the reported $38.5m losses are a big step up from $29.5 million in Q1, and the share price takes a hit.
  • Tesla [url=https://ir.tesla.com/press-release/tesla-motors-reports-second-quarter-results]announces[/url] its Q2 results (up to June 30, 2010) and it doesn’t make for great reading. Everyone knew the firm wasn’t profitable but the reported $38.5m losses are a big step up from $29.5 million in Q1, and the share price takes a hit: falling 3.14% the day the results are announced and continuing to decline over the following week to hit a low of $17.39 on August 12 before making a mild recovery.
  • Roadster 2.5 drives to the moon (not really)
  • Tesla introduces the brand new Roadster 2.5 with updated styling and an upgraded interior, its fourth model in two years. Over 1,200 Roadsters are now driving in 28 countries with first sales in Canada, Japan and Hong Kong during Q2.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.tesla.com/blog/tesla-unveils-roadster-25-newest-stores-europe-and-north-america?redirect=no]introduces[/url] the brand new Roadster 2.5 with updated styling and an upgraded interior, its fourth model in two years. Over 1,200 Roadsters are now driving in 28 countries with first sales in Canada, Japan and Hong Kong during Q2. By July 31, customers had driven almost 6 million miles in their Roadsters. That’s like driving round the earth 120 times. Or 26 times the distance between the earth and the moon. Basically, it’s a heck of a lot of miles.
  • Tesla Roadster 2.5. Photo: Overlaet / Wikimedia
  • Photo: Alexander Andrews / Unsplash
  • IPO makes a surprisingly small splash
  • Tesla lists on Nasdaq, selling 13.3m shares at $17 each to raise $226m. The share price increases 40.53% over the day to close at $23.89. By IPO standards, it’s nothing to write home about. A star is not (yet) born.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1318605/000119312510017054/ds1.htm]lists[/url] on [url=https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/if-you-invested-%245000-in-teslas-ipo-this-is-how-much-money-youd-have-now-2019-11-17]Nasdaq[/url], selling 13.3m shares at $17 each to raise $226m. The share price increases 40.53% over the day to close at $23.89. By IPO standards, it’s nothing to write home about. It might be hard to imagine today, but at the time Tesla was having a rough ride of things, having almost gone belly up in 2008, mainly due to the global financial crisis. The company was only saved at the last by a $50m investment from German carmaker Daimler ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/XETR-DAI/]DAI[/url]) in April 2010 and another US$50m injection from Toyota ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-TM/]TM[/url]) in May 2010, just months before its IPO. That investment accounted for nearly a fifth of the company. Even with all that extra cash, plus the IPO money, it took years for the firm to pull itself out of its money worries. Still, [url=https://www.wired.com/2010/06/tesla-ipo-raises-226-1-million/]seeing Elon[/url] outside the NASDAQ building with his Roadster is pretty dope.
  • New Chinese factories bump price
  • New production facilities in China help boost Beyond Meat stock 15.5%.
  • The Asian expansion continues as Beyond Meat [url=https://www.livekindly.co/beyond-meat-opening-major-production-facility-china/]confirms plans[/url] for two new production facilities in China, pushing its stock up 15.5% from an opening price of $123.81 on September 8 to $143.04 once the markets fully digested the news on September 10. Beyond Meat signed an agreement with the Jiaxing Economic & Technological Development Zone on September 8 to design and develop manufacturing facilities close to Shanghai, making it the first multinational company focused solely on plant-based meat production to bring its own major production facility into China. By September 29 Beyond Meat had also secured a major deal to [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-expand-walmart-distribution]expand[/url] its partnership with the world’s oldest retailer, Walmart ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WMT/]WMT[/url]), sending its stock up 9.4% on the previous day’s close to $165.66. The partnership saw the Beyond Burger offered in about 800 locations through more than 2,400 Walmart stores. This delighted investors, who were already salivating over the popular frozen Beyond Breakfast Sausage Patties, which had [url=https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/09/21/2096557/0/en/Beyond-Meat-to-More-Than-Double-Retail-Distribution-of-Beyond-Breakfast-Sausage-Patties.html]doubled distribution[/url] at the end of September with expansion into Kroger ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-KR/]KR[/url]), Super Target ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-TGT/]TGT[/url]), Walmart ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-WMT/]WMT[/url]), Publix and Harris Teeter stores Investors also got excited by the impending launch of Beyond Meatballs in October at Whole Foods Market, Stop & Shop ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/EURONEXT-AD/]AD[/url]), Sprouts, Harris Teeter, Kroger and Albertsons ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-ACI/]ACI[/url]). This took Beyond Meat’s supermarket presence to 26,000 outlets across the US. The meatballs had previously only been offered in Subway’s Beyond Meatball sub. There was added good news from SPINS data for the four weeks ending 9 August 2020 that showed Beyond Meat was the [url=https://vegconomist.com/food-and-beverage/beyond-meat-launches-dtc-platform-with-2-day-home-delivery-is-1-refrigerated-plant-meat-brand/]number one[/url] selling brand in refrigerated plant-based meat. Now Beyond Meat was booming in both supermarkets and restaurants.
  • Sell rating sends stock tumbling
  • Beyond Meat’s share price tumbles 12.4% over three days after receiving a rare sell rating.
  • Beyond Meat’s share price tumbles 12.4% over three days after receiving a rare sell rating. Brian Holland, a senior research analyst at DA Davidson, [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/beyond-meat-stock-price-dips-second-wall-street-sell-rating-2019-9-1028505770]warned[/url] that the company was being mis-valued as a tech company rather than a “meat” manufacturer, and suggested the stock had a more realistic price target of $130. His report, only the second-ever underweight rating for the firm, prompted three successive days of stock market dips. Holland also questioned the size of the market that Beyond Meat could realistically capture, and challenged an [url=https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1655210/000165521019000093/ex991investorpresentatio.htm]investor presentation[/url] from the firm on September 5, where it estimated it could achieve around 13% of the meat market at a value of around $35bn. “Our cautious approach to the total addressable market – specifically, fewer likely frequent purchasers of plant based meat as compared to milk given roughly half the number of non meat eaters versus lactose intolerant – informs long term forecasts we believe are lower than the consensus view,” said Holland. Ouch. Not everyone agrees though, and sentiment is still strong around the plant-based revolution. Barclays ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/LSE-BARC/]BARC[/url]) analysts, for example, [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/meat-substitutes-impossible-foods-beyond-meat-sales-skyrocket-2019-5?utm_source=markets&utm_medium=ingest%3Futm_source%3Dmarkets&utm_medium=ingest%3Futm_source%3Dmarkets&utm_medium=ingest&utm_medium=ingest%3Futm_source%3Dmarkets&utm_medium=ingest%3Futm_source%3Dmarkets&utm_medium=ingest&r=US&IR=T]estimated[/url] that the alternative meat market could explode by 1,000% over the next decade to reach $140bn. That’s a hell of a lot of burgers.
  • A wild ride into the index
  • Tesla joins the S&P500 as its sixth-biggest member on Monday December 21, and it's a major deal. Trading goes crazy in the final hours of Friday, with shares going on a rollercoaster ride before closing at a record-breaking $695.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/tesla-is-getting-listed-on-the-sp-500-here-are-3-takeaways-for-retail-investors-2020-11-17]joins[/url] the S&P500 as its sixth-biggest member on Monday December 21, kicking out Apartment Investment and Management ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-AIV/]AIV[/url]) to make space... and it's a major deal. Trading goes crazy in the final hours of Friday, with shares going on a rollercoaster ride before closing at a record-breaking $695 as investors scramble to get ahead of the game. The stock fell by over 4% during Friday before jumping back up by over 6% to end the day at its highest ever closing price, giving the firm a market cap of well over $650bn. The share price was already up by around 70% since the S&P 500 announcement back in mid-November, and by over 700% since the start of the year. The company will account for 1.69% of the S&P500, and its inclusion has forced index funds to buy upwards of $85bn of Tesla stock in order to balance their holdings. Going forward, every time Tesla moves by $11.11, the S&P 500 will [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/12/20/tesla-enters-the-sp-500-with-1point69percent-weighting-in-the-benchmark-fifth-largest.html]move[/url] by a point – which judging by past performance, could mean good news for S&P 500 investors. But can the bull live up to the hype? Its price fell by around 3% in after hours trading, and opened on December 21 at $666.24, falling a further couple of percentage points during the day to end -6.49% lower at $649.86, as investors who bought ahead of entry cashed in their holdings. Some market commentators have [url=https://www.ft.com/content/d3e332a7-8708-4383-aa78-472233ae412b]warned[/url] that S&P500 inclusion could cast a damper on its seemingly unstoppable rise, with history suggesting that many blue chip stocks tend to underperform the index in their first year after inclusion. By comparison, Apartment Investment and Management is expected to outperform by up to 20%. Rob Arnott, founder of Research Associates, [url=https://www.researchaffiliates.com/en_us/publications/articles/819-tesla-the-largest-cap-stock-ever.html?evar36=eml_tesla-hero-cta&_cldee=Y2hyaXN0aW5lLmlkemVsaXNAaW5zdGl0dXRpb25hbGludmVzdG9yLmNvbQ%3d%3d&recipientid=contact-beb4874d2270e81180d6005056bc1247-9470838182f24da2a3eb090d7d667203&esid=0498153a-6840-eb11-80f1-b4c5161772f1]thinks that[/url] that Tesla's inclusion could be a bubble rather than a buy signal. "Tesla is entering the S&P500 with a stupendously high valuation. Traditional cap-weighted indices, such as the S&P500, are structured to buy high and sell low – and Tesla is a prime example of this maxim," he said in a December 17 paper. "The odds are against its remaining a top-dog stock." Will we see a reversal in 2021? It's bulls against bears...and the fight is on.
  • Photo: Gabriel Valdez / Unsplash
  • A Christmas No 1?
  • Let’s end the year on a high note. Let’s bring a little festive cheer to the world. Let’s launch a Christmas single with three three-time NBA champion and Grammy Award-nominated music producer Javale McGee.
  • Let’s end the year on a high note, thinks Beyond Meat. Let’s bring a little festive cheer to the world. Let's launch a [url=https://thebeet.com/vegan-nba-players-star-in-new-beyond-meat-christmas-single/]Christmas single[/url] with three-time NBA champion and Grammy Award-nominated music producer [url=https://twitter.com/JaValeMcGee]Javale McGee[/url] and his vegan NBA buddies Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan. Calling themselves ‘The Beyond Boys’, the guys did a [url=https://twitter.com/BeyondMeat/status/1339219803165216768]rousing version[/url] of ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’ but, you’ve guessed it, replacing all those useless gold rings and dancing girls with different delicious Beyond Meat recipes. Whatever floats your boat. Beyond Meat has been closely linked with the NBA since its inception, with professional athletes including Shaquille O’Neal, Derick Morgan, McGee, Paul, Jordan, and more all joining the firm as investors and participating in numerous brand campaigns. What it is to have friends in high places. Sadly, it didn’t make it onto the charts.
  • "Let’s launch a Christmas single". Photo: Manuel Will / Unsplash
  • Photo: Manuel Will / Unsplash
  • Second quarter slump
  • The pandemic starts to show as stock falls 6.7% after second quarter results look bleak.
  • Disappointing [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/04/beyond-meat-bynd-q2-2020-earnings.html]second quarter results[/url] reveal the impact of the pandemic on Beyond Meat and send the brand’s stock down 6.7% to $132.69 in opening trading. Markets were notably concerned at how much it had cost Beyond Meat to navigate the outbreak. Food service sales slumped by over 60% during the quarter, and the firm spent $5.9m on repackaging its products to be sold at grocery stores instead. Net sales rose 69% annually to $113.3m but Beyond Meat posted a total net loss of $10.2m, even wider than the $9.4m loss in the first quarter.
  • Citi downgrade, Brazil bump
  • Citi analyst Wendy Nicholson turns bearish on Beyond Meat and the stock falls from a monthly high of $144.98 on July 8, dropping 13.1% to $135.03 by July 13.It gets a little jump on July 15, however, when it enters the Brazilian market.
  • Citi ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-C/]C[/url]) analyst Wendy Nicholson [url=https://seekingalpha.com/news/3590157-beyond-meatminus-3-after-citi-warns-on-unhealthy-margins]turns bearish[/url] on Beyond Meat and the stock falls from a monthly high of $144.98 on July 8, dropping 13.1% to $135.03 by July 13. "To simulate the texture and taste of traditional meat products, the products have a similar nutritional profile to the real thing, which means that though it may be better for the environment, it is not much healthier,” she said. She gave it an even lower price target of $123. Party pooper. The stock suffered three consecutive days of drastic declines. It gets a little jump on July 15, however, when it [url=https://www.beyondmeat.com/whats-new/beyond-meat-launches-in-brazil/]enters[/url] the meat-loving Brazilian market to bring its particular range of planty goodness to the masses.
  • The stock jumps a little when Beyond Meat enters the Brazilian market. Photo: Sergio Souza / Unsplash
  • Photo: Sergio Souza / Unsplash
  • Lightlife Foods issues attack
  • Beyond Meat and arch rival Impossible Foods find a common enemy after Lightlife Foods publicly urges them both to stop using “processed ingredients”.
  • Beyond Meat and arch rival Impossible Foods find a common enemy after Lightlife Foods publicly urges them both to stop using “processed ingredients” that are “unnecessary and confusing” for consumers. The division of Canadian meat-industry giant Maple Leaf Foods ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/TSX-MFI/]MFI[/url]) issued an [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/jennysplitter/2020/08/25/lightlife-letter-impossible-beyond/?sh=5e31eba32b65]open letter[/url] to Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods that said: “Enough with the hyper-processed ingredients, GMOs, unnecessary additives and fillers, and fake blood.” Beyond Meats said in response: “If they were clear on our ingredients, they would see that our products are made with simple, plant-based ingredients. With no GMOs. No synthetically produced ingredients. Our products are designed to deliver the same taste and texture as animal-based meat but are better for you and the planet. We believe it’s the future of food.” The Beyond Meat share price spent the rest of the month stumbling around $125, with even the launch of [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/8/27/21400792/beyond-meat-website-direct-consumers]its own[/url] direct-to-consumer e-commerce site doing little to satisfy the markets.
  • Zoom to add calendar and email services
  • Zoom had a pretty great year in 2020, with the share price rising over 400% (despite a bit of a dip in December). And things end on a high note, with reports that it's about to introduce email and calendar services in a major platform expansion.
  • Revenues heat up
  • The stock hits a new high of $168.10 in the days after Beyond Meat’s first quarter results. Beyond Meat reported a 215% annual increase in net revenues to $40.2m for the first quarter of 2019 and expects to break-even over the year.
  • The stock hits a new high of $168.10 in the days after Beyond Meat’s [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-reports-first-quarter-2019-financial-results]first quarter results[/url]. Beyond Meat reported a 215% annual increase in net revenues to $40.2m for the first quarter of 2019 and expects to break-even over the year. Investors also overlooked regulatory disclosures that showed former supplier Don Lee Farms had been given permission to pursue a [url=https://iclg.com/ibr/articles/10729-beyond-meat-sued-for-fraud-negligence-and-breach-of-contract#:~:text=Beyond%20Meat%20sued%20for%20fraud%2C%20negligence%20and%20breach%20of%20contract,-Published%20by%3A%20Sandy&text=%2C%20fo...-,Beyond%20Meat%20has%20become%20the%20subject%20of%20a%20litigation%20action,allowing%20the%20case%20to%20proceed.]lawsuit[/url] against Beyond Meat for breach of contract. Also in June, arch-nemesis Impossible Foods expanded its landmark partnership with Burger King ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-QSR/]QSR[/url]), in a move that should in theory have knocked Beyond Meat. The privately-owned, California-based plant-based foods firm was founded in 2011 by Stanford biochemistry professor Patrick O. Brown, and launched its Impossible Burger in 2016 with investment from both Google Ventures and Bill Gates, among others. US burger chain Whitecastle started selling the burger in April 2018, and Burger King started testing it in April 2019. On June 10 it [url=https://www.cnet.com/news/burger-kings-vegan-impossible-whopper-makes-its-way-to-san-francisco/]debuted[/url] the Impossible Whopper in restaurants across San Francisco, before rolling it out to 7,000 US locations in August. It should have knocked Beyond Meat, but it didn’t. In fact, as investors got more and more excited about the interest and opportunities in plant-based products, Beyond Meat got a nice little bounce.
  • Meat shortages boost share price
  • Fears over a US meat shortage due to the pandemic boosts Beyond Meat stock.
  • Fears of a US [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-27/americans-face-meat-shortages-while-farmers-are-forced-to-cull]meat shortage[/url] amid plant closures during the pandemic help boost the Beyond Meat stock to $76.91. You can’t slaughter a cow or pig over Zoom – well, you could, but your meeting (meating?) attendees probably wouldn’t like it much. Either way, large producers such as Smithfield Foods and Tyson (America’s biggest meat company) were forced to close their processing plants during lockdown, and John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods, [url=https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/tyson-foods-chairman-warns-food-supply-chain-breaking-n1193256#:~:text=Meat%20could%20begin%20disappearing%20from%20grocery%20shelves%2C%20company%20warns&text=The%20chairman%20of%20Tyson%20Foods,food%20processing%20plants%20to%20shutter.]warned[/url] that “the food supply chain is breaking.” Bad news for farmers, good news for vegans. Shoppers turned to meat alternatives in their droves, with sales of plant-based meats [url=https://plantbasednews.org/lifestyle/us-vegan-meat-sales-skyrocket-coronavirus-crisis/]shooting up[/url] by a staggering 279.8% annually in the week up to March 14. That’s a lot of Beyond Burgers. There was a further boost for the stock on April 20 when the [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/20/starbucks-to-debut-beyond-meat-products-in-china.html]news hit[/url] that Starbucks ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-SBUX/]SBUX[/url]) would debut its Beyond Meat products in China as part of a new sustainability campaign. The stock rose 2.8% on April 20 from the previous close to $79.12 and hit $108.78 by April 24, back over the all-important $100 floor.
  • Photo: Wesual Click / Unsplash
  • Canadian expansion
  • Beyond Meat expands in Canada, but the stock price doesn't react.
  • Beyond Meat builds on its success of its Beyond Burger in Canada by [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20191211005208/en/Beyond-Meat%C2%AE-Serves-Canada-a-Second-Helping-with-National-Launch-of-Beyond-Beef%C2%AE]bringing[/url] Beyond Beef to the nation. Canada was already Beyond Meat’s second largest market outside the US, with its products distributed across 4,000 stores. The Beyond Burger was the number one selling plant-based burger on the fresh meat counter of at least one major grocery chain, and with the country’s Good Food Guide [url=https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/healthy-food-choices/]directly urging[/url] people to “choose protein foods that come from plants more often,” it represented an appealing market. It was also where McDonald's ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]) was trialling Beyond Meat burgers, with analysis by UBS finding that the chain was selling up to 100 Plant. Lettuce. Tomato (PLT) burgers a day throughout December. The [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-mcdonald-s-corp-beyond-meat-research/mcdonalds-could-sell-over-250-million-beyond-meat-burgers-in-u-s-annually-ubs-idUKKBN1YE21N]data suggested[/url] that if rolled out in the US, McDonald’s could see up to 250m sales a day in plant burgers, adding up to $325m in sales annually for Beyond Meat as the supplier. These expansions did little for the stock though, which surpassed $80 for the first time since the beginning of the month during trading on December 19, but settled at $77.36 to close.
  • Photo: Silvestri Matteo / Unsplash
  • Lyft entry boosts car ownership
  • Ride-sharing apps like Lyft and Uber bump up car ownership by 0.7% in urban areas.
  • Ride-sharing apps like Lyft and Uber bump up car ownership by 0.7% in urban areas, [url=https://www.newscientist.com/article/2264144-uber-and-lyft-operating-in-us-cities-linked-to-rises-in-car-ownership/]says[/url] the New Scientist. The research, from Jeremy Michalek at Carnegie Mellon University, analyzed trends in vehicle ownership in 224 urban areas across the US between 2011 and 2017 to investigate how these were influenced by ride-sharing companies – either Uber or Lyft – entering the area. “We would have expected ownership to probably go down, because when people gain access to this alternative travel mode they may be able to get away with not owning a car, or owning fewer cars in their household,” said Michalek. But instead, it went up. Cool beans, but why? Possibly, because the drivers themselves end up buying new cars in order to work for the ride-shares. So, employment AND economic benefit. That's a pretty positive result.
  • Photo: Austin Distel / Unsplash
  • So close - Tesla squeaks to 500k target
  • Tesla promised to hit 500k customer deliveries in 2020, and they’ve only gone and damn well done it. Well – as good as.
  • Tesla [url=https://www.digitaltrends.com/cars/why-teslas-promise-to-deliver-500000-electric-cars-in-2020-isnt-unrealistic/]promised[/url] to hit 500k customer deliveries in 2020, and they’ve only gone and [url=https://twitter.com/Tesla/status/1345377367947005955]damn well done it[/url]. Well – as good as. On January 2 the firm released its [url=https://ir.tesla.com/press-release/tesla-q4-2020-vehicle-production-deliveries]production figures[/url] for the previous year and despite a couple of minor bumps in the road (you know, just a [url=https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/events-as-they-happen]massive global pandemic[/url], [url=https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2020-04-30/tesla-musk-fremont-shutdown-outburst]factory closures[/url], a [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/investor/2020/07/16/stock-market-crash-2020-welcome-to-the-end-game/?sh=11dbf8cb5782]stock market crash[/url], California [url=https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/california-exceeds-4-million-acres-burned-wildfires-2020-n1242078]on fire[/url]…) it managed to deliver a whopping 499,500 cars, just 450 short of the half a million target, and a 36% jump on 2019. In fact, Tesla actually produced a total of 509,737 cars over the period, so let’s not split hairs here – they pretty much made it. We call that an awesome achievement, especially in such a crazy year. The news sent the stock soaring above $700, making a lot of investors very happy. By January 6, shares were at a high of $774, bringing Tesla’s market cap to well over $700bn – [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-01-06/tesla-eyes-another-milestone-as-valuation-nears-facebook-s]within spitting distance[/url] of Facebook.
  • Photo: Tesla.com
  • Back into triple figures
  • Beyond Meat’s stock hits a three-month high, cracking the $100 barrier to close at $117.05.
  • Beyond Meat’s stock hits a three-month high, cracking the $100 barrier to close at $117.05 on January 14 as rival Impossible Foods [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/01/07/impossible-foods-abandons-pursuit-of-mcdonalds-burger-deal.html]drops out[/url] of the race to supply plant-based burgers for McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]). Investors licked their lips at the prospect that Beyond Meat could seal a partnership with McDonald’s in the US off the back of their successful trial together in Canada. There was also a boost from another of Beyond Meat’s partnerships, this time Dunkin Donuts, which [url=https://news.dunkindonuts.com/news/snoop-dogg-beyond-d-o-double-g-sandwich]unveiled[/url] a new national TV advertising campaign featuring none other than rapper Snoop Dogg to promote the chain's new Beyond Sausage Sandwich. He was such fan of the plant-based meat that he even had a sandwich named after him. The Beyond [url=https://news.dunkindonuts.com/blog/snoop-dogg-interview-menu-hack-dunkin]D-O-Double-G[/url] was put on the menus for one week only. It featured a Beyond Breakfast sausage patty with egg and cheese, served on a sliced glazed donut. Yep, a donut. Ain’t no one gonna drop that like it’s hot. Beyond Meat Chairman Seth Goldman on January 14 also revealed big plans to hit the Chinese mainland market [url=http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2020-01/14/c_138704031.htm]Speaking[/url] at the at the U.S. National Retail Federation’s Big Show 2020, he confirmed that "We haven't announced anything, but we are expected to do something this year.” China was becoming a key market, with its domestic plant-based meat industry growing 14.2% annually in 2018 to $910m, [url=https://www.gfi.org/new-gfi-report-illustrates-the-state-of-chinas]according[/url] to a Good Food Institute survey. Notably, over 90% of Chinese participants did not identify as vegan, yet 86.7% of them had tried plant-based meat products – the holy grail, a market in which non-vegans purchase vegan foods. The Beyond Meat stock rose to hit $135 during trading on January 14 on the back of the China news.
  • 'Fake meat laxative' ad airs during Super Bowl LIV
  • The meat lobby gets mad and fights back at plant-based popularity with a prime-time ad claiming that synthetic meat products contain ingredients found in laxatives.
  • Talk about a train-wreck. The meat lobby gets mad and fights back at plant-based popularity with a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/06/beyond-meat-impossible-foods-face-new-powerful-fake-meat-foe.html]prime-time ad[/url] claiming that synthetic meat products contain ingredients found in laxatives. Gross. The move pushes Beyond Meat stock down 4% to $104 from the previous close, presumably because people don’t like the idea of pooping their own pants. Launched by the Advocacy group The Center for Consumer Freedom in the Washington, DC area during the Super Bowl, the [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jC16c_EyqP4&amp%3Bfeature=emb_title]advert[/url] warned that plant-based meats contained a chemical laxative called methylcellulose. It marked a week of bad news for Beyond Meat, after former partner Don Lee Farms won a decisive victory in its ongoing litigation against the firm when a judge [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200127005705/en/Judge-Rules-Don-Lee-Farms-Obtain-Judgment.?mod=article_inline]ruled[/url] in favor of the “probable validity” of its claims for fraud, negligence, and breach of contract. In yet another blow, JP Morgan ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JPM/]JPM[/url]) [url=https://www.thestreet.com/investing/stocks/beyond-meat-cools-on-jpmorgan-downgrade-to-neutral#:~:text=Beyond%20Meat%20is%20downgraded%20to%20neutral%20from%20overweight%20by%20J.P.%20Morgan.&text=Shares%20of%20Beyond%20Meat%20(BYND,stock%20to%20neutral%20from%20overweight.]downgraded[/url] the stock from overweight to neutral citing valuation concerns on January 27. “This is largely a valuation call,” Goldman [url=https://www.barrons.com/articles/beyond-meat-stock--downgfrade-court-ruling-liability-breach-contract-51580221175]said[/url]. “Our downgrade is unrelated to yesterday’s stories about a legal conflict with a former partner.” Shares fell by almost 4% by the close of January 28 to settle at $120.12. And it was only going to get worse. On January 29 It fell further to $114.88 on January 29 after Canadian chain Tim Hortons ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-QSR/]QSR[/url]) [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-01-28/beyond-meat-products-pulled-from-tim-hortons-canada-restaurants]pulled[/url] Beyond Meat products at most of its stores, giving no reasons.
  • Lockdown hits
  • Covid-19 hits, and the pandemic puts much of the US and Europe into lockdown. Markets tumble across the world, and Beyond Meat sinks below its IPO closing price in May 2019 to just to $54.02.
  • Covid-19 hits, and the pandemic puts much of the US and Europe into lockdown. Markets tumble across the world, and Beyond Meat sinks below its IPO closing price in May 2019 to just to $54.02. Even a juicy Beyond Burger can’t fill that hole. It’s simple math really. Beyond Meat relies heavily on selling its products to restaurants (its $133m Restaurant & Food Service division [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2019/12/19/what-is-driving-6x-growth-in-beyond-meats-restaurant--foodservice-business/?sh=61be33bc99b3]contributed[/url] 48% of sales in 2019). If you close restaurants, people don’t eat burgers. That’s almost half its sales wiped out. Uh oh. Overall, food service sales were [url=https://www.cspdailynews.com/foodservice/us-foodservice-faces-worst-financial-year-decades]set to fall[/url] by $183bn during 2020, their worst year in decades. There was a bright spot on the horizon though, as the Senate agreed a stimulus package in the US to boost the economy on March 26, and stock rose back up to $71.10. But it fell back to $66.12 a day later, and analysts weren’t optimistic – Goldman Sachs ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-GS/]GS[/url]) [url=https://marketrealist.com/2020/03/beyond-meat-stock-goldman-sachs-turns-bearish/#:~:text=Beyond%20Meat%20(NASDAQ%3ABYND),for%20the%20alternative%2Dmeat%20maker.&text=Goldman%20Sachs%20downgraded%20Beyond%20Meat,stock%20to%20%2439%20from%20%24129.]downgraded[/url] its rating from neutral to a sell, citing the impact of the global shutdown, and cut its target price from $129 to just $39. Bank of America ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-BAC/]BAC[/url]) also downgraded Beyond Meat’s rating to underperform from neutral and cut its target price from $126 to just $50.
  • Black Friday sales through Shopify stores reach almost $3bn, peaking at $1.5m per minute during the post-Thanksgiving shopping bonanza. Shopify shareholders seem more interested in selling stock though, as the share price falls 1.7% by the following Monday to $330.84. Shopify had just hit one million stores so technically if each one sold $1,000 of stock over the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping events they should easily hit $1bn sales as in recent years. That’s just basic math. The company’s merchants did even better than that though and broke the previous year’s records [url=https://news.shopify.com/shopify-merchants-break-records-with-29-billion-in-worldwide-sales-over-black-fridaycyber-monday-weekend]with $2.9 billion of sales[/url], up from $1.8bn in 2018. Consumers spent an average of $83.05 per order, with Canadian consumers spending the most at $96.30. That's a home-field advantage, right there.
  • New lows
  • Coronavirus continues to hit stocks globally. Uncertainty pushes Beyond Meat’s stock down to $57.95, close to its record low of $54.02 in March when the pandemic started.
  • Global coronavirus cases [url=https://www.ft.com/content/a5847177-f993-3c8e-af60-747e6109cb7d]surpass[/url] the 1m mark. Uncertainty pushes Beyond Meat’s stock down to $57.95, close to its record low of $54.02 in March when the pandemic started. Overall, Beyond Meat’s stock stood 75% below its peak of $234.90 in July 2019.
  • Poor results shake confidence
  • Revenues miss earnings expectations to slip stock price down 17%.
  • Shares initially rise ahead of [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-reports-third-quarter-2020-financial-results]Q3 results day[/url] on November 9, but the markets are shaken when revenues [url=https://www.verdict.co.uk/beyond-meat-q3-results/]badly missed[/url] earnings expectations. The stock loses 4% in a day, dropping to $150.50 off the previous close, and slipping as low as $141 during trading. By the end of the week (November 13) it’s down 17% to $124.74. Sales grew just 2.7% annually to $94.4m as the full brunt of Covid finally hit – its slowest sales growth ever since going public, and it posted a net loss of $19.3m. Things weren’t helped by McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]), which announced on November 9 that it was [url=https://techcrunch.com/2020/11/09/mcdonalds-to-launch-a-mcplant-vegetarian-option/]launching[/url] a meat-free McPlant line, using its own in-house formulation rather than working with a third-party supplier. Beyond Meat did [url=https://www.pizzahut.co.uk/beyond-meat]launch[/url] a new Beyond Italian sausage pizza at Pizza Hut on November 11, with a [url=https://twitter.com/BeyondMeat/status/1326160515610021888]Twitter video[/url] fronted by actor Kevin Hart. And on November 16, it [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-unveils-delicious-next-iterations-iconic-beyond]unveiled[/url] two new versions of its Beyond Burger, expected to launch nationwide in early 2021, featuring an “enhanced meaty flavor” but with 35% less saturated fat. So you can be greedy AND healthy at the same time. Win win.
  • Downgrades drive dip
  • Beyond Meat loses all its gains for October after a dire fortnight that includes an analyst downgrade and fears over increased competition.
  • Beyond Meat loses all its gains for October after a dire fortnight that includes an analyst downgrade and fears over increased competition. The stock ends the month down 27% on its high of $194.94 to finish at $142.43. Analysts are starting to become unwelcome dinner guests. Wall Street firm Bernstein [url=https://thefly.com/landingPageNews.php?id=3173775&headline=BYND;MCD;WMT-Bernstein-downgrades-Beyond-Meat-to-Underperform-on-stretched-valuation]downgraded[/url] the stock on October 13 from “market perform” to “underperform”, warning that its recent rally had “stretched” its valuation. There was also new competition from Tyson Foods ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-TSN/]TSN[/url]), which [url=https://www.tysonfoods.com/news/news-releases/2020/10/jack-box-introduces-first-ever-unchicken-sandwiches-us#:~:text=%E2%80%93%20October%2015%2C%202020%20%E2%80%93%20Today,.%2C%20and%20Reno%2C%20Nev.]launched[/url] its first Unchicken sandwich in the US. And at the end of the month top rival Impossible Foods [url=https://vegnews.com/2020/10/impossible-burger-debuts-at-600-grocery-stores-across-canada]expanded[/url] its retail competition into Canada, putting it head-to-head with Beyond Meat, which had long relied on the country as a key market and testing ground.
  • A meat-free unicorn
  • Beyond Meat gallops to record growth as the first publicly-traded vegan brand on Nasdaq.
  • Beyond Meat gallops to record growth as the first publicly-traded vegan brand on Nasdaq, bursting onto the scene as the [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/beyond-meat-soars-163-in-biggest-popping-us-ipo-since-2000-2019-05-02]best-performing US IPO[/url] since 2000 with a price of $25 a share. Meat-free lifestyles have become increasingly popular, and plant-based food maker Beyond Meat has been a big part of that journey. The firm has gained a lot of friends in high places since it was first [url=https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2020-01-08/beyond-meat-founder-ethan-brown]founded by Ethan Brown[/url] in 2009. A former clean energy executive, Brown went vegan for the health benefits but missed fast food (who doesn’t love a dirty burger?) and so Beyond Meat, the trendy alternative for meat-free munchies, was born. Its high profile IPO was [url=https://www.livekindly.co/snoop-dogg-works-beyond-meat]backed by rapper Snoop Dogg[/url] and basketball legend [url=https://vegnews.com/2019/2/shaquille-oneal-and-13-top-athletes-invest-in-vegan-beyond-meat]Shaquille O’Neal[/url] – who, although they aren’t actually vegans, have vocally highlighted the health benefits of eating less meat. Microsoft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-MSFT/]MSFT[/url]) founder Bill Gates has [url=https://thebeet.com/bill-gates-eats-a-plant-based-burger-reveals-the-next-major-industries-ripe-for-disruption/]also invested[/url] in the stock, praising its environmental benefits compared with the planetary pressures of meat production. The LA-based firm takes plant proteins and mixes them with minerals, healthy fats and flavourings to make food that tastes like, but definitely isn’t chicken, pork and beef, and with no added hormones, antibiotics, or cholesterol. Its first and main market was the US, but it also entered Canadian supermarkets during [url=https://www.beyondmeat.com/whats-new/canada-were-coming-to-the-meat-case/]April 2019[/url] with its Beyond Burger product. It’s not the first company to do it (anyone remember [url=https://lindamccartneyfoods.co.uk/our-food/frozen-range/vegetarian-sausages/]Linda McCartney sausages[/url]) and it won’t be the last, but it was the first vegan brand to go public on Nasdaq, and we think that’s pretty cool. Turns out, so did the market – the firm debuted with a delicious market value of $1.46bn after raising $240m. The stock also recorded the highest level of growth for a listed company since 2008, rising 163% from its initial public offering price of $25 a share to $65.75 by the end of trading. Beyond Meat got its [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/05/07/beyond-meat-gets-first-buy-rating-from-bernstein.html]first buy rating[/url] from Wall Street analyst Bernstein just days after listing on May 7. Bernstein suggested that the alternative meat industry could be worth a mouthwatering $40.5bn by 2028. This pushed the Beyond Meat stock up to $79.60 – more than tripling its IPO value in the first week of trading.
  • A meat-free star is born. Photo: Beyond Meat
  • Edging higher on McDonald’s rumors
  • The stock hits a high for 2020, buoyed by a couple of weeks of good market news that places it 14.2% higher than the start of the month at $194.94.
  • The stock hits a high for 2020, buoyed by a couple of weeks of good market news that places it 14.2% higher than the start of the month at $194.94. October started with a meaty rumor that McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]) was partnering with Beyond Meat to launch a vegan burger in the UK. A mystery Instagram user called Vegan Food UK [url=https://www.instagram.com/p/CF32E1upyqR/?utm_source=ig_embed]shared[/url] an image showing a ‘new vegan burger’ featuring a Beyond Meat patty. The post said: “This image is from a survey that someone had from McDonald's in the UK. Nothing is official until McDonald's says so 🙂. We aren’t sure of a launch date yet but we know they have had this in the pipeline for a while.” Intriguing. The strong month was topped off a day later after the US District Court for the Central District of California [url=https://lawstreetmedia.com/agriculture/california-court-dismisses-securities-lawsuit-against-beyond-meat/#:~:text=California%20Court%20Dismisses%20Securities%20Lawsuit%20Against%20Beyond%20Meat,-Facebook&text=On%20Tuesday%2C%20Central%20District%20of,specifically%20using%20protein%20from%20peas.]rejected[/url] a shareholder class action against Beyond Meat which claimed it had failed to disclose the extent of litigation against it from Don Lee Farms. The judge ruled there was no evidence of misleading information.
  • October started with a meaty rumor that McDonald’s was partnering with Beyond Meat to launch a vegan burger in the UK. Photo: Jurij Kenda / Unsplash
  • Photo: Jurij Kenda / Unsplash
  • Costco deal
  • Beyond Meat strikes partnership with Costco, and the deal was supersized. For the first time shoppers could get a pack containing eight burger patties, rather than the traditional pack of two offered in other supermarkets.
  • Fancy something tasty alongside your giant jar of pickles and that multipack of cookies? Beyond Burgers [url=https://www.beyondmeat.com/whats-new/beyond-meat-now-available-at-costco/]hit the shelves[/url] of US retail giant Costco ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-COST/]COST[/url]). The high-profile partnership helped the stock climb to $76.03 during trading before closing at $73.6. It opened the next day at $76.22. And the deal was supersized. For the first time shoppers could get a pack containing eight burger patties, rather than the traditional pack of two offered in other supermarkets. Because why not, if you are already pushing a massive trolley around Costco.
  • Starbucks joins the party
  • Starbucks announces it will sell Beyond Meat products at its stores in Canada.
  • Deals don’t come much bigger than the world’s [url=https://www.insider.com/best-fast-food-restaurants-that-have-coffee-in-the-us#starbucks-is-the-biggest-coffee-chain-in-the-world-1]largest[/url] coffee chain. Starbucks ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-SBUX/]SBUX[/url]) [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelpellmanrowland/2020/02/26/beyond-meat-comes-to-starbucks/?sh=556526352812]says[/url] it will sell a Beyond Meat breakfast sandwich at its 1,200 Canadian stores in March, giving the stock a daily 2.3% boost to $112.51. The excitement wore off a day later on February 27 when Beyond Meat’s [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/27/beyond-meat-bynd-earnings-q4-2019.html]Q4 results[/url] showed yet another a loss, despite revenues increasing 212% to $98.5m. The slump ate into investor expectations and the stock dived 15% by the close of February 28 to $89.65. “Turnover is vanity and profit is sanity,” so they say. Investors weren’t best pleased when Beyond Meat revealed a net loss of $0.5m for the fourth quarter of 2019 and a $12.4m loss for the year. The loss was attributed to higher operating expenses, but analysts remained unsure about the stock price. Oppenheimer analyst Rupesh Parikh [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-beyond-meat-stocks/no-profit-no-love-for-beyond-meat-as-shares-fall-idUKKCN20M1Z1]said[/url]: “Pricey valuation, increasing competition, and the potential for new selling pressures following the expiration of the lock-up suggest more muted upside potential from here.”
  • Starbucks said it would start selling Beyond Meat breakfast sandwiches in Canadian stores. Photo: Starbucks / Twitter
  • Photo: Khadeeja Yasser / Unsplash
  • Stunt with BrewDog pushes down stock
  • Beyond Meat is battered in the first weeks of October as competition and some poor publicity with Scottish brewer BrewDog sends its stock below $100 for the first time since listing in May.
  • Beyond Meat is battered in the first weeks of October as competition and some poor publicity sends its stock below $100 for the first time since listing in May. Beyond Meat got some flak at the start of the month for its partnership with Scottish brewer BrewDog, which [url=https://www.businessgreen.com/news/3082254/brewdog-launches-beyond-meat-hybrid-burger]released[/url] a hybrid half meat/half plant-based burger that was ridiculed by punters. “So a burger that vegans can’t eat and no meat eater is going to want to eat,” [url=https://twitter.com/dropkickemma/status/1180032278287835137]scoffed[/url] one critic on Twitter. “This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever,” [url=https://twitter.com/dougsfresh/status/1179718015568531463]said[/url] another customer. The idea, in fact, was to encourage meat eaters to reduce their consumption and “do their bit for the planet,” rather than create a new vegan offering, but it didn’t go down well. In the meantime, rival Nestle ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/SIX-NESN/]NESN[/url]) was developing cool new [url=https://edition.cnn.com/2019/10/10/business/nestle-vegan-bacon-cheese/index.html]plant-based cheese and bacon[/url] products to accompany its meat-free Awesome Burger, meaning more competition from a major player. Beyond Meat’s shares were also hit when Wall Street firm Bernstein [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/beyond-meat-stock-price-target-slashed-25-percent-by-bernstein-2019-10-1028611644]slashed[/url] its price target by almost 25% to just $130 on October 18.
  • A lot of people don't get Brewdog's hybrid half meat/half plant-based burger. Photo: BrewDog
  • Share offering sinks stock
  • It’s a bad couple of weeks for Beyond Meat. Second quarter results are a mixed bag, with revenues up almost 300% but net losses also mounting; while a secondary stock offering pushes shares sharply downwards.
  • It’s a bad couple of weeks for Beyond Meat. [url=https://www.nasdaq.com/press-release/beyond-meatr-reports-second-quarter-2019-financial-results-2019-07-29]Second quarter results[/url] are a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/29/beyond-meat-earnings-q2-2019.html]mixed bag[/url], with revenues up almost 300% but net losses also mounting; while the announcement on July 29 of a secondary stock offering pushes shares sharply downwards. The equity fundraising was completed on August 5, just months after it went public. Given that the IPO raised $240m in the best-perfoming US launch since 2000, eyebrows were unsurprisingly raised that it needed to dip its fingers in the pot again so soon. The firm [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-announces-closing-public-offering-common-stock]raised[/url] $38.5m in a sale of 3.7m common shares, of which the majority were sold by existing shareholders, and 250,000 shares issued by Beyond Meat itself. Given that the price was up at $160 (compared to $25 at IPO) it still cashed in a pretty penny. However, the shares sold at a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/08/01/beyond-meat-shares-fall-after-pricing-secondary-stock-offering-at-160.html]discount[/url] of 18.6% to the closing share price the previous day, and the stock dropped even further over the next few days to close at $161.24 on August 6, down from $177.60 at the start of the week. In better news, on August 7 Beyond Meat revealed a [url=https://www.subway.com/en-us/subculture/subway-and-beyond-meat-team-create-plant-based-sub]Beyond Meatball Marinara[/url] across 685 Subway chains across the US and Canada from September. Everyone knows the best Subway sandwich is a Meatball Marinara right? Right. We’re on board, but looks like investors weren’t entirely sure, as the stock barely moved.
  • (Stock) sharing proves unpopular, pushing Beyond Meat's price down. Photo: Beyond Meat
  • Maple syrup with that?
  • Beyond Meat’s stock closes at a new high of $92 per share after Canada’s largest coffee chain, Tim Hortons (QSR), adds three of its vegan breakfast sandwiches to its menu.
  • Beyond Meat’s stock closes at a new high of $92 per share after Canada’s largest coffee chain, Tim Hortons ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-QSR/]QSR[/url]), [url=https://edition.cnn.com/2019/06/12/business/beyond-meat-tim-hortons/index.html]adds[/url] three of its vegan breakfast sandwiches to its menu. The move picked up on the trend that more people were going vegan and that meat-free alternatives were growing. Tim Hortons president Alex Macedo said: “Canadians are looking to incorporate plant-based options into their diets and we’re thrilled to partner with Beyond Meat." Interest in 'veganism' increased [url=https://www.vegansociety.com/news/media/statistics#:~:text=General,-If%20the%20world&text=Interest%20in%20'veganism'%20increased%20seven,vegetarian%20and%20gluten%20free%20searches.]seven-fold[/url] in the five years between 2014 and 2019, according to Google trends searches, while dollar sales of plant-based foods [url=https://www.gfi.org/marketresearch]grew 11%[/url] between 2017 and 2019, according to the Good Food Institute. By contrast, total US retail food dollar sales grew just 4% over the same period. So the takeaway here? It’s good to give customers what they want, and that isn’t always meat.
  • Tim Hortons adds three Beyond Meat vegan breakfast sandwiches to its menu. Photo: Hermes Rivera / Unsplash
  • Photo: Hermes Rivera / Unsplash
  • A crowded (non)-meat market
  • Competition heats up a few degrees after rival brands boost their offerings, pushing the stock to a three-month low of $138. Analysts had warned for months that Beyond Meat could so easily be replicated that it was hard to justify its valuation.
  • Competition heats up a few degrees after rival brands boost their offerings, pushing the stock to a three-month low of $138. Analysts had [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/oliviergarret/2019/09/03/beyond-meat-will-crash-when-investors-realize-what-its-really-selling/?sh=b9421185ea2e]warned[/url] for months that Beyond Meat could so easily be replicated that it was hard to justify its valuation. Investors winced at the prospect of competition on the supermarket shelves after food giant Nestle ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/SIX-NESN/]NESN[/url]) [url=https://www.nestle.com/media/news/nestle-launch-plant-based-burgers-grounds-us-switzerland]launched[/url] its own plant-based Awesome Burger through subsidiary Sweet Earth Foods. Beyond Meat’s rival Impossible Foods also announced its burger would be [url=https://edition.cnn.com/2019/09/26/us/impossible-burger-east-coast-intl-hnk-scli/index.html#:~:text=Good%20news%20for%20vegetarians%20on,debut%20on%20the%20West%20Coast.]available[/url] in select East Coast stores, just a week after its California grocery store launch saw the Impossible Burger [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20191001005462/en/Impossible-Burger-Becomes-No.-1-Item-Sold-at-Grocery-Stores]outselling[/url] ground beef from cows to become the top-selling item for the Gelson’s supermarket chain. The success of these alternatives is obviously good news for the plant-based foods market, but presented a very real threat to Beyond Meat’s flagship product, the Beyond Burger. Beyond Meat’s stock fell as low as $133 during trading on September 25 as the markets considered whether it could maintain its dominance. Luckily, the price recovered a day later, driven by news that McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]), would conduct a [url=https://www.valuethemarkets.com/2020/11/15/will-the-mcplant-boost-mcdonalds-revenues-and-does-beyond-meat-play-a-secret-role-in-its-creation/#:~:text=In%20fact%2C%20in%20September%202019,to%20Plant%2C%20Lettuce%2C%20Tomato.&text=The%20fact%20Beyond%20Meat%20and%20McDonald's%20collaborated%20on%20the%20P.L.T.]12-week test[/url] in Canada of a new plant-based burger called the P.L.T. (which cleverly stands for Plant. Lettuce. Tomato. Get it?) using the Beyond Burger. McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]) is the holy grail of distribution lines and Beyond Meat’s shares soared 11.5% in a day to $155. It also got Beyond Meat back in the game with its nemesis Impossible Foods, which already had a partnership with McDonald’s main rival, Burger King ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-QSR/]QSR[/url]). Beyond Meat founder Ethan Brown was happy about it, anyway – he [url=https://chooseveg.com/blog/mcdonalds-plant-based-burger-beyond-meat/]described[/url] working with McDonald’s as a “central and defining goal.”
  • There's news that McDonald’s would conduct a 12-week test in Canada of a new plant-based burger called the P.L.T. Photo: PRNewsfoto/McDonald's Corporation
  • Impossible Foods edges ahead
  • Beyond Meat falls 7.5% on its previous close to $131.55 as investors struggle to stomach a series of surprising developments. The stock drops as low as $125 during trading on June 29.
  • Beyond Meat falls 7.5% on its previous close to $131.55 as investors struggle to stomach a series of surprising developments. The stock drops as low as $125 during trading on June 29. You spend all evening dining together and then your partner climbs out the restroom window. Starbucks ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-SBUX/]SBUX[/url]), which already offered Beyond Meat products on its Canadian and Chinese menus, instead decided to partner with rival Impossible Foods to [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/23/starbucks-partners-with-impossible-to-sell-plant-based-breakfast-sandwich.html]launch[/url] a new meat-free Breakfast Sandwich as part of its new summer menu at its 15,000 U.S. stores. That must have come as a bit of a blow to Beyond Meat. Impossible Foods won another coup when Burger King ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-QSR/]QSR[/url]) [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/15/burger-king-unveils-impossible-foods-meatless-sausage-breakfast-sandwich.html]unveiled[/url] the Impossible Sausage, while McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]) said it was [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/beyond-meat-stock-price-after-mcdonalds-ends-trial-vegetarian-canada-2020-6-1029343100#:~:text=Beyond%20Meat%20plummeted%20as%20much,it%20learned%20from%20the%20test.%22]ending[/url] its Canadian trial with Beyond Meat with no plans to continue. The stock dropped almost 10% during the day and continued to decline all week, hitting a lot of $125 on June 29. The next day brought better news though. Beyond Meat [url=https://www.alizila.com/beyond-meat-grocery-debut-in-china-freshippo/]entered[/url] Chinese stores through Alibaba ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-BABA/]BABA[/url]) supermarket chain Freshippo, its first foray into the Chinese retail sector. The prospect of hitting the world’s [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/sponsored/china-appetite-still-growing]largest meat market[/url] pushes the stock up 5.7% to 141.64 on its previous close, climbing to a high of $151.53 during trading on July 1. The meat-free market in China is expected to be worth [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-china-agriculture-plant-based-focus/beyond-meat-vs-zhenmeat-the-battle-for-chinas-meatless-market-idUKKBN1XS2MG]almost $12bn[/url] by 2023. It’s a toothsome prospect.
  • Millionaire-maker?
  • Investor Rich Duprey suggests that Beyond Meat could be a “millionaire-maker” stock, citing positive growth prospects and a surprisingly strong 2020 performance that saw the share price increase by over 65% on the year.
  • Investor Rich Duprey [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2021/01/05/could-beyond-meat-be-a-millionaire-maker-stock/]suggests[/url] that Beyond Meat could be a “millionaire-maker” stock, citing positive growth prospects and a surprisingly strong 2020 performance that saw the share price increase by over 65% on the year, despite coronavirus challenges. Duprey pointed out that despite recent setbacks and poor third quarter results, Beyond Meat could be in for a boost if yet another meat shortage hits the US, leading to a new round of panic buying. JBS, the world's largest meat supplier, recently [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-12-04/jbs-removes-8-of-u-s-workforce-with-pay-during-new-covid-wave]sent home[/url] about 8% of its U.S. workforce over rising COVID-19 cases, which could spell bad times ahead for the meat industry – and good times for meat alternatives. Plans to expand further and bring production in-house to lower costs are all positives, while new markets China and Brazil offer strong potential. Overall however, the outlook is cautious. “Beyond Meat as an early mover in the space still has a lot of growth left in it, and it has arguably tapped into consumer demand for plant-based meat alternatives better than the competition. Yet there also seems to be a finite market for its product -- and only a certain subset of consumers are likely to be regular repeat customers,” noted Duprey. “Its stock is also quite pricey, it needs to show that it can have sustained growth outside of a global pandemic, and can rise above the competition.”
  • Photo: Sharon McCutcheon / Unsplash
  • Buying in bulk
  • Beyond Meatballs launch in Costco warehouses across the US, meaning customers can now buy their favorite plant-based balls in bulk.
  • Beyond Meatballs [url=https://finance.yahoo.com/news/costco-will-now-sell-giant-packages-of-beyond-meat-meatballs-in-new-deal-133217726.html]launch[/url] in Costco warehouses across the US, meaning customers can now buy their favorite plant-based balls in bulk. Customers can pay $9.99 for 24 meatballs (compared to a usual RRP of $6.99 for 12) at select Costco locations in New York, New Jersey and California. That some serious savings. The launch follows Beyond Meat’s first foray into Costco in 2019 via its Beyond Burger. The stock stayed steady at around $140.
  • Finger lickin’ but not chicken
  • Stocks fall by around 15% over the month, but KFC and Beyond Meat trial plant-based fried chicken.
  • August isn’t great for Beyond Meat, with the stock falling by around 15% over the month. But in a positive end to a poor showing, KFC ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-YUM/]YUM[/url]) and Beyond Meat hail a [url=https://www.beyondmeat.com/whats-new/beyond-fried-chicken/]“Kentucky Fried Miracle”[/url] when the colonel trials a plant-based fried chicken alternative at a single location in Arizona. It was a sell-out success and pushed the stock up 3.2% from $155 on August 26 to $160 by the time the markets digested the outcome of the trial two days later. Hungry customers [url=https://twitter.com/BeyondMeat/status/1166400200367173632?s=20]queued round the block[/url] and the dish, if that’s a fair way to describe a takeaway product, sold out within five hours.
  • The Colonel trials a plant-based fried chicken alternative at a single location in Arizona. Photo: Beyond Meat / KFC
  • Photo: Beyond Meat / KFC
  • The ZOOM Cloud Meetings app [url=https://www.iphoneincanada.ca/news/tiktok-zoom-most-downloaded-apps-2020/]tops the free charts[/url] in both Apple and Google mobile app stores in the US this week. In the Apple store, it’s up from number 11 the previous week, and just 87th place the week before that. But the firm is scrambling to build up its infrastructure as demand skyrockets, and the pressure is on. “We are really focused on ensuring we continue to deliver a reliable, high-quality experience for all of our customers, prospects, schools — everybody that’s relying on us. That’s what we talked about all morning long in his staff meeting,” [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/18/zoom-cfo-explains-how-the-company-is-grappling-with-increased-demand.html]said[/url] CFO Kelly Steckelberg. Zoom added servers and other equipment to all of its 17 data center locations in March, with two more data centers also coming online that month. It also increased its capacity with cloud providers Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, just to be on the safe side.
  • Missing a whopper of a deal
  • Rival The Vegetarian Butcher partners with Burger King to create the Rebel Whopper in the UK. Uh oh.
  • More competition enters the kitchen as Unilever ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/EURONEXT-UNA/]UNA[/url])’s small and unassuming 2019 acquisition The Vegetarian Butcher announces a [url=https://www.thegrocer.co.uk/leader/burger-kings-vegetarian-butcher-deal-is-a-massive-coup-for-unilever/599524.article]surprise partnership[/url] with Burger King to launch a plant-based burger called the Rebel Whopper in the UK, beating out obvious choices such as Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. The stock starts the week down 4% to $76.79. Beyond Meat had already lost out to Impossible Foods in the US when it trialled the Impossible Whopper with Burger King ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-QSR/]QSR[/url]). Investors weren’t happy at this dent in the prospects of international expansion, and it came on the heels of an already poor performance. The stock had been falling since late October after the 150-day lock-up period restricting pre-IPO investors from selling shares [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2019/10/29/beyond-meat-faces-a-moment-of-truth-as-ipo-lockup-period-is-set-to-end/?sh=1f52826841a0]came to an end[/url], prompting fears of an insider sell-off to cash in gains. Founder Ethan Brown was [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/beyond-meat-ceo-wont-sell-shares-after-stock-price-drop-2019-10-1028644977]adamant[/url] that he would keep hold of all his shares but that didn’t stop investor concerns pushing the stock down. The share price lost 22.22% in a single day on October 29, the day the lock-in period ended. . Some analysts later regained their appetite for the stock though, noting that its recent declines now made it a [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-11-14/beyond-meat-rises-as-berenberg-sees-attractive-entry-point]buying opportunity[/url]. Talk about food envy. Wall Street firm Berenberg gave a price target of $100 and Bernstein also upgraded the stock to an “outperform” from a “market perform,” on the grounds that the trials with McDonald’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-MCD/]MCD[/url]) in Canada would significantly boost sales.
  • Who doesn't like a nice sausage?
  • More good news arrived on July 23 when Dunkin’ Donuts announced it would add Beyond Meat’s sausage breakfast sandwich to its menu.
  • More good news arrived on July 23 when Dunkin’ Donuts announced it would [url=https://edition.cnn.com/2019/07/24/business/dunkin-beyond-meat/index.html]add[/url] Beyond Meat’s sausage breakfast sandwich to the menu of its Manhattan outlets, helping the stock break the $200 barrier again. Beyond Meat’s breakfast sandwich was launched exclusively at Dunkin’ Donuts’ 163 stores in Manhattan as part of a trial before a national rollout. Dunkin’ Donuts (which was [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-dunkin-brands-m-a-inspire-brands/dunkin-brands-to-go-private-in-8-76-billion-deal-by-arbys-owner-idUKKBN27G00D]taken private[/url] in December 2020 when acquired by Inspire Brands) became the first US restaurant brand to add the company’s products to its menu, which excited investors. Twitter [url=https://twitter.com/BeyondMeat/status/1154008999131529216]comments[/url] on both Beyond Meat and Dunkin’ Donuts were [url=https://twitter.com/dunkindonuts/status/1154009853473501185]filled[/url] with happy, and full, customers.
  • Dunkin’ Donuts announced it would add Beyond Meat’s sausage breakfast sandwich to the menu of its Manhattan outlets. Photo: Dunkin’ Donuts/Twitter
  • China debut
  • Beyond Meat hits mainland China, sending stock up 4.6%.
  • The Beyond Burger [url=https://www.greenqueen.com.hk/beyond-meat-china-launch-kfc-pizza-hut-taco-bell/]makes its debut[/url] in mainland China, sending the stock up 4.6% to $134.23 as it partners with KFC ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-YUM/]YUM[/url]), Pizza Hut ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-YUM/]YUM[/url]) and Taco Bell ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-YUM/]YUM[/url]). KFC offered the Beyond Burger at five of its locations in Beijing, Chengdu, Hangzhou, and Shanghai. Taco Bell launched its own classic taco made out of the Beyond Burger patty in Shanghai, while Pizza Hut unveiled its own burger menu. The firm also boosted its environmental credentials on June 11 by opening its [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-expands-local-production-capabilities-europe]first manufacturing facility[/url] in Europe, which reduced its carbon footprint and boasted a “lighter environmental impact.” Beyond Meat partnered with Dutch company Zandbergen on a co-manufacturing facility in Zoeterwoude, the Netherlands, to produce the Beyond Burger and Beyond Sausage. The stock hit $155.24 during trading and closed at $143.51 on June 11.
  • The Beyond Burger makes its debut in mainland China. Photo: Li Yang / Unsplash
  • Photo: Li Yang / Unsplash
  • First quarter results reassure
  • Markets feast on Beyond Meat’s first quarter results, sending its stock up 34.8% since the end of April to $133.51. It’s a nice way for the company to mark its IPO birthday – up 434% on its listing price.
  • Markets feast on Beyond Meat’s first quarter results, sending its stock up 34.8% since the end of April to $133.51. It’s a nice way for the company to mark its IPO birthday – up 434% on its listing price. A $10,000 investment at the IPO stage would now be worth a whopping $43,400. That could get you 2,900 packs of Beyond Burgers from Costco ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-COST/]COST[/url]), priced at $14.99. You’d need a [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2800_Polar_Way]big freezer[/url] though so probably best to buy that first. Beyond Meat published its [url=https://investors.beyondmeat.com/news-releases/news-release-details/beyond-meatr-reports-first-quarter-2020-financial-results#:~:text=Net%20revenues%20increased%20141%25%20to,lower%20net%20price%20per%20pound.]first quarter results[/url] on May 5 and was still reaping the benefits days later. Net revenues were up 141% annually in the first quarter to $97.1m and gross profit was $37.7m. The market was pleased with the results despite the company suspending its 2020 outlook due to Covid.
  • [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-shopify-ipo/canadian-software-maker-shopify-valued-at-2-billion-in-u-s-debut-idUSKBN0O61R020150521]Shopify storms onto the New York Stock Exchange[/url] at $17 a share to raise $130m and is valued at $1.27bn. The stock quickly spikes to $28.74 during trading on its opening day before settling at $25.68. The Canada-based e-commerce software platform was initially launched in 2004 as Snowdevil by Tobias Lütke, Daniel Weinand, and Scott Lake so they could sell their snowboarding equipment online. But they quickly found that their payments, marketing, shipping and customer engagement software were of use beyond the slopes. They launched as Shopify in 2006 to provide snazzy technology so any small- and medium-sized business could get a website built without needing design skills and sell their goods and services online. Shopify was in the cloud before the cloud was even cool – when everyone probably thought you were just talking about weather. Finally businesses could manage a website, sales, marketing and deliveries from anywhere without needing their own software or pricy web servers.
  • Lyft offers free vaccine rides
  • Lyft launches a high-profile new vaccine access campaign to provide 60 million rides to and from vaccination sites for low-income, uninsured, and at-risk people. It's some seriously good PR.
  • Lyft partners up with JP Morgan, health insurer Anthem, and community non-profit United Way to [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-launches-vaccine-access-campaign?linkId=100000025053054]launch[/url] a high-profile new vaccine access campaign to provide 60 million rides to and from vaccination sites for low-income, uninsured, and at-risk people. It's some seriously good PR and it pumps the share price back above $50. “Making sure people can get to vaccination sites when they need to is mission critical to beating this virus,” said Lyft Co-Founder and President, John Zimmer. “This is an opportunity to use our collective strength to mobilize on a massive scale and serve our communities. We cannot let lack of transportation be a factor in determining whether people have access to healthcare.” It marks a wider Lyft strategy to further develop its healthcare business, which already has its own [url=https://www.lyftbusiness.com/industries/healthcare]division[/url] within the company and which has been a key priority since 2016. As of 2020 the firm partners with nine of the top 10 largest health systems and nine of the 10 largest non-emergency medical transportation brokers to provide patient journeys. It has also partnered Epic, one of the most widely used electronic-health-record (EHR) services in the US, through which doctors can arrange transportation for patients directly with Lyft.
  • Photo: Hakan Nural / Unsplash
  • Beyond Beef bumps price
  • Beyond Meat’s stock rallies to $162 as it whets the public’s appetite with a new innovation called Beyond Beef.
  • Beyond Meat’s stock rallies to $162 as it whets the public’s appetite with a [url=https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/06/26/1874481/0/en/Beyond-Meat-Announces-Nationwide-Retail-Launch-of-Latest-Product-Innovation-Beyond-Beef.html#:~:text=EL%20SEGUNDO%2C%20Calif.%2C%20June,shelves%20nationwide%20later%20this%20week.]new product[/url] called Beyond Beef, designed to deliver the same juicy goodness as ground beef (or “mince”, if you’re in the UK). Beyond Beef was rolled out across the US market and was made to look, cook and taste like traditional ground beef, but harming no cows in the process. Guilt-free tacos galore. Hungry attendees at the Wall Street Journal’s [url=https://www.wsj.com/video/subject/future-of-everything-festival-2019]Future of Everything[/url] conference were offered free samples of Beyond Beef on top of nachos with melted cheese and were [url=https://www.cnet.com/pictures/the-future-of-everything-festival-2019-nyc/5/]described[/url] by Cnet as “worth the wait.” Mmm, tasty.
  • A new product launches called Beyond Beef. Photo: Beyond Beef / Beyond Meat
  • Photo: Beyond Beef / Beyond Meat
  • Rapid growth exposes Shopify to fraudsters
  • It's not great news to end the year with, as new analysis from ecommerce authentication service FakeSpot finds that over a fifth of Shopify sites pose a risk to their customers.
  • It's not great news to end the year with, as new analysis from ecommerce authentication service FakeSpot [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-55420445]finds[/url] that over a fifth of Shopify sites pose a risk to their customers. Fakespot analyzed 124,000 Shopify sites, and found that around 26,000 were "related to fraudulent practices" – including 40% described as "problematic sellers" and 28% possible scam stores. “We recognise there will be those — however few they may be relative to our base of more than one million merchants — that may abuse our service, and we take this matter seriously,” said Shopify, which has employed “multiple teams” to address what it calls "an industry-wide problem." The problem is that while centralized sites like Amazon can operate a relatively robust system of reviews that allow customers to see at a glance what they're getting into, the fragmented nature of Shopify (and its "anti-Amazon" strategy) means that it can be difficult to separate legit sellers from dodgy ones. The market did not like the news at all, and the stock dropped by almost 7% the day after it broke, falling to $1,197.96 on December 23.
  • Photo: Rupixen.com / Unsplash
  • Zoom had a pretty great year in 2020, with the share price rising over 400% (despite a bit of a dip in December). And things end on a high note, with [url=https://www.theverge.com/2020/12/23/22197057/zoom-email-service-calendar-app-microsoft-google-competition]reports[/url] that it's about to introduce email and calendar services in a major platform expansion. The word on the street is that Zoom could begin testing a new web email service in 2021, while a calendar app is also on the cards. Makes sense, given that the stock took a pretty big hit once the Covid vaccines started rolling out and people started to think about returning to work in the new year. Videoconferencing apps aren't quite so vital when you can chat face to face over the watercooler again. It didn't do a lot for the share price though, which still lost over 17% in the last 10 days of the year to close 2020 at $337.32 on December 31. And people are [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2021/01/06/zoom-stock-ran-too-far-too-fast-in-2020/]still concerned[/url] about contracting margins, with uncertainty about how long the pandemic will last into 2021 casting doubt over how robust the company's earnings might be.
  • Lyft [url=https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/lyft-and-motional-to-deploy-fully-self-driving-vehicles-in-multiple-us]partners[/url] with driverless technology firm to launch a fully self-driving service across the US by 2023. It's the dream – but is it achievable? The market seems to think so, and the stock is up to $49.91 from $47.23 a week earlier. Lyft has been working with Motional (a $4bn joint venture between tech firm Aptiv and auto giant Hyundai) since 2018, and by December 2020 had provided more than 100,000 self-driving paid rides to its customers. They seem to have gone down pretty well, with 94% saying they'd do it again. So Lyft and Motional take the next step, with plans to launch fully driverless vehicles across the Lyft network in 2023 in multiple US cities. It's the first deployment partnership between a rideshare company and a driverless technology provider, and it's pretty cool that Lyft snuck in there in front of its rival Uber, which [url=https://www.npr.org/2020/12/08/944337751/uber-sells-its-autonomous-vehicle-research-division]abandoned[/url] its own self-driving attempt earlier in the month. It's a big deal – but it's not good news for Lyft drivers, who already have a bit of a [url=https://www.sfchronicle.com/news/article/How-Biden-administration-could-upend-Prop-22-and-15753984.php]shaky relationship[/url] with the firm. Driverless cars would be great for Lyft (and possibly its customers) but they have the potential to put a whole lot of people out of work.
  • Engineering team to double
  • Shopify hires a new VP of Engineering and announces plans to double its engineering team with the hire of over 2,000 new employees. Many of these are likely to be in Ireland, its largest cluster of staff outside the home base of Canada.
  • Shopify [url=https://betakit.com/shopify-hires-new-vp-of-engineering-looks-to-add-2021-new-technical-staff-this-year/#:~:text=Shopify%20has%20tapped%20Cathy%20Polinsky,me%20most%20to%20the%20role.%E2%80%9D]hires[/url] a new VP of Engineering and announces plans to double its engineering team with the hire of over 2,000 new employees. Many of these are likely to be in Ireland, its [url=https://www.siliconrepublic.com/careers/shopify-ireland-recruitment-john-riordan]largest cluster[/url] of staff outside the home base of Canada. On its [url=https://www.shopify.com/careers]website[/url], Shopify said it was looking for people with experience in front and back end development, data, mobile and infrastructure work. Cathy Polinsky also joined the firm as its new Engineering VP. She was previously Chief Technology Officer at online personal styling service Stitch Fix and has also held senior roles at Salesforce, Oracle and Yahoo. “Shopify’s mission to make commerce better for everyone is incredibly inspiring, and it’s what attracted me most to the role," she said.
  • Photo: Silvia Brazzoduro / Unsplash
  • Could Tesla hit $1trn?
  • Morgan Stanley auto guru Adam Jonas not only rates Tesla a buy, he increases his price target to $810, the highest on Wall Street. If it hit the mark, its valuation would top $1trn. Oh yeah, and Elon Musk is now the world's richest man.
  • On January 6 Morgan Stanley auto guru Adam Jonas not only rates Tesla a buy, he [url=https://www.benzinga.com/analyst-ratings/analyst-color/21/01/19029167/tesla-gets-street-high-810-price-target-from-morgan-stanley]increases[/url] his price target to $810, the highest on Wall Street. The news bumps the stock up to a high of $801 on January 7 . If Tesla hit the $810 mark it could see a valuation [url=https://www.barrons.com/articles/tesla-stock-could-be-worth-a-trillion-dollars-51609963298]upwards of $1trn[/url], joining the elite handful of $1trn+ companies that includes Apple ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-AAPL/]AAPL[/url]), Microsoft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-MSFT/]MSFT[/url]), and Alphabet ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-GOOGL/]GOOGL[/url]). Sounds ambitious – even Apple only hit the $1trn mark back in 2018, the [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-45050213]first company[/url] ever to do so. But the figures look promising. Tesla has aggressively invested in production capacity, which [url=https://www.fool.com/investing/2021/01/05/why-teslas-deliveries-are-likely-to-soar-in-2021/]now sits[/url] at 840,000 cars per year, and Musk suggested in the firm’s Q3 2020 [url=https://www.fool.com/earnings/call-transcripts/2020/10/22/tesla-tsla-q3-2020-earnings-call-transcript/]earnings call[/url] that they could hit a million by the end of 2021. The Shanghai gigafactory [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/tesla-starts-model-y-production-shanghai-china-reduces-price-2021-1?r=US&IR=T]started producing[/url] the Model Y from December 31, with the price discounted by a whopping 30%. New vehicle assembly plants in Germany and Texas, expected to complete this year, will also ramp up capacity. There are threats, of course – other auto giants are crowding into the race. General Motors CEO Mary Barra came out fighting on January 5, with plans to hit $1bn in EV sales for 2021. “We are committed to fighting for EV market share until we are number one in North America,” she [url=https://www.ft.com/content/3aa7a6ee-8a18-4cdd-b031-742a237f830c]said[/url]. But will it dampen Tesla’s current bull run? It would be a brave trader to bet against Musk right now – in 2020, shortsellers [url=https://edition.cnn.com/2021/01/06/investing/tesla-shorts-losses-elon-musk-win/index.html]lost[/url] $40.1bn against the firm. Can 2021 bring more of the same? It's looking good for Musk, anyway. He added about $165bn onto his personal fortune in 2020 and in January it finally happened – he [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-01-06/musk-close-to-surpassing-bezos-as-world-s-richest-person?utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter&cmpid=socialflow-twitter-business&utm_campaign=socialflow-organic&utm_content=business&sref=xuVirdpv]surged[/url] past Amazon's Bezos with a net worth of $194.8bn to become the world's richest man. Hey, we called it.
  • Photo: Hans Eiskonen / Unsplash
  • Republican leaders throw weight behind Bitcoin
  • On the back of a cryptocurrency hearing held by the US Congress (prompted by the announcement of Facebook’s new digital currency, Libra a number of Republicans come out in praise of Bitcoin.
  • On the back of a [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/17/technology/facebook-libra-house-hearing.html]cryptocurrency hearing[/url] held by the US Congress (prompted by the announcement of Facebook’s new digital currency, [url=https://www.ft.com/content/cfe4ca11-139a-4d4e-8a65-b3be3a0166be]Libra[/url]) a number of Republicans come out in praise of Bitcoin – taking a radically different stance to their Commander-in-Chief. Although most lawmakers were openly critical of Libra, Bitcoin came in for some surprisingly strong support. Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/16/i-like-bitcoin-says-house-gop-leader-mccarthy-hits-facebook-libra.html]told CNBC[/url] at the time: "I like Bitcoin ... The real thing I like when it comes to Bitcoin is I like blockchain because I like the security. I want the government to start using blockchain.” And during his testimony to the House on July 17, North Carolina Congressman Patrick McHenry [url=https://medium.com/paradigm-fund/crypto-regulation-news-finra-extends-deadline-for-firms-to-report-crypto-activity-chinese-court-382bae998a4b]told[/url] Congress that Bitcoin was “an unstoppable force” and efforts to suppress it were “futile.”
  • A CME partnership to be proud of
  • CME Group (CME), CME begins trading options on its Bitcoin futures contracts.
  • CME Group ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-CME/]CME[/url]), CME [https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/cme-group-announces-jan-13-2020-launch-for-bitcoin-options-300956137.html]begins trading[/url] options on its Bitcoin futures contracts. The next day Bitcoin jumps almost 9% for joy. The launch of contracts on the Chicago-based marketplace was a success which [url=https://www.theblockcrypto.com/post/52891/cme-tops-bakkts-reported-bitcoin-options-volumes-in-one-day]surpassed[/url] rival Bakkt in reported volumes within its first day of trading.
  • A shot in the arm
  • In a massive win for crypto, the EU declares no VAT on Bitcoin trades and rules it a bona fide currency.
  • In a massive win for crypto, the EU [url=https://www.fintechfutures.com/2015/10/eu-high-court-says-bitcoin-not-subject-to-vat-oct-27-2015/]declares no VAT[/url] on Bitcoin trades and rules it a bona fide currency. By comparison, in September the U.S. authorities classified Bitcoin as a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2015/09/18/bitcoin-now-classed-as-a-commodity-in-the-us.html]commodity[/url]. The European decision was as popular as the Queen of England*, and Bitcoin’s new tax-free status brought traders flooding in, pushing the price back up to over $300. *Note: To all the pedants out there, yes, we know that there hasn't actually been a 'Queen of England' since Queen Elizabeth 1 back in 1603, after which the monarch became known as the King or Queen of the United Kingdom. But England sounded better, so we ran with it :)
  • The EU declares no VAT on Bitcoin trades and rules it a bona fide currency. Photo: Markus Spiske / Unsplash
  • Photo: Markus Spiske / Unsplash
  • China charges in
  • China’s foreign minister Wang Yi takes a positive stand. He announces at a conference that people in China are “free to participate in the Bitcoin market,” and promises to “adopt a long-term perspective” on the currency.
  • China’s foreign minister Wang Yi takes a positive stand. He [url=https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/article/1364040/value-virtual-currency-bitcoin-skyrockets#!]announces[/url] at a conference that people in China are “free to participate in the Bitcoin market,” and promises to “adopt a long-term perspective” on the currency. This reassurance did a lot to calm people’s nerves. BTC China (by then the largest Bitcoin exchange in the world) saw trading volumes shoot up while the overall Bitcoin price hopped up from just over $600 to over $1,000. China has always been a major influence on Bitcoin, with Chinese traders keen to embrace its freedoms as an alternative to the highly-controlled domestic currency. As a result, the Chinese authorities have a bit of a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/11/27/china-has-a-love-hate-relationship-with-blockchain-and-crypto.html]love-hate[/url] relationship with the cryptocurrency, and they’ve blown hot and cold over the years when it comes to controlling access. When they do show support though, it can have a massive impact on price and volume.
  • China’s foreign minister Wang Yi announces that people in China are “free to participate in the Bitcoin market.” Photo: Li Yang / Unsplash
  • Photo: Li Yang / Unsplash
  • Breaking the barrier
  • Bitcoin breaks $1,000 again for the first time in three years. It doesn’t stay up there, but the surge of new investors brought in by the constant publicity of the previous few years contributes to a massive bull run over the course of 2017.
  • Bitcoin breaks $1,000 again for the [url=https://www.pymnts.com/news/bitcoin-tracker/2017/bitcoin-breaks-1000/]first time[/url] in three years. It doesn’t stay up there, but the surge of new investors brought in by the constant publicity of the previous few years contributes to a massive [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/08/31/bitcons-nearly-five-fold-climb-in-2017-looks-very-similar-to-tech-bubble-surge.html]bull run[/url] over the course of 2017. It didn’t do too badly in 2016 either – it was, [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoins-performance-against-other-currencies-in-2016-2017-1?r=US&IR=T]according[/url] to Business Insider, the top-performing currency of the year.
  • Bitstamp barrage
  • Hackers break into the Bitstamp exchange through a targeted phishing attack on employee Luka Kodric, gaining access to its servers and stealing almost 20,000 Bitcoins worth over $5 million.
  • Hackers break into the Bitstamp exchange through a targeted [url=https://www.coindesk.com/unconfirmed-report-5-million-bitstamp-bitcoin-exchange]phishing attack[/url] on employee Luka Kodric, gaining access to its servers and stealing almost 20,000 Bitcoins worth over $5 million. The price drops from $264 on January 4 to $171 a week later. It wasn’t the end of the world – it wasn’t even another Mt. Gox. The hackers only stole a small proportion of Bitstamp’s total coins, and the theft didn’t affect any customer accounts or breach the “cold storage” area where most of its assets were kept. What scared people, though, was the systematic social attacks on exchange employees. Six of them were harassed for months in a heavy phishing attack that included constant messages over Skype and numerous emails and attachments. Poor Kodric was finally convinced to download a Word doc, which contained a virus that the hacker used to break into the Bitstamp servers. It was a new type of attack – one that might seem obvious to us now (never open a suspicious file from someone you don’t know) but at the time, it made for a pretty major dent in the currency’s reputation.
  • Bitcoin turns 10
  • It’s been 10 crazy years since the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto mined the first genesis block back on January 3, 2009 – a decade that has seen lawsuits, drug deals, feuds, forks, and a whole load of serious, never-seen-before wealth creation.
  • It’s been [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/01/04/bitcoin-turns-10-the-obscure-technology-that-became-a-household-name.html]10 crazy years[/url] since the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto mined the first genesis block back on January 3, 2009 – a decade that has seen lawsuits, drug deals, feuds, forks, and a whole load of serious, [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-12-31/bitcoin-s-9-000-000-rise-this-decade-leaves-the-skeptics-aghast]never-seen-before[/url] wealth creation for the ordinary citizens of Planet Earth. On its 10th birthday, Bitcoin hits a daily high of $3,893.40. It’s not the stratospheric levels of 2017. But don’t worry, because the best is yet to come.
  • Bitcoin up 100% on the year
  • Oh, how the worm has turned. King Bitcoin hits a high of $15,770 in trading today, a gain of over 10% on yesterday’s close, raking in gains of over 100% since the start of the year and taking it to its highest level in three years.
  • Oh, how the worm has turned. King Bitcoin hits a high of $15,770 in trading today, a gain of over 10% on yesterday’s close, raking in gains of over 100% since the start of the year and taking it to its highest level in three years. Why? Traders seem to think it’s because the Federal Reserve just keeps [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-jumps-above-14-5k-taking-2020-gains-to-over-100]printing money[/url]. As the US election inches nearer and gets ever [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0Gnh4oBVgA%5Dcrazier%5B%2Furl]crazier[/url], the markets are desperately trying to figure out and price in the possibilities. But either way, Bitcoin could be in for a win. "If there is social disorder because of a Trump win, the Fed prints. If the election result is a blue wave and taxes rise, the dollar falls because the Fed prints more, and more and more," Bill Noble, chief technical analyst at Token Metrics, a cryptocurrency research company, told CoinDesk.
  • King Bitcoin gains over 100% since the start of the year, taking it to its highest level in three years. Photo: William Krause / Unsplash
  • Photo: William Krause / Unsplash
  • Bitcoin reaches 88% capacity
  • Bitcoin miners have created more than 18.5 million BTC, totalling 88% of the 21 million limit.
  • Bitcoin miners have [url=https://decrypt.co/43106/the-18-5-millionth-bitcoin-has-now-been-mined]created[/url] more than 18.5 million BTC, totalling 88% of the 21 million limit. But it’s still going to take over a century to hit 100% due to the ongoing halvings, with full capacity expected in 2140. By the way, as of September 2020 there were over 17,000 Bitcoin millionaires. If you’d bought 85 Bitcoins on August 31, 2015, you too could have had $1 million by August 31, 2020. But most of us were probably out sunbathing somewhere instead.
  • Brexitement
  • After gaining almost 50% between June 1–18, driven by the momentum of Brexit, prices lose almost 10% of those gains on June 21 after a poll shows that UK voters are leaning toward remaining in the EU.
  • After gaining almost 50% between June 1 and June 18, driven by the momentum of Brexit, prices lose almost 10% of those gains on June 21 after a [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-06-18/first-brexit-poll-since-jo-cox-killing-shows-remain-in-lead]poll[/url] shows that UK voters are leaning toward remaining in the EU. Bitcoin lost a further 9.92% on June 22, after the poll helped push financial markets and the sterling higher but caused Bitcoin [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2016/06/23/bitcoin-plunges-nearly-25-percent-in-6-days-heres-3-reasons-why-brexit-china-yuan-halving.html]some trouble[/url]. It seems a lot of the [url=https://crypterium.com/en/news/post/will-brexit-affect-bitcoin-and-other-cryptocurrencies]Brexitement[/url] was because of the belief that a No Deal Brexit might soften cryptocurrency regulations. Added to that, the negative impact on both sterling and the euro could [url=https://channels.theinnovationenterprise.com/articles/brexit-could-have-positive-impact-on-bitcoin-and-cryptocurrency-markets]make way[/url] for another player… a digital currency perhaps? In fact, if the EU no longer governs UK regulations, the hope was that the UK might welcome Bitcoin with open arms to help bolster its economy. Either way, people were excited. Imagine their reaction if they’d known just how long the “deal or no deal” business would [url=https://www.politico.eu/article/eu-uk-parliaments-sidelined-as-brexit-talks-drag/]actually go on for[/url]. Though the price took a hit on June 21, it recovered on June 23 when the referendum took place, though not quite to the same highs it was riding earlier in the month.
  • Bitcoin gets a festive boost
  • Bitcoin gets a nice little Xmas present in the form of a 10% jump on the back of positive market movement leading up to the holidays.
  • Bitcoin gets a nice little Xmas present in the form of a 10% jump on the back of positive market movement leading up to the holidays. Guess we’re not the only ones feeling Christmas cheer. The seasonal boost was kind of expected, after [url=https://www.sfox.com/blog/the-sfox-crypto-volatility-report-2018-year-end-edition/]research[/url] from digital currency exchange SFOX showed that Bitcoin usually saw a positive market response heading into holiday time. Also in December, YouTube [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-50924494]banned[/url] all cryptocurrency videos...by mistake. Doh. It later apologized, saying it had made the wrong call.
  • BitPay makes history
  • Bitcoin is making its voice heard all around the world, and BitPay is helping pave the way. The world leader in bitcoin payment processing, BitPay surpasses 10,000 Bitcoin merchant transactions in January, with not a single case of payment fraud.
  • Bitcoin is [url=https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/january-2013-bitcoin-news-roundup-1360089070]making its voice heard[/url] all around the world, and BitPay is helping pave the way. The world leader in bitcoin payment processing, BitPay surpasses [url=https://bitpay.com/blog/bitpay-surpasses-10000-bitcoin-merchant-transactions-zero-cases-of-payment-fraud/]10,000 Bitcoin merchant transactions[/url] in January, with not a single case of payment fraud. Look, [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_jkg6xcetV0]Gepetto[/url], it’s a real live currency! Transactions aren’t the only thing increasing, with Bitcoin gaining over $4 for the month.
  • Coinbase comes to the UK
  • Coinbase, the first licenced Bitcoin exchange in the US, opens its (virtual) doors across the pond, giving Bitcoin a nice little boost after a tumultuous April.
  • Coinbase, the [url=https://www.ccn.com/coinbase-inc-open-first-licensed-bitcoin-exchange-u-s/]first[/url] licenced Bitcoin exchange in the US, opens its (virtual) doors across the pond, giving Bitcoin a nice little boost after a tumultuous April. The Bitcoin payment processor now [url=https://blog.coinbase.com/coinbase-expands-to-the-uk-3f2723100d11?gi=5f9a06957671]allowed[/url] people to transfer from GBP into Bitcoin, and vice versa. It was good timing, because the world had just seen the UK come out in [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-currency-bitcoin-london-insight/london-stakes-its-claim-as-global-bitcoin-hub-idUSKBN0N622320150415]support of digital currencies[/url] in the name of financial innovation. London was also home to Coinscrum, the biggest Bitcoin networking group in the world. After the April decline, the 5.10% price jump was a welcome one.
  • Taproot upgrade to boost privacy
  • Genius Bitcoin developer Pieter Wuille unveils two Bitcoin Improvement Proposals (BIP) that could be the next big upgrade for the cryptocurrency, offering major privacy improvements.
  • Genius Bitcoin developer Pieter Wuille [url=https://finance.yahoo.com/news/pieter-wuille-unveils-two-proposals-221548902.html]unveils[/url] two Bitcoin Improvement Proposals (BIP) that could be the next big upgrade for the cryptocurrency, offering major privacy improvements. The proposals sat within [url=https://medium.com/@nateman/bitcoins-taproot-ccaf26e9ad5f]Taproot[/url], a code change first proposed by developer Greg Maxwell back in 2018 to improve Bitcoin’s privacy. It was formalized by Wuille in May 2019 as a soft fork, bundled together with an upgrade called [url=https://www.coindesk.com/schnorr-upgrade-set-for-inclusion-in-next-bitcoin-cash-hard-fork]Schnorr[/url], which adds a new type of signature. Together, they represented a major step forward for the privacy and scalability of Bitcoin – although there’s still a long way to go, and the full (and very complex) soft fork proposal wasn’t officially formalized until January 2020. Still, the prospect of improved privacy pushed up the price, which rose from a high of $5,755.79 on May 6 to $8,167.50 a week later.
  • Retailers get on board
  • A whole bunch of hopeful retailers get on board with Bitcoin over the summer: including Microsoft (MSFT), Dell (DELL), Braintree (a Paypal PYPL subsidiary), and online shopping giant Overstock (OSTK).
  • A whole bunch of hopeful retailers get on board with Bitcoin over the summer: including Microsoft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-MSFT/]MSFT[/url]), Dell ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-DELL/]DELL[/url]), Braintree (a Paypal ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-PYPL/]PYPL[/url]) subsidiary), and online shopping giant Overstock ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-OSTK/]OSTK[/url]). But this doesn’t stop the long-term price slide, and by the end of the year Bitcoin is back to below $300. In fact, there’s the chance that the big companies were actually the ones pushing the price down. They’d accept Bitcoin as payment but immediately put their holdings back on the market to exchange them back into normal currency, shoving up supply and devaluing Bitcoin.
  • Photo: Jezael Melgoza / Unsplash
  • Bitcoin is born - but who’s the father?
  • Oh Bitcoin, where do we begin with you? The leader in the decade-long rise of cryptocurrency, Bitcoin has changed how global markets work, and made a load of people super rich along the way.
  • Oh Bitcoin, where do we begin with you? The leader in the decade-long rise of cryptocurrency, Bitcoin has changed how global markets work, and made a load of people super rich along the way (and, for a few unlucky ones, significantly poorer too). Little wonder it's one of the most popular symbols on TradingView. The most famous cryptocurrency in the world kicked off on January 3, 2009 with the mining of the genesis block (Block 0), which created 50 Bitcoins. On January 9, Version 0.1 of Bitcoin was [url=http://satoshinakamoto.me/2009/01/09/bitcoin-v0-1-released/]officially released[/url], including the generation system that limits the blockchain to the creation of 21 million Bitcoins by 2040. It was a pretty simple outline, tbh. But the big question is not how, it’s who. The simple answer is: some guy called [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-history-cryptocurrency-satoshi-nakamoto-2017-12?r=US&IR=T]Satoshi Nakamoto[/url]. But damn, it gets way more complicated than that. Satoshi Nakamoto was certainly the name on the [url=https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf]white paper[/url] that first introduced Bitcoin to the world back in 2008. He’s the guy who registered the [url=https://bitcoin.org/en/about-us#own]first Bitcoin.org[/url] website, the guy who mined the first ever Bitcoin block (and hid a [url=https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2018/10/12/bitcoin-easter-egg/]secret line[/url] of text in it poking fun at normal banks), the guy who wrote and modified all the source code for the first couple of years. He’s the guy who did the first ever transaction on January 12, [url=https://www.thestreet.com/investing/bitcoin/bitcoin-history-14686578#:~:text=Just%20a%20few%20days%20into,programmer%20and%20developer%20Hal%20Finney.]sending[/url] 10 Bitcoins from Block 170 to developer Hal Finney. He’s the king of cryptocurrency, the big enchilada. But is he real? Sorry to disappoint you but probably not. Although his [url=https://web.archive.org/web/20120529203623/http://p2pfoundation.ning.com/profile/SatoshiNakamoto]online profile[/url] (back in 2012) claimed to be a 37 year old nerd living in Japan, there’s a whole bunch of evidence to suggest that ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’ was actually a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/10/27/bitcoins-origin-story-remains-shrouded-in-mystery-heres-why-it-matters.html]fake[/url] name – and finding the “real” Satoshi has become the Holy Grail of the Bitcoin universe. From space aliens to a reincarnation of Scientology fantasist Ron L. Hubbard time travelling agent from the future (yes, there’s a [url=https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/6952tf/could_aliens_have_created_bitcoin/]Reddit[/url] on it), a time travelling [url=https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/]agent[/url] from the future, to CIA [url=https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2019/07/19/satoshi-nakamoto-left-bitcoin-because-of-the-cia-theory-cryptocurrency/]operatives[/url], everyone has an opinion. One [url=https://hackernoon.com/elon-musk-probably-invented-bitcoin-9d6c7b7f9c3b]journalist[/url] thinks he’s Elon Musk. Another has suggested notorious drug dealer [url=https://www.wired.com/story/was-bitcoin-created-by-this-international-drug-dealer-maybe/]Paul Le Roux[/url]. Some people think he’s [url=https://medium.com/asecuritysite-when-bob-met-alice/satoshi-was-british-1ba1f75cf09c]British[/url], because he uses British words and often posted in what seemed to be a UK timezone. Most people, however, seem to think it’s one of the original in-crowd of Bitcoin developers. Maybe [url=https://www.coindesk.com/where-is-gavin-andresen-the-quiet-exile-of-bitcoins-former-face]Gavin Andresen[/url], the guy who Nakamoto apparently “[url=https://ricsize.com/flipping-a-bitcoin/]handed over[/url]” the source code to back in 2010 before he mysteriously disappeared. Or [url=https://fortune.com/2018/10/31/satoshi-identity/]Nick Szabo[/url], the flamboyant founder of [url=https://coincentral.com/what-is-bit-gold-the-brainchild-of-blockchain-pioneer-nick-szabo/]Bit Gold[/url] ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BTGUSD/]BTGUSD[/url]), an early precursor to Bitcoin. There have been multiple pretenders to the crown over the years, but so far they’ve all fallen by the wayside – some more heavily than others. With [url=https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/satoshi-net-worth/]over a million[/url] Bitcoins still sitting in Satoshi’s personal wallets (which would make him one of the [url=https://qz.com/1159188/bitcoin-price-approaches-20000-making-satoshi-nakamoto-worth-19-4-billion/]top 50 richest men in the world[/url]) there’s a BIG incentive to reappear – but if he exists, and he’s alive, he ain’t budging. To this day, Satoshi’s identity is still the biggest [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/17/business/decoding-the-enigma-of-satoshi-nakamoto-and-the-birth-of-bitcoin.html]mystery[/url] of Bitcoin 🧐
  • The Genesis Block message: "The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks."
  • Mainstream media makes its move
  • Bitcoin magnate Jerry Brito debuts Bitcoin into mainstream media with an article for Time on the impact the cryptocurrency could have on governments.
  • Bitcoin magnate [url=https://jerrybrito.com]Jerry Brito[/url] debuts Bitcoin into mainstream media with an article for [url=https://techland.time.com/2011/04/16/online-cash-bitcoin-could-challenge-governments/]Time[/url] on the impact the cryptocurrency could have on governments. Basically, by removing the need for a third-party intermediary, Bitcoin allows people to spend their money where they want, without government oversight or approval. In the wake of the Wikileaks scandal (when the US Government allegedly pressured payment providers such as PayPal to freeze funding to the site) this ideological freedom was becoming increasingly important. The very same day, Bitcoin surpassed $1 again, hitting [url=https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/price/]$1.05[/url].
  • Second halving day
  • The second halving cuts another automatic 50%, but because of strong sentiment in the run-up to the split, volatility stays low and the price recovers rapidly.
  • The second Bitcoin [url=https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/how-bitcoin-s-second-halving-came-and-went-and-not-much-happened-1468856719]halving[/url] cuts another automatic 50%, but because of strong [url=https://www.coindesk.com/july-bitcoin-price]bullish[/url] sentiment in the run-up to the split, volatility stays low and the price recovers rapidly.
  • Good news for US banks
  • Good news - US banks can now hold Bitcoin on behalf of their clients, meaning that the traditional main street players can finally get in on the act.
  • Good news - US banks can now hold Bitcoin on behalf of their clients, meaning that the traditional main street players can finally get in on the act. Has crypto made the mainstream? The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) [url=https://www.coindesk.com/banks-in-us-can-now-offer-crypto-custody-services-regulator-says]confirmed[/url] on July 22 that all nationally chartered banks in the U.S. were now allowed to provide custody services for cryptocurrencies. It was a huge deal – although not great news for specialty platforms like Coinbase, who up till now had been the only guys allowed to perform the service.
  • Good news - US banks can now hold Bitcoin on behalf of their clients. Photo: Steve Pancrate / Unsplash
  • Photo: Steve Pancrate / Unsplash
  • Get them to the Greek
  • The past few months see prices generally sitting between $220 and $240, but on June 16 Bitcoin breaks out of the doldrums, spiking to a high of $252.05 on the back of a shaky Greek economy.
  • The past few months see prices generally sitting between $220 and $240, but on June 16 Bitcoin breaks out of the doldrums, spiking to a high of $252.05 on the back of a shaky Greek economy. Yep, really. People thought that the price bump was related to the [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2015/06/29/greek-crisis-stokes-bitcoin-prices-higher.html]state of the Greek economy[/url]. It seems like a wild leap at first, but the Greek economy was not looking good. And if the country defaulted on its loan obligations, bank accounts might be frozen. And in that case, digital currency might be the only way of getting money in and out of the country. See the logic here? Some hoped it meant that the volatile currency had finally [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-price-in-2015-doom-and-gloom-give-way-to-positive-years-end]found a floor[/url], and that it would be all upside from here on out. They were wrong.
  • CFTC crack down
  • In a move that doesn’t impact the price very much but makes unregistered Bitcoin derivatives firms very nervous, Bitcoin is classed as a commodity in the U.S. It’s not seen as good news by the community.
  • In a move that doesn’t impact the price very much but makes unregistered Bitcoin derivatives firms very nervous, Bitcoin is classed as a commodity in the U.S. It’s not seen as good news by the community. The Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) made the decision to class Bitcoin as a commodity along with oil and gold, and in September, ordered options trading platform Coinflip to stop trading as a result – with charges filed against the firm for unlicensed activity. Not cool. [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2015/09/18/bitcoin-now-classed-as-a-commodity-in-the-us.html]The CFTC said[/url] that “while there is a lot of excitement surrounding Bitcoin… innovation does not excuse those acting in this space from following the same rules applicable to all participants in the commodity derivatives markets.”
  • Bitcoin 'laid bare' by board member
  • The Bitcoin Foundation gets a brand new member in March, and it seems that Olivier Janssens’ first order of duty is to divulge a whole load of Bitcoin secrets in a Reddit post, claiming that the Foundation is "effectively bankrupt."
  • The Bitcoin Foundation gets a brand new member in March, and it seems that Olivier Janssens’ first order of duty is to [url=https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/31e6jh/the_truth_about_the_bitcoin_foundation/]divulge a whole load of Bitcoin secrets[/url] in a Reddit post, claiming that the Foundation is "effectively bankrupt" as a result of "two years of ridiculous spending and poorly thought out decisions." It understandably ruffles some feathers. The post was taken down, but the damage had been done. His expose claimed that the [url=https://bitcoinfoundation.org]Bitcoin Foundation[/url] had almost no money left, had fired 90% of its people, and regularly used intimidation tactics to suppress leaks. Now, The Bitcoin Foundation doesn’t necessarily represent Bitcoin, but it works to make Bitcoin globally accepted – and a knock to its reputation is a knock to the currency. The post was released on April 5, and sparked a steady decline that took the price from $260.54 on April 5 down to $215.80 on April 14. Though things started to look up slightly from there, April to June was notable for massive volatility.
  • Black Swan author trashes Bitcoiners
  • Nassim Taleb, outspoken economist and author of books including ‘Skin in the Game’ and ‘Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable’, takes to Twitter to trash-talk Bitcoin investors.
  • Nassim Taleb, outspoken economist and author of books including ‘Skin in the Game’ and ‘Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable’, takes to Twitter to trash-talk Bitcoin investors – although it turns out, he actually thinks Bitcoin itself is a pretty good idea. “Almost all Bitcoiners are total idiots, can’t get nuances beyond fortune cookies,” he, quite meanly, [url=https://twitter.com/nntaleb/status/1274692670502383617?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1274692670502383617%7Ctwgr%5Eshare_3&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fcointelegraph.com%2Fnews%2Fnassim-taleb-almost-all-bitcoiners-are-total-idiots]tweeted[/url]. He was in a slanging match with Bitcoin enthusiast Giacomo Zucco, who believes that Bitcoin needs to be free from state control. It raised an interesting debate around the origins of Bitcoin as a decentralized, libertartion, real-world currency.
  • Outspoken economist Nassim Taleb takes to Twitter to trash-talk Bitcoin investors. Photo: Mattia Astorino / Unsplash
  • Photo: Mattia Astorino / Unsplash
  • People’s Bank of China causing chaos
  • China’s central bank launches a fresh crackdown on cryptocurrencies, and Bitcoin begins a decline.
  • China’s central bank launches a [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-blockchain-shanghai/china-central-bank-cracks-down-on-cryptocurrency-trading-in-shanghai-idUSKBN1XW152]fresh crackdown[/url] on crypto currencies, and Bitcoin begins a decline. The People’s Bank of China also warned people of the risk associated with using or trading cryptocurrency, and prices reached a six-month low.
  • Halving day = happy times
  • Bitcoin undergoes its first halving – when the reward for mining new blocks is slashed by 50% in order to cut the supply of new coins and control inflation.
  • Bitcoin undergoes its first halving – when the reward for mining new blocks is slashed by 50% in order to cut the supply of new coins and control inflation. [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-25/get-set-for-bitcoin-halving-here-s-what-that-means-quicktake]Halvings[/url] are supposed to happen once every 210,000 blocks (about every four years) up to a maximum of 21 million Bitcoins and a reward of $0 – expected to happen around 2140. When demand is high, halvings can push the price up, although market reaction can be tough to predict. This first one was super [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-history-part-24/]successful[/url] though, cutting the mining reward from 50 Bitcoins to 25. It kickstarted a massive run on demand which boosted the price from $12.07 on November 27, 2012 to over $1,012 a year later – a return of more than 8,000%.
  • Happy New Year!
  • The year ends on a whopping great high, with Bitcoin nudging $30,000 (hitting a peak of $29,300 on December 31 and closing the year at $28,992.
  • The year ends on a whopping great high, with Bitcoin nudging $30,000 (hitting a peak of $29,300 on December 31 and closing the year at $28,992. It’s pretty close to what legendary Bitcoin Pundit [url=https://twitter.com/100trillionUSD]PlanB[/url] predicted all along (though slightly short of the $31,000 he thought it might reach by December 2020). However, it showed that the Stock-to-Flow model he uses is [url=https://www.fxstreet.com/cryptocurrencies/news/bitcoin-price-drastic-rise-to-31-000-by-december-2020-exploring-the-btc-s2f-model-202009080843]scarily accurate[/url] a lot of the time. It treats Bitcoin like a traditional commodity such as gold, and compares its current supply volume with its rate of production – meaning that halvings are pretty important events, even if they can come across initially like an anticlimax. And PlanB is even more optimistic about the future. On December 31 he [url=https://twitter.com/100trillionUSD/status/1344603456833728512]predicted[/url] that between now and the next halving (expected in 2024) the average Bitcoin price would sit at $288,000. That’s one hell of a rise.
  • Bitcoin futures
  • The New York Stock Exchange launches its long-awaited market for Bitcoin futures through commodity exchange ICE Futures.
  • The New York Stock Exchange launches its [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/nyse-owner-to-launch-long-awaited-bitcoin-futures-11569153649]long-awaited[/url] market for Bitcoin futures through commodity exchange ICE Futures. Back in 2017 the world’s largest futures exchange, the [url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-CME/]CME[/url], also [https://www.cnbc.com/2017/12/17/worlds-largest-futures-exchange-set-to-launch-bitcoin-futures-sunday-night.html]listed[/url] Bitcoin futures, [https://www.cnbc.com/2017/12/04/cboe-announces-it-will-launch-bitcoin-futures-on-dec-10.html]as did[/url] the CBOE Futures Exchange ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/AMEX-CBOE/]AMEX-CBOE[/url]). This time though, the move sent the price tumbling – possibly due to weak trading volumes. Did you know that as of September 2019 there were 5,457 Bitcoin ATMs worldwide? Top of the list were the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Austria, and Spain.
  • Banks bite back
  • Leading payment platform Paxum drops Bitcoin and starts selling off its Bitcoin assets.
  • Leading payment platform Paxum [url=https://www.paymenteye.com/2012/02/14/paxum-disassociates-itself-with-bitcoin/] drops Bitcoin[/url] and starts selling off its Bitcoin assets. Paxum said that “pressure” from its banking partners was behind the decision. Were mainstream players starting to feel a bit threatened by the Bitcoin boom? The price dipped slightly from $5.50 on February 11 to $4.23 on February 18, but it didn’t seem to put people off too much.
  • Security gaps start to show
  • The crypto-novelty is starting to wear off and people are starting to look for ways to exploit the system. Creating 92 billion Bitcoins out of thin air is one way to do it...
  • The crypto-novelty is starting to wear off and people are starting to look for ways to exploit the system. Creating 92 billion Bitcoins [url=https://medium.com/@jeancvllr/the-value-overflow-incident-in-the-bitcoin-blockchain-15th-august-2010-a59a516e03db]out of thin air[/url] is one way to do it. Given that there’s a limit of 21 million Bitcoins in total that can in theory ever be mined, the massive influx came as a bit of a shock. Bitcoin developer Jeff Garzik first raised the issue on the Bitcointalk.com forum, mildly [url=https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=822.0]pointing out[/url] that: “The "value out" in this block #74638 is quite strange.” His observation would come to be regarded as pretty much the understatement of the year. Basically, someone managed to exploit a flaw in the code (a bug known as a “number overflow error”) that meant they could flood it with an insanely large quantity of bitcoin. It wasn’t exactly fake money, but it sure as hell wasn’t real, and the community went crazy. Amazingly however, they managed to fix it within just five hours - by resetting the blockchain to the last point before the bad transaction, and voiding everything that had been created since. It was a quick fix, but it worked. Which is lucky, because [url=https://www.coindesk.com/9-biggest-screwups-bitcoin-history]according[/url] to Bitcoin Core lead developer Wladimir Van Der Laan, “It was the worst problem ever.”
  • Bitcoin breaks through $10k. Again.
  • Prices had been trading pretty horizontally around $9,000 for a while, but Bitcoin finally breaks out at the end of July with an exciting 11.08% price jump on July 27, taking it surging above $11,000.
  • The currency comes into its own
  • Bitcoin is now accepted by over 100,000 retailers worldwide: including Microsoft (MSFT), Dell (DELL), Wikipedia, Twitch, Greenpeace, Expedia (EXPE) and PayPal (PYPL).
  • Bitcoin is now accepted by over 100,000 retailers worldwide: including Microsoft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-MSFT/]MSFT[/url]), Dell ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-DELL/]DELL[/url]), Wikipedia, Twitch, Greenpeace, Expedia ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-EXPE/]EXPE[/url]) and PayPal ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-PYPL/]PYPL[/url]). The widespread merchant adoption reassures people that Bitcoin has real value as a currency, not just as a digital investment. [url=https://www.coindesk.com/venture-capital-funding-bitcoin-startups-triples-2014]Data[/url] (from Bitcoin payments processor BitPay) also showed that Bitcoin venture capital activity was up by 342% last year, from $96 million in 2013 to $335 million in 2014. Major deals included $40 million for Xapo, $30 million for Blockchain, and $30.5 million for BitPay itself.
  • Silk Road gets seized
  • Remember that secret online black market called Silk Road that uses Bitcoin for shady transactions? In October 2013 the plug is finally pulled, and Bitcoin prices plunge over 18% from $127.30 to $103.85 as a result – hitting a low of $85.
  • Remember that secret online black market called Silk Road that uses Bitcoin for shady transactions? In October 2013 the plug is finally pulled, and Bitcoin prices plunge over 18% from $127.30 to $103.85 as a result – hitting a low of $85. A massive two-year [url=https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ross-ulbricht-dread-pirate-roberts-silk-road-fbi/]FBI sting[/url] led to Ulbricht’s dramatic arrest in the San Francisco Public Library (back in the days when real books were a thing). About 144,000 Bitcoins were seized from his private stash and sold in a blind auction (won by legendary crypto champion [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-bitcoin/venture-capitalist-draper-wins-u-s-bitcoin-auction-idUKKBN0F719920140702]Tim Draper[/url]) and the Dread Pirate is now serving life in prison. He hasn’t thrown in the towel yet though – and he’s still one of Bitcoin’s biggest bulls. Posting from prison, in April 2020 he speculated that Bitcoin could eventually reach a staggering $333 million per coin which, assuming a market limit of 21 million bitcoins, would give a market cap of $7 quadrillion. “That's more than ten times the current GDP of all humanity,” he [url=https://medium.com/@RossUlbricht/bitcoin-by-ross-10-some-clarification-and-long-term-perspective-d227efaa4866]said[/url] on his private Medium account. “So the point is – long term – the sky’s the limit.” Nice to see he hasn’t lost his optimism. Nor did the market. Despite all the drama, Bitcoin rebounded by a solid 13% the day after the arrest.
  • Back with a vengeance
  • After experiencing a dip since March 29, when prices fell over 10% and stayed there, Bitcoin is back with a 14% comeback.
  • After experiencing a [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-recovers-40-from-12-month-low-below-3-9k]dip[/url] since March 29, when prices fell over 10% and stayed there, Bitcoin is back with a 14% comeback. The rally was attributed to an increase in buying volume on the day. Bitcoin had been facing worries about a regulatory [url=https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets/stocks/news/rbi-bans-bitcoin-and-other-virtual-currencies-investors-concerned-for-tax-dues/articleshow/63651548.cms?from=mdr]crack down[/url] and tax-related sell-offs before the April tax deadline. When that passed with no major incident, the market gained a bit of confidence back.
  • Back to basics
  • Welcome to the Bitcoin timeline! Obviously there's a lot more history to the currency from before the rate started being officially tracked on-exchange, so check out the earlier entries below for all the juicy pre-2011 details.
  • It's a great summer for Bitcoin, but by autumn it drops around 90% from its June peak, falling back below $3 to head back into single digits. The crypto-novelty and a wave of [url=https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/10/10/the-crypto-currency]media coverage[/url] over the summer had given the price a push, but a few [url=https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2011/06/bitcoin-price-plummets-on-compromised-exchange/]PR disasters[/url] pushed prices down to a point where it [https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2011/oct/18/bitcoin-value-crash-cryptocurrency]costed more to mine[/url] than what they were worth. Notably, a crash on crypto exchange Mt. Gox due to a compromised user account sent the price from $17 to cents, while a subsequent data breach that circulated the personal details of thousands of Mt. Gox users online did nothing to improve its reputation. It wasn’t going to be the first time that Mt. Gox had problems...
  • With great power comes great responsibility
  • Bitcoin mining pool GHash reaches 51% of all hashing output, giving it the power to sidestep the decentralization of Bitcoin’s blockchain and control a lot of its functions.
  • Bitcoin mining pool [url=https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2014/06/after-reaching-51-network-power-bitcoin-mining-pool-says-trust-us/]GHash[/url] reaches 51% of all hashing output, giving it the power to sidestep the decentralization of Bitcoin’s blockchain and control a lot of its functions. What does that mean? Well, [url=https://blockgeeks.com/guides/what-is-hashing/]hashing[/url] is basically the calculation process that creates a Bitcoin – it’s what miners do to create the individual blocks, which then get added to the chain. If someone controls more than 51% of the hashrate they can get up to all sorts of trouble – like rejecting or even reversing transactions, spending the same coins twice, demanding higher fees, and even denying service to the Bitcoin network. Lots of 51% attacks get launched on crypto networks to try and gain control, and it raises an interesting question around security. GHash weren’t one of the bad guys – CIO Jeffrey Smith [url=https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2014/06/after-reaching-51-network-power-bitcoin-mining-pool-says-trust-us/]promised[/url] they didn’t want to damage Bitcoin, and swore he “never had and never will participate in any 51% attack or double spend.” Later that year the mining pool actually brought miners and developers together in a round table to try and figure out a longer-term solution to the 51% problem. This turned into support for the [url=https://www.coindesk.com/segregated-witness-bitcoin-block-size-debate]Segregated Witness[/url] functionality (more on this later), along with a hard fork to increase the block size limit to 4MB by July 2016.
  • $20k here we come
  • It looks like all the bulls were on the right track when they called $20,000 by the end of 2020 – Bitcoin is so close you can almost taste it.
  • It looks like all the bulls were on the right track when they called $20,000 by the end of 2020. Bitcoin is very nearly there, edging up with a daily high of $19,864 on November 30 before closing the month at $19,700. It doesn’t hurt that everyone is piling in to praise it to the skies. On November 20 Rick Rieder, chief investment officer of global fixed income at BlackRock, the world’s biggest money manager, [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/11/20/blackrocks-rick-rieder-bitcoin-can-replace-gold-to-a-large-extent-.html]said[/url] that Bitcoin was here to stay and could “replace gold.” And on November 30, Alliance Bernstein analyst Inigo Fraser-Jenkins had a change of heart, [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/alliancebernstein-bitcoin-has-role-in-asset-allocation/]telling clients[/url] that Bitcoin had a role to play in asset allocation. It’s still being touted as “digital gold” because of its role in hedging against inflation – but even as [ur;=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-11-30/gold-extends-slump-as-copper-climbs-on-economic-recovery-bets]gold struggles[/url], Bitcoin continues to rise.
  • Photo: Armand Khoury / Unsplash
  • Advertising ban
  • UK banking group Lloyd’s (LLOY) and Virgin Money (LSE-VMUK) ban their customers from using credit cards to buy Bitcoin; while Twitter (TWTR), Google (GOOGL), and Facebook (FB) all outlaw crypto advertising.
  • UK banking group Lloyd’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/LSE-LLOY/]LLOY[/url]) and Virgin Money ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/LSE-VMUK/]LSE-VMUK[/url]) [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/heatherfarmbrough/2018/02/09/why-britains-largest-bank-stopped-customers-buying-bitcoin-with-credit-cards/?sh=7d111aeb4a53]ban[/url] their customers from using credit cards to buy Bitcoin; while Twitter ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-TWTR/]TWTR[/url]), Google ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-GOOGL/]GOOGL[/url]), and Facebook ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-FB/]FB[/url]) all [https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-26/twitter-joins-facebook-google-in-banning-crypto-coin-sale-ads]outlaw[/url] crypto advertising. Although they all ended up [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/26/facebook-is-reversing-its-ban-on-cryptocurrency-ads.html]reversing[/url] their decisions pretty quickly, the blanket bans pushed the price back down below $6,000 by the end of June. An ongoing US Justice [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-24/bitcoin-manipulation-is-said-to-be-focus-of-u-s-criminal-probe]investigation[/url] into crypto price manipulation didn’t help either.
  • “Bitcoin is the future of Twitter” says Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey
  • Speaking at a conference in Norway, the Bitcoin bull (who has previously predicted that it could be the world’s sole currency by 2030), says that Bitcoin future is where “content exists forever, where it doesn’t go away.”
  • Speaking at a conference in Norway, the Bitcoin bull (who has previously predicted that Bitcoin could be the world’s sole currency by 2030), [url=https://markets.businessinsider.com/currencies/news/bitcoin-blockchain-will-shape-twitter-future-dorsey-says-2020-9-1029631121#:~:text=to%20BI%20Prime-,Jack%20Dorsey%20says%20Bitcoin%20and%20blockchain%20will,future%20where%20'content%20exists%20forever'&text=Twitter%20CEO%20Jack%20Dorsey.&text=Bitcoin%20and%20blockchain%20will%20shape%20Twitter's%20future%20through%20a%20decentralized,Freedom%20Forum%202020%20last%20week.]says[/url] that Bitcoin pointed to a future where “content exists forever, where it’s permanent, where it doesn’t go away.” “The whole spirit of Bitcoin... is to provide a trusted system in a distrusted environment, which is the internet,” he said. Meanwhile, the price still hovered around $11,000.
  • Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey says Bitcoin points to a future where “content exists forever, where it’s permanent, where it doesn’t go away.” Photo: Mark Warner / Wikimedia
  • Photo: Mark Warner / Wikimedia
  • Blockchain takeover
  • Bitcoin reaches a closing price of $467.42, its highest since September 2014, after a few weeks of relatively steady overall price performance, despite volatility in daytime trading.
  • Bitcoin reaches a closing price of $467.42, its highest since September 2014, after a few weeks of relatively steady overall price performance, despite volatility in daytime trading. Thoughts are that [url=https://siliconangle.com/2016/04/13/bitcoin-weekly-2016-april-13-storj-beta-added-to-azure-baas-ecosystem-shapeshift-hacked-kraken-series-b-investment/]increased adoption[/url] of cryptocurrency tech in general could be behind the jump. Globally renowned chip maker Intel ([url= https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-INTC/]INTC[/url]) released [http://news.fintech.io/post/102daiu/intel-reveals-its-plan-for-blockchain-technology-with-sawtooth-lake-distributed]plans[/url] to use blockchain technology, new developer of blockchain technology Storj [url=https://storj.io/blog/2016/04/storj-labs-joins-the-microsoft-azure-blockchain-ecosystem/]joined[/url] the Microsoft ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-MSFT/]MSFT[/url]) Azure blockchain, and on April 26 the UK [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-government-blockchain/britain-looking-at-blockchain-for-tracking-taxpayer-money-payments-idUKKCN0XN1KT?edition-redirect=uk]revealed[/url] plans to use blockchain to track taxpayer money.
  • Crypto crash
  • It’s a bad month. Starting August at $7,726.85, Bitcoin fell to just $5,880 by August 14.
  • It’s a bad month. Starting August at $7,726.85, Bitcoin fell to just $5,880 by August 14. In fact, it was a rubbish month for cryptocurrencies in general, which [url=https://bitcurate.medium.com/crypto-carnage-august-2018-why-did-more-than-70-of-cryptocurrency-prices-crash-cfcbcf2a33f]lost[/url] about 70% overall. It raised fears over the mental health of all the amateur traders and investors losing money hand over fist as the markets hit panic mode, with [url=https://finance.yahoo.com/news/crypto-market-crash-prompts-suicide-concerns-135248250.html]reports[/url] of increased depression and suicides. Not very cheerful news.
  • Naysayers come out in force
  • After such a show-stopping December, there were high hopes for Bitcoin in 2018, but after the currency lost over $3,500 in early March, the mood shifted.
  • After such a [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/business-42260211]show-stopping December[/url], there were high hopes for Bitcoin in 2018, but after the currency lost over $3,500 in early March, the mood shifted. Some started proclaiming that the rapid drop in price was the work of a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/14/bitcoin-bubble-just-about-to-burst-major-money-manager-says.html]bubble[/url] that had to eventually burst. But there were also those who [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/francescoppola/2018/03/20/bitcoins-bubble-is-bursting-how-low-will-prices-fall/?sh=52aebb10724e]compared it to the Wall Street Crash[/url] of 1929. Was the rally just a blip before the whole thing came tumbling down? Clearly, the answer was no, but peeps didn't know that back then. Even Mr Bill Gates, who in 2014 was bullish on crypto, changed his tune and [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-43239781]said it was causing deaths[/url] in a “fairly direct way” because of its links to terrorist funding and money laundering. Seems a bit melodramatic, but OK.
  • After the currency lost over $3,500 in early March, the naysayers came out in force. Photo: 傅甬 华 / Unsplash
  • Photo: 傅甬 华 / Unsplash
  • China changes its tune
  • China does a U-turn on Bitcoin. The Chinese central bank bans financial institutions and payment companies from using the currency, leading to a surprise collapse.
  • China does a U-turn on Bitcoin. The Chinese central bank [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2013-12-05/china-s-pboc-bans-financial-companies-from-bitcoin-transactions]bans[/url] financial institutions and payment companies from using the currency, leading to a surprise collapse. Buying real goods with virtual currency has been illegal in China since 2009, but internet giants like Baidu ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-BIDU/]BIDU[/url]) and YeePay were still accepting Bitcoin for a whole bunch of services. The 2013 ban stopped all that, and the central bank [url=https://apnews.com/article/fdc84d52e81a4b8c964a9e3af72893f6]declared[/url] that Bitcoin was not a currency but an asset. That made it liable for a bunch of new taxes, and people weren’t happy. In the same month [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-25428866]BTC China[/url], the country’s biggest crypto exchange, stopped accepting deposits in Yuan. Although the currency remained legal for individuals to trade, without third party payment providers such as BTC, activity practically ceased overnight. Remember how we said China was a massive influence on Bitcoin? It lost almost half its value, falling from $1,131.76 on December 4 to close at $693.30 on December 7. It wouldn’t close out at $1,000 again for another three years.
  • Bitcoin loses currency status
  • Disaster. Following in the footsteps of China, America’s IRS decides that Bitcoin is property rather than currency – opening it up to capital gains tax.
  • Disaster. Following in the footsteps of China, America’s IRS [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2014/03/25/irs-says-bitcoin-is-property-rather-than-currency.html]decides[/url] that Bitcoin is property rather than currency – opening it up to capital gains tax. The move struck a blow to the crypto’s original ideals of freedom and decentralization. The loss of faith triggered a loss in value – around a third over the following month, from over $600 on March 10 to just over $400 in mid-April.
  • Russia joins the crowd
  • Russia suggests that it might legalize the use of cryptocurrencies – a pretty major deal for Bitcoin, which sees an immediate price jump.
  • Russia suggests that it might [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-10/russia-caves-in-on-bitcoin-to-open-new-front-on-money-laundering]legalize[/url] the use of cryptocurrencies – a pretty major deal for Bitcoin, which sees an immediate price jump. It’s a big turnaround from the previous year, when Russian authorities said that anyone caught trading cryptocurrencies could be [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-04-28/russian-law-would-send-bitcoin-users-to-jail-as-cybercriminals]jailed[/url]. Why? Some cynical people think it could be to avoid sanctions on traditional banking channels, while others think it could be down to the Bitcoin benefits of speed, security and transparency. Either way, it took a while to happen – President Putin finally [https://www.coindesk.com/putin-signs-russian-crypto-bill-into-law]signed the bill[/url] to legalize cryptocurrency in August 2020. It allowed people to trade Bitcoin, but banned its use as a means of payment.
  • Russia suggests that it might legalize the use of cryptocurrencies. Photo: Felipe Simo / Unsplash
  • Photo: Felipe Simo / Unsplash
  • Operation Crypto-Sweep
  • Bitcoin just keeps falling, losing all of its recent May gains. Both the U.S. and Canadian governments also announce major plans for a crack-down on crypto investment schemes in what was named “Operation Crypto-Sweep.”
  • Bitcoin just keeps falling, losing all of its recent May gains. [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/11/bitcoin-could-soar-after-blockchain-week-new-york-crypto-analyst-says.html]Analysts were bullish[/url] leading up to the last week of the month, which saw Blockchain Week take place in New York, but expectations were hit and miss and the price dropped from $8,518.64 to $7,471.18 during the week. [url=http://tokensummit.com/blockchain-week-new-york/]Blockchain Week New York[/url] is a big deal in the cryptocurrency world, and for the last three years Bitcoin has seen a rise following the event, so it wasn’t completely unlikely that it would do the same this year. Bitcoin wasn’t the only cryptocurrency in trouble, with regulatory concerns pressuring the whole market. That week, both the U.S. and Canadian governments [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/21/state-regulators-crack-down-on-cryptocurrency-investment-schemes.html]announced[/url] major plans for a crack-down on crypto investment schemes in what was named “Operation Crypto-Sweep.” At least 70 investigations were already underway, adding onto the SEC’s efforts to bring a bunch of [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/23/bitcoin-drops-9-percent-now-back-below-8000.html]fraud cases[/url] against Bitcoin operators. The movement started a decline that lasted well into June.
  • Both the U.S. and Canadian governments announce major plans for a crack-down on crypto investment schemes in what was named “Operation Crypto-Sweep.” Photo: Michael Discenza / Unsplash
  • Photo: Michael Discenza / Unsplash
  • Gotcha
  • Now, there have been a couple of April Fool’s jokes that have gone wrong before in the tech world. This time though, a joke has the opposite effect, and Bitcoin gets a bump on the back of it.
  • Now, there have been a [url=https://mashable.com/article/april-fools-2019-tech-companies/]couple of[/url] April Fool’s jokes that have gone wrong before in the tech world (Elon Musk [url=https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/980566101124722688]springs to mind[/url]). So you’d think by now they would have figured out that the markets don’t like surprises. This time though, a joke had the opposite effect, and Bitcoin got a bump on the back of it. An April Fool’s article from Finance Magnates [url=https://www.financemagnates.com/cryptocurrency/news/sec-drops-the-bomb-approves-bitcoin-etfs-markets-skyrocket/]pretended[/url] that the SEC had finally approved the long-awaited Bitcoin-based ETFs. The post was taken down PDQ, but prices had already begun to climb – and even though the story wasn’t true, they didn’t fall either. There was some [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-15/-flash-boys-trading-bots-are-running-wild-on-crypto-exchanges]speculation[/url] that this was because of Bitcoin trading bots, or that automatic keyword searches by traders got people ahead of themselves, but either way it was a great boost for Bitcoin, which carried on with this impressive momentum well into the year.
  • Photo: Levi-Saunders / Unsplash
  • Greenback parity
  • Bitcoin reaches US$1, hits the headlines for all the right reasons. 📰🗞️ Sadly, it falls back down below the line pretty quickly.
  • Bitcoin reaches US$1, hits the headlines for all the right reasons. 📰🗞️ Sadly, it falls back down below the line pretty quickly. Pricecheck: If you’d bought $100 of Bitcoin on February 9, 2011, by February 9, 2020 you’d have had $974,700. That’s enough to buy a super rare copy of the legendary 1941 [url=https://www.sellmycomicbooks.com/all-star-comics-8.html]edition[/url] of All-Star Comics #8 – the first one ever to feature Wonder Woman 🦸🏻‍♀
  • Bitcoin reaches US$1, hits the headlines for all the right reasons. Photo: NeONBRAND / Unsplash
  • Bitcoin-China breakup
  • Bitcoin and China feel like that couple that keeps breaking up, bad-mouthing the other, and then getting back together again. Well, they’re back in the break-up phase, with China’s largest exchanges blocking people from withdrawing their Bitcoins.
  • Bitcoin and China feel like that couple that keeps breaking up, bad-mouthing the other, and then getting back together again. They’re back in the break-up phase right now though, with two of China’s largest Bitcoin exchanges [https://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-price-february-9-2017-2017-2]blocking[/url] people from withdrawing their Bitcoins. It sends Bitcoin crashing down. The news came following a [https://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-price-february-8-2017-2017-2]meeting[/url] between the People’s Bank of China and the Bitcoin exchanges. The announcement was particularly hard-hitting because China dominated Bitcoin trading at the time, with [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-trading-china-yuan-remnibi-2017-1]almost 100%[/url] of Bitcoin exchanges taking place on Chinese exchanges.
  • Two of China’s largest Bitcoin exchanges block people from withdrawing their Bitcoins. Photo: Xiaokang Zhang/ Unsplash
  • Photo: Xiaokang Zhang/ Unsplash
  • Bitcoin traders dominate the market
  • As of June 2020 11.4 million BTC (about $107bn) are held by long-term investors, reducing the tradeable supply to just 20%.
  • As of June 2020 11.4 million BTC (about $107bn) are [url=https://blog.chainalysis.com/reports/bitcoin-market-data-exchanges-trading]held by long-term investors[/url], reducing the tradeable supply to just 20%. But, says Chainalysis, it’s the 3.5 million that are being actively traded that supply the market and therefore support the price. “Retail traders, whom we categorize as those who deposit less than $10,000 worth of Bitcoin on exchanges at a time, appear to be the large majority, accounting for 96% of all transfers sent to exchanges on an average weekly basis,” [url=https://blog.chainalysis.com/reports/bitcoin-market-data-exchanges-trading]found the report[/url]. “Professional traders, however, control the liquidity of the market, accounting for 85% of all the USD value of Bitcoin value sent to exchanges.”
  • The Bitcoin Foundation
  • The Bitcoin Foundation launches, with the main aim of promoting the uptake of the new currency.
  • The Bitcoin Foundation [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/jonmatonis/2012/09/27/bitcoin-foundation-launches-to-drive-bitcoins-advancement/?sh=1928b3e1d868]launches[/url] with the main aim of promoting the uptake of the new currency. Prices don’t move much on the day, but it’s a big step.
  • Emoji success
  • Bitcoin makes it to the bigtime. In February, the currency gets its own emoji – revealed by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
  • Bitcoin makes it to the bigtime. In February, the currency gets [url=https://twitter.com/jack/status/1223841364711854080?lang=en]its own emoji[/url] – revealed by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
  • A knack for getting hacked
  • Reuters gets a scoop, and it’s not pretty. According to the data, a third of Bitcoin trading platforms have been hacked at some point, and the risk for Bitcoin holders is doubled because there’s no such thing as depositors insurance for cyber theft.
  • Reuters gets a scoop, and it’s not pretty. [https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bitcoin-cyber-analysis-idUSKCN11411T]According to the data[/url], a third of Bitcoin trading platforms have been hacked at some point, and the risk for Bitcoin holders is doubled because there’s no such thing as depositors insurance for cyber theft. However, this comes as a shock to exactly nobody after the whole [https://www.cnbc.com/2016/08/04/bitfinex-hack-could-shake-faith-in-bitcoin.html]Bitfinex[/url] ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/QUANDL-BITFINEX/BTCUSD/]BITFINEX/BTCUSD[/url]) fiasco earlier this year, and prices hardly move. Not much seems to have changed since then either – by 2020 more than [url=https://insidebitcoins.com/news/over-11-billion-has-been-hacked-from-crypto-exchanges-new-timeline-reveals/247510]$11 billion[/url] had been stolen from ‘secure’ crypto exchanges, wallets and mining platforms. You could buy an [url=https://www.bluewateryachting.com/blog/10-islands-you-can-buy-for-less-than-10-million-36]island or two[/url] with that.
  • It’s finally happened!
  • Crack open the champagne and break out the party hats, because Bitcoin has only gone and done it – we've broken through the $20,000 barrier.
  • Crack open the champagne and break out the party hats, because Bitcoin has only gone and done it. Yes, on December 16 the cryptocurrency blows past the $20,000 barrier, barely stopping to say hello before charging on up to reach a record-breaking high of $21,576 – a yearly gain of over 180%. Double whoop. It doesn’t stop there. The currency just keeps on climbing, passing $24,000 on December 21 and $26,000 on December 26. Jeff Dorman, Chief Investment Officer at digital asset investment giant Arca, [url=https://www.coindesk.com/what-this-digital-asset-investment-firm-missed-and-capitalized-on-in-2020]summarized[/url] the situation pretty well, we think. “Bitcoin has graduated from “digital assets playground” to “mainstream global investment”,” he told CoinDesk. “Investors now have the knowledge and means to buy bitcoin themselves, and we are seeing it in real time, which happened quicker than we anticipated.” However, he warned against fund managers jumping too enthusiastically onto the bandwagon. “Very soon, investors will specifically seek out digital asset hedge fund strategies that don’t own any Bitcoin, as they want fund managers to give them exposure to assets that they can’t buy themselves, or don’t know exist. As a result, there is a good chance that actively managed hedge funds and passive indexes built around high allocations to Bitcoin have a very short shelf life.”
  • Uh oh... down we go...
  • Bitcoin begins a slide backwards. Cryptocurrencies as a whole have a bad week, with almost $200bn wiped off the market in a single day. But don't panic – looks can be deceiving.
  • Bitcoin begins a slide backwards. Cryptocurrencies as a whole have a bad week, with almost $200bn [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/jonathanponciano/2021/01/11/crypto-market-erases-200-billion-in-market-value-in-24-hours-regulator-warns-investors-could-lose-all-their-money/?sh=6046d9a3913b]wiped[/url] off the market in a single day. Bitcoin loses around 17%, falling back down to a low of $30,261 on January 11 and closing at $35,455.58. Part of the problem was that that regulators were running scared – in the UK, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) [url=https://www.fca.org.uk/news/news-stories/fca-warns-consumers-risks-investments-advertising-high-returns-based-cryptoassets]warned[/url] that people investing in cryptoassets “should be prepared to lose all their money” This went down, unsurprisingly, like a lead balloon in the market, and Bitcoin alone lost about $125bn in market value within 24 hours. It wasn’t the first time the FCA had taken a stand against crypto either - back in October 2020, it [url=https://www.coindesk.com/uks-ban-on-crypto-derivatives-goes-into-effect-today]banned[/url] the sale of crypto-derivatives to retail consumers in the UK. Not everyone is worried though. Upwards cycles usually go through corrections, and a 30% drop was only to be expected, [url=https://cointelegraph.com/news/does-a-stronger-dollar-mean-bitcoin-price-is-destined-to-lose-30k]said[/url] some observers, with a $30,000 price support even suggesting more potential upside for the future. Optimistic thinking – let’s hope it happens.
  • Bitcoin gets a May-jor boost
  • The second halving is coming up. People are excited, and Bitcoin is reaping the benefits.
  • The [url=https://theconversation.com/bitcoin-halving-qanda-what-its-all-about-and-what-it-means-for-the-cryptocurrency-138570]second halving[/url] is coming up. People are excited, and Bitcoin is reaping the benefits. With a 10% price hike on May 28 it’s looking to be one for the books. There were a few [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-price-20-percent-biggest-monthly-gain]different[/url] ideas about what exactly caused the May boost, but it was most probably a combination of a few different things. Rival currency [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/28/business/dealbook/ethereum-a-virtual-currency-enables-transactions-that-rival-bitcoins.html]Ethereum[/url] had entered the market a few months before and was drawing more attention to the digital currency ecosystem globally, as well as finally providing Bitcoin with some real competition. Anticipation was also growing for the upcoming [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-halving-2016-will-price-rise-fall]halving[/url], and the possibility of Brexit was creating some excitement for the UK market, with the possibility that a split from the EU could [url=https://crypterium.com/en/news/post/will-brexit-affect-bitcoin-and-other-cryptocurrencies]benefits[/url] the digital currency. Having started the month at $448.43, May closed at $531.84, and June only got better.
  • Photo: Jen Theodore / Unsplash
  • SEC rejects Bitcoin ET
  • Bitcoin isn’t having a great time of it, and in July the SEC rejected yet another Winklevoss application for a Bitcoin ET, sending prices down around 3%.
  • Bitcoin isn’t having a great time of it, and in July the SEC [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/26/winklevoss-twins-bitcoin-etf-rejected-by-sec.html]rejected[/url] yet another Winklevoss application for a Bitcoin ET, sending prices down around 3%. And the issues with the SEC weren’t over, becoming a [url=https://coinsavage.com/content/2018/09/what-caused-the-bitcoin-dump-on-september-5th/]contributor[/url] to the volatility that Bitcoin experienced for the rest of the year.
  • Bitcoin economy tops $1m
  • It might be slow, but it’s growing. On November 6, the total market cap of Bitcoin tops $1 million for the first time ever.
  • It might be slow, but it’s growing. On November 6, the total market cap of Bitcoin [url=https://www.itpro.co.uk/strategy/28758/what-is-the-value-of-bitcoin#:~:text=Over%20the%20next%20few%20years,2010%2C%20valued%20at%20%240.50%20BTC.]tops[/url] $1 million for the first time ever. It was calculated by multiplying the total number of Bitcoins in circulation with the price of the last trade of the day on MtGox, valued at $0.50.
  • Growing pains
  • Get set for a couple months of incredible growth. Bitcoin goes from $928.10 on March 25 to $2,954.22 at the close of June 11.
  • Get set for a couple months of [url=https://www.coindesk.com/900-20000-bitcoins-historic-2017-price-run-revisited]incredible growth[/url]. Bitcoin goes from $928.10 on March 25 to $2,954.22 at the close of June 11. But growth doesn’t come without growing pains, and it slides way back down amid a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/15/bitcoin-tumbles-12-percent-erases-gains-for-june.html]broader[/url] sell-off in digital currencies. The suffering doesn’t last too long though, and shortly after a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/17/in-relief-rally-bitcoin-jumps-more-than-20-percent-from-june-low.html]relief rally[/url] brings prices back up from a low of $2,120 on June 15 to $2,740 on June 20.
  • Bitcoin predicted to double
  • Well-known Bitcoin bull Mike Novogratz, CEO of crypto merchant bank Galaxy Digital, tells CNBC’s Closing Bell that if the Bitcoin price doesn’t double by October (from a high of $7,236.39 on 2 April) and reach $20,000 again by the end of the year.
  • Well-known Bitcoin bull Mike Novogratz, CEO of crypto merchant bank Galaxy Digital, tells CNBC’s Closing Bell that if the Bitcoin price doesn’t double by October (from a high of $7,236.39 on 2 April) and reach $20,000 by the end of the year, he’ll “hang up his spurs” and might even give up on the currency. “This is the year of Bitcoin,” he [url=https://twitter.com/cnbcclosingbell/status/1245801607914233858?lang=en]promises[/url]. He’s not the only one. Optimistic predictions abound this year, despite the pressures of the pandemic. The 10th edition of the Crypto Research Report (CRR) in June 2020 was also [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-price-20k-2020-398k-2030/]super enthusiastic[/url]. Using the “equation of exchange” model, which estimates a target price based on “certain assumptions regarding changes in supply and demand,” it [url=https://cryptoresearch.report/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Crypto-Research-Report-June-2020-ENG.pdf]predicted[/url] the price of Bitcoin to rise to $19,044 in 2020, $341,000 in 2025, and $397,727 in 2030. A 35-fold gain in five years? We’d take that.
  • Photo: Chan / Unsplash
  • Bitcoin Gold trips at launch
  • Bitcoin takes another hard fork to create Bitcoin Gold (BTGUSD), in an ambitious bid to bring the currency back to its decentralized roots.
  • Bitcoin takes another hard fork to create [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/10/25/bitcoin-gold-price-plunges-what-is-hard-fork.html]Bitcoin Gold[/url] ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BTGUSD/]BTGUSD[/url]), in an ambitious bid to bring the currency back to its decentralized roots. The aim was to reform the mining process in favor of smaller players. Nice idea, but sadly it didn’t work that well in practice – the new currency lost over 60% in its first few hours of trading. It’s still going however – hang on in there Bitcoin Gold ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BTGUSD/]BTGUSD[/url]).
  • Coinapult is compromised
  • Coinapult, the service that lets you secure the value of your Bitcoin in fiat, is ironically hacked.
  • Coinapult, the service that lets you secure the value of your Bitcoin in fiat, is ironically [url=https://cointelegraph.com/news/150btc-coinapult-hack-renews-doubts-about-security-fundamentals]hacked[/url]. Hackers managed to get into the platform on March 17 and steal around 150 Bitcoins, worth $43,000. A terrible Tuesday indeed. Access to the site had to be disabled and everyone was warned off sending Bitcoin (and reminded of its dangers). Chinese bitcoin exchange BTER also had a cold wallet [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bter-bitcoin-stolen-cold-wallet-hack]hacked[/url] earlier in the year, losing over 7,000 bitcoin; and an [https://siliconangle.com/2015/03/18/bitcoin-weekly-2015-march-18-rakuten-accepting-bitcoin-payments-coinbase-chief-compliance-officer-resigns-exchanges-coinapult-and-allcrypt-hacked/]AllCrypt hack[/url] also led to a BTC42 loss. Looks like the security concerns were getting to people – on news of the hack there was an overnight drop of almost 10%.
  • Bitcoin tops a record-breaking $20,089, and closes the day at an all-time high of $19,783.06.
  • Bitcoin tops a [url=https://fortune.com/2017/12/17/bitcoin-record-high-short-of-20000/]record-breaking[/url] $20,089, and closes the day at an all-time high of $19,783.06. In a hilarious story to end the year with, some guy called James Howells threw away an old hard drive that contained a wallet with 7,500 Bitcoins on it – worth upwards of $127 million. It ended up in a landfill site, and his local council [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/12/20/man-lost-127-million-worth-of-bitcoins-and-city-wont-let-him-look.html]wouldn’t let him look for it[/url]. Sucks for James.
  • The Wright saga continues
  • Remember Craig Wright, that Australian crypto guy who claimed to be Satoshi Nakamoto back in 2015, to a somewhat sceptical community that basically pushed back with: “er, no you’re not?” Yeah, well he’s back – and he’s not happy.
  • Remember Craig Wright, that Australian crypto guy who [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-36168863]claimed[/url] to be Satoshi Nakamoto back in 2015, to a [url=https://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-bitcoin-craig-wright-20190620-story.html] somewhat sceptical[/url] community who basically pushed back with: “er, no you’re not?” Yeah, well he’s back – and he’s not happy. Wright, who claims to be the sole inventor of Bitcoin, now says that the Bitcoin Core developer team are infringing on his intellectual property by making changes to the database. In a [url=https://craigwright.net/blog/law-regulation/forking-and-passing-off/]blog post[/url] on 13 February 2020 he wrote: “As the sole creator of Bitcoin, I own full rights to the Bitcoin registry. People can fork my software and make alternative versions. But, they have no rights to change the protocol using the underlying database.” He also [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/craig-wrights-100b-theft-btc-bch-database/]threatened[/url] to take legal action against both Bitcoin Core (the group that maintains and develops bitcoin) and Bitcoin ABC (which does the same for Bitcoin Cash ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BCHUSD/]BCHUSD[/url]). He hasn’t. But he might. It all makes for good watching.
  • SegWit takes off
  • The controversial Segregated Witness [SegWit] software upgrade is approved – oddly enough, sparking a slight dip in price, perhaps as traders price in the possible impact.
  • The controversial Segregated Witness [SegWit] software upgrade is [url=https://www.coindesk.com/50-blocks-segwit-bitcoins-coming-upgrade-blockchain-game-changer]approved[/url] – oddly enough, sparking a slight dip in price, perhaps as traders price in the possible impact. The upgrade was [url=https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/segwit/]designed[/url] to improve a number of longstanding issues within Bitcoin. First, the issue of ‘transaction malleability’ – the bug that brought Mt. Gox [url=https://www.coindesk.com/study-finds-mt-gox-lost-386-bitcoins-due-transaction-malleability]to its knees[/url] back in 2014. But perhaps more importantly, the debate around scalability and block size. SegWit [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/08/09/bitcoin-segwit-milestone-paves-way-for-lightning-network.html]enabled[/url] the creation of a new payment protocol, the Lightning Network, which allowed almost unlimited numbers of instant and cheap transactions to take place “off-chain”. Although not fully activated until late August, the SegWit upgrade was hugely popular and supported by 100% of Bitcoin mining pools. World domination was pretty much inevitable.
  • Living on a Bitcoin
  • Amidst the rising hype, Forbes journalist Kashmir Hill decides to challenge herself to live only on Bitcoin, for a whole week.
  • Amidst the rising hype, Forbes journalist Kashmir Hill decides to challenge herself to not just buy the currency, but to [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill/2013/05/01/living-on-bitcoin-for-a-week-the-journey-begins/?sh=4eb9edf03520]live on it for a week[/url]. It went surprisingly well. She went onto Coinbase, bought 5 Bitcoins at $126.69 each (which were worth $142 each by the time they arrived a few days later) and set to work. Turned out it could actually be done – or just about, barring a fussy landlord who didn’t think Bitcoin was a good substitute for rent. But it wasn’t easy.
  • Forbes journalist Kashmir Hill decides to challenge herself to not just buy the currency, but to live on it for a week. Photo: Kam Idris / Unsplash
  • Photo: Kam Idris / Unsplash
  • Bearwhale breaks the bank
  • A random trader offloads the biggest deal Bitcoin has ever seen. He tries to sell 30,000 coins on the Bitstamp exchange at a limit price of $300, well below the current mid-300s trading price.
  • A random trader offloads the biggest deal Bitcoin has ever seen. He tries to sell 30,000 coins on the Bitstamp exchange at a limit price of $300, well below the current mid-300s trading price. The [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2014/10/09/bitcoins-bearwhale-and-the-future-of-a-cryptocurrency.html]‘Bearwhale’[/url] confuses the market – why so much? Why so cheap? – and the price wobbles for a moment. But, crucially, only for a moment. This one can actually be counted as a win – pretty much the whole amount was absorbed, and the price regained stability quicker than a first time lover. Some people think the size of the $9 million cut-price deal was a deliberate ploy to raise profile and draw new buyers into the market, which might have helped to absorb the volume. Either way, the whole [url=https://bravenewcoin.com/insights/the-legacy-of-bitcoins-bearwhale]“slaying of the Bearwhale”[/url] thing has become legendary in the Bitcoin universe, inspiring a whole range of mythology, poetry and art immortalizing his madness. Who doesn’t love a good meme?
  • PayPal accepts Bitcoin, price hits record high
  • Bitcoin prices are staying steady at around $10,500-11,000: up about 50% on the year, but not setting the world on fire.
  • Bitcoin prices are staying steady at around $10,500-11,000: up about 50% on the year, but not setting the world on fire. And then suddenly, everything changes. On October 21, PayPal [url=https://newsroom.paypal-corp.com/2020-10-21-PayPal-Launches-New-Service-Enabling-Users-to-Buy-Hold-and-Sell-Cryptocurrency]launches[/url] a new service allowing its 346 million customers to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrency directly from their PayPal account, as well as using it as a funding source across its 26 million merchants. That’s a very big deal indeed, and Bitcoin jumps over 7% straight away to break $12,000 for the first time since August, hitting a record high for 2020 so far. “It’s the sheer scale of PayPal’s reach that is attracting the headlines. This could well go down in history as a watershed moment, the point at which bitcoin goes properly mainstream,” [url=https://www.coindesk.com/first-mover-markets-ugly-bitcoiners-secular-trend]said[/url] Jason Deane, an analyst for cryptocurrency analysis firm Quantum Economics. PayPal marked a turning point in the market, and former skeptics pile on board to boost Bitcoin’s rep. On October 26, JP Morgan [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-gold-millennials-jpmorgan-price?utm_source=newsletters&utm_medium=firstmover&utm_campaign=&clid=00Q1I00000LtNYcUAN]wrote[/url] that Bitcoin had “considerable price upside” – a pretty big U-turn from the days when CEO Jamie Dimon [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/12/20/jp-morgan-ceo-jamie-dimon-in-2017-calls-bitcoin-a-fraud.html]called[/url] the currency a “fraud.”
  • And hacked again
  • Bitcoinica, one of the first Bitcoin exchanges, is hit again with the theft of 18,000 Bitcoins.
  • Bitcoinica, one of the first Bitcoin exchanges, is hit again with the theft of 18,000 Bitcoins. Having managed to survive the impact of the March Linode hack, this sends them over the edge and the exchange [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-exchange-thefts-forgotten/]shuts down[/url] in the face of a $460,000 lawsuit from users. The shock value of Bitcoin hacks may be starting to wear off though, as the price didn’t move much. These early investors were hella loyal.
  • Hacker heist
  • Private server network Linode is hacked. Almost 50,000 Bitcoins are stolen from the e-wallets of customers including Gavin Andresen, Bitcoin’s lead developer – a bit embarrassing all round.
  • Private server network Linode is [url=https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2012/03/bitcoins-worth-228000-stolen-from-customers-of-hacked-webhost/]hacked[/url]. Almost 50,000 Bitcoins are stolen from the e-wallets of customers including Gavin Andresen, Bitcoin’s lead developer – a bit embarrassing all round. This is one of the first, but certainly not the last, headline-grabbing thefts to bring Bitcoin into the public eye. But hey, that’s what you get with a decentralized system – everyone wants to test it. The high-profile hack coincided with the growing popularity of Hacker culture, boosted by Mark Zuckerberg’s [url=https://www.wired.com/2012/02/zuck-letter/]letter to investors[/url] ahead of Facebook ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-FB/]FB[/url])’s 2012 IPO in which he praised “the Hacker Way.” In it, he claimed that “the vast majority of hackers I've met tend to be idealistic people who want to have a positive impact on the world.” Probably not the guys who hacked Linode though, to be fair 🤷.
  • Poodlemania ($10 ceiling)
  • It’s party time, as Bitcoin breaks $10. If you’d bought $100 of Bitcoin on August 15, 2011, by August 15, 2020 you’d have had $117,763.
  • It’s party time, as Bitcoin breaks $10. If you’d bought $100 of Bitcoin on August 15, 2011, by August 15, 2020 you’d have had $117,763. That’s enough to buy 147 pedigree poodle puppies, in case you’re looking for new friends. 🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩🐩
  • Happy wife, happy price
  • Bitcoin announces its Hollywood debut on hit TV show, “The Good Wife”, which is set to air a “Bitcoin for Dummies” TV episode.
  • Bitcoin announces its Hollywood debut on hit TV show, “The Good Wife”, which is set to air a [url=https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2148561/]“Bitcoin for Dummies”[/url] TV episode. The initial announcement sent the price up 10% as people got excited. When the episode finally aired on January 15, 2012, the price rose even further, by more than 13%. Ah, the allure of the silver screen.
  • The Good Wife cast. Photo: The Peabody Awards / Unsplash
  • Bitcoin takes a tumble
  • After starting the year at $13.24 and reaching heights of $235.29 in April, prices close at a low of $66.93 on July 5.
  • After starting the year at $13.24 and reaching heights of $235.29 in April, prices close at a low of $66.93 on July 5. It’s not a good look. There were a couple of things going on at the time that could have contributed. The world’s biggest known Bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox, [url=https://www.wired.com/2013/06/mt-gox-stops/]stopped[/url] paying people out in US dollars, with no real explanation except some mumblings about “increased volume of transactions”. The media also kind of lost interest in Bitcoin at this point, after the hype of its impressive rally earlier in the year. On top of all that, at this point, you still couldn’t really use Bitcoin to buy a whole lot of stuff, which kind of sucks for a currency. Oh, but what a different future lies ahead for this young cryptocurrency – just you wait.
  • Breaking the $40k barrier
  • Well, whaddya know. The bull run hasn’t stopped, and Bitcoin bowls into a record-breaking new year by smashing through the $30,000 barrier on January 2 and breaking $40,000 just five days later, before hitting a high of $42,000 on January 8.
  • Well, whaddya know. The bull run hasn’t stopped, and Bitcoin bowls into a record-breaking new year by smashing through the $30,000 barrier on January 2 and breaking $40,000 just five days later, before hitting a high of $42,000 on January 8. That’s a 40% gain in the first week of the year. It’s looking good, and the banks are behind the bulls – on January 5, JP Morgan [url=https://www.thestreet.com/investing/bitcoin-cryptocurrency-146000-jpmorgan-analysts]suggested[/url] that Bitcoin could realistically reach $146,000 if it started to replace gold in investor portfolios. But be wary. Not everyone is on board, and there are inevitable fears that the bottom could fall out of the market. Michael Hartnett, Chief Investment Strategist at Bank of America Securities, [url=https://www.wraltechwire.com/2021/01/08/surging-bitcoin-is-mother-of-all-bubbles-bank-of-america-strategist-warns/]called it[/url] the “mother of all bubbles” and compared it to the dot.com boom of the late 90s. NYU professor of economics Nouriel Roubini was also skeptical. “The price of Bitcoin is totally manipulated by a bunch of people, by a bunch of whales,” he [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bank-of-america-predicts-mother-of-all-bubbles-bitcoin/]said[/url]. “It doesn’t have any fundamental value. We’re close to the point where the hyperbolic bubble is going to go bust.” But then, his nickname is Dr. Doom, so you'd expect him to be pessimistic...
  • Coronavirus hits cryptos
  • The plague strikes. Covid-19 crashes into our lives, and markets around the world take a dive.
  • The plague strikes. Covid-19 crashes into our lives, and markets around the world [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/12/coronavirus-impact-on-global-economy-financial-markets-in-6-charts.html]take a dive[/url]. Bitcoin doesn’t escape, falling by over 50% in less than a week as the world moves towards lockdown. On March 12 it dropped from almost $8,000 to below $5,000, losing 39% in a single day. Market liquidity froze up, and investors fled into cash. Amazingly, however, Bitcoin traders got back into the game pretty quickly – by May, the price was back up to pre-pandemic levels, boosted by a massive Fed [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/billybambrough/2020/03/25/bitcoin-demand-is-about-to-skyrocket-on-massive-2-trillion-coronavirus-stimulus/?sh=6447bfc76f6e]stimulus plan[/url] and 0% interest rates.
  • McAfee bets big (and the stakes are high)
  • Bitcoin crusader John McAfee predicts on Twitter that Bitcoin would reach $500,000 within three years, promising that he’d “eat his own dick” live on TV if it didn’t.
  • Bitcoin crusader John McAfee [url=https://twitter.com/officialmcafee/status/887024683379544065]predicts[/url] on Twitter that Bitcoin would reach $500,000 within three years, promising that he’d “eat his own dick” live on TV if it didn’t. In November 2017 he doubled down, [url=https://twitter.com/officialmcafee/status/935900326007328768]betting[/url] that it would reach $1 million by 2020. People were pretty keen to see what happened – and a whole bunch of [url=http://www.dickline.info]websites[/url] sprang up to track the (admittedly unlikely) possibility. With Bitcoin barely hovering above $10,000 as of September 2020, it wasn’t looking likely – and in July McAfee [https://cointelegraph.com/news/worthless-coin-mcafee-says-he-never-believed-bitcoin-would-hit-1m]backtracked[/url], tweeting: “Not going to get out of it. I never believed Bitcoin would hit $1 mil. It's absurd. It’s an old, tired, worthless coin. I just wanted to eat my dick on TV.” Spoiler alert: it didn’t happen, and he didn’t do it. He did, however, [url=https://fortune.com/2018/06/04/john-mcafee-president-2020/]try to run[/url] for US President. Fun times.
  • Pizza party
  • The first Bitcoin purchase ever. Programmer Laszlo Hanyecz buys two Papa John's pizzas for BTC10,000 (worth about $30 at the time) through an exchange on the Bitcointalk chat forum.
  • The first Bitcoin purchase ever. Programmer Laszlo Hanyecz buys two Papa John’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-PZZA/]PZZA[/url]) pizzas for 10,000 Bitcoins (worth about $30 at the time) through an [url=https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=137.0]exchange[/url] on the Bitcointalk chat forum. Fast forward a decade and in May 2020, 10,000 Bitcoins would have been worth about $92.7 million. That’s more than 6 million Papa John’s ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NASDAQ-PZZA/]PZZA[/url]) pizzas at $15 a pizza – enough to feed the entire population of Ireland 🍕 In February 2018, Hanyecz got hungry again. He bought two pizzas from a friend in London through the [url=https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/lightning-dev/2018-February/001044.html]Lightning Network[/url] (a payment channel designed to keep transaction fees low). They were delivered to him in Florida for a mere BTC0.00649 (about $67 back then). He said at the time he just wanted to prove that the currency could still be used for real world purchases. Anyone else feeling hungry?
  • Trump elected
  • Donald Trump is, and around the world. Investors exit the dropping equities market to look for new opportunities, which works in Bitcoin’s favor.
  • Donald Trump is [url=https://www.c-span.org/video/?418090-1/donald-trump-elected-45th-president-united-states]elected President of the USA[/url], and [url=https://money.cnn.com/2016/11/08/investing/global-markets-stocks-trump-clinton-us-presidential-election/index.html]markets tumble[/url] around the world. Investors exit the dropping equities market to look for new opportunities, which works in Bitcoin’s favor. The price spikes by around 5% in a single day – ironic really, because Trump is notoriously [url=https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1149472282584072192]not a fan[/url] of Bitcoin.
  • Photo: Shealah Craighead - White House
  • Mike Hearn says goodbye
  • Mike Hearn, the Bitcoin Core developer who earlier launched competing Bitcoin XT software, leaves the community in dramatic fashion, declaring: “Bitcoin has failed.”
  • Mike Hearn, the Bitcoin Core developer who earlier launched competing Bitcoin XT software, leaves the community in dramatic fashion, declaring: “Bitcoin has failed.” Btw, he’s the guy that Satoshi Nakamoto apparently sent his “resignation” email to back in October 2013. Hearn predicted a massive price crash for Bitcoin – which, coming from such a respected developer, had its own impact. Bitcoin lost over $60 from its value, falling from $429.55 on 14 January to $360 the next day. In a [url=https://blog.plan99.net/the-resolution-of-the-bitcoin-experiment-dabb30201f7]lengthy post[/url] on Medium, Hearn complained that “the fundamentals are broken and whatever happens to the price in the short term, the long term trend should probably be downwards.” He warned that “the network is on the brink of technical collapse” and claimed to have sold all his coins. Bitcoin, of course, is still going strong many years later.
  • Bitcoin Core developer Mike Hearn leaves the community in dramatic fashion, declaring: “Bitcoin has failed.” Photo: Dima Pechurin / Unsplash
  • Photo: Dima Pechurin / Unsplash
  • Bitcoin XT creates constitutional crisis
  • Bitcoin Core developers Mike Hearn and Gavin Andresen sprinkle a bit of chaos into the community by releasing a new, slightly different version of the software called Bitcoin XT.
  • Bitcoin Core developers Mike Hearn and Gavin Andresen sprinkle a bit of chaos into the community by [url=https://www.newyorker.com/business/currency/inside-the-fight-over-bitcoins-future]releasing[/url] a new, slightly different version of the software called Bitcoin XT. Fears of a potential [url=https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-33974826]split[/url] send the price spiralling. The issue boiled down to a [url=https://bravenewcoin.com/insights/bitcoins-block-size-debate-tests-its-community-governance]debate[/url] over the size of the blocks in the chain. Andresen, Hearn and their supporters argued that as the currency became more popular, its blocks should be made bigger. If not, they warned that Bitcoin could fall off a “capacity cliff” where all its blocks ended up full, creating a backlog of transactions waiting to be included. This would overload the network with data and make for long delays, not to mention pushing up prices. As a solution, Bitcoin XT wanted to increase the block size from 1MB to 8MB, and then by a further 40% every two years. The release of the new software [url=https://blog.twitter.com/en_us/topics/insights/2017/Cryptocurrency-The-Discussion-on-Twitter-Keeps-Growing.html]spooked[/url] a lot of people though, because it raised the possibility that the [url=https://forum.stacks.org/t/blockstack-community-thoughts-on-block-size-bitcoin-xt-debate/152]Bitcoin community[/url] might not be able to reach an agreement on size. In a decentralized community, consensus is everything – and a permanent disagreement could mean a permanent divorce. It didn’t pan out that way this time – not many miners took up the Bitcoin XT option, and the alternative software eventually [url=https://blog.plan99.net/the-resolution-of-the-bitcoin-experiment-dabb30201f7#.kynwaxj1d]petered out[/url] sometime around mid-2016. But the possibility of a hard fork still panicked the market, and the price dipped from $261.46 on August 15 to $209.72 on August 24.
  • Gavin Andresen helps sprinkle a bit of chaos into the community by releasing a new, slightly different version of the software called Bitcoin XT. Photo: Stephen McCarthy / Wikimedia
  • Gavin Andresen. Photo: Stephen McCarthy / Wikimedia
  • The Third Halving
  • To the unknowing, it still sounds like something out of an alien horror movie, but halvings are usually pretty good for the Bitcoin price – the first one pushed it from $12 to over $1,000 within a year.
  • To the unknowing, it still sounds like something out of an alien horror movie, but [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/11/bitcoin-halving-heres-what-you-need-to-know.html]halvings[/url] are usually pretty good for the Bitcoin price – the [url=https://chainbulletin.com/heres-what-happened-before-after-the-first-2-bitcoin-halving-events/]first one[/url] pushed it from $12 to over $1,000 within a year. The latest, which occurred slightly earlier than expected on May 11, [url=https://www.ig.com/ae/bitcoin-halving]cuts the reward[/url] for mining a Bitcoin block from 12.5 to 6.25 Bitcoins. It kickstarted a heck of a lot of volatility in the market, with the price bouncing around all over the place before breaking the $10,000 barrier again on June 1. In fact, a whole lot of people [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-price-20k-2020-398k-2030/]were still pretty sure[/url] that it could top $20,000 again by the end of 2020. Crypto analyst PlanB [url=https://currency.com/the-biggest-bitcoin-price-predictions-made-for-2020-and-beyond]was one of the biggest bulls[/url] – he said that the price could reach $100,000 between 2020-24. Now that’s optimism. Although the upside wasn’t as big (proportionately) as earlier halvings, it marked the start of a pretty good summer – with lots of fun stuff happening, including the growth of new investment tools. The second half of June saw record inflows into Bitcoin-based exchange-traded instruments such as Grayscale([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/OTC-GBTC/]OTC-GBTC[/url])’s Bitcoin Trust[/url], the biggest Bitcoin fund by AUM, which as of September 2020 [https://cointelegraph.com/news/grayscale-investments-now-controls-24-of-the-current-btc-supply]controlled 2.4%[/url] of the total global BTC supply.
  • Pirate ponzi scheme
  • Bitcoin’s getting more popular, and as it does, more people are trying to make a quick buck. In August 2012 a massive ponzi scheme crashes and burns, making headlines around the world.
  • Bitcoin’s getting more popular, and as it does, more people are trying to make a quick buck. In August 2012 a massive ponzi scheme crashes and burns, making [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/texas-man-charged-with-running-bitcoin-ponzi-scheme-1415293750]headlines[/url] around the world. Run by chatroom pundit [url=https://www.wsj.com/articles/texas-man-admits-to-bitcoin-ponzi-scheme-1442873692]Trendon T. Shavers[/url] (known as Pirateat40 – what is it with crypto-criminals and pirates?) the [url=https://www.theverge.com/2012/8/27/3271637/bitcoin-savings-trust-pyramid-scheme-shuts-down]Bitcoin Savings and Trust scheme[/url] is the biggest Bitcoin fraud to date. When the sh*t hit the fan, Shavers escaped with around 146,000 Bitcoins, worth more than $800,000 at the time. But he didn’t get away with it. The SEC [url=https://www.sec.gov/news/press-release/2013-132]charged[/url] him with defrauding investors, and arrested him in 2014. In 2016 he was [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bitcoin-fraud-texas-idUSKCN1012W8]sentenced[/url] to 18 months in jail and ordered to pay $2.4 million in damages. However, that fine was nothing at all compared to the separate [url=https://www.sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2014/lr23090.htm]civil action[/url] against him, where he was put on the hook for a whopping $40 million in compensation. In this case, crime really didn’t pay. Bitcoin got stung by the fallout, losing almost half its value and falling from $13.42 on August 16 to a low of $8.06 on August 19. It recovered pretty quickly though – climbing back over the $10 mark by August 20 and rising steadily over the next couple of months.
  • Bug breaks blockchain
  • A bug in version 0.8 of the Bitcoin software causes a temporary fork in the blockchain.
  • A bug in version 0.8 of the Bitcoin software causes a temporary fork in the blockchain. For a couple of hours, two different versions operate at the same time, creating complete [url=https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2013/03/major-glitch-in-bitcoin-network-sparks-sell-off-price-temporarily-falls-23/]chaos[/url]. Notorious Bitcoin exchange Mt Gox was forced to halt trading for a few hours in order to figure out just what the f*** was going on, and the price dropped by about 23% during the day. But in a brilliant display of teamwork, developers, coders and the wider Bitcoin community all pulled together to work on a fix. By [url=https://sourceforge.net/p/bitcoin/mailman/message/30587843/]downgrading[/url] most of the network back to an earlier software version they managed to get the whole thing back up and running within less than six hours. That’s barely enough time to drive from LA to Las Vegas for a quick spin on the slots. An updated version (v0.81) was quickly released to stop the problem from happening again.
  • Mining difficulty drops
  • Bitcoin’s price enters yet another lengthy decline towards the end of 2018. A hard fork in the Bitcoin Cash (BCHUSD) blockchain makes it worse – although it doesn’t directly impact the original Bitcoin, confidence dips across the crypto market.
  • Bitcoin’s price enters [url=https://www.fastcompany.com/90285052/beyond-the-bubble-what-happened-to-bitcoin-in-2018]yet another[/url] lengthy decline towards the end of 2018. A [url=https://www.marketwatch.com/story/what-you-need-to-know-about-the-bitcoin-cash-hard-fork-2018-11-13]hard fork[/url] in the Bitcoin Cash ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BCHUSD/]BCHUSD[/url]) blockchain makes it worse – although it doesn’t directly impact the original Bitcoin, confidence dips across the crypto market. On December 3 the Bitcoin mining difficulty [url=https://cryptonews.com/news/what-does-bitcoin-s-second-largest-difficulty-drop-mean-3020.htm]fell[/url] by about 15%, the second-largest drop in history. Why? Because Bitcoin mining difficulty is adjusted to account for how many machines are mining the market at any one time. This is to keep up a consistent 10 minute processing time per block. In general, the difficulty has only gone up since inception, as more and more people enter the game. But after a whole year of bearish performance, the difficulty level fell sharply – a clear loss of confidence. By December 16 the price, which was above $17,000 in January, had crashed to just $3,193.78.
  • US Pentagon creates Bitcoin-based wargame
  • The Intercept reveals that in 2018, the US Pentagon created a wargame scenario, in which disillusioned young Gen Z-ers in the in the 21st century are recruited to fight the establishment, and rewarded with Bitcoin for their part in the "Zbellion".
  • An [url=https://theintercept.com/2020/06/05/pentagon-war-game-gen-z/]article[/url] on The Intercept reveals that back in 2018, the US Pentagon created a wargame scenario called the Joint Land, Air and Sea Strategic Special Program (JLASS), in which disillusioned young Gen Z-ers in the 21st century are recruited to fight the establishment, and rewarded with Bitcoin for their part in the “Zbellion.” Could crypto be the currency of our post-apocalyptic future? Keep an eye on your kids, people…
  • Merry Christmas (and a VERY happy new year…)
  • Although super volatile, Bitcoin didn’t really do anything too mad during 2016.
  • Although super volatile, Bitcoin didn’t really do anything too mad during [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-2016-year-different-rise/]2016[/url]. The coming year, however, would tell a very different story.
  • Photo: Macau Photo Agency / Unsplash
  • Can a bot break Bitcoin?
  • Bitcoin reaches $1,000 in November: the end of a long-term price rise that started with the first Bitcoin halving back in 2012.
  • Bitcoin reaches $1,000 in November: the end of a long-term price rise that started with the first Bitcoin halving back in 2012. But wait – the plot thickens. [url=https://weis2017.econinfosec.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2017/05/WEIS_2017_paper_21.pdf]Research[/url] from the University of Tulsa and Tel Aviv University [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/23/one-person-caused-bitcoin-to-spike-from-150-to-1000-in-2013.html]found[/url] that the 2013 spike might actually have been driven by two bots – created by a single shadowy figure in the background. Between them, the bots bought and sold hundreds of thousands of Bitcoins over the year in order to manipulate the market. November saw mad volatility, with the price rising and falling by as much as 50% in a day on November 19. It reached a high of $1,163 on November 30 before starting a longer-term decline that would last, give or take, for the next two years.
  • Will the real Satoshi please stand up?
  • A Newsweek article on March 6, 2014 claims that the real Satoshi Nakomoto is in fact a guy called… Satoshi Nakamoto.
  • A [url=https://www.newsweek.com/2014/03/14/face-behind-bitcoin-247957.html]Newsweek article[/url] on March 6, 2014 claims that the real Satoshi Nakomoto is in fact a guy called….Satoshi Nakamoto. Confused? Yeah. Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto was a Japanese-American systems engineer living in California, whose birth name really was Satoshi Nakamoto. Newsweek Journalist Leah McGrath Goodman made a strong case that he was the real founder of Bitcoin, pointing to his experience working with defense systems and as a computer engineer. When she asked him about Bitcoin for the article he apparently said: "I am no longer involved in that and I cannot discuss it. It's been turned over to other people. They are in charge of it now. I no longer have any connection.” That’s pretty compelling stuff – but turns out it was wrong. In later interviews, Nakamoto [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/mar/07/satoshi-nakamoto-denies-inventing-bitcoin]denied[/url] all knowledge of Bitcoin, saying he’d never heard of it before, and had thought Goodman was asking him about his previous work on classified defense projects. Another one bites the dust. Hang on though, there’s more. Nakamoto lived just a couple of blocks from crypto pioneer Hal Finney, one of the first developers to work on Bitcoin. Perhaps Finney was the real founder, and he just stole the name of his neighbor (because, let’s face it, Satoshi Nakamoto sounds way cooler)? On 25 March 2014 an [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2014/03/25/satoshi-nakamotos-neighbor-the-bitcoin-ghostwriter-who-wasnt/#106e82e74a37]article[/url] in Forbes suggested exactly that. But in yet another plot twist, by that point Finney was suffering from ALS, a form of motor neurone disease that left him almost completely paralysed and able to communicate only by blinking. He apparently denied involvement, but Forbes journalist Andy Greenberg came up with a ton of research that suggested otherwise. Sadly, Finney died in August 2014, so it looks like we’ll never know.
  • A Newsweek article on March 6, 2014 claims that the real Satoshi Nakomoto is in fact a guy called….Satoshi Nakamoto.Photo: Ben Sweet / Unsplash
  • Photo: Ben Sweet / Unsplash
  • Mt. Gox goes dark
  • The world's biggest Bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox, is bankrupt. Bitcoin drops from a high of about $1,160 in December 2013 to under $400 in February 2014.
  • The world's biggest bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox is [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bitcoin-mtgox-bankruptcy-idUSBREA1R0FX20140228]bankrupt[/url]. Bitcoin drops from a high of about $1,160 in December 2013 to under $400 in February 2014. Wallets are emptied, lawsuits are launched, and the drama continues to this day. Amazingly, however, Bitcoin proves resilient to the reputational hit, with people blaming the exchange rather than the asset. It reads like a soap opera, but the story of Mt. Gox is central to the early years – and early success – of Bitcoin as a tradable asset. Launched in 2010, by 2014 it was trading about 70% of all Bitcoin in existence, and its charismatic CEO Mark Karpeles was enjoying life in Tokyo (some folks even believed he was Satoshi Nakomoto himself). But the nails were already in the coffin. Mt. Gox had suffered through [url=https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2019/03/14/a-brief-history-of-mt-gox-the-3b-bitcoin-tragedy-that-just-wont-end/]numerous[/url] hacking scandals starting as early as 2011, and in February 2014 things went properly belly up. While Karpeles was putting the final touches on his ‘Bitcoin Cafe’ on the bottom floor of the Mt. Gox headquarters (never underestimate the importance of a [url=https://www.newsbtc.com/news/mark-karpeles-spent-50000-kitchen-equipment-bitcoin-cafe/]bespoke quiche oven[/url]), [url=https://www.wired.com/2014/03/bitcoin-exchange/]hackers[/url] were siphoning off all the exchange’s assets using a flaw in the Bitcoin protocol. [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-bug-guide-transaction-malleability]“Transaction malleability”[/url] was a design fault that allowed multiple withdrawals of the same amount – but it wasn’t a new thing. Other exchanges had already identified and coded around the problem. Mt. Gox had not – mainly because Karpeles had written almost all the code himself, without any oversight. With hindsight this seems… a little unwise? The exchange was broke – pretty much all its Bitcoin assets had disappeared, including about 650,000 coins belonging to customers (worth about $40m) and 100,000 belonging to the exchange itself. It suspended trading on February 24 and went permanently dark just hours later. People were furious, and a whole bunch of [url=https://cdn.arstechnica.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/Greene-MtGox-1st-Amend-Complaint.pdf]lawsuits[/url] were launched against both Mt. Gox and against Karpeles himself, including from competing US-based exchange CoinLab, as well as hundreds of seriously pissed off clients. Many of them are still dragging on to this day. The value of Bitcoin unsurprisingly tanked, losing over a third over the following month. But things actually could have gone a lot worse. Although the price dipped it didn’t go into the free fall that everyone expected, with most people blaming the mismanagement of Mt. Gox rather than being scared away from the currency itself. Random fact: In February 2014 the first ever Bitcoin ATM was [url=https://techcrunch.com/2014/02/19/the-first-bitcoin-atm-in-the-us-is-opening-in-austin-texas/]opened[/url] in Austin, Texas by Jordan Kelley, original founder of alternative crypto Robocoin.
  • Buffet gets his first Bitcoin
  • Warren Buffet is NOT keen on Bitcoin. In 2018 he rather melodramatically called it “rat poison squared”. But that didn’t stop the crypto community from having some fun with him...
  • Warren Buffet is NOT keen on Bitcoin. In 2018 he rather melodramatically called it “[url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/05/warren-buffett-says-bitcoin-is-probably-rat-poison-squared.html]rat poison squared[/url]” and in February 2020 he doubles down. "Cryptocurrencies basically have no value," [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/24/warren-buffett-cryptocurrency-has-no-value.html]he insisted[/url]. "You can't do anything with it except sell it to somebody else. I don’t own any cryptocurrency…I never will.” But that didn’t stop the community from having some fun with him. On February 5, 2020 a group of crypto pioneers including Tron Founder and Bittorrent CEO Justin Sun treated the 90yo Berkshire Hathaway legend to a three-hour [url=https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20200206005315/en/Warren-Buffett-Dines-with-Justin-Sun-Founder-of-TRON]charity dinner[/url] at the Happy Hollow Club in Omaha, Nebraska. They presented him with a pair of Samsung Galaxy Fold Smartphones loaded with a bunch of cryptocurrencies – and during the meal, Sun [url=https://twitter.com/justinsuntron/status/1225415845641363457]sent[/url] Buffet his first ever Bitcoin. Looks like he owns some cryptocurrency now after all. In fact, despite Buffet’s bearish stance on Bitcoin, there were rumblings that he could be about to change his tune. He [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/robertberger/2020/08/28/warren-buffetts-gold/?sh=39405af86a63]famously[/url] shifted his position on gold in 2020, taking a stake in one of the world’s biggest gold miners. Since then, pundits including [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/warren-buffett-gold-panic-buy-bitcoin-50k/]Max Keiser[/url] have predicted that he could do the same for Bitcoin, possibly with a panic buy if/when the price hits $50,000.
  • Warren Buffet. Photo: Mark Hirschey / Wikimedia
  • First ever exchange rate
  • The first ever BTC/USD exchange rate is launched by pro-Crypto website New Liberty Standard. It was the first source to price Bitcoins based on the electricity cost it took to mine them.
  • The first ever BTC/USD exchange rate is launched by pro-Crypto website New Liberty Standard (run by a Bitcoin developer of the same name, who was instrumental in developing the Linux version of the system.) The site [url=http://newlibertystandard.wikifoundry.com/page/2009+Exchange+Rate]sets[/url] the rate of one Bitcoin at $0.0007 on October 5, 2009. It was the first source to price Bitcoins based on the electricity cost it took to mine them, and it was the first to offer a daily price. It wouldn’t be the last. In case you’re interested, during 2009 the exchange rate was calculated by dividing $1 by the average amount of electricity required to run a computer with high CPU for a year (1331.5 kW), multiplied by the the average residential cost of electricity in the U.S. for the previous year, ($0.1136), divided by 12 months, divided by the number of Bitcoins generated by the site owner’s computer over the past 30 days.
  • Bitcoin v0.2 released
  • Version 0.1 of Bitcoin was first released on January 5, 2009 – but it would go through multiple incarnations, starting with Bitcoin Version 0.2 on December 17, 2009.
  • Version 0.1 of Bitcoin was first released on January 5, 2009 – but it would go through multiple incarnations, starting with [url=http://satoshinakamoto.me/2009/12/17/bitcoin-list-bitcoin-0-2-released/]Bitcoin Version 0.2[/url] on December 17, 2009. The new version was available to download on both Windows and Linux, and came with a bunch of new features including multi-processor support, and “an autostart on boot option” so that miners could keep it running in the background automatically. Satoshi also announced the launch of a new forum at http://www.bitcoin.org/smf/. A few weeks later, on December 30, the first difficulty increase occurs (when the system makes it harder for miners to achieve block rewards, in order to limit supply).
  • Bitcoin exchange 1.0
  • The idea for the first official cryptocurrency exchange, Bitcoin Market, is born.
  • The idea for the first official cryptocurrency exchange, [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/bitcoin-history-part-6-the-first-bitcoin-exchange/]Bitcoin Market[/url], is born. Bitcoinmarket.com started with a proposal on a [url=https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=20.0]Bitcoin forum[/url] (where else?), back when Bitcoin was trading at about $0.05. By the time it launched in March 2010, one single Bitcoin was worth about $0.03. Oh, how we wish we’d invested back then.
  • Hey Satoshi - where’d you go?
  • Remember the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto who created this whole crazy thing? Well, spoiler alert: he disappears.
  • Remember the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto who created this whole crazy thing? Well in April 2011 he pretty much [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-history-cryptocurrency-satoshi-nakamoto-2017-12?r=US&IR=T#two-years-later-the-mysterious-figure-known-as-satoshi-nakamoto-disappears-from-the-web-6]vanishes[/url], setting in motion the biggest mystery of the Bitcoin universe. On April 23 he sent (or at least, it looks like he sent) an [url=https://pastebin.com/syrmi3ET]email[/url] to Bitcoin Core developer Mike Hearn, saying that he planned to step back. “I've moved on to other things. It's in good hands with Gavin [Andresen] and everyone,” it said. And… that was it. No more Satoshi. But the question of who he *might have been* has bugged everyone ever since.
  • Bitcoin v0.3 hits the shelves
  • It’s time for an update, and in July the third version of the cryptocurrency is unveiled.
  • It’s time for an update, and in July the third version of the cryptocurrency is [url=http://satoshinakamoto.me/2010/07/06/bitcoin-0-3-released/]unveiled[/url]. It included a host of new updates including translations into German, Dutch, and Italian. It was also, notably, the first upgrade that wasn’t signed off by Satoshi Nakamoto himself. A sign of things to come…? The following week the price of Bitcoin jumped tenfold, from $0.008 on July 12 to $0.08 on July 17. And on July 17, notorious crypto exchange Mt. Gox opened its (metaphorical) doors for the first time. More on that later.
  • Pirate pushes up price
  • A Gawker article about shady underworld website The Silk Road goes viral. It includes a weblink to the (now defunct) Tokyo-based Bitcoin exchange Mt Gox, which kicks off a massive surge in traffic.
  • A [url=https://gawker.com/the-underground-website-where-you-can-buy-any-drug-imag-30818160]Gawker article[/url] about shady underworld website The Silk Road goes viral. It includes a weblink to the (now defunct) Tokyo-based Bitcoin exchange [url=https://www.wired.com/2014/03/bitcoin-exchange/]Mt Gox[/url], which kicks off a massive surge in traffic as people head over to see what all the fuss is about. The price bumps up from around $10 to over $30 within the month. Led by the Dread Pirate Roberts (codename of Californian programmer Ross William Ulbricht), The Silk Road holds a special place in the halls of Bitcoin history. [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/23/man-accused-of-laundering-millions-in-bitcoin-from-silk-road.html]Money laundering[/url], [url=https://www.theverge.com/2013/10/3/4798336/silk-road-owner-charged-again-this-time-for-hiring-a-hitman-in-maryland]hitmen-hiring[/url], and [url=https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2019/11/08/silk-road-drug-dealer-laundered-19m-in-profits-with-bitcoin/]drug dealing[/url] – it was the place to go for everything underhand and illegal. But crucially, it was also one of the first darkweb sites to use Bitcoin for its anonymous transactions. This didn’t do much for its reputation in the eyes of the law, but it raked in an absolute fortune for founder [url=https://archives.fbi.gov/archives/newyork/press-releases/2013/manhattan-u.s.-attorney-announces-seizure-of-additional-28-million-worth-of-bitcoins-belonging-to-ross-william-ulbricht-alleged-owner-and-operator-of-silk-road-website]Ulbricht[/url], who took a cut of each deal (making him an estimated $80 million).
  • The road to hell is paved with… silk?
  • The infamous Silk Road website is launched on January 2 by one Mr Ross Ulbricht, who wanted to create a lawless darkweb location where people could buy and sell whatever they wanted with no trace.
  • The [url=https://www.wired.com/2015/04/silk-road-1/]infamous Silk Road[/url] website is launched on January 2 by one Mr Ross Ulbricht, who wanted to create a lawless darkweb location where people could buy and sell whatever they wanted with no trace. Bitcoin is an obvious choice of currency. [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2011/oct/18/bitcoin-value-crash-cryptocurrency]BTC was trading[/url] at about [url=https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/price/]$0.30[/url].
  • Double digits returning
  • Bitcoin, ever volatile, has been slowly rising again over the last few months after the price peaked back in June 2011 and a lot of people think it’s just a passing fad. But it proves the haters wrong, rising back above $9.
  • Bitcoin – ever [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/jayadkisson/2018/02/09/why-bitcoin-is-so-volatile/?sh=5734faea39fb]volatile[/url] – has been slowly rising again over the last few months after the price peaked back in June 2011 and a lot of people began thinking it’s just a passing fad. But it proves the haters wrong, rising back above $9 for the first time in almost a year.
  • Photo: Priscilla Du Preez / Unsplash
  • Chinese whispers
  • China totally bans all Bitcoin trading on 1 February and shuts down all mining activity, leading to a massive price slump.
  • China totally [url=https://www.scmp.com/business/banking-finance/article/2132009/china-stamp-out-cryptocurrency-trading-completely-ban]bans[/url] all Bitcoin trading on 1 February and shuts down all mining activity, leading to a massive price slump. Bitcoin crashes almost 40% in value, dropping from over $10,000 at the end of January to $6,914 by 5 February. Plenty of Bitcoin traders, who had made bank during the bull run of 2017, get “[url=https://qz.com/878728/buy-and-hodl-just-dont-get-rekt-the-slang-that-gets-you-taken-seriously-as-a-bitcoin-trader/]REKT[/url]” (as they call it in the chatrooms). Not everyone though – players like [url=https://twitter.com/TheBootMex]TheBoot[/url] carried on “[url=https://paybis.com/blog/what-does-buy-the-dip-mean/]buying the dip[/url],” legendarily turning 0.6 of a Bitcoin into 300 between March 2018 and June 2019. But Bitcoin is starting to make traditional bankers nervous. Agustín Carstens, head of the Bank of International Settlements (which represents the world’s central banks), in January 2018 labelled Bitcoin a Ponzi scheme that threatened global financial stability. “There is a strong case for policy intervention,” he [url=https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-cryptocurrency-markets-bis/central-banks-must-act-against-ponzi-scheme-cryptocurrencies-bis-head-idUKKBN1FQ13E]said[/url]. “Appropriate authorities have a duty to educate and protect investors and consumers, and need to be prepared to act.” Oh and by the way, there’s only 20% left! As of January 2018 a solid 80% of Bitcoin had [url=https://news.bitcoin.com/80-percent-of-the-total-bitcoin-supply-have-now-been-mined/]already[/url] been mined. The clock is ticking...
  • China gets back in the game
  • The price jumps after Chinese President Xi Jinping comes out in support of blockchain technology, saying he wants to invest further in cryptocurrencies.
  • The price jumps after Chinese President Xi Jinping comes out [url=https://www.businessinsider.com/china-bullish-on-blockchain-xi-jinping-2019-10]in support[/url] of blockchain technology, saying he wants to invest further in cryptocurrencies.
  • Chinese President Xi Jinping comes out in support of blockchain technology.Photo: Ling Tang / Unsplash
  • Photo: Ling Tang / Unsplash
  • Believe that I’m Satoshi or I’ll sue!
  • Australian scientist Craig Wright insists that he is the real Satoshi Nakamoto in a headline-grabbing claim that convinces a whole load of people worldwide.
  • Australian scientist Craig Wright insists that he is the real Satoshi Nakamoto in a headline-grabbing claim that convinces a whole load of people worldwide. It all started with a [url=https://www.wired.com/2015/12/bitcoins-creator-satoshi-nakamoto-is-probably-this-unknown-australian-genius/]Wired article[/url] published on 8 December 2015, which suggested that Wright could be Satoshi. The claim was based on documents given to Wired by researcher and dark web analyst Gwern Branwen, that strongly suggested a link. But then, Wired changed their minds. The magazine suspected that the documents may have been leaked to Branwen by Wright himself, and a couple of days later they published a [url=https://www.wired.com/2015/12/new-clues-suggest-satoshi-suspect-craig-wright-may-be-a-hoaxer/]U-turn[/url], based on alleged “inconsistencies” in Wright’s story. Wired has since confirmed that it “no longer believes Wright is likely to be the creator of Bitcoin.” He came pretty close though, and he persuaded a lot of people – including one of the original developers, Gavin Andresen, whose continued [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNZyRMG2CjA]support[/url] of Wright eventually got his Bitcoin code access [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/may/06/bitcoin-project-blocks-out-gavin-andresen-over-satoshi-nakamoto-claims]revoked[/url], basically destroying his Bitcoin career. Wright struggled to convince the wider community though, and his claim is now widely [url=https://www.reuters.com/article/us-australia-bitcoin-idUSKCN0XW1BT]disputed[/url]. Because basically, if you say you have the key to a Bitcoin wallet worth over $10bn, then eventually people are gonna expect you to be able to open that wallet. And, er, he didn’t. But Wright stuck to his guns, and continued to maintain he was the real deal. A few years later he [url=https://www.coindesk.com/craig-wright-attempts-to-copyright-the-satoshi-white-paper-and-original-bitcoin-code]filed[/url] US copyright for the original Bitcoin white paper released back in 2008, and 2019 he even tried to [url=https://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-bitcoin-craig-wright-20190620-story.html]sue[/url] the people who didn’t believe him (including Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin, Bitcoin.com founder Roger Ver and Blockstream CEO Adam Back) using UK libel law. [url=https://decrypt.co/25916/craig-wright-vs-crypto-the-current-state-of-his-5-libel-lawsuits]It did not go well[/url]. But the [url=https://coingeek.com/craig-wright-wins-landmark-case-in-english-court-of-appeal-defamation-claim-vs-hodlonaut-to-proceed-in-england/]story[/url] continues... In January 2021 Wright won a landmark ruling in the UK courts in an ongoing defamation case against Norway-based Twitter user Magnus Granath (Twitter name [url=https://twitter.com/hodlonaut/status/1350848634150133762]Hodlonaut[/url]), who had repeatedly tweeted that Wright was not the real Satoshi. It's been a complicated legal battle and it's not over yet but one thing is for sure – real or fake (and hey, we ain't judging either way), it makes for great TV.
  • The Japanese join the party
  • The Japanese Government recognizes virtual currencies as similar to real money, able to make payments and with the potential to be digitally transferred.
  • The Japanese Government [url=https://www.fintechlawblog.com/2016/03/157/]approves a bill[/url] recognizing virtual currencies as similar to real money, able to make payments and with the potential to be digitally transferred. This is a big step forward, with many other nations still struggling (some to this day) with the role that cryptocurrencies can, or should, be allowed to play. The [url=http://www.fsa.go.jp/common/diet/190/01/shinkyuu.pdf]Amendment Bill[/url] to the Payment Services Act of Japan was designed to bring the industry under the supervision of the country’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) and bring in new registration requirements for virtual currencies exchanges, including foreign exchanges providing services to Japanese customers. It also imposed a whole new bunch of requirements on crypto exchanges, including recordkeeping, annual reporting, and anti-money laundering compliance.
  • Bitcoin busts through $100
  • Bitcoin breaks the all-important $100 barrier for the first time, jumping from $96.15 on March 31 to close at $104.70 the next day.
  • Bitcoin breaks the all-important $100 barrier for the first time, jumping from $96.15 on March 31 to close at $104.70 the next day. But then things start to get seriously volatile – mostly due to a whole ton of media coverage, which brings a bunch of new traders into the market. The price hits $200 by the second week of April, then falls by 70% overnight, breaking $50 by week three. A [url=https://money.cnn.com/2013/04/12/investing/bitcoin-bubble/index.html]series[/url] of outages and processing delays at major crypto exchanges including Mt. Gox and BitInstant didn’t help much. In fact, things got so crazy that from April 11-12 Mt. Gox, which was by this point handling over 70% of global Bitcoin trades, suspended trading altogether in order to cool things down. Easy, tiger. If you’d bought $100 of Bitcoin on April 1, 2013, you’d have had $6,652.07 on April 1, 2020. It’s not gonna get you a yacht, but you could afford a pretty sweet [url=https://www.leamboatcentre.com/p/2581/Leisure-Swan-Pedalo]swan-shaped pedalo[/url].
  • South Korea takes a stand
  • South Korea, the world’s third-largest cryptocurrency market, suggests it might follow China’s lead and shut down crypto exchanges, calling the market “irrationally overheated.”
  • South Korea, the world’s [url=https://www.ft.com/content/74bf4bc2-bcce-3e88-8041-1e102a6005e1]third-largest cryptocurrency market[/url], suggests it might follow China’s lead and shut down crypto exchanges, calling the market “[url=https://nypost.com/2017/12/28/bitcoin-slumps-again-this-time-amid-south-korea-crackdown/]irrationally overheated[/url].” The move is deeply unpopular, and the price crashes back down to around $12,000 by the end of the year.
  • Trump weighs in
  • President Trump gets involved in a big way. Turns out, he’s not a fan. In a series of aggressive tweets he claims that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are “based on thin air” and accuses them of encouraging “unlawful behaviour.”
  • President Trump gets involved in a big way. Turns out, he’s not a fan. In a series of aggressive [url=https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/1149472282584072192?lang=en]tweets[/url] he claims that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are “based on thin air” and accuses them of encouraging “unlawful behaviour.” The price takes a hit – falling from over $12,500 on July 9 to just over $9,000 on July 16. Want to know a fun fact? As of July 2019, Bitcoin's electricity consumption was bigger than Switzerland (over 7 gigawatts). Total Bitcoin mining costs sat at about $360 million per year (2019) – same as the total net worth of [url=https://media.giphy.com/media/Y3kK1IGPHIt8fuUGCq/giphy.gif]Taylor Swift[/url].
  • Japan takes the lead
  • Japan officially recognizes Bitcoin as legal tender, a move that seems positive but may actually be a cynical attempt to regulate the currency and impose more restrictions on how people use it.
  • Japan [url=https://complyadvantage.com/knowledgebase/crypto-regulations/cryptocurrency-regulations-japan/#:~:text=Japan%20has%20the%20world's%20most,under%20the%20Payment%20Services%20Act.]officially recognizes[/url] Bitcoin as legal tender, a move that seems positive but may actually be a cynical attempt to regulate the currency and impose more restrictions on how people use it. Well that’s governments for you. But although the rule change restricted Bitcoin’s freedoms in Japan, it was enthusiastically welcomed by the trading community. The price reflected the boost, jumping from $1,070 at the start to $1,350 by the end of the month. The official stamp of approval gave traders increased confidence. It also led to a surge of new exchanges in Japan, with 11 [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2017/09/29/bitcoin-exchanges-officially-recognized-by-japan.html]licensed[/url] by September 2017 alone.
  • Japan officially recognizes Bitcoin as legal tender. Photo: Nicki Eliza Schinow / Unsplash
  • Photo: Nicki Eliza Schinow / Unsplash
  • Winklevoss woes
  • The SEC rejects an application from superhero twin brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss to launch the first Bitcoin exchange-traded fund.
  • The SEC [url=https://www.vox.com/new-money/2017/3/10/14888744/bitcoin-etf-rejected-crash]rejects an application[/url] from superhero twin brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss to launch the first Bitcoin exchange-traded fund. The decision caused prices to plunge dramatically in minutes, from a high of $1,350 to a low of $975, a whopping -28% swing, before closing the day over -6% down at $1,116.97.
  • Cyber-ransoms
  • For a month Bitcoin has been hovering between $615 and $595, but a New York Times article on central bank usage busts it out of the slump.
  • For a month Bitcoin has been hovering between $615 and $595, but a [url=https://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/12/business/dealbook/central-banks-consider-bitcoins-technology-if-not-bitcoin.html]New York Times article[/url] on central bank usage busts it out of the slump. Bitcoin has had a fairly up and down relationship with government and banking regulations, but it looked like central banks were gradually coming around to the idea of using blockchain technology, if not Bitcoin itself. In 2016, a few banks also started [url=https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/oct/22/city-banks-plan-to-hoard-bitcoins-to-help-them-pay-cyber-ransoms]looking into[/url] stockpiling Bitcoin to pay off cyber criminals who might threaten their systems.
  • All aboard the Swiss Railway
  • The Swiss get on board with Bitcoin in a big way – in October, national railway service SSB begins selling Bitcoin through its network of ticket kiosks.
  • The Swiss get on board with Bitcoin in a big way – in October, national railway service SSB begins [url=https://www.coindesk.com/swiss-railway-service-sell-bitcoin-ticket-kiosks]selling[/url] Bitcoin through its network of ticket kiosks. “Until now, there have only been limited opportunities to purchase bitcoin in Switzerland. With over 1,000 ticket machines, SBB has a dense distribution network that is available round the clock and is not only suitable for purchasing tickets, but also allows additional services to be obtained,” [url=https://www.coindesk.com/swiss-railway-service-sell-bitcoin-ticket-kiosks]said SSB[/url].
  • Photo: Piotr Guzik / Unsplash
  • Fork in the road
  • In a massive upset, the ultimate event occurs. In its first successfully hard fork, Bitcoin splits into two separate versions, and boom, Bitcoin Cash (BCHUSD) is born 👶🍼
  • In a massive upset, the ultimate event occurs. In its first successfully hard fork, Bitcoin splits into two separate versions, and boom, Bitcoin Cash ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BCHUSD/]BCHUSD[/url]) is born 👶🍼 The split was the [url=https://www.coindesk.com/crypto/bitcoin-cash]result[/url] of the neverending argument over scalability, which the introduction of SegWit was supposed to have solved. But although no one really disagreed with the need to improve transaction speed through better blocks, they had very different ideas about how big they needed to be (apparently, size does matter 🤷) [url=https://www.buybitcoinworldwide.com/segwit/]SegWit[/url] optimized the blocks through a software upgrade. But [url=https://medium.com/digitalassetresearch/the-resolution-of-the-big-block-experiment-e1df3e38d03f]another group[/url] of developers wanted the blocks to be even bigger (up to 8MB each), so they spun off into a whole new cryptocurrency called Bitcoin Cash ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/BCHUSD/]BCHUSD[/url]) (BCH). By boosting the blocks, the theory was that more transactions could then be processed, making it cheaper and faster to use. BCH supporters, including [url=https://cryptonews.com/news/roger-ver-led-bitcoin-cash-camp-bchn-leads-the-post-hard-for-8317.htm]Roger Ver[/url] (one-time CEO of Bitcoin.com and widely known as the [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/lukefitzpatrick/2019/12/20/bitcoin-cash-to-surpass-btc-market-cap-says-roger-ver/?sh=6b73aa541f5a]“Bitcoin Jesus”[/url]) [url=https://www.coindesk.com/roger-ver-bets-segwit-bitcoin-upgrade-anarchapulco]argued[/url] that by upgrading rather than increasing the block size, SegWit was pushing Bitcoin to act more like a digital investment rather than a real, usable currency, moving away from its original goals. What do you think? The hard fork basically doubled Bitcoin holdings (so if you held 10 Bitcoins on July 31, by August 1 you’d hold 1 Bitcoin and 1 Bitcoin cash). The new currency began trading at about $240 (compared to $2,731 for its older sister).
  • Two roads diverged in a yellow wood. Photo: Jens Lelie / Unsplash
  • Photo: Jens Lelie / Unsplash
  • Bitfinex hack
  • Uh oh, it’s another hack. Exchange platform Bitfinex (BTCUSD) suspends trading after a security hack leads to the heist of almost 120,000 Bitcoins, and prices plunge in response.
  • Uh oh, it’s another hack. Exchange platform Bitfinex ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/QUANDL-BITFINEX/BTCUSD/]BITFINEX/BTCUSD[/url]) suspends trading after a security hack leads to the heist of almost 120,000 Bitcoins, and prices [https://www.cnbc.com/2016/08/04/bitfinex-hack-could-shake-faith-in-bitcoin.html]plunge[/url] in response. Around 119,756 customer Bitcoins, worth about $72 million, went missing in the largest loss of Bitcoins since the [url=https://www.wired.com/2014/03/bitcoin-exchange/]Mt Gox[/url] crisis in 2014. Given the size of the loss, there was (understandably) a lot of confusion and frustration in the market and prices plunged almost 11% from $606.84 to $540.03, reaching a low of $465.28. Luckily, it began bouncing back the next day.
  • Bitcoin smashes $10k – but is it real?
  • In a gigantic jump, Bitcoin went from under $1,000 on January 1, 2107 to $10,840 on December 1: making a whole lot of people very rich (and very happy) in the process.
  • In a gigantic jump, Bitcoin went from under $1,000 on January 1, 2107 to $10,840 on December 1: making a whole lot of people very rich (and very happy) in the process. But were the gains real? Some people don’t think so, and University of Texas Professor John Griffin was one of them. He [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/13/much-of-bitcoins-2017-boom-was-market-manipulation-researcher-says.html]believes[/url] that a lot of it was actually due to coordinated price manipulation using another cryptocurrency called Tether ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/USDTUSD/]USDTUSD[/url]) – and it could have been done by just one rogue trader. He examined millions of transactions on the Bitfinex exchange and found that Tether ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/USDTUSD/]USDTUSD[/url]) was being used to buy Bitcoin as soon as the price started to fall, in order to bump it back up again. The banks weren’t too impressed either. JP Morgan Chase ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JPM/]NYSE-JPM[/url]) CEO Jamie Dimon famously [url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-09-12/jpmorgan-s-ceo-says-he-d-fire-traders-who-bet-on-fraud-bitcoin]said[/url] that he’d fire any employee he found trading Bitcoin for “being stupid,” calling the currency a “fraud” that would not end well. Funnily enough, despite the trash talk, JP Morgan ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-JPM/]NYSE-JPM[/url]) still [https://news.bitcoin.com/after-the-boss-calls-bitcoin-a-fraud-jp-morgan-buys-the-dip/]bought[/url] over $3 million of XBT shares (exchange-traded notes that track the price of Bitcoin) in September 2017 – making it one of the biggest bank buyers in the crypto ring. We see you, Jamie.
  • China shuts up shop
  • One of the biggest global outposts of Bitcoin trading, the Chinese authorities have always had a love-hate relationship with the currency. In September, they make their boldest move yet, closing all Bitcoin exchanges in the country.
  • One of the biggest global outposts of Bitcoin trading, the Chinese authorities have always had a [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/11/27/china-has-a-love-hate-relationship-with-blockchain-and-crypto.html]love-hate relationship[/url] with the asset. In September they make their boldest move yet, [url=https://in.reuters.com/article/us-china-bitcoin-ban/china-to-close-all-bitcoin-exchanges-by-end-september-yicai-idUSKCN1BP27C]ordering[/url] the closure of all Bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. The move had an immediate impact, wiping almost $1,000 off the price in just a few days and taking it back down to a low of $3,227 before it rallied again.
  • Photo: Tim Mossholder / Unsplash
  • Big banks mean business
  • Heads up. After all the drama last month, the big boys really are starting to wake up and show an interest, nine years late to the party.
  • Heads up. After all the drama last month, the big boys really are starting to wake up and show an interest, nine years late to the party. Investment giant Fidelity ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-FIS/]FIS[/url]) [https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaeldelcastillo/2018/10/15/fidelity-launches-institutional-platform-for-bitcoin-and-ethereum/?sh=7adaa8e493c4]starts up[/url] its own institutional platform for crypto trading on October 15. BlackRock ([url=https://www.tradingview.com/symbols/NYSE-BLK/]BLK[/url]) [url=https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/16/bitcoin-jumps-after-report-says-blackrock-exploring-cryptocurrencies.html]also revealed plans[/url] for a cryptocurrency working group. It didn’t stop the volatility though, and the price continued to yo-yo.
  • Bitcoin climbs back over $10k
  • The price continues to climb for a further week, hitting $13,880 on June 26 before sliding back.
  • The price continues to [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-hits-17-month-high-above-12-9k]climb[/url] for a further week, hitting $13,880 on June 26 before sliding back.
  • All press is good press.. right?
  • September 5 sees another dramatic drop in price of just under 10%, which carries on going for a few days after news that Goldman Sachs is ditching its plan to open a Bitcoin trading desk.
  • September 5 sees another dramatic drop in price of just under 10%, which carries on going for a few days after [url=https://outline.com/JC43ZD]news[/url] that Goldman Sachs is ditching its plan to open a Bitcoin trading desk. The news saw prices drop from $7,353.48 to $6,178.31 by September 8, erasing any gains the price made in August and adding fuel to the “Great Crypto Crash” fire. Although the Goldman CFO stressed that the rumor was [url=https://cryptoslate.com/bitcoin-trading-desk-goldman-sachs-cfo-says-speculation-is-fake-news/ ]“fake news”[/url], and that Goldman had never planned to launch a BTC trading desk in the first place, concerns over the future of the cryptocurrency were growing. Around the same time, a [url=https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/9bfnff/near_1b_are_currently_on_the_move_from_a_silkroad/]Reddit article[/url] revealed that a Silk-Road linked wallet with over 111,000 Bitcoins had been dumped on the market after going missing years ago, driving down the price even further. That’s supply and demand, for you.
  • Fake news: Goldman Sachs is ditching its plan to open a bitcoin trading desk. Photo: Roman Kraft / Unsplash
  • Photo: Se Nuno / Unsplash
  • Pop and drop
  • After a nice price jump the day before that takes Bitcoin back up above $4,000, the price goes into freefall once more, dropping almost 10% for no obvious reason.
  • After a nice price jump the day before that takes Bitcoin back up above $4,000, the price goes into [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/billybambrough/2019/02/24/after-soaring-yesterday-bitcoins-suddenly-gone-into-freefall/?sh=2cddb84239d7]freefall[/url] once more, dropping almost 10% for no obvious reason. Looks like we’d hit bottom though, because this was the beginning of a [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/ktorpey/2019/10/01/why-the-bitcoin-price-may-be-headed-for-a-great-few-months/?sh=5f9e6210a387]slow and steady[/url] increase for the rest of the year.
  • Price goes up, price goes down. Photo: Victor Rodriguez / Unsplash
  • Photo: Victor Rodriguez / Unsplash
  • A roaring April
  • Bitcoin is on a roll. The currency is up by 34% since the end of March, nudging $9,500 on April 30 and ending the month at $8,627.32.
  • Bitcoin is on a roll. The currency is up by 34% since the end of March, nudging $9,500 on April 30 and ending the month at $8,627.32. It’s roaring towards $10,000 again – but why? Well, partly because it was on a bull run before the pandemic hit, and as investors regain their confidence (and the equity markets make a surprisingly strong recovery) it’s just getting back on track. It doesn’t hurt that Fed chairman Jerome Powell doubled down on his commitment to supporting the US economy, [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/billybambrough/2020/04/13/donald-trump-and-the-fed-have-ended-the-free-market/?sh=71dd251d4ef0]pumping in[/url] upwards of $6trn in liquidity and promising more if needed. Most Bitcoin investors are now [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/billybambrough/2020/03/30/crypto-traders-see-bitcoin-but-not-ethereum-surging-to-all-time-highs-in-2020-heres-why/?sh=279d0d959712]upbeat[/url], with high hopes of hitting $20,000 by the end of the year. "Bitcoin is now trading at a critical inflexion point, where significant Fibonacci retracements, 50-day moving averages and 10-day moving averages converge on the daily chart," [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/billybambrough/2020/04/29/bitcoin-at-critical-point-as-price-suddenly-roars-toward-10000/?sh=5a350fa5f752]said[/url] analysts at Stack, an index fund based in Singapore.
  • Congressman is confident
  • U.S. Congressman Tom Emmer thinks that as we emerge from the catastrophe of COVID, Bitcoin will only get stronger.
  • U.S. Congressman Tom Emmer [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/billybambrough/2020/08/06/us-congressman-coronavirus-crisis-will-make-bitcoin-more-important-and-stronger/?sh=56f6800f17d3]thinks[/url] that as we emerge from the catastrophe of COVID, Bitcoin will only get stronger. And it looks like he’s right. Bitcoin, among other “safe haven” assets, climbs steadily over the week. It benefits from [url=https://www.forbes.com/sites/steveforbes/2020/11/19/will-a-new-stimulus-package-spike-inflation/?sh=798b5a345f62]fears[/url] that Coronavirus stimulus measures could cause heavy inflation, With Bitcoin often used as a [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-hedge-inflation-crazy]hedge[/url] against inflation, a lot more people are now [url=https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40822-020-00154-1]looking[/url] to crypto. Winning.
  • U.S. Congressman Tom Emmer thinks that as we emerge from the catastrophe of COVID, Bitcoin will only get stronger. Photo: House Creative Services / Wikimedia
  • U.S. Congressman Tom Emmer. Photo: House Creative Services / Wikimedia
  • And it was all going so well….
  • What happened? It was all going great, with the price staying steady between $11,000 and $12,000 for the whole of August, and then on September 3 boom, a crash drops the rate right back down to a low of $9,987.86, ending the day at $10,160.
  • What happened? It was all going great, with the price staying steady between $11,000 and $12,000 for the whole of August, and then on September 3 boom, a crash drops the rate right back down to a low of $9,987.86, ending the day at $10,160. It wouldn’t clear $11,000 again for two weeks. So what happened to wipe 10% off its value? According to Coindesk, a notable rise in deposits onto exchanges suggested that some investors could be trying to [url=https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoin-news-sept-3]offload[/url] their Bitcoin all at once, which can depress prices. In other news, nine members of the U.S. Congress wrote a [url=https://emmer.house.gov/_cache/files/2/7/276d8dcd-ea28-4236-a2af-24e3748d1c7c/B3AB1A3EE89378C6DDB47DB00F798760.final-caucus-letter1.pdf]letter[/url] urging Trump to use blockchain to help with Covid-19 relief; while over in Switzerland the entire canton of Zug [url=https://www.coindesk.com/swiss-canton-zug-accept-taxes-crypto-bitcoin-ether-2021]decided[/url] to allow people to pay their taxes in Bitcoin.
  • Photo: Arash Payam / Unsplash
  • 20 Jan from 12:12pm to 12:14pm