After a wild week, which saw sharp losses, a bounce back and more losses, Dow Jones was down 0.2%, S&P 500 rose 1.4%, and Nasdaq was up 4.4%. The 10-year Treasury saw huge daily swings as well, and the two-year yield fell ~75 basis points to 3.85%, in its biggest weekly drop since 1987. Bitcoin notched a 9-month high after inflation data bolsters speculation of smaller rate hike. Silicon Valley Bank’s parent company filed for bankruptcy after worry spread among its long-established customer base of tech startups, prompting regulators to seize the firm’s banking unit. Hedge fund Tiger Global marked down the value of its venture capital funds in 2022 by 33%, or US$23 billion. China’s robotaxi upstart WeRide confidentially filed for an IPO. Amazon and Rivian are considering ending their exclusivity agreement. Google unveils new AI tools for Cloud, Workspace. Microsoft announced Copilot: the AI-powered future of Office documents. OpenAI on Tuesday began selling access to GPT-4, the newest version of its machine-learning model. Baidu debuted China’s answer to ChatGPT via a recorded video, disappointing investors. Meta will cut another 10,000 jobs and cancel ‘low priority projects’. Amazon plans to offer first satellite internet service next year. YouTube TV is raising its prices by US$8 per month, citing in part rising content costs. Tesla relaunches Powerwall sales. In Canada, Last week’s sudden collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) could choke funding for Canada’s technology start-ups and place them in the hands of domestic lenders who may be more selective in financing new ventures. Sophic Client Swarmio received an interest-free loan of $1 million from a strategic shareholder. Sophic client UGE achieves a Notice to Proceed Milestone for 2.7MW community solar project in Maryland.
Canadian Technology Capital Markets & Company News
Sophic Client Swarmio Media (SWRM-CSE, SWMIF-OTC) receives interest-free loan of $1 million from strategic shareholder.
The Company has received $1,000,000 in secured debt from a private lender, who is an existing shareholder. The debt is repayable on demand by the lender at any time on or after June 10, 2023. The lender of this debt also received common share purchase warrants entitling them to acquire an aggregate of 5,000,000 common shares of Swarmio at $0.08 per share for up to 5 years. The net proceeds of this debt offering will be used for short-term working capital and general corporate purposes. In connection with the debt financing, Swarmio also issued share purchase warrants entitling their holders to acquire an aggregate of 10,034,750 common shares of Swarmio at $0.08 per share for up to 5 years. These warrants were issued to holders of outstanding Swarmio debt in return for extending the debt repayment terms and agreeing to subordinate to the new lender described above. Swarmio also issued warrants to acquire an aggregate of 3,000,000 common shares of Swarmio to consultants. https://bit.ly/3FwehyU
Sophic Capital client UGE achieves Notice to Proceed Milestone for 2.7MW community solar project in Maryland.
Sophic Capital client, UGE International Ltd., announces that it has reached the ‘Notice to Proceed’ milestone for a 2.7MW ground-mount community solar project in Oakland, Maryland. The Notice to Proceed milestone indicates that financing for the project has closed, and all necessary permits and interconnection approvals for the project are in place. With this project, UGE has reached NTP on 3.5MW of projects and commercial operation on 1.4MW of projects so far this year. his will be UGE’s first project to break ground in Maryland. UGE has an additional 10.6MW of projects currently under development in the state. http://bit.ly/3YWOSWd
Spark Microsystems raises $34 million to meet chip demand amid supply crunch.
Montréal-based fabless semiconductor company Spark Microsystems has closed $34 million in Series B financing as the broader chip industry continues to grapple with a supply crunch and demand fluctuations. The funding was led by Québec investment firm Idealist Capital, which secured a first close of $250 million in September to invest in decarbonizing power systems. It also saw participation from existing Spark investors, including Economic Development Canada, Real Ventures, ND Capital, and climate tech-focused Cycle Capital. http://bit.ly/3FvYmRg
Shinydocs raises $16.25 million to make it easier to find buried files, media, documents.
Kitchener-based information management startup Shinydocs has raised $16.25 million to expand its market share as more organizations accelerate their transition to organizing information digitally. Founded in 2013 by CEO Jason Cassidy, Shinydocs’ software automates the process of finding and identifying files, media content, and documents within an organization’s repositories. The market for enterprise data management is expected to reach $122.9 billion by 2025. According to Shinydocs, businesses within the government, financial services, as well as the oil and gas industries use its platform to make data-driven decisions while reducing time for searching files. In 2022, Shinydocs secured $4 million from FedDev Ontario with the intention of hiring more people for its human resources, marketing, product, sales, customer support, as well as research and development departments. https://bit.ly/3LujfQN
Canada’s tech start ups face financing hurdles with SVB collapse.
Last week’s sudden collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) could choke funding for Canada’s technology start-ups and place them in the hands of domestic lenders who may be more selective in financing new ventures. SVB’s Canadian division, which received a license to operate in 2019, competed against other banks and private lenders to help finance the growth of the Canadian technology sector, before it collapsed on Friday. It had doubled its secured loans to $435 million (US$314 million) in 2022 from previous year. CIBC, Royal Bank of Canada and Bank of Montreal were the most likely to pick up both SVB’s current book, and future clients in Canada, John Ruffolo, Managing Partner Maverix Private Equity, a Toronto-based PE firm said. Canadian companies saw overall venture capital investment of $1.3 billion (US$947.38 million) so far this year, compared to $4.5 billion over the first three months of 2022 and $3.5 billion over the same period in 2021. http://bit.ly/3mUIDou
Global Markets: IPOs, Venture Capital, M&A
SVB Financial Group files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
Silicon Valley Bank’s parent company filed for bankruptcy after worry spread among its long-established customer base of tech startups, prompting regulators to seize the firm’s banking unit. SVB Financial Group listed assets and liabilities of as much as US$10 billion each in a Chapter 11 petition filed in New York. Because Silicon Valley Bank is a California-chartered commercial bank and part of the Federal Reserve system, it is not eligible for bankruptcy and landed in Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. receivership instead. Its parent company, however, is eligible to file in order to protect its remaining assets and work on repaying creditors, including bondholders. Broker-dealer SVB Securities and venture capital arm SVB Capital aren’t included in the filing, according to a statement. Santa Clara, California-based SVB is the biggest bank to fail in more than a decade, with about US$209 billion in total assets as of the end of last year, the FDIC said. It’s also the second largest bank to fall under the agency’s receivership, behind only Washington Mutual Inc., which imploded in 2008. https://bloom.bg/3yPXXFu
Tiger Global writes down value of its venture funds by 33%.
Hedge fund Tiger Global marked down the value of its venture capital funds in 2022 by 33%, or US$23 billion, The Wall Street Journal reported. Tiger’s holdings in private companies include ByteDance, Stripe and Shein. The report noted that valuations in closely held private companies fell relatively less than those of publicly listed equities which are more liquid and transparent and were battered by a global tech stock meltdown. Tiger posted much steeper losses in its flagship hedge fund and long-only fund, which focuses on public markets and high-growth tech companies which often are unprofitable. The firm lost 56% on its hedge fund and 67% on its long-only fund, the report said. Tiger is currently raising money for a US$5 billion venture fund, and the writedown could impact how successful it is in that effort. https://bit.ly/42l1kSw
China’s robotaxi upstart WeRide confidentially files for IPO.
WeRide.ai, one of the most funded Chinese robotaxi operators, has confidentially filed to go public in the U.S.. WeRide’s valuation jumped to US$3.3 billion when it raised its Series C round nearly two years ago. It reportedly pulled in a new round in March 2022, lifting its valuation to US$4.4 billion. Its nemesis Pony.ai achieved an even loftier valuation – US$8.5 billion – a year ago. At some point, though, these capital-intensive robotaxi operators will need to access the public market for capital, as not many investors are able or willing to sign the large checks that support their late-stage expansion. WeRide is aiming to raise as much as US$500 million. WeRide has raised over US$1.4 billion to date from investors, including Bosch and China’s state-owned carmaker Guangzhou Automobile Group. http://bit.ly/3mUKU2Z
U.S. officials demand ByteDance sell TikTok.
The Biden administration is demanding that Chinese internet giant ByteDance sell TikTok despite the company’s yearslong effort to avoid such a decision, according to a person briefed about the situation. U.S. officials have told TikTok to rid itself of Chinese ownership and implied the app could face an outright ban if ByteDance doesn’t comply, this person said. More pressure from the White House puts ByteDance in a tough spot as China’s government, which considers Chinese-made software algorithms to be of national security importance, could oppose the idea of selling TikTok to a non-Chinese buyer. TikTok faces an uphill battle in Washington, where lawmakers have been calling for a ban due to concerns that the popular video app could enable China’s government to influence its content and gain access to American users’ personal information. In August last year, TikTok submitted a proposal to the U.S. government detailing its plans to address security concerns, including an arrangement for Oracle to host all U.S. user data and traffic. But calls for a TikTok ban in the U.S. have intensified since then. https://bit.ly/3YY7DIH
Amazon and Rivian consider ending exclusivity agreement.
Amazon and Rivian are considering ending a deal that requires the electric automaker to exclusively sell its delivery vans to the e-commerce giant, The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. Amazon told Rivian in recent months that it plans to buy around 10,000 vans this year, on the lower end of what it had previously told the automaker, according to the report. Rivian then initiated ongoing talks about ending the exclusivity agreement, which was first signed in 2019. Amazon is Rivian’s biggest shareholder, owning 17% of the company. Amazon has touted the investment, along with plans to buy 100,000 Rivian vans by 2030, as an important part of its plans to reduce carbon emissions. Both companies have sought to slash costs in recent months, including through layoffs. https://bit.ly/3JoMWjv
Google unveils new AI tools for Cloud, Workspace.
Google said Tuesday it would allow customers of its cloud platform to use one of its language models, PaLM, to program chatbot functions into their apps. The search giant also introduced new AI features in Gmail and Google Docs that automatically compose emails or generate summaries of documents, matching tools that Microsoft announced earlier this year for its office software products. The announcements come as Google tries to keep pace with other companies in rolling out AI products that generate content like text and images. It is planning a competitor to OpenAI’s ChatGPT, but has not yet released a product since announcing the effort in early February. Meanwhile, OpenAI this month made the machine-learning model behind ChatGPT available to outside developers who want to use the chatbot in their own programs. https://bit.ly/3n67s0Y
Microsoft announces Copilot: the AI-powered future of Office documents.
Microsoft is announcing a new AI-powered Copilot for its Microsoft 365 apps and services, designed to assist people with generating documents, emails, presentations, and much more. The Copilot, powered by GPT-4 from OpenAI, will sit alongside Microsoft 365 apps much like an assistant (remember Clippy?), appearing in the sidebar as a chatbot that allows Office users to summon it to generate text in documents, create PowerPoint presentations based on Word documents, or even help use features like PivotTables in Excel. Microsoft’s Copilot leaked earlier. Microsoft 365 users will be able to summon Copilot to provide information on an upcoming Microsoft Teams meeting, preparing people with updates on related projects, organizational changes like recent hires, and even updates on co-workers who might have returned from vacation. Copilot can also be summoned throughout Microsoft’s Office apps and be used in Word to draft documents based on other files. The AI-generated text can then be freely edited and adapted. As Copilot is essentially a chatbot, you can even ask it to create a 10-slide PowerPoint presentation based on a Word document or analyze or format Excel data. https://bit.ly/3TsnOgh
OpenAI is testing a version of GPT-4 that can ‘remember’ long conversations.
OpenAI has built a version of GPT-4, its latest text-generating model, that can “remember” roughly 50 pages of content thanks to a greatly expanded context window. That might not sound significant. But it’s five times as much information as the vanilla GPT-4 can hold in its “memory” and eight times as much as GPT-3. Where it concerns text-generating AI, the context window refers to the text the model considers before generating additional text. While models like GPT-4 “learn” to write by training on billions of examples of text, they can only consider a small fraction of that text at a time – determined chiefly by the size of their context window. Models with small context windows tend to “forget” the content of even very recent conversations, leading them to veer off topic. After a few thousand words or so, they also forget their initial instructions, instead extrapolating their behavior from the last information within their context window rather than the original request. http://bit.ly/42ijWm7
OpenAI sells GPT-4 access to developers.
OpenAI on Tuesday began selling access to GPT-4, the newest version of its machine-learning model that has enraptured the tech world for its ability to parse text and produce human-like answers to written prompts. The Microsoft-backed startup said GPT-4, which is trained on data scraped from the web, outperforms earlier versions of GPT at accurately summarizing text and at answering factual questions because it uses more computational power and is trained on more data. Companies including Stripe and Duolingo already pay for GPT-4, OpenAI said, for features such as fraud detection and chatbots that interact with users. GPT-4 also will power ChatGPT Plus, the US$20-per-month paid tier of OpenAI’s popular ChatGPT chatbot. The free version of ChatGPT, first released in November, is powered by an earlier version of GPT, which stands for generative pre-trained transformer model. (Read about GPT and other seminal AI research here.) Microsoft, which has invested at least several billion dollars in OpenAI and has exclusive rights to use its models in its own products, incorporated GPT-4 into its Bing search chatbot. The software also will power features of Microsoft’s Office 365 software, The Information reported in January. Microsoft plans to unveil those features on Thursday. https://bit.ly/40ifxxO
Baidu plunges after recorded demo of AI chatbot disappoints.
Baidu Inc. debuted China’s answer to ChatGPT via a recorded video, disappointing investors hoping for a real-time demo of the country’s highest-profile entry in a race to dominate transformative technology. Billionaire founder Robin Li took to a Beijing stage to introduce his company’s “Ernie Bot,” a landmark moment for a search leader that’s struggled in recent years to revitalize growth. But instead of putting the service through its paces in real time, he talked over a scripted video of interactions with the AI. Baidu’s shares fell 6.4% in Hong Kong, wiping out about US$3 billion of value. http://bit.ly/42gcd8h
Adobe shares jump 5%, CEO says Figma deal still on track.
Adobe shares ticked up nearly 5% after the cloud software provider reported that sales rose 9.2% to nearly US$4.7 billion in the three months to Jan. 31 compared to last year, down only slightly from the 10% growth it had last quarter, showing that it is weathering the technology spending slowdown better than many of its peers. Adobe is also upping its earnings per share forecast for its fiscal year to US$10.85 to US$11.15, an increase of 10 cents per share from the numbers it gave last quarter, and bumping its forecast for the amount of new subscription revenue it expects to generate from sales of digital media tools from US$1.65 billion to US$1.70 billion. Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen said this is because customers see Adobe’s tools as a way to grow sales more profitably in an uncertain economy. Narayen, in prepared remarks, also said Adobe expects its US$20 billion acquisition of design firm Figma to close this year. Bloomberg reported last month that the Department of Justice was readying an antitrust lawsuit to block the deal. https://bit.ly/42pgGFu
Meta to cut another 10,000 jobs and cancel ‘low priority projects’.
Meta plans to cut its workforce by another 10,000 people and withdraw around 5,000 open roles that it had yet to fill, company co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Tuesday, confirming recent rumors that another round of layoffs was imminent. Zuckerberg also said that the company will cancel “lower priority projects,” adding that he “underestimated the indirect costs” associated with these initiatives. The announcement comes just four months after Meta revealed that it was eliminating about 11,000 roles as the social networking giant pushes ahead with what it’s calling a “year of efficiency.” Combined, this means that Meta has effectively laid off – or plans to lay-off – roughly one-quarter of its workforce since the tail-end of last year. http://bit.ly/3TmMeYs
Amazon plans to offer first satellite internet service next year.
Amazon plans to start providing satellite internet service to its first customers in 2024, the company said Tuesday, as it races to catch up with SpaceX’s Starlink. Amazon’s satellite internet division, called Project Kuiper, expects to start mass producing satellites by the end of 2023 and launch its first production satellites in the first six months of next year, the company said in a press release. To help prepare for those launches, Amazon plans to send two prototype rockets to space on a United Launch Alliance rocket within the next few months. But Amazon still has a long way to go to catch up with Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which has already launched about 4,000 satellites and has “well over” 1 million Starlink users, according to a SpaceX executive quoted by CNBC on Monday. Amazon hasn’t revealed how it plans to price Kuiper, but said in Tuesday’s release that its customer terminals will cost less than US$400 each to manufacture. If Amazon were to sell the terminals at cost, it could undercut SpaceX, which charges U.S. customers a US$599 one-time fee for hardware and US$120 per month for internet service. https://bit.ly/3Ts9Afe
Lowe’s is testing 400-pound, egg-shaped autonomous robots to patrol parking lots at some of its stores.
Lowe’s is testing autonomous, 400-pound security robots from robotics company Knightscope to patrol parking lots at some of its stores to enhance safety. Lowe’s said it began testing the Knightscope K5 robots in February in Philadelphia. It’s also running pilots in Washington State, North Carolina, Washington D.C., and California. Lowe’s decision to test these autonomous robots comes as retailers have been sounding the alarms about rising levels of theft. Knightscope began public trading on Nasdaq early last year. The theft issue has ballooned into a US$94.5 billion problem for the retail industry, according to a 2022 study conducted by the National Retail Federation. http://bit.ly/3Jp7MiH
Media, Streaming, Gaming & Sports Betting
YouTube TV hikes prices, cites rising content costs.
YouTube TV is raising its prices by US$8 per month, citing in part rising content costs for the live TV service, which offers more than 100 broadcast and cable TV channels including NBC, ESPN and TNT. The tech giant said YouTube TV’s “Base Plan” will go up from US$64.99 to US$72.99 per month, a 12% increase, starting April 18. “As content costs have risen and we continue to invest in the quality of our service, we are updating our price to keep bringing you the best possible service,” the company said in an email to subscribers. YouTube TV’s price hike is notable as YouTube last year secured the exclusive rights to the NFL’s Sunday Ticket package, which allows subscribers to watch all NFL games not available in their local TV market. YouTube is reportedly paying more than US$2 billion per year over the next seven years for the rights, a costly investment as live sports fees continue to skyrocket, making it harder for TV and tech firms to generate a profit, as The Information reported earlier this week. While YouTube TV will offer Sunday Ticket as an add-on, hiking up the base monthly price for the live TV service can presumably help pay for the deal. https://bit.ly/3LPRDpx
Apple undecided on whether it will bid for NBA streaming rights, new report says.
Apple has started to invest heavily in live sports, including MLB Friday Night Baseball and MLS Season Pass. While the NBA is shopping its media rights around, Apple is still undecided on whether it will make a bid for those rights. Specifically, the NBA wants to sell a national streaming-only package, alongside two national TV deals. The report says that the NBA is looking to “triple its current revenue” from TV deals. While Amazon and Google would acquire streaming rights, the NBA has two existing partners for TV deals: Walt Disney’s ESPN and Warner Bros. Discovery. Both of these companies, however, are looking to reduce spending and have suggested cutting sports spending as a way to do that. The trillion-dollar elephant in the room, however, is Apple. For the streaming package, both Google and Amazon are the two companies that have expressed interest so far. Apple is reportedly undecided on whether it will make a bid. http://bit.ly/3n5Iezq
Adtech, Privacy & Regulatory
Biden administration reportedly demanding that TikTok sell or face a ban.
TikTok is facing a direct challenge to its continued operations in the US. The Biden administration is reportedly demanding that TikTok be sold off from its Chinese parent company, ByteDance, or face a potential ban. The White House’s threat is an escalation from the limited bans and pending legislation that have been bubbling up for some time. In late February, the Biden administration said federal agencies would have 30 days to remove TikTok from government devices, and similar restrictions have spread across dozens of US states. http://bit.ly/3Z1RlhT
Amazon tests Rite Aid deliveries in Instacart challenge.
Amazon is mounting a challenge to Instacart through a new partnership with Rite Aid offering same-day deliveries of health, cosmetics and grocery items to Prime members in two U.S. markets. The company plans to test the service in Newark, NJ and Burbank, Calif., allowing Prime members to order deliveries within two-hour windows through a dedicated Rite Aid page on Amazon’s website and app. Prescription drugs are not available through the service. The partnership marks a push by Amazon onto the territory of Instacart, which has offered speedy deliveries from Rite Aid and other pharmacies for several years. Amazon is charging a US$6.95 fee on Rite Aid deliveries under US$40; US$4.95 for deliveries between US$40 and USS$75; and US$2.95 for orders between US$75 and US$100. Orders above US$100 come with free delivery. Instacart pricing, meanwhile, starts at US$3.99 for same-day orders over US$35 but can vary significantly. https://bit.ly/3LwQIde
Fintech, Blockchain & Cryptocurrency
Bitcoin notches 9-month high after inflation data bolsters speculation of smaller rate hike.
Bitcoin jumped to a nearly nine-month high on Tuesday as traders mulled over key inflation data that could bolster odds the Federal Reserve will slow interest rate hikes. The CPI rose 0.4% in February from January and was up 6% annually. Bitcoin soared to US$26,500 shortly after the print, surging over 15%. Cryptos are up across the board as the market sits at a US$1.1 trillion value. Ethereum is also on a tear, jumping 7.5% in the past 24 hours. While federal regulators are stepping in to backstop depositors at SVB and Signature, the earlier fear that they could lose some of their money may have given crypto a boost. http://bit.ly/3lonFxK
Billions worth of crypto trades at risk as bank shutdowns take toll.
The digital-asset market is coming off of a turbulent year featuring a number of high-profile blowups. Now, three shutdowns in the banking industry – SVB Financial Group’s Silicon Valley Bank, Silvergate Capital Corp. and Signature Bank – have set off a fresh set of stresses. SVB’s failure triggered a knock-on effect in the crucial market for stablecoins after digital-asset giant Circle Internet Financial Corp., one of the biggest issuers of the widely used tokens known for their perceived safety, revealed it had US$3.3 billion of reserves with the bank. The news caused Circle’s token, USD Coin, to slip below its intended 1-for-1 peg with the dollar, sending a shock through the market. http://bit.ly/3TiTtAV
Coinbase explores overseas venue as US ramps up crypto scrutiny.
Institutional clients of Coinbase Global Inc. have been contacted by the firm about plans to potentially set up a new crypto-trading platform overseas, according to three people with direct knowledge of the matter. The talks with market makers and investment firms touched on the possibility of establishing an alternative venue — away from the main Coinbase marketplace — for global clients, said the people, who asked not to be named as the discussions are confidential. The talks are occurring against the backdrop of an intensifying US crackdown on cryptocurrencies. https://bloom.bg/3YRC3MQ
Samsung Electronics to invest US$230 billion through 2042 in South Korea chipmaking base.
South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics expects to invest US$230 billion over the next 20 years to develop what the country’s government called the world’s largest chip-making base, in line with efforts to boost the national chip industry. Samsung’s around 300 trillion won project is part of a 550 trillion won private-sector investment plan unveiled by the government on Wednesday. Seoul’s strategy aims to expand tax breaks and support to raise competitiveness of high-tech sectors including those involving chips, displays and batteries. Samsung’s manufacturing additions will include five chip factories and attract up to 150 materials, parts and equipment makers, fabless chipmakers and semiconductor research-and-development organisations near Seoul, the industry ministry said in a statement. http://bit.ly/3LBlhPb
Samsung’s new Texas chip plant cost rises above US$25 billion.
A chip plant that South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co Ltd is building in Taylor, Texas, will cost the world’s biggest memory chipmaker over US$25 billion, up more than US$8 billion from initial forecasts. The increase in cost is primarily due to inflation. Last year, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the world’s largest contract chip manufacturer, announced it was more than tripling a planned investment in a new plant in Arizona to US$40 billion. Meanwhile, Intel Corp announced a US$20 billion chip factory in Ohio that it could expand to cost up to US$100 billion. Also last year, chipmaker Micron Technology said it planned to invest up to US$100 billion over the next 20-plus years to build a computer chip factory complex in upstate New York. http://bit.ly/3Lx9Tn7
Tesla relaunches Powerwall sales.
Tesla has relaunched its Powerwall residential battery, two years after restricting sales of the product due to supply constraints. Customers can now purchase a stand alone Powerwall, which connects to solar panels and Tesla’s Solar Roof to store unused energy, for US$9,200 through its website. Previously the product was only available in a bundle with Tesla’s solar products at an added cost of US$12,850 each. The relaunched product opens the doors to wider battery sales for Tesla, which said in early March that it intends to sell one terawatt of energy-generating products annually, a massive expansion of existing sales. Last year, Tesla deployed 6.5 gigawatt hours of energy storage, less than 1% of its one terawatt goal. https://bit.ly/3n0vJ8r
Waze is adding electric vehicle charging stations to its route planning tool.
Electric vehicle owners who prefer Waze to other navigation tools, rejoice: the Google-owned company is adding EV charging stations to its route planning tools in an effort to improve the experience for plug seekers. Starting today, Waze users can input their vehicle information into the app, as well as their preferred plug type, and Waze will find the nearest stations along their route. Waze briefly trialed adding EV chargers to its route planning tool back in 2021 in partnership with Volkswagen. But that trial only lasted a few weeks, and after it concluded, the charging stations vanished from the app. With today’s announcement, Waze has added EV charging “permanently” to the app, a company spokesperson said. Waze also claims that thanks to its crowdsourced map editing function, “EV data is reviewed and updated in real-time to provide the most accurate, comprehensive information to the map.” http://bit.ly/40cS40S
IPhone maker Hon Hai expects flat 2023 as it builds EV push.
Gadget assembler sees slump in consumer electronics demand Will build EV battery packs and components in Ohio, Wisconsin. Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. said it expects to multiply its sales of electric vehicle components this year while weathering cooler consumer spending on technology. The Taiwanese Apple Inc. assembler offered a forecast of slumping consumer electronics demand this year offset by an uptick in sales of cloud and networking products, PCs and especially EV hardware, which it sees growing by as much as fivefold this year. The flattish overall outlook for 2023 is matched by the current quarter. http://bit.ly/3YXTbAD
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