H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (28 February 2019) – Melbourne’s See-Mode has built A.I. software that sees a stroke before it strikes + Warren Buffett was too American to see through Kraft

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (28 February 2019) – Melbourne’s See-Mode has built A.I. software that sees a stroke before it strikes + Warren Buffett was too American to see through Kraft

Companies

  • It Ain’t Easy Being Big Brother’s Little Favorite; Investors betting on Beijing’s support have lifted shares of Hikvision, the country’s largest maker of surveillance gear. That backing could falter. (Bloomberg)
  • Tencent-backed brokerage Futu targets $130m in US listing; Xiaomi-linked rival also headed for Nasdaq debut (Nikkei)
  • Why Nintendo keeps returning to classics like Pokémon (CNN)
  • Meet The Taiwanese Tech Giant That’s Due To Make The Next iPad Mini (Forbes)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

  • Consumers see no need for $2,000 foldable phone, poll shows; Nikkei survey results raise questions over Samsung and Huawei strategies (Nikkei)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Apple lays off 190 employees from self-driving car unit: report (MW)
  • Cedars-Sinai puts Amazon Alexa in patient rooms as part of a pilot program (TC)
  • How Amazon took 50% of the e-commerce market and what it means for the rest of us (TC)
  • Google’s new AI grammar checker is now live in Google Docs (TC)
  • Netflix Stock to Rally Because It Can Raise Prices, Says Analyst (Barron’s)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • How Huawei tried to sell itself to Motorola for $7.5bn; 2003 deal between Chinese group and US partner would have changed course of telecoms history (FT)
  • House Mart shortens property proposal that takes about 60 minutes to 1 minute, open SaaS “PropoCloud” for real estate brokerage companies (TC)
  • Japan Display to market cutting-edge car panels with French partner; Ultra-wide screen for automated vehicles to be supplied to carmakers (Nikkei)
  • Thailand’s food delivery battle heats up as Go-Jek arrives; Indonesian unicorn hails local player Get to speed entry into growing market (Nikkei)
  • TheAsianparent, a leading parenting portal, jumps into ecommerce (TIA)
  • Indonesian online travel unicorn Traveloka expands to Australia (KRA)
  • Thailand’s food delivery battle heats up as Go-Jek arrives; Indonesian unicorn hails local player Get to speed entry into growing market (Nikkei)
  • How Metro Cash & Carry is helping kirana stores go digital (Forbes)
  • Melbourne’s See-Mode has built software that sees a stroke before it strikes (AFR)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • D-Wave announces its next-gen quantum computing platform (TC)
  • Deliveroo announces “click and collect” (FT)
  • Intel CEO’s Visionary Strategy Can Drive the Stock Higher, Analyst Says (Barron’s)
  • Etsy Stock Has Soared, but Investors Might Want to Be Cautious (Barron’s)
  • The World’s Biggest Smartphone Conference Looks More Like CES. Here’s Why. (Barron’s)
  • 5G Is Still Tomorrow’s Dream for Big Tech. Expect a Slow Rollout. (Barron’s)
  • How data helps deliver your dinner on time-and warm (Wired)
  • Edge Computing Wants Smarter IoT Devices (EET)
  • NXP to Kick-Start Cloud Apps for Car OEMs (EET)

Life

  • Warren Buffett was too American to see through Kraft; what he calls the “moat” around US packaged food brands has been crossed; sales of the Kirkland Signature private label brand owned by Costco had overtaken all of the Kraft Heinz brands put together (AFR)
  • Is Warren Buffett Just Mailing It In? The Berkshire Hathaway CEO’s latest annual shareholder letter is shorter and less upbeat than in years past. (II)

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (27 February 2019) – SEA Ltd – Investors Should Stick to Their (Accounting) Principles + Nietzsche on How to Find Yourself and the True Value of Education

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (27 February 2019) – SEA Ltd – Investors Should Stick to Their (Accounting) Principles + Nietzsche on How to Find Yourself and the True Value of Education

Companies

  • Xiaomi sets up artificial intelligence and big data departments to sharpen focus in tech race; Tech firm trying to transform itself from a smartphone maker to an internet services firm (SCMP)
  • Nintendo plays winning Japanese buyback game (Reuters)
  • Rakuten Lifull Stay launches WillStyleStay marketplace (STR)
  • Tokyo Electron Sees Potential Mid-Year Chip Rebound (Bloomberg)
  • SEA – Investors Should Stick to Their (Accounting) Principles; The Southeast Asian e-commerce company would rather be judged by its chosen financial metrics. (Bloomberg)
  • Strong demand for circuit board inspection lifts Vitrox Q4 profit (Star)
  • SamacSys today announces a new Altium integration at embedded world 2019 (NE)
  • IDP Education continues to be a high-class business (LWM)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

  • What is the greatest threat to WeChat? (TIA)
  • Asia fintech leads global funding as Alibaba and Baidu wallets thrive (Nikkei)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Apple Plans Sleep Tracking Feature for Future Watch (Bloomberg)
  • How Netflix created a $1 billion arms race for TV writers (FastCo)
  • Amazon Doesn’t Have to Beat Facebook and Google to Win in Advertising (Barron’s)
  • Facebook expands ad buying options for premium video (Reuters)
  • Microsoft’s HoloLens 2 looks like a meaningful mixed-reality advance (FastCo)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • News app unicorn Yidian Zixun’s Shanghai IPO may be underway (Technode)
  • China’s top securities regulator raises doubts about readiness of new tech board in debut meeting with press (SCMP)
  • AI chip unicorn Horizon Robotics raises US$600m in funding as China seeks to reduce dependence on imported semiconductors (SCMP)
  • Wall-crawling robots sound out loose tiles on Tokyo buildings; Replacing human inspectors cuts costs by 25% and improves safety (Nikkei)
  • The imminent fall of Korea’s first unicorn Yello Mobile; Once regarded as one of the nation’s hottest “it” enterprises worth more than US$4billion at its peak, greed and incompetence have taken their toll (Investor)
  • Spotify launches music streaming service in India (Reuters)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Warren Buffett Joins the Crowd Struggling to Understand Oracle (Bloomberg)
  • Farfetch Soars After Pact to Help Harrods Woo Online Shoppers (Bloomberg)
  • Zillow Is Now The Netflix Of Homes (TBP)
  • Happy anniversary to TiVo’s ‘strategic review,’ which still hasn’t found a strategy (MW)
  • Lyft and Uber Are Easy to Understand and Hard to Value (Bloomberg)
  • S. consumer regulator forms task force to monitor big tech (Reuters)
  • The Value Chain Constraint (Stratechery)

Life

  • Nietzsche on How to Find Yourself and the True Value of Education (BP)
  • 3 states of share pledging: Fame, flame and shame (Ventura)

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (26 February 2019) – Appen rockets on ‘mega trend’ of artificial intelligence

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (26 February 2019) – Appen rockets on ‘mega trend’ of artificial intelligence

Companies

  • Apple supplier AAC Tech sees shares plunge after profit warning (Reuters)
  • Meituan labor strikes underscore profitability pressures (Technode)
  • HERE expands mapping services to China with Navinfo partnership (Reuters)
  • Trend Micro New Offering Enables Telecom Provides to Push a Security Layer Across Users’ Digital Life (FP)
  • Sony revitalizes smartphone franchise with movie-style screens (Reuters)
  • Lifull Home’s plans new matching portal (AIM)
  • Vitrox plans to invest up to RM300mil on Batu Kawan facility (Star)
  • RF contribution expected to remain soft for Inari Amertron (Edge)
  • Vista Group’s annual net profit jumped 26.7 percent as its businesses increased their market share around the world. Excluding China, Vista says its global market share increased to 48 percent (SC)
  • O2O leader VGI bumps profits 71 per cent, cites in-depth consumer data (Nation)
  • ASX offloads 18.6% stake in Iress (FE)
  • John Wylie makes $25m bet on Afterpay rival FlexiGroup (Age)
  • Appen rockets on ‘mega trend’ of artificial intelligence (Age)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

  • Tencent’s WeChat super app focuses on offline services (TIA)
  • Payment Companies’ Free Lunch Comes to an End (Caixin)
  • Galaxy Fold: The start of a form-factor revolution? (Investor); Huawei and Samsung still have much to prove on foldable phones; Doubts over whether Mate X and Galaxy Fold will win over consumers (Nikkei)
  • TSMC Unveils Chip Technology To Boost iPhone Speeds, Prolong Battery Life (Forbes)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • WhatsApp Is Celebrating Its 10th Anniversary And A Decade Of Disruption (Forbes)
  • Facebook, Alphabet Stock Could See Boosts From Direct-To-Consumer Brands (Barron’s)
  • An Apple Streaming Service Might Not Be Worth Getting Excited About, Analyst Says (Barron’s)
  • Netflix and the Economics of Bundling (HBR)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • China’s evolving spending habits produce highfliers and flameouts; Movies shine while smartphones lose sheen as optimism and pessimism mix (Nikkei)
  • China’s Tech Firms Are Mapping Pig Faces; As a devastating disease afflicts the country’s swine, companies are scrambling to roll out facial and voice recognition and other unproven ways to save them. (NYT)
  • Super-customization — a lifeline for Japan Inc? While companies elsewhere are also targeting ‘only for you,’ Japan has big advantages (Nikkei)
  • TPG-Backed Chip Tester UTAC Taps Citigroup for $1 Billion Sale; Affinity and TPG bought UTAC in a S$2.2 billion ($1.6 billion) leveraged buyout in 2007 (Bloomberg)
  • Who wins and who loses if India’s draft e-commerce rules are implemented (Qz)
  • Zilingo: Fashionably near-unicorn (Forbes)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Buffett, the Oracle of Omaha, backtracks on Oracle, the company (Reuters)
  • How artificial intelligence helps companies recruit talented staff; Many HR departments deploy new technological tools to locate potential candidates (FT)
  • Car industry will be big 5G customer down the road, says SEAT (Reuters)
  • How a new crop of tech IPOs may steal sentiment from FAANG stocks; Prominent among the new potential IPOs are Lyft, Uber, Pinterest and Airbnb; hence the acronym, LUPA. (MW); As Lyft’s Public Offering Looms, A Reminder Of Where The Year’s Unicorn IPO Crop Stands (CB)
  • How U.S. retailers turn their bane into boon with ‘click and collect’ (Reuters)
  • Creating A Data-Driven ‘You Are Here’ Media Map To Combat Fake News Using Billions Of Links (Forbes)
  • Wayfair’s 78% Surge Hits Short Sellers With $1 Billion in Losses (Bloomberg)

Life

  • A 7-Element Algorithm for Equity Investing (FS)
  • Dalai Lama Has the Antidote to Destructive Emotions (Medium)

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (25 February 2019) – Appen continues stellar run, revenue jumps 119 per cent

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (25 February 2019) – Appen continues stellar run, revenue jumps 119 per cent

Companies

  • Xiaomi-backed online broker that serves Chinese stock traders aims to raise US$150 million in Nasdaq IPO (SCMP)
  • The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) fined seven media platforms for unfair business practices. Kakao and Kosdaq-listed AfreecaTV, were on the list (KJA)
  • Appen continues stellar run, revenue jumps 119 per cent (AFR)
  • IRESS CEO Andrew Walsh tips widespread automation of financial advice (AFR)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Microsoft proves pioneer in ‘augmented reality’ with HoloLens 2; Tech giant doubles down on corporate customers with latest version of headset (FT); Microsoft promises an open HoloLens ecosystem (TC); Microsoft doubles, then triples down on HoloLens (AFR); Microsoft hails revamped goggles as more immersive and easy to wear (Reuters); Microsoft and Trimble made a hardhat with HoloLens built-in (TC)
  • How Netflix is eating the Academy (TC)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • LG unveils dual-screen 5G smartphone and touts biometric breakthrough (Reuters)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Stitch Fix’s radical data-driven way to sell clothes-$1.2 billion last year-is reinventing retail; CEO Katrina Lake’s e-commerce retailer uses data science to find you the best-fitting clothes you’ve ever worn (FastCo)
  • Why online service providers shouldn’t partner with big tech (TNW)
  • Cofounder Of 3-D Printing Unicorn Formlabs Raises $18M For Manufacturing Software Company Tulip (Forbes)
  • Europe’s Giant Tech Show Packs Hits, And Plenty of Flops (Bloomberg)
  • Lyft Filing Could Kick Off Cavalcade of High-Profile Tech IPOs (Bloomberg)
  • A $210 Billion Rally in Chip Stocks Leaving Hedge Funds in Dust (Bloomberg)
  • In conversation with Efinix: Start-up sees big opportunities in China for its programmable AI chips; Programmable chips can be altered and applied to different use cases – such as toys, security equipment or smartphones (SCMP)

Life

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (23 February 2019) – Uniqlo’s quest to become the world’s top e-tailer/retailer; Having built the brand, Yanai’s focus now switches to digital strategy + Quants Learn a Tough Lesson on Their Limits From Kraft Plunge; Dividend, low volatility and value ETFs all own the stock

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (23 February 2019) – Uniqlo’s quest to become the world’s top e-tailer/retailer; Having built the brand, Yanai’s focus now switches to digital strategy + Quants Learn a Tough Lesson on Their Limits From Kraft Plunge; Dividend, low volatility and value ETFs all own the stock

Companies

  • Uniqlo’s quest to become the world’s top e-tailer/retailer; Having built the brand, Yanai’s focus now switches to digital strategy (Nikkei)
  • En-Japan announced that it has acquired India-based IT staffing firm Future Focus Infotech (SI)
  • Netmarble, Kakao, global PEFs bid for Nexon takeover (Investor)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

  • Beneath Baidu’s positive results lie brand, trust burdens (Technode)
  • Tencent’s WeChat super app focuses on offline services to address changing needs of its 1 billion users; The number of people using WeChat to pay their medical expenses saw a 2.9-times year-on-year increase (SCMP)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • You Give Apps Sensitive Personal Information. Then They Tell Facebook. (WSJ)
  • YouTube’s Ad Revolt Seen Fleeting. Brands Just Can’t Quit Google (Bloomberg)
  • Personalizing Learning with Data: Microsoft’s latest acquisition shows how combining pedagogy and technology can dramatically improve learning outcomes. (Medium)
  • Gamers Could Have the Final Say on Nvidia’s Stock (Barron’s)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Beijing turns to facial recognition to deter scalpers who sell hospital appointments; To help cure the woes of China’s medical system, Beijing has turned to facial recognition technology as part of its latest effort to snare unscrupulous (SCMP)
  • Korean unicorn buys Vietnammm, turning up the heat in Vietnam’s food delivery sector; Vietnammm, Grab Food, Now by Foodie and Go-Viet’s Go-Food are currently the leading players in the industry (KRA)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Zillow Stock Soared Because Change Is Good (Barron’s); Zillow just told us what the future of buying a home looks like (TBP)
  • Reinvention is key for small tech companies; WANdisco, CentralNic and Forbidden seek to keep pace with industry (FT)
  • TechStyle hits 5 million members for its retail empire (TC)
  • Zoom, the video conferencing company, may be a public company as early as April (TC)
  • The decline of Monster.com from HR leader to follower (TN)
  • Some planes have cameras on seat-back screens; American Airlines and Singapore Airlines say systems are inactive but could allow seat-to-seat video conferencing in the future (JT)
  • Why Investors Should be Wary as the Unicorns Finally Seek IPOs (Barron’s)
  • Tech Companies Want to Be Banks (Bloomberg)
  • Wayfair Can’t Relax on the Easy Chair of Sales Growth; The online home-goods retailer’s operating expenses continue to climb, and it’s still spending a lot on marketing. (Bloomberg)
  • Everybody Makes Podcasts. Can Anyone Make Them Profitable? The industry generates a lot of enthusiasm and little revenue, but that could be changing. (Bloomberg)
  • Drive for Instacart and you could make $29.05 for an hour’s work-or $2.74 (FastCo)

Life

  • Warren Buffett’s Big Consumer Bets Bite Back (Bloomberg); Warren Buffett’s Kraft Heinz Bet Dragged Down Berkshire Hathaway in 2018; Conglomerate swung to a $25.4 billion loss in the fourth quarter due to an unexpected write-down at Kraft Heinz and unrealized investment losses. (WSJ); It Shook the Food Business by Snagging Burger King, Kraft and Heinz. Now 3G Is Reeling.; The Brazilian investment firm cut costs relentlessly but failed to spend on new ideas when consumer tastes changed (WSJ); Kraft Heinz Faces Existential Crisis After $16 Billion Rout (Bloomberg); Kraft Heinz’s Financial Recipe Turns Sour; The cost-cutting and debt-driven acquisitions leave investors with a bad taste. (Bloomberg); Quants Learn a Tough Lesson on Their Limits From Kraft Plunge; Dividend, low volatility and value ETFs all own the stock (Bloomberg)
  • High Glassdoor Ratings Can Lead to Better Stock Returns, But There’s a Catch (Barron’s)
  • Pizza Hut – How Lock-In Causes Growth Stalls, Irrelevancy and Bad Results: “Most management teams don’t think their problem is a market shift. Instead react by trying to do more of the same. They treat this situation like it’s an operational problem. Undertake more quality campaigns, more money spent on advertising, more promotions, asking employees to work a little harder, more product for the same (or lower) price – more, better, faster, cheaper. But this doesn’t work, because the problem lies in a market shift away from the company “core” Success Formula. Only by now management is so far removed from market trends that it has no idea how to regain relevancy. In Pizza Hut’s case, leadership is undertaking what they’d like to think is a brand overhaul that will change its position in customers’ minds. But, unfortunately, they are doing the ultimate in defend & extend management to try and save the old Success Formula, and not really doing anything “new,” or innovative, at all.” Forbes – November 12, 2014 (Forbes)
  • China Minsheng Investment Group: debt-fuelled ‘aircraft of private businesses’ took off – and then the tank ran dry; Investment group facing debt crisis after splurging on US$46.3 billion in assets from Bermuda to London (SCMP)

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (22 February 2019) – Webjet shares soar as hotel business shines; for the first time, its booking arm WebBeds generated more than half of its earning + Charlie Munger on cheerfulness

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (22 February 2019) – Webjet shares soar as hotel business shines; for the first time, its booking arm WebBeds generated more than half of its earning + Charlie Munger on cheerfulness

Companies

  • Tencent Music Trades Song Copyrights for Stake in Douban FM; Internet giant hopes to revive foundering rival known for obscure and hard-to-find folk music. (ST)
  • Meituan denies claims it has plans to ditch Dianping under investor pressure (KRA)
  • Baidu’s video site iQiyi adds 37M subscribers in 2018 amid mounting losses (TC)
  • China’s Powerful Surveillance State Has Created at Least Four Billionaires; Tiandy’s Dai Lin is China’s latest surveillance billionaire (Bloomberg)
  • Lenovo’s reboot could run low on battery (Reuters)
  • Kogan earnings and profits fall despite record Christmas trading (AFR)
  • Afterpay share plunge probe explores ‘Chinese whispers’ (AFR)
  • Citadel grows ECM cloud userbase (IDM)
  • UK growth sees Iress profits grow (FTA)
  • Webjet shares soar as hotel business shines; for the first time, its booking arm WebBeds generated more than half of its earnings. WebBeds is the second largest business-to-business provider of hotel beds in the world. (SMH)
  • Info Edge invests in Wishbook Infoservices; Wishbook develops an application that allows catalogue distribution from manufacturers down to retailers and salespersons, who can show these catalogues and take orders (SI); Zomato Gold to bring in $20-25M in revenue by the end of 2019 (ET)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

  • Baidu Reports 50% Quarterly Profit Drop but Revenue Beats Projections (WSJ); Baidu’s Acting Like a Startup, But Not in a Good Way; Spending outpacing revenue signals a desperate attempt to keep momentum going at an old company. (Bloomberg); Baidu under pressure to maintain pace of growth amid macro challenges and tough advertising market; Baidu beats estimates but its transformation into AI champion – along with heavy investments needed – will be tough amid slowing economy (SCMP)
  • Alibaba hits the gas on mobility as its bike-sharing service adds carpooling (TC)
  • SoftBank’s Vision Fund Leads $1 Billion Funding Round for Shipping Broker Flexport; Company arranges shipments using technology that mirrors travel-booking websites Expedia and Priceline (WSJ)
  • Samsung’s $2,000 Bid to Be the King of Cool; The South Korean company is aiming to give Apple a taste of its own medicine. (Bloomberg)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Apple, Goldman Sachs Team Up on Credit Card Paired With iPhone; Both companies are seeking new revenue sources as their bread-and-butter businesses struggle (WSJ)
  • Apple Snaps Up Two Startups In Rapid Succession (CB)
  • Stevey’s Google Platforms RantSteve Yegge’s Google Platforms Rant (PG)
  • YouTube’s Latest Quandary Deepens as AT&T Joins Ad Pause (Bloomberg)
  • Google’s new cloud boss has big task to catch rivals, Reuters data show (Reuters)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • China is driving Asia’s AI age – with some exceptions; China is leading the way with AI in Asia but more must be done to educate and re-engineer the work force to ensure successful adoption (SCMP)
  • Japan seeks more unicorns by easing rules on unlisted shares; New startup market proposed as country trails US and China (Nikkei)
  • Uber is reportedly close to making a tactical exit from India’s food delivery industry (TC)
  • Indian education unicorn Byju’s aims to ace global test; Tutoring app makes ‘accidental entrepreneur’ an investor darling (Nikkei)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Uber Eats to cut fees in battle with Deliveroo and Just Eat; UK and Ireland charges reduced while restaurants with own couriers allowed to use app (FT)
  • Afterpay rival Zip narrows losses, says regulation will be ‘business as usual’ (AFR)
  • Airbnb, Automattic, And Pinterest Top Rank Of Most Acquisitive Unicorns (CB)
  • Pinterest confidentially files for IPO: WSJ (Reuters)
  • DoorDash Shrugs Off Tipping Controversy, Raises $400 Million (Bloomberg)
  • Stamps.com Plunges 50% as It Ends Crucial Partnership With Post Office (Bloomberg)
  • Business of Renting Kitchen Space Heats Up in China; Travis Kalanick’s CloudKitchens is reportedly eyeing China (Bloomberg)
  • Hearing Without Listening to the Sound of Tesla; The electric-car maker sends conflicting signals that should raise doubts about its lofty stock price. (Bloomberg)

Life

  • The Weekly Email. One of my favorite moves that I have seen founders do in the early stages of their company (think pre-seed, seed, and possibly into the Srs A stages), is the weekly email. This can take a number of forms; a weekly email to the team, a weekly email to the investors, a weekly email to everyone, even a weekly email to yourself! It matters a bit who the audience is for the weekly email because it determines what the founder can put into the email. But I am not sure it matters that much who the audience is. What matters more is a weekly cadence of what is on the founders mind, what happened in the last week, and what the objectives are for the coming week. Early stage startups are hyper-changing environments. The founder needs to keep everyone aligned and on-board as he or she weaves and bobs around product market fit, the positioning of the company, the composition of the team, and a lot more. The weekly email does a good job of accomplishing that. But more than anything, writing the weekly email is a tool for the founder to collect themselves, get grounded for the week ahead, and articulate what they and the company are doing and why. I like Sunday evening for the timing of the weekly email best. It sets up the week to come. But any time over the weekend, or even monday morning, works fine. If you are starting something new and want a routine that can help you get into a rhythm and stay there, consider the weekly email. It’s a great one. (AVC)
  • Charles Duhigg on job as a source of purpose and meaning, a place in the world. (NYT)
  • Charlie Munger on cheerfulness (VIW)
  • Damodaran: Profitability and Value Creation! (Damodaran)
  • The Dalai Lama on Why Leaders Should Be Mindful, Selfless, and Compassionate (HBR)

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (21 February 2019) – Enter the gig economy and Ikea’s recent purchase of informal jobbing platform TaskRabbit + Goodwill Hunting Is a Disaster Movie in China; Cover your eyes. The coming earnings season won’t make pleasant viewing as companies are forced to reassess asset values.

H.E.R.O.’s Journey in Tech (21 February 2019) – Enter the gig economy and Ikea’s recent purchase of informal jobbing platform TaskRabbit + Goodwill Hunting Is a Disaster Movie in China; Cover your eyes. The coming earnings season won’t make pleasant viewing as companies are forced to reassess asset values.

Companies

  • Tencent Music Confirms ‘Strategic Investment’ in Rival Douban FM (Technode, DMN)
  • Foldable Phone Frenzy Is Supercharging Gains in Chinese Stocks (Bloomberg)
  • Meituan Dianping has topped Fast Company’s annual list of the world’s most innovative companies – for “pioneering transactional super apps”. (Age)
  • Lenovo’s Mobile Profits Are a Bit of a Mirage; Better late than never, as the PC maker needs to justify its buying spree from five years ago. (Bloomberg); PC maker Lenovo returns to profit in third quarter on strong performance across business groups (SCMP)
  • Netposa, “leading manufacturer of video surveillance platforms” and boasted coverage of over 1.5 million roads in China at the end of 2017 (Sun)
  • Weathernews develops an AI road management support system prototype that automatically recognizes mixed snow surface conditions (HSN)
  • Rakuten slashes mobile network costs with cloud tech; Reliability questions remain as Japan’s new carrier readies service (Nikkei)
  • Lifull Co. Ltd. has entered into a business alliance with Chinese-oriented Japan New Xinhua News Agency, to guide and attract real estate investment in Japan from China. (AIM)
  • A Steve Jobs Rival Who Hit Hard Times Makes Remarkable Comeback; Sim Wong Hoo’s Creative has developed ‘3D’ headphone sound (Bloomberg)
  • Holding pattern: MYOB’s growth slows as it braces for private equity takeover (ANZ)

BATTSS – Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, TSMC, Samsung, Softbank

  • Market for bogus WeChat accounts still alive and well despite crackdown on illegal practice (SCMP)
  • Blown away by innovation or price? Samsung’s foldable phone opens up debate (Reuters); Samsung unveils foldable and 5G phones days ahead of Huawei (Nikkei)
  • SoftBank Leads $200 Million Investment In Storage Startup Clutter (Forbes)
  • Samsung, Toshiba Detail AI Chips (EET)

FAANNMG – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Nvidia, Netflix, Microsoft, Google

  • Thirty years of financial filings reveal Microsoft’s biggest competitors (qz)

Asia Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Short video app Kuaishou makes foray into game livestreaming (Technode)
  • Investors demand to know how IPOs will be priced in the run-up to China’s new tech board launch (SCMP)
  • Stock exchange operator HKEX buys Shenzhen-based fintech company to raise capabilities, compete with global rivals; Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing has signed a letter of intent to buy a 51 per cent stake in Shenzhen Ronghui Tongjin Tec (SCMP)
  • China’s social credit system shows its teeth, banning millions from taking flights, trains; Annual report shows the businesses and individuals added to trustworthiness blacklist as use of the government system accelerates (SCMP)
  • On-demand logistics startup Lalamove raises $300M for Asia growth and becomes a unicorn (TC)
  • Tokyo company uncovers 2.7bn stolen passwords worldwide; Emails at small businesses hacked and sold on darknet, Soliton finds (Nikkei)
  • Mizuho’s digital currency to take on payment rivals next month (Nikkei)
  • A mobile app created by a former Goldman Sachs banker obsessed with fresh food is disrupting South Korea’s retail industry by giving grocery shoppers fewer reasons to visit a store. (Bloomberg)
  • Two investment banks mandated for loss-making ‘unicorn’ iflix’s float (AFR)
  • Kill the paperwork: how NoPaperForms is changing the face of college admissions in India; Delhi-based startup NoPaperForms’ SaaS-based enrolment automation solution is helping streamline the admission process for universities, colleges, schools and students (YS)

Global Tech & Innovation Trends

  • Virtual makeovers are better than ever. Beauty companies are trying to cash in (CNN)
  • Enter the gig economy and Ikea’s recent purchase of informal jobbing platform TaskRabbit. (FT)
  • AI Chip Market Will Soar to $34 Billion in Five Years, Says Analyst (Barron’s); IoT Was Interesting, But Follow the Money to AI Chips (EET)
  • Someday Your Self-Driving Car Will Pull Over for Police; Driverless cars won’t be able to take over until automakers, engineers, lawmakers and police work through a series of thorny problems. (Bloomberg)
  • Garmin Surges to 11-Year High as Smartwatches Are ‘on Fire’ (Bloomberg); Smartwatches Are Changing the Purpose of the EKG (Atlantic)
  • Will EV Charging Face the Erlang Challenge? (EET)

Life

  • Why Great Innovation Needs Great Marketing (HBR)
  • Goodwill Hunting Is a Disaster Movie in China; Cover your eyes. The coming earnings season won’t make pleasant viewing as companies are forced to reassess asset values. (Bloomberg)
  • How to Think And See The World Like Leonardo da Vinci (Medium)
  • Different Kinds of Stupid (MH)
  • Changes in Accounting Estimates: Underlying Economic Reality or Earnings Management. Abstract: We examine whether companies strategically change accounting estimates to manipulate earnings (“earnings management” hypothesis) or whether these modifications represent changes in the underlying fundamentals (“economic reality” hypothesis). Using audit fees to discriminate between the two hypotheses, we find no evidence that auditors charge an incremental fee for changes in accounting estimates which is consistent with the economic reality hypothesis. More directly, we find a strong association between the underlying macro-economic factors and changes in accounting estimates. Relying on conventional earnings management proxies, we find no evidence that changes in accounting estimates are used to manage earnings. Finally, our results indicate that typically “financially troubled” companies undergoing major corporate restructuring are expected to change their accounting estimates over subsequent periods because they are more vulnerable to macro-economic shocks and more likely to update prior estimates. (SSRN)
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