July 8, 2022

Amazon is knocking on your door

The sheer size of Amazon means that when it decides to take a bit of a new market, there’s a genuine concern that incumbents could simply be gobbled up. With aspirations to be The Everything Store, Amazon has now turned its sights onto food delivery and it could have big ramifications for the industry. These…

By Jack Derwin

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The sheer size of Amazon means that when it decides to take a bit of a new market, there’s a genuine concern that incumbents could simply be gobbled up. With aspirations to be The Everything Store, Amazon has now turned its sights onto food delivery and it could have big ramifications for the industry. These are thee five big stories from the week that was.

1. Delivery boy

Amazon is bigger than the 50 largest ASX companies combined so when it announced it was getting into food delivery this week, it made waves.

Taking a 15% stake in Grubhub, Amazon is giving 150 million Prime members free food delivery for a year.

Uber and DoorDash briefly lost US$4 billion on the news. That’s the entire market cap of AGL. And in the highly-competitive field, no wonder.

After years spent in the market, Uber Eats and Doordash have signed up just one-fifth as many Americans users. Now that’s scale.

2. Numbers game

Another quarter and another set of results are shining a light on the EV race. Status: Tesla is slowing down but retains a comfortable lead.

Elon Musk’s company delivered 254,000 cars in three months, 18% fewer than Q1 as chip shortages smash the entire auto industry. 

For comparison, most rivals are producing somewhere between 4,500 (Rivian after it tripled production) and 34,000 (XPeng).

Closer to home, there are warnings that limited subsidies, high prices, and a lack of chargers are severely holding back Australian sales. 

3. Ship it

Boeing will build two spacecraft for Virgin Galactic to ferry passengers into orbit. The two ships are expected to join the fleet from 2025.

They will join the ‘mothership’ VMS Eve and arrive as the company looks to step up intergalactic tourism.

Virgin plans to soon perform 400 launches a year, making the tourist option frequent if not affordable or environmentally-friendly

4. Clearing house

It’s been a tough few years for Australia’s biggest casinos. A dozen probes left some reputations in tatters and put gambling licences at risk. 

Yet the dust may finally be settling. A restructured Crown this week named a new incoming CEO and chairman to set it straight.

Star Entertainment is trying to do the same after poaching Tyro’s CEO. With the worst of the pandemic finally over, both hope to get back to business.

But with some major obstacles ahead, neither is in the clear just yet.

5. Rare find

Turkey has just discovered the second-largest reserve of rare earths in the world and the industry is trying to figure out what it means. 

Required for everything from EVs and wind turbines to weapons, the production of the commodity has historically been controlled by China.

The discovery of almost 700 million tonnes elsewhere could help shift that dynamic. 

ASX miner Lynas, which has done well out of being a hedge against China’s dominance, tumbled on the news, falling almost 10% this week.

 

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