NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Tiffany is getting the time but not the date. A Delaware judge ruled for a speedy trial to decide whether LVMH must go ahead with its $16 billion takeover of the U.S. jeweler. The whole thing ought to be wrapped up in four days. But the three months until the trial starts is a long time to be left dangling. A truce would be preferable.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - The co-chief executive of the video-streaming firm is out with a new book, “No Rules Rules.” Hastings zoomed in with Jennifer Saba to discuss Netflix’s unorthodox approach to management – like unlimited vacation – and how it sets up the company nicely in a post-Covid world.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - When a slow-growth company like Walmart starts talking about going “omnichannel” by splurging on a hot new technology, it’s time to worry. The retail behemoth confirmed on Thursday that it’s teaming up with Microsoft to make an offer for the U.S. business of video app TikTok, whose Chinese owner ByteDance is being compelled to sell by the White House. Like rival bidder Oracle, Walmart is out of its lane.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - The more things change, the more they stay the same. “Fortnite” owner Epic Games is picking a fight with Apple and Alphabet over the lock they have on distribution. Like the spats between U.S. cable companies and media networks, monopolistic-type dealings over carriage often lead to the content creators digging in. There, public battles can end with smalls wins for content. The video-game maker can expect the same.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - It's tough being in a business that gets people places when no one is going anywhere. That’s the case for ride-hailing firm Uber Technologies, which saw second-quarter revenue fall 29% from a year earlier, it said on Thursday. True, things won’t be in this state for long – hopefully. Still Uber’s prognosis is far from all clear after Covid.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - For some troubled retailers, real estate used to be the fallback asset. But a spate of bankrupt apparel chains shows the sector’s last ditch for value is on the fritz. And as plans to turn former shopping venues into, say offices, seem like a near term pipe dream, the likes of Simon Property will need to reinvent the reinvention.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - For Netflix investors, reality bites. Netflix’s subscriber growth is slowing, and boss Reed Hastings has decided to share his chief executive role. That was enough to knock around 10% off the streaming service’s stock in after-hours trading on Thursday. But even after a 60% share price rise this year, well ahead of Facebook, Alphabet and Apple, Netflix is still the sharpest FAANG.
SAN FRANCISCO/NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Facebook’s new best friends are becoming a weakening link at the worst time. Small firms account for a large chunk of the social network’s $70 billion in annual advertising revenue. The pandemic has also made them more dependent on the platform just as big companies from Ford Motor to Unilever boycott it. But these minnows could flounder just when Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg needs them most.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - There are three good things about Uber Technologies’ purchase of Postmates. First, it removes a competitor from the food delivery market. Second, it looks cheap in light of the amount of cost Uber boss Dara Khosrowshahi thinks he can cut. And while at $2.7 billion the deal is pretty small, that makes it an amuse-bouche sized test of how regulators will respond to the $55 billion ride-hailing firm’s future acquisitions.
NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) - Amazon.com still dominates the fast-growing e-commerce pie, but it’s getting some company. Lockdowns have trained people to shop online including in formerly laggard categories like groceries. That has helped Jeff Bezos but even more so digital sales at Walmart and other retailers. The future may be a lot to do with balancing clicks and bricks.