đź‘» Side-tab economy

Tuesday, July 19, 2022 by Robinhood Snacks |
Snap goes back to the future (Snap Inc./Getty Images)

Snap goes back to the future (Snap Inc./Getty Images)

Snap goes back to the future (Snap Inc./Getty Images)

Snap goes back to the future (Snap Inc./Getty Images)

Yesterday’s Market Moves
Dow Jones
31,073 (-0.69%)
S&P 500
3,831 (-0.84%)
11,360 (-0.81%)
$21,652 (+4.14%)

Hey Snackers,

In the vacay world, the only thing worse than finding out your flight is canceled is finding out your connecting flight is canceled — while on the plane to catch said flight.

Stocks ticked down yesterday after a report said that Apple (still Earth’s largest company) would slow its spending and hiring. Meanwhile, homebuilder sentiment had its biggest monthly drop since April 2020 (aka: mid-lockdown) as inflation and soaring mortgage rates curb the home-buying boom.


Vintage, so adorable... not the "Mean Girls" skirt. Snap's latest move is so old school it's almost innovative. After more than a decade as a mobile-only app, the little ghost is coming for your laptop. Snap’s launching a web version so that you can send disappearing puppy-face pics on your desktop too.

  • Snapchat for Web will initially be available only to subscribers of Snapchat+, its new $4/month subscription. And only in the US and some other English-speaking countries.
  • Do less: The site will launch as a stripped-down version of the app, focused on chats and video calls (no Stories yet). Snap says its average caller spends 30 minutes/day on calls.

Feeling ghosted... by investors. Snap stock is down 70% this year after it said it would miss its earnings guidance for its latest quarter (FYI: it reports Thursday). In May, Snap warned of slowing growth. Now it's trying to spark engagement with its core user base:

  • Save the Snap streak: Snap says it’s used by more than three-quarters of 13- to 34-year-olds in key markets, like the US and UK. These Gen Z’ers and millennials will be more likely to Snap between classes and Zoom meetings.
  • Case in point: Snap’s web offering features a privacy screen that hides the Snap window when you toggle away for another task (think: Excel when your boss walks by).

The side-tab economy has intensified… since the rise of WFH. The side-tab economy = everything you do on your desktop between Google Meets, classes, and deadlines — from bathing-suit shopping to Twitter scrolling. Snap wants to be a tab you always have open during your workday. And its biggest rivals, TikTok and Insta, already have web offerings.


McMutiny… McDonald’s franchise owners are not lovin’ Chris: in a recent survey, 87% of McD’s restaurant owners indicated they disapprove of CEO Chris Kempczinski. That’s not ideal, since franchisees own 95% of the nearly 14K McDonald’s restaurants in the US. Two years ago, there was a turf war over Happy Meals. Now there’s fresh beef:

  • McDynasty: Last summer, McD’s added new fees for passing on franchise licenses to family members. Burger heirs now have to pay fees to inherit Golden Arches from their parents.
  • Two sides of the same patty: McD’s says it’s trying to expand franchisee diversity. The chain plans to offer $250M in loans to boost ownership diversity (FYI: it costs at least $1.4M to open a McD’s). But owners say the new rules are just an excuse for corporate to charge higher fees and mandate costly training.

Nuggets of success… The franchise model usually benefits both sides: companies make big bucks renting out real estate, brand IP, and deep fryers, while owners profit from beloved chains. Subway, Dunkin, and Marriott are all heavily franchised. But during the pandemic tensions between franchisees and their corporate overlords rose as companies imposed new rules and demanded higher fees.


Franchises are symbiotic relationships… but inflation and other stresses can throw off their balance. McD’s scaled into the world’s largest burger chain thanks to its franchisees. In return, franchisees got a taste of McD’s fame — and profits. But new rules are alienating franchisees, which could hurt business. Last year, the number of McD’s owners who sold their franchises boomed, and the number of US McD’s locations has fallen since 2019.

What else we’re Snackin’

  • Cut: Russia’s Gazprom reportedly stopped exports to some major European buyers, blaming “extraordinary” circumstances. EU countries worry Russia won’t restore gas flow, which could launch an energy crisis.
  • Map: The US gov’t is paying location-data brokers to track hundreds of thousands of Americans through their phones. Critics say that violates the Fourth Amendment, which blocks unwarranted searches.
  • Swipe: Bank of America’s revenue jumped 6% last quarter as consumers ramped up credit-card spend on everything from vacays to gas (ditto for Citi). But profit fell 32% as IPO listings and M&A deals dried up.
  • Maxed: Delta’s updating its fleet with 100 new Boeing 737 Max planes, its first major order in over a decade. But Boeing said supply and labor shortages will curb Max production until late next year.
  • Exit: As the US dollar appreciates, it’s getting pricier for foreigners to snag American vacay homes. The # of foreign homebuyers in the US fell 8% in the past year to the lowest level in over a decade.

Snack Fact of the Day

Hulu is Disney’s fastest-growing US streaming service, driving more subscriptions than Disney+


  • Earnings expected from Johnson & Johnson, Novartis, Netflix, Hasbro, and Halliburton

Authors of this Snacks own: shares of Snap, Apple, Netflix, Disney, Twitter, Google, and Delta

ID: 2299413