⚽️ Amazon and Apple chase live sports

Monday, June 22, 2020 by Robinhood Snacks | Disclosures

Coming to a Twitch stream near you

Last Week’s Market Moves
Dow Jones
25,871 (+1.03%)
S&P 500
3,098 (+1.87%)
9,946 (+3.72%)
$9,303 (-1.19%)
10-Yr US Treasury

Hey Snackers,

Product marketing in 2020: "Just turn it into a baby." After the viral success of Baby Yoda-related anything, Planters has shipped a toddler mascot. RIP 104-year-old Mr. Peanut. Hello "Baby Nut." What's next, Baby Mr. Clean? Oh wait, that already happened.

Markets ended the week positive led by the tech-heavy Nasdaq. "Reopening stocks" like airlines dipped Friday after Apple said it's re-closing some stores in states with corona-spikes (like Florida and Arizona).

On the pod: CLEAR likes speeding you through airports so you feel better than everyone else — our 15-minute podcast is looking at the startup's pivot to health to speed you into the office.

1. Amazon offers free Premier League streaming as Big Tech dabbles in live sports

Pour out the pints of London Pride... Amazon is footing the pub tab, as long as you're guzzling London Prime. Amazon will air four Premier League soccer matches on Prime Video and Twitch for free in the UK (even for non-Prime members). It's Amazon's competition-crushing way of getting more of Europe on its platforms:

  • Last year, Amazon streamed Premier League matches for the first time. It reportedly dropped $112M for the right to broadcast 60 matches over three years (pennies for the 'Zon).
  • For the first time, Amazon is offering Premier League on Twitch, the live gaming streamer it bought in 2014 for almost $1B. The matches will be played in empty stadiums, so Amazon's adding optional synthetic cheering noises from EA Sports. And since it's Twitch, you can blast emojis through the match via live chat.

Encroaching on cable's sacred turf... Live sports are a big reason many still haven't cut the cable cord. Now, those soccer and football-driven cable bucks are being threatened by streamers. Particularly, big tech companies that also happen to have streaming (and billions lying around to spend on it):

  • Apple just hired a former Amazon sports exec to lead its Apple TV+ sports division. It's reportedly looking to invest in live sports, including college football.
  • Amazon recently signed a deal with the NFL for the right to stream 11 Thursday Night Football games a year on Prime and Twitch. The 'Zon first acquired TNF rights in 2017, but this deal is the biggest (reportedly worth over $200M).

Big Tech can afford to give away things that should be expensive... Companies like Amazon, Apple, and Google rake in so much from their main hustles that they can afford to throw billions at growth in side gigs (like video streaming). That can significantly undercut existing players, like cable providers, who can't afford to give away their main product for free. Legacy cable is bound to lose in a price war with tech's video streaming loss leaders.

  • Battle Royale > Casino Royale... Fortnite-maker Epic Games is reportedly close to raising $750M from private investors (Epic hasn't IPO'd yet). That would level it up to a $17B valuation, up from $15B in 2018. People have flocked to video games for thrills + human interaction in the corona-conomy. Investors think the trend will stick post-lockdown. Epic has over 250M users gaming/chatting via Fortnite. It also owns video chat app Houseparty, which gained 50M users in April alone.
  • Kim K and Batman walk into a pod... Spotify shares hit an all-time high after it snagged exclusive podcast deals with Warner Bros' DC Comics and Kim Kardashian. Expect original pods featuring Superman and Wonder Woman... and a Kim K pod on criminal justice. Last month, Spotify dropped $100M to make Joe Rogan Spotify-exclusive. Since its 1st pod-cquisition in 2019, Spotify's market value has gained $25B and its pod audience more than doubled.
  • Ship out of luck... Carnival stock plunged 8% Friday after cruise lines suspended all trips out of US ports until September 15th — Carnival had 8 set for August 1st (now canceled). Earlier in the week, Carnival reported a record $4.4B quarterly loss and said it would burn $650M per month for the rest of 2020. The stock actually jumped after that because investors focused on early bookings for 2021, which hit pre-COVID levels.
  • Truth hertz, needed something... less bankrupt. A month ago, Hertz filed for bankruptcy with $19B in debt. Over the next two weeks, Hertz stock confoundingly soared 887% as investors piled into shares of the rental car company. So Hertz announced plans to sell $500M in new shares, which it warned are most likely worthless (but would help it raise cash to pay off creditors). Then the SEC (aka the US' chief stock market regulator) questioned the bizarre move. That SEC side-eye led Hertz to cancel the controversial sale.
What else we’re Snackin’
  • Chill: How to build a rest ethic that's as strong as your work ethic — Aristotle's "noble leisure" philosophy for the 21st century.
  • Visualize: The true size of land masses, from largest to smallest (Brazil beats Australia, hands down under).
  • Focus: The two things killing your ability to focus — those endless information feeds aren't always a good thing.
  • Learn: How to start managing your finances in your 20s with the BOMB method.
  • Eat: 10 once-popular foods that have fallen out of favor (Baked Alaska?).

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Snacks Daily Podcast

Biometrics company CLEAR loves to speed you through TSA checkpoints (so that you can feel cooler than people in the "normal" line).

But since people are paranoid of flying right now, CLEAR is pivoting to health: biometric data like fingerprints to virus-screen people for COVID-19.

Clear's "Health Pass" could go way beyond airports — think: stadiums, offices, and retail stores. Tune into our highly digestible pod to learn more about this potential multi-billion dollar market.

This Week

Disclosure: Authors of this Snacks own shares of Amazon and Spotify

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