🎤 Live Nation's (COVID-free) live summer

Friday, November 13, 2020 by Robinhood Snacks | Disclosures

"I said I want to do it live!"

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Hey Snackers,

2006: Kazakhstan wants to sue Borat creators in outrage over the film. 2020: "Very nice!" becomes the new slogan of Kazakhstan's tourism campaign.

Markets dipped yesterday. US jobless claims fell to a seven-month low last week, but the pace of improvement is slowing.

1. Live Nation wants to become the TSA of concerts to make sure 2021 is live

Ariana Grande fans are having withdrawal... and concert giant Live Nation is saying "thank u, next" to 2020 (48 more days). Live Nation's sales were down 95% last quarter because it was 0% live. The previous quarter was even worse, since festival season was cancelled (#Nochella). Still...

  • 83% of concert-goers kept their tickets for rescheduled shows last quarter, keeping Live Nation's refund rate low. It still lost over $1B since January.
  • Live Nation has already sold 19M tickets to 4K+ concerts scheduled for 2021, so it's invested in them actually happening.

Do I have to take off my shoes?... Live Nation's Ticketmaster unit is reportedly working on a TSA-like plan to go live. Ticketmaster wants to check your COVID status before you step foot in its venues.

  • After buying a ticket, you verify that you've been vaccinated OR that you've tested negative for COVID-19 no more than three days before the concert.
  • Your test results get delivered to a health pass company like CLEAR. If you test negative, CLEAR tells Ticketmaster you're good to rock.

This could be a framework for all live gatherings... Live Nation wants to lead the "Return to Live." A vaccine could be widely available by April, as Dr. Fauci suggested following the promising Pfizer news. But until enough Americans get vaccinated (could be a while), Live Nation will have to prove it can operate safely enough. If it succeeds, others like Eventbrite could follow.


But does it have Ludicrous mode?... Ford is working on an electric version of its classic Transit model. The nearly-windowless van reminds you of a sketchy UberPool — it's actually the top-selling van in America, used by companies for jobs like plumbing and delivery. Now Ford wants to give it some sex appeal...

  • The e-Transit will start at $45K and is set to drop in 2021. It could attract businesses looking to save on fuel costs. Also...
  • Maintenance costs will be 40% lower over eight years for the electric vs. the gas version, according to Ford (no oil changes).

It's not just about electric wheels... Ford's also making a subscription play with digital add-ons to help customers track and manage their fleets. Currently, it charges $20 to $25 per vehicle/month for those services. It's expanding those offerings with the new e-fleets:

  • Driver-coaching: Remember those "How's my driving?" bumper stickers? This is like the techy version of that. Voice commands nag drivers if they're speeding or idling for too long (fuuun).
  • Juice check: Owners can remotely check how much charge each van has left, or preprogram them to recharge when rates are lower.

Subs could be Ford's future profit puppy... With recurring revenue from digital subscriptions, Ford can continue to profit off your purchase even after it sells you the car. Companies are obsessed with data because it helps them run more efficiently: if Ford can save companies money with these connected data services, companies could be willing to pay extra.

What else we’re Snackin’
  • Mickey: Disney's quarterly loss wasn't as bad as expected, and Disney+ has more than 73M paid subscribers barely a year after launch.
  • Vax: American pharma Pfizer struck a deal with the EU to initially charge Europe less for its COVID-19 vaccine than the US.
  • Banner: Facebook and Google reportedly extend their ban on political ads for weeks after the election — because: there's still a lot happening.
  • Helicool: German aviation start-up Lilium snagged a deal with Orlando, FL to launch a US hub for flying taxis.
  • Low: US airline employment will reportedly fall to the lowest level in nearly 40 years as 90K jobs are cut this year.
  • Womp: Google Photos will end its free unlimited storage on June 1st, 2021 after five years of offering it.

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Snacks Daily Podcast

"Sonos used to be the Apple of Speakers - now Apple is the Apple of speakers."

Sonos just launched an $8/month music streaming radio service, but Apple and Spotify are already all over the audio streaming game.

If Sonos wants to survive Big Tech, it needs to embrace its luxury niche.


Disclosure: Authors of this Snacks own shares of Apple, Disney, and Google

ID: 1411687

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