Auquan's Weekly Wrap | 8 - 12 August: What you might have missed
Recap of the week's market activity: China chip industry corruption, economic impact of European heatwaves, Amazon's iRobot acquisition and approval for Baidu's selfdriving taxis.
China Chip Industry Corruption
Source: Getty Images.
Among three other top industry executives, the CEO of China Integrated Circuit Industry Investment Fund, nicknamed the “Big Fund,” had been arrested for “suspected serious violations of the law.” As the fund was driven by a political mission (and vulnerable to current corruption chaos ensuing), analysts say China may now strongly reconsider how it invests in chip development. This could be a positive shift from limited politically driven funding to more market-based management utilising more precision and professional knowledge.
- Corruption is sending shock waves through China’s chipmaking industry
- China hits Big Fund chip executives with corruption probes
European Heatwaves Economic Impact
Source: Getty Images.
With extreme heatwaves and drought conditions hitting Europe, crop yield is suffering - particularly for olive oil and wine production. Not only are UK households facing hosepipe bans, further inflationary effects are likely to hit consumers. Acesur, who supplies the UK's biggest supermarkets, says customers could see olive oil prices rise by 20-25%.
- Olive oil prices to rise as heatwave hits production
- London faces hosepipe ban in weeks as England braces for new heatwave
- Drought takes toll on Tuscany's famed olive oil and wine production
Themes to Watch Out
Amazon iRobot Acquisition
Source: Credit: Mashable Composite; IRobot, Shutterstock/Dan Thornberg.
Amazon's $1.7bn acquisition of iRobot, producer of Roomba robot vacuum cleaners shows further growth intentions of it's smart home product lines. However, privacy experts are concerned about what the home-mapping abilities could mean for consumers' data. Roomba vacuums have already been scrutinized over the data they collect. After mapping your house, data is collected by iRobot and sometimes shared with third parties - sparking potential concerns on the deal's regulatory approval.
- Amazon/iRobot: panic over deal to buy Roomba creator makes little sense
- Amazon Buying Roomba Maker iRobot for $1.7 Billion
- Amazon's acquisition of Roomba maker iRobot could give the e-commerce giant sweeping surveillance powers
Baidu Selfdriving Taxis Approval
Source: Reuters/Florence Lo/File Photo.
China's recent regulatory approval may potentially pave way for further development and adoption of autonomous self-driving vehicles. Baidu has leapfrogged rivals like Pony.ai Inc. and XPeng Inc, securing permits to operate robotaxis without a driver or a person overseeing safety in a vehicle in two cities, Wuhan and Chongqing.
- Baidu Wins China Approval for Full Driverless Taxis Over Pony.ai, Xpeng
- Two Chinese Cities Approve Baidu’s Unmanned Self-Driving Taxis
Thank you for reading! Don't forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more!