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Breakfast Briefing: Elon Musk’s Pay, Twitter Exit & Uber’s Target

Elon’s New Pay Package

Elon Musk has decided to remain as Tesla’s CEO for the next ten years.  

Editor’s Remarks: For his efforts, Musk could earn anywhere between absolutely nothing and $55bn. The new pay arrangement is tied to Tesla’s performance in the marketplace and 12 “Market Capitalisation Milestones”, each at $50bn increments from the company’s present value of $59bn up to $650bn. So far, there are just four companies in the world with a market cap of over $650bn: Microsoft, Apple, Alphabet and Amazon, although Tencent and Facebook are catching up. Musk clearly has his work cut out, particularly since automakers do not currently carry high valuations: Ford’s market cap is $41bn, while GM’s is $62bn.

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RAF to Retire Tornado Jets

The Tornado, which has served as the centrepiece of the RAF for 30 years, will be retired next year.

Editor’s Remarks: The Tornado class fighter jets will be replaced by the F-35, an entirely new generation of aircraft. The upgrade coincides with the RAF celebrating its 100th anniversary alongside the threat of an increasingly hostile Russia. The F-35s feature an electro-optical targeting system that can track targets in the air and on the ground, and identify targets for laser-guided weapons. The F-35s will operate in tandem with the UK’s new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers to form a new spearhead of the UK military.

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Uber’s CEO Sets New Target

Dara Khosrowshahi says that he wants Uber to be profitable within three years.

Editor’s Remarks: Since its inception, Uber has relentlessly prioritised global domination over profits. Over the next three years, however, new CEO Khosrowshahi wants to pull the company out of the red and start generating profits. Speaking at Davos, he also added that Uber would continue to make “very aggressive investments”, drawing a line across any sort of radical cost-cutting program. In Q3 2017, Uber lost $1.46bn, compared to $1.06bn in Q2. Despite barely being six months into the role, Khosrowshahi has so far had to steer Uber through a maze of legal issues in virtually every corner of the world.

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Twitter COO Joins SoFi

Anthony Noto, a key player in Twitter’s turnaround strategy, left to become CEO of Social Finance.

Editor’s Remarks: Noto’s immediately departure caused Twitter shares to slide, which underlined the integral role that he has played in moving the company forward. Over the past few years, Twitter has struggled to build its user base and its popularity has waned as Facebook continues to dominate the social media space. More recently, there have been signs of improvement – and Noto, a Goldman Sachs alumnus, has played a big role in that. Sources close to him say that he has always harboured ambitions of being a CEO and with Jack Dorsey having no plans to leave Twitter, Noto’s move is not a total surprise.

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Hedge Fund Bets on H&M

Harris Associates has increased its H&M stake by 300% in the last 12 months.

Editor’s Remarks: The hedge fund, which has $140bn under management, has increased its stake in H&M to 5% of the company’s shares. Last year, H&M shares fell around 30% with a further 7% shed since the turn of the new year; the last time H&M was trading this low was in March 2009. H&M has been hit by the continued rise of e-commerce and is wallowing in excess inventory, prompting perpetual discounts that have harmed revenues. Harris Associates believes that while the company is suffering from a slump in operations, the market’s reaction has been rather overblown.

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