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Amazon fancied takeout | ASML's too big for its own good |

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Today's big stories

  1. Just Eat is teaming up with Amazon in the US
  2. Here’s how to find the companies that are somehow managing to shrug off inflation – Read Now
  3. The US wants ASML to stop supplying some chipmaking gear to China

Grub’s Up

Grub’s Up

What’s Going On Here?

Food delivery giant Just Eat Takeaway announced a new partnership with Amazon on Wednesday.

What Does This Mean?

The pandemic brought out the best in the food delivery industry, and Just Eat was positively heady with the success of the moment: it bought US company Grubhub for $7.3 billion in 2020 – a move that finally gave it a foothold Stateside. But with restaurants reopening left, right, and center, that success has evaporated almost as quickly as it arrived. Investors, then, have been putting Just Eat under pressure to sell the offshoot, and it’s been giving the idea some serious thought.

At the same time, though, the company’s been thinking about how to turn things around. Cue a new deal with Amazon that’ll offer US Prime users a one-year membership to Grubhub, which analysts think could help bring in new customers and boost the service’s standing. The solution seems to work for investors: they sent Just Eat’s shares up 20% – their biggest jump in nearly four years.

Why Should I Care?

Zooming in: Whoa, déjà vu.
If this all feels familiar, it’s because Amazon launched its own restaurant delivery business back in 2015, before shuttering the segment in 2019 when it failed to establish itself as a key player. This deal is arguably a safer bet: Amazon will receive “warrants” – stock options, essentially – that represent a 2% stake in Grubhub, and it could increase that ownership to 15% if it fulfills certain performance conditions, like bringing enough new customers through Grubhub’s door.

Zooming out: Amazon goes green.
Amazon is changing the way it delivers parcels too, announcing this week that it’ll start delivering packages by electric bike and on foot for the first time in the UK. It’s all part of its goal to make half its shipments net-zero by 2030, and 100% by 2040.

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Analyst Take

How To Find The Companies Shrugging Off Inflation

How To Find The Companies Shrugging Off Inflation

By Theodora, Analyst

With inflation taking a serious toll on global companies, it’s more important than ever to find the few that can protect their bottom lines.

That’s where firms with strong “pricing power” – the ability to pass costs onto customers without losing them to competitors – come into their own.

There isn’t a single formula for the metric, which is why investors are in the habit of thinking of consumer staples as the ones with the most to offer.

But actually, there are seven characteristics that demonstrate pricing power – from industry concentration to brand presence.

So that’s today’s Insight: which characteristics impact pricing power, and which companies are best able to pass on their costs.

Read or listen to the Insight here

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Pressure Point

Pressure Point

What’s Going On Here?

The US is reportedly pushing for chipmaking equipment manufacturer ASML to stop selling even more of its products to China.

What Does This Mean?

As the world’s biggest producer of key chipmaking equipment, ASML is a crucial part of global tech companies’ supply chains. But the Dutch government has already banned the company from selling its most advanced gear to Chinese companies, and the US now wants it to go a step further to keep China – the biggest buyer of chipmaking equipment in the last two years – from gaining even more influence over the semiconductor sector. It’s now reportedly piling pressure on the Dutch government to expand ASML’s ban to mainstream technology, essential for the kinds of chips used in cars, phones, and more. ASML isn’t happy, and nor are its investors: analysts think the move could hit its revenue by as much as 10%, and its stock fell 8% after the reports emerged.

Why Should I Care?

For markets: Tough love.
The push for more restrictions goes to show the growing tension in a $550 billion industry that plays a key role in everything from defense to artificial intelligence. But while this ban would hit Chinese chipmakers in the short term, any restrictions could also force the country to improve its own capabilities. That would essentially hand its manufacturers a bigger domestic market share, which might be why the stocks of Chinese chipmakers surged on Wednesday.

The bigger picture: The US takes with one hand…
The US is picking and choosing its battles with China. There’s speculation, for example, that it’ll roll back hundreds of billions’ worth of tariffs on Chinese consumer goods as soon as this week (tweet this). This isn’t out of the goodness of its heart, mind you: lower taxes should help bring down the cost of everyday products until the Federal Reserve gets a handle on inflation.

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💬 Quote of the day

“If you make something out of it, then you’ve no longer been bested by these events.”

– Louise Glück (an American poet and essayist)
Tweet this

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