Original link: https://www.latepost.com/news/dj_detail?id=1194
Two months after retirement, Liu Qiangdong cashed out 1.8 billion yuan from JD.com
Liu Qiangdong, who stepped down as CEO of JD.com, appeared in public in another form in the past two months: reducing his holdings of the company’s stock.
Following the continuous reduction of JD Health’s shares worth more than 440 million Hong Kong dollars (about 376 million yuan) at the end of April and early May, on June 17, Liu Qiangdong reduced his holdings of JD.com’s stocks worth about 279 million US dollars, or about 1.871 billion yuan. . Before the reduction, Liu Qiangdong held more than 12% of JD.com’s shares and had more than 70% of the voting rights. The reduction will not affect his control over the company.
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Liu Qiangdong stepped back behind the scenes in 2018, and the third quarterly earnings conference call that year was the last time he had a direct discussion with the market about his views on the company and the business—but in fact, what he said was very limited, mainly emphasizing his trust in his successor and his commitment to the company. Focus on four areas: strategy, team, culture and new business.
Since last year, he has successively stepped down as legal representative, chairman or other executive positions of companies including JD.com, JD.com, and JD.com, including stepping down as president of JD.com in September 2021 and as CEO of JD.com in April this year. Both positions were handed over to Xu Lei, who had fought together for thirteen years. Currently, Liu Qiangdong is the chairman of Jingdong Group.
In May of this year, JD.com first announced a dividend to shareholders, with a total value of about $2 billion, the first “straightforward” return to shareholders. A slightly roundabout way is to buy back shares. JD.com has announced repurchase plans with a ceiling of $1 billion, $1 billion and $3 billion in 2015, 2018 and 2021. The last buyback program is valid until 2024.
A more “sophisticated” way of rewarding shareholders is to invest in the growth of the business — including innovation in people, hardware, and products and processes — with no money, no buybacks. For a long time, the most familiar group of Silicon Valley companies – Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, Netflix – did not do this.
Until the uncertainty from technology, markets and competition grows, or the most innovative and aggressive founders retire. Sometimes even based on certain ideological changes. For example, the governor of California in 2019 called on local technology companies to share profits with California consumers, “California consumers should also be able to share the wealth created by their data.”
In 2012, Apple announced its first dividend since 1995, a year after Jobs’ death. In the past decade, Apple has become the most generous company in the United States and perhaps even the world to shareholders, with more than $460 billion in buybacks alone. Apple’s first dividend was in 1987, eleven years after the company was founded, and two years after Jobs was kicked out of the company.
In 2015, Google reorganized and established Alphabet. After taking office, the new CFO invited from Wall Street continued to do things more friendly to investors: shrinking cash-burning businesses and announcing the first $5 billion buyback plan . At this time, Google was seventeen years old.
In March of this year, more than half a year after founder Bezos stepped down as CEO, Amazon announced its first stock split since 1999 and planned to buy back $10 billion. “This split will give our employees more flexibility in managing their Amazon stake and make it easier for anyone looking to invest in the company to buy into the stock,” a spokesperson said. However, this is not the first time Amazon has bought back. The new $10 billion plan will replace the $5 billion buyback plan in 2016.
FT Lex criticized this as short-sighted, and the money should be used for long-term investments, as Amazon has continued to do for the past two decades. (Gong Fangyi)
State Council encourages electric vehicle consumption, considers extending tax holiday
According to Xinhua News Agency, the executive meeting of the State Council held on June 22 determined the policy of increasing support for automobile consumption, requiring “to further release the potential of automobile consumption”, mentioning support for the consumption of new energy vehicles, considering the current actual research to exempt the purchase of new energy vehicles The tax policy will be postponed after it expires at the end of the year, and the local protection of the new energy vehicle market will be broken.
The stimulus policies for automobile consumption also include the complete removal of restrictions on the relocation of used cars that meet the National V emission standards from August 1, and the improvement of the parallel import policy of automobiles. The National Standing Committee predicts that after the implementation of relevant policies, automobile and related consumption will increase by about 200 billion yuan this year.
Among China’s nearly 40 trillion yuan of goods and catering consumption a year, automobile consumption accounts for about 10%.
- In the first five months of this year, the total retail sales of consumer goods nationwide was about 17.16 trillion yuan, and auto consumption was about 1.65 trillion yuan, accounting for 9.6%.
- During the period, the nationwide retail sales of passenger vehicles in the narrow sense decreased by 12.8% year-on-year, and the decline intensified. Among them, the cumulative sales of sedans fell by 11.6%, and the cumulative sales of SUVs fell by 12.5%.
New energy vehicles, which are expected to boost consumption, still maintain a triple-digit growth rate this year.
- In the first five months, the cumulative sales of new energy passenger vehicles across the country was approximately 1.712 million, a year-on-year increase of 119.5%.
- The sales of new energy vehicles accounted for about 23.41% of the national vehicle retail sales in the same period, and the proportion further increased.
Note: The proportion of new energy vehicles in the cumulative sales of passenger vehicles. Click to see larger picture
According to the plan , the Ministry of Finance will no longer subsidize the purchase of new energy vehicles from next year.
- Previously, the most common subsidies for new energy vehicles in China were state subsidies, local subsidies, and exemption from purchase tax.
- What was proposed at the regular meeting this time was to extend the period of tax reduction and exemption for the purchase of new energy vehicles.
Regarding the “removal of local protection in the new energy vehicle market” mentioned at the meeting, the Ministry of Commerce already mentioned it at the press conference at the end of May this year. The “local protection” mainly relies on the “new energy vehicle product catalog”, and some local governments are allowed to determine which vehicles can enjoy local subsidies. (Gong Fangyi)
Microsoft restricts customers from abusing facial recognition technology
- Microsoft announced on Tuesday (June 21) that it will limit its facial recognition service. This includes stopping face analysis for age, gender, and mood, and vetting customers, asking them to explain in detail how to use the technology, and obtaining user consent before enabling it.
- Face recognition has always been controversial. On the one hand, it is highly intrusive to user privacy, and the technology is not necessarily reliable. Microsoft mentioned that because of cultural and individual differences, there is no single standard for expressions, and “emotion recognition” is scientifically untenable.
- Face recognition can also match errors, especially for dark-skinned people, and American police have mistakenly arrested several black men for this. In 2020, both Microsoft and Amazon announced that they would suspend the provision of identification tools to police.
- Privacy is a wider concern. Under regulatory pressure, Facebook shut down its more than 10-year-old facial recognition system late last year, which automatically identifies people in users’ photo albums and quickly jumps to linked accounts. Each new technology brings benefits and pitfalls, management says, and wants to find a balance.
- However, earlier this year, its parent company Meta filed a series of patents for “biometric analysis”, including the analysis of pupil movement, which is believed to be used to accurately push advertisements. Some AI experts said that Microsoft’s strict restrictions on face recognition may be because of low commercial value; in contrast, more profitable targeted advertising, although there are privacy issues, big companies are unlikely to give up.
- There are similar discussions in the country. At the end of 2020, there were media reports that 80% of the sales offices were equipped with face recognition, which is said to be to distinguish whether it is a self-visit or an intermediary customer, and to judge whether to give a commission to the channel. People are concerned about privacy and whether there is price discrimination if personal information is exposed. In July last year, the Supreme Court ruled that the abuse of facial recognition in business premises is an infringement. (Lin Guangying)
Pringles’ parent company plans to split into three, most optimistic about snack business
- Kellogg announced on June 21 that it will split into three separate companies, operating snacks, North American cereals, and plant-based foods, which are expected to be completed in 2023. Kellogg’s is known for its breakfast cereals, and it also owns brands such as Pringles and Doritos.
- Kellogg’s CEO Cahillane explained that since different businesses are at different stages of development, the three companies after the split can concentrate their resources more and focus on the most important tasks at the moment.
- The snack business will continue to seek growth and will be led by Cahillane himself in the future. Its revenue in the last fiscal year was US$11.4 billion, accounting for 80% of the total revenue. In the future, it will invest more resources and expand channels. Cahillane mentioned last month that people are more willing to spend on snacks amid inflationary pressures. And frozen breakfasts in North America and cereals in emerging markets, because they are still growing, are also included in the snack business.
- In contrast, the North American grain market has long since slowed. Kellogg’s Cereal’s North American revenue last year was $2.4 billion, down 10 percent from a year earlier. Cahillane said the top priority is to solve supply chain issues and maintain market share; future revenue is expected to be stable and profit margins to improve.
- Plant-based foods generated $50 million in profit last year on $340 million in sales; but the overall market is slowing. Cahillane said it remains to be seen how big the market will be, and will focus on production technology and supply chain in the short term, and may also consider a sale.
- Some analysts believe that the spin-off may weaken Kellogg’s scale advantage in terms of procurement costs, but it will help solve the problem of resource preemption between large companies’ businesses. Kraft spun off the North American grocery business 10 years ago, focusing on snacks; Johnson & Johnson, General Electric, IBM, etc. have announced spin-offs in the past two years. (Lin Guangying)
Who is trading New Oriental Online these two weeks?
From around HK$30 per share to less than HK$3, it took New Oriental Online more than 440 trading days. It took only 24 trading days to go from less than 3 Hong Kong dollars to more than 30 Hong Kong dollars. This makes New Oriental Online one of the companies with the shortest time for “ten times shares” in non-IPO transactions in Hong Kong stocks.
During this period, institutional shareholders such as Tencent, Morgan Stanley, Citi, and JPMorgan Chase successively reduced their holdings:
- Morgan Stanley: On the 15th and 16th, it reduced its holdings by 35.3145 million shares and 36.6889 million shares respectively.
- HSBC: On the 14th and 15th, it reduced its holdings by 3.6665 million shares and 7.0171 million shares respectively.
- JPMorgan Chase: 15.4504 million shares were reduced on the 17th.
- Tencent holds 90.4162 million shares, down from 9.04% to 1.58%, and the reduction price is about HK$9.
Buying orders mainly came from mainland investors, including institutional and individual investors, who took advantage of the Hong Kong Stock Connect. Among them, individual investors need to meet the standard of 500,000 yuan in average daily wealth in the 20 trading days before opening an account for Southbound Stock Connect.
- According to Wind data, from June 10 to June 22, New Oriental was among the top ten active stocks of the day for ten trading days. Among them, eight trading days ranked first in the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Stock Connect trading list. The daily transactions completed through Southbound trading account for about 80% to 90% of its total transaction value.
- The highest trading volume of the Southbound Stock Connect occurred on June 16, with a turnover of HK$9.98 billion. On the same day, the stock price of New Oriental Online rose by 100%. Gains narrowed to 72% at the close. (Gong Fangyi)
Amazon’s first fully automated warehouse robot may reduce human injury rates
- Amazon has announced the first “fully autonomous mobile robot” Proteus for moving large carts (Amazon GoCarts) around its warehouses. They will be deployed in the GoCart outbound processing areas of Amazon’s fulfillment centers and sorting centers.
- In the official promotional video, a green Proteus slides directly under Amazon’s GoCarts and jacks them up, transporting them through the warehouse to employees or robotic sorting units. When traveling, a green beam will be projected in front of Proteus. Once a person enters the range of the beam, Proteus will stop and continue to move forward after the person leaves.
- Amazon also demonstrated visual technology that may be taken from AmazonGo, an unmanned supermarket. When warehouse workers pick up or put down products on the shelves/trolleys, they only need to stand in front of a camera system, and the system can identify the packaging without manually scanning the code for confirmation.
- The Kiva robotic system, a QR code navigation robot acquired by Amazon a decade ago, will continue to be used. Kiva moves along the QR code printed on the warehouse floor, transporting hundreds of kilograms of goods to the warehouse staff on the sorting line, who scan the code and deliver the goods.
- Once a person moves on the path of the Kiva robot, injury accidents can easily occur. An internal Amazon report cited by the media in 2019 said the number of injuries has also increased with the advent of robots, with some warehouses reporting five times more injuries than the industry average.
- Amazon said at the time that the report was exaggerated.
CHART OF THE DAY | Russia becomes China’s largest crude oil importer
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The Bank of Japan may be making history.
According to the calculations of several institutions, the Bank of Japan may have bought nearly half of Japanese government bonds in order to control its government bond yield curve to remain within the target area. According to the formula of yield-to-maturity = issue rate/price, due to the issuance of fixed-rate bonds, if the price increases, the yield-to-maturity decreases. vice versa. In the context of global interest rate hikes, international investors are increasingly suspicious of the Bank of Japan’s determination and ability to maintain a relatively loose domestic monetary policy. On June 15, Japanese government bond futures plummeted, the largest decline since 2013. In order to combat the game sentiment in the market, the Bank of Japan continued to buy government bonds. In the first five months of this year, the Bank of Japan increased its holdings of Japanese government bonds by an average of 3.4 trillion yen per month. The figure for the same period last year was 1.2 trillion yen.
Station B was accused of preparing 3,000 exclusive resignation packages.”
On June 22, several photos of resignation materials from station B were circulated on social media, including a large cardboard box printed with “exclusive resignation gift package for station B”, with a total of 3,000 single items printed on the outer packaging. The resignation gift package includes a pendant for “entering station B with no regrets in this life”. A person close to station B, “Late Finance”, said that this is not specially prepared for layoffs, and there will be those who leave station B.
Anchors in the fields of medical care, education, finance and finance must hold a certificate.
On June 22, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism released the “Code of Conduct for Internet Anchors”. It is clearly required that in the fields of medical treatment, education, law, finance, finance and other highly professional fields, the anchor should obtain the qualification for practice, and the live broadcast platform should review and record the qualification. In addition, it is also required that anchors who have serious problems and have not changed their minds should be banned from their accounts and not allowed to change their accounts to start broadcasting; they should pay taxes according to law, etc.
The first real estate project in Shangqiu, Henan launched the “Wheat Exchange House” activity. There were very few participants. The developer said that the activity had ended.
In Shangqiu City, Henan Province, Jianye·Riverside House has recently launched a house purchase activity of “Wheat Exchange House”. According to its official Weibo article, the campaign will purchase wheat at a price of 2 yuan per catty, which is 0.5 yuan per catty higher than the market price, and can cover a maximum mortgage loan of 160,000 yuan. The average price of the real estate is about 5,800 yuan per square meter, and the unit size is 117-144 square meters. The down payment is about 200,000-250,000 yuan based on 30% of the down payment. The Jianye Group behind the marketing campaign is facing greater sales pressure this year. According to data released by the China Index Research Institute, from January to April, its sales were 8.897 billion yuan, a year-on-year decrease of 36.3%. One hundred million U.S. dollars. On the 21st, the real estate staff said that no one was actually involved for the time being.
Guangzhou added 1 new case of local diagnosis, and Beijing Universal Resort will gradually limit the flow of traffic this week.
According to the official announcement, Guangzhou’s first local confirmed case occurred on June 21, and it is a key industry personnel for closed-loop management. There were 4 newly diagnosed cases and 4 asymptomatic cases in Shanghai, 4 newly diagnosed cases and 2 asymptomatic cases in Beijing; no new cases were newly diagnosed in Shenzhen on the 21st, and 2 asymptomatic cases were found in community screening at 0-12 on the 22nd. In Xilin Gol League, Inner Mongolia, 1 new case was confirmed locally, and there are currently 137 local confirmed cases and 199 asymptomatic cases. In addition, Beijing Universal Resort announced on the 22nd that it will gradually resume the limited-flow opening on the 24th, and the theme park will officially open on the 25th.
Four new A shares were listed today, up 36% to 45%.
On June 22, 4 new A shares were listed . Excavator and other parts manufacturer Tuoshan Heavy Industries closed up 44%, wind power and new energy equipment maker Sany Heavy Energy closed up 37.5%, and fragrance manufacturer Yaxiang shares closed up 36.1%; third-party testing institutions such as wire and optical cables, National Cable Testing It closed up 44.8%. The Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.2% on the 22nd, the Shenzhen Component Index fell 1.43%, the ChiNext Index fell 0.58%, and the Science and Technology Innovation 50 Index fell 1.78%.
The domestic revenue of domestic games declined year-on-year for 3 consecutive months.
According to Gamma data, the actual sales revenue of China’s game market in May was 22.92 billion yuan, a year-on-year decrease of 6.7%, which was a year-on-year decline for three consecutive months; of which mobile game revenue was 16.6 billion yuan, a year-on-year decrease of 10.9%; Driven by popular games, the terminal game market has grown year-on-year. In terms of games going overseas, the actual overseas sales revenue of China’s self-developed games in May was US$1.45 billion, down 5.8% from the previous month, and some leading products declined.
MINISO will be listed in Hong Kong as soon as possible next week.
According to media reports, MINISO will pass a hearing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange as soon as Thursday, and launch its Hong Kong listing as soon as next week, with plans to raise US$100 million. MINISO was listed in the United States in October 2020, and its market value has dropped by 75% from a high point; its return to Hong Kong will adopt a “dual primary listing”, which can access the Hong Kong Stock Connect and introduce A-share investors. In the first quarter of this year, MINISO’s revenue was 2.34 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 5%, and its net profit was 97 million yuan, a year-on-year decrease of 21%.
Tencent Cloud plans to build the third data center in Japan, and the local business has grown by over 100% annually.
Tencent announced plans to build a third data center in Japan, due to the strong demand for cloud services for local games and live broadcasts, with an annual business growth rate exceeding triple digits; and said it would use cloud networks to help Japanese and Korean game companies expand into other markets. According to Gartner data, the top two global cloud service shares in 2021 are Amazon (38.9%) and Microsoft (21.1%); Alibaba Cloud ranks third with 9.6%, and Tencent Cloud ranks sixth with 2.8%, but both share Nearly 98% belong to the Asia Pacific market.
Brilliance Power has suffered losses for three consecutive fiscal years, and Brilliance China plans to transfer its 49% equity interest to Brilliance Group.
In order to facilitate the reorganization of Brilliance Group, Brilliance China intends to transfer its 49% equity interest in Brilliance Power to Brilliance Group at no cost. Brilliance Power is mainly engaged in the manufacture and sales of powertrains, with Brilliance China and Brilliance Group holding 49% and 51% of the shares respectively. Brilliance China said that Brilliance Power has been in a state of loss for the past three fiscal years, and if the sale is implemented, it will not have an adverse impact on the company’s finances. As of December 31, 2021, the loss of Brilliance Power after tax and special items was approximately RMB 3.888 billion, and the unaudited net debt was approximately RMB 3.858 billion.
With strong demand in the United States and Europe, Bain predicts that the global luxury goods industry will grow at least 5% this year.
Bain predicts that, according to the most conservative estimates, global luxury goods sales will be at least 305 billion euros this year, and if optimistic, it will reach 330 billion euros, which is higher than previously expected. Analysts said that although the Russian market is limited, demand in the United States and Europe remains strong, South Korea is growing rapidly, and China may gradually recover in the second half of the year. Last year, the global luxury goods sales reached 288 billion yuan, and the United States surpassed Europe to become the largest market.
Silicon Valley takes the lead in formulating the metaverse standard, and Apple is not involved for the time being.
Meta, Microsoft, Nvidia, Qualcomm, Sony, Epic, W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) and other 36 companies have formed a “Metaverse Industry Standards” group, covering everything from chipmakers to game companies. Since the key to the metaverse is to allow users to enter virtual spaces as “digital avatars”, establishing common standards allows different “virtual spaces” to be compatible. However, Apple has not joined the organization for the time being. Analysts believe that when Apple launches AR/VR devices, it will be the dominant player in the metaverse.
British unions rejected Rolls-Royce’s one-time offer of £2,000, saying it was far below expectations.
UK unions rejected Rolls-Royce’s proposed pay rise announced yesterday, including a one-off £2,000 payment to 11,000 workshop workers and 3,000 junior managers, as well as a 4% pay rise for workshop workers. Rolls-Royce stressed that this was the first time it had offered a “bonus” unrelated to performance to help employees cope with inflation; the union said the “offer” was much lower than what workers were asking for and was discussing next steps. The UK is currently facing a labor shortage.
Airbus has called on the EU to avoid sanctions on Russian titanium, and rival Boeing has sought alternative suppliers.
Airbus has publicly called on the EU not to restrict trade in Russian titanium, which would cause huge damage to its supply chain. Titanium is a key metal in aerospace manufacturing, used to make aircraft landing gear, fasteners and other components. Airbus produces 65 percent of its titanium in Russia. Currently, Russia produces 22% of the world’s titanium. Many buyers have reduced their exposure to Russian sources despite sanctions not yet in place in the U.S. and Europe. In March, Boeing announced it was suspending purchases of Russian titanium, which accounts for one-third of its titanium needs, and turned to other suppliers.
Electric vehicles sold locally by Kia in South Korea will use CATL batteries.
On June 22, South Korean car company Kia announced that it will use batteries from foreign companies in electric vehicles sold locally for the first time. The first supplier is CATL. CATL began supplying batteries to Kia’s sister brand, Hyundai Motor, in February last year. CATL has more than 35 percent of the global EV battery market, according to industry tracking platform SNE Research. In May, CATL obtained the world’s first ECE R100.03 power battery system certificate, and obtained the permit to enter the European new energy vehicle market.
Britain’s largest rail strike in three decades.
More than 40,000 rail workers from 14 rail operators took part in a three-day rail strike after talks between the UK government and rail unions over wage increases failed. This is the largest in the UK in 30 years. Transport Minister Grant Shapps said the median salary in the railway sector was £44,000, nearly double the UK average and similar to that of local pilots. But workers believe wages are not keeping up with soaring inflation, which has hit 9.1% in recent days, the highest level since March 1982.
Say goodbye to Spotify, Obamas strike exclusive podcast deal with Audible.
The Obamas’ media company, Highlands, has struck an original audio content production deal with Amazon.com Inc.’s Audible, under which Audible will have exclusive rights of first refusal to all podcasts produced by the production company Highlands created in 2018. Highland previously worked with Spotify for three years, producing shows such as “Michelle Obama Podcast” and “Born in America,” and the former became one of Spotify’s most popular original podcasts released in 2020, in April this year Spotify declined to renew its agreement with Highland. In early June, Spotify announced plans to make audiobooks its next content pillar.
Ming-Chi Kuo: This year’s Meta VR/headset shipments are down 25%-35%.
Tianfeng International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicts that Meta VR/headset shipments will drop by 25%-35% in 2022 (from 10-11 million units to 7-8 million units). Ming-Chi Kuo said that the order reduction will be mainly in the second half of 2022. Due to Meta’s reduction in hardware investment and considering the risk of economic recession, the forecast for Meta VR/headset shipments in the second half of the year will be reduced by 40%-50%, and the forecast was originally scheduled. Meta headset shipments in 2024 and beyond will be delayed.
Swiss watch imports fell 65% in May, the second straight month of slump.
According to the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry, Swiss watch exports to China have plummeted for two consecutive months. From January to May, China’s total imports were US$910 million, down 30.2% year-on-year. At the same time, demand for timepieces has picked up in the US and Europe. Swiss watch exports totaled $2.1 billion in May, an increase of 14%, with imports from the US and Europe up more than 30%, amid a 65% drop in Chinese imports. Last year, the United States replaced China as the number one exporter of Swiss watches.
Text | Gong Fangyi, Lin Guangying, He Ganming, intern Han Chang
Editor | Gong Fangyi
The title picture comes from the movie “The Pianist at Sea”
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