Cutting out China 🤟
Apple is winning, Walmart gets excited, and Metro brings home a win.
Market summary: 📊
India opened Monday a bit soft, but still finishing in the green. US markets were closed for Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday.
Nifty 50 - up 0.29%
Sensex - up 0.14%
What’s brewing hot?☕
📱 Surprise surprise — 2021 was a good year for Apple India. The premium brand, which historically somewhat struggled to crack the Indian consumer, managed to sell 5.4 million iPhones here this year — virtually doubling its market share to just about 4.5%. WFH savings and late-Android converts helped. Apple also began assembling phones in India, cutting import duties and bringing prices of some of its models significantly lower. So that’s that!
😆 We rule this world — retailer Walmart’s enthusiasm for the Metaverse is becoming a butt of all jokes on social. WMT, trying to get ahead on the tech, filed for several patents outlining its own crypto, a collection of NFTs, and other tech allowing for the sale of merch, electronics, sporting goods, personal care items inside the Metaverse lol. Bit too much?
Tesla strikes a major deal 🔌
What’s poppin’ — Tesla is increasingly getting queasy about its dependence on China for key materials, and has signed an agreement with an Australian company, to source graphite from Mozambique.
Graphite is a key material in making lithium-ion batteries, and China is the king of the product — owning 55%+ global supply share, selling to almost all EV players worldwide. After this deal though, Tesla promises that by 2025 about 80% of its graphite needs, or nearly 8,000 tons per year will come from the Aussie firm.
Worth mentioning — Syrah, the Aussie firm, operates one of the world’s largest mines in the African nation of Mozambique, with a capacity to generate 350,000 tons of graphite annually.
Not sure how the Chinese will take this though, considering that’s Tesla's biggest global market (450K vehicles sold there vs. 350K in the US a year). But other EV makers are sure to follow.
Meanwhile, Indian-mantris send flowers to woo Musk ☝️
When asked about the status of Tesla’s India launch, Elon tweeted he’s still working with the government on ironing out things (duties, taxes, and everything).
Bunch of Indian states took that as a cue for proactive participation, getting their heads to tweet incentives at Tesla. Nice, but a bit cringe when there’s like dozens of credible, commercial-ready local startups ready to drive EV ambitions here?
Fintech back with a bang 💰
INDMoney raised a sizable $75 million Series D from serial-funder Tiger Global, with Steadview, Dragoneer pitching in — at a $600 million valuation!
You’ve probably seen those ads everywhere by now, the 4-year-old business is building an investing super-app that lets people buy stocks, mutual funds, index funds, and even US stocks. There’s also other things like expense-tracking, and plans of integrating a full-stack neobanking operation within. Some 3.5 million people are active users.
Fresh funds will be put into expanding lending products and card services most immediately.
Quickly looking at the cosmetics space, 💅
Entrackr reports that online cosmetics vendor, Purplle, scooped up $38 million from Sequoia, Blume, and others — at a $728 million valuation. Just 3 months ago had Purplle raised $75 million.
Nykaa’s IPO and the explosive growth of the digital cosmetics space, driven by fundamental shift in buying behaviors, is offering strong tailwinds to the business. Purplle now reaches 7 million monthly active buyers.
Quick look at Metro Brands’ stellar earnings show 📈
Remember footwear brand Metro, which had recently IPO’ed to quite the warm reception. Well, Metro’s first earnings report yesterday since its IPO was a TOTAL BANGER.
Revenues for the Oct-December quarter topped ₹484 crores — jumping a solid 59% YoY. Profits were up 54%. Numbers are a bit skewed because business was mostly closed due to COVID last year — but recovery is impressive nonetheless.
Investors loved the numbers and stock finished up 19% on Monday.
Bottomline — reminder to look past the beat up tekk-IPOs and find some reasonably priced gems with legit strong fundamentals.
What else are we Snackin'🍿
😎 Politics of farm - India will set aside $19B in the upcoming budget as subsidies for agricultural companies selling products to farmers at lower than market prices.
🏎️ Electric racing is here - HYD will become the first Indian city to host the Formula E world championship, set to start in November this year.
📃 Evidence check - Apple is now asking all employees to get the COVID booster shot before returning to office. Or be ready to be tested randomly.
Hit that 💚 if you liked today’s issue.
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