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Apple launches on WeChat; ByteDance pressures Meituan
Tencent [0700.HK] has announced the launch of an Apple store on its social media platform WeChat, enabling users to buy the US tech giant’s products. Meanwhile, the share price of Chinese food delivery firm Meituan [3690.HK] has logged a 30% slide this year, in part thanks to TikTok-owner ByteDance’s relentless encroachment on its market share. ByteDance is now hoping to make further gains with Douyin, its short video platform, which also has ecommerce functionality.
Is Threads on track to trounce Twitter?
Threads — the new social media app launched by Meta [META] last week — has got off to a rip-roaring start, with 100 million users signing up within days. Now Evercore ISI analysts are predicting that the app will garner 200 million daily active users over the next two years, and generate some $8bn in annual revenue. This would put it well ahead of the $5.1bn in sales and revenue earned by Twitter, which Threads manifestly aims to displace, in its last year as a public company.
Indian chip goals knocked by Foxconn
Taiwan-based Apple [AAPL] supplier Foxconn [2354.TW] has reneged on its $19.5bn agreement to build an Indian chip factory with miner Vedanta [VEDL.NS]. “We have been actively reviewing the landscape for optimal partners,” Foxconn said in a statement, reiterating its interest in helping to establish “a robust semiconductor manufacturing ecosystem” within India. Tata Group is on the verge of acquiring the factory of an Apple supplier, which would make it the country’s first manufacturer of iPhones.
Renault and Geely sign €8bn JV
Renault [RNO.PA] and Geely [0175.HK] have made their partnership official, signing a €8bn, 50/50 joint venture (JV) agreement to establish a new combustion engine and hybrid powertrain company. According to a Hong Kong stock exchange filing seen by Bloomberg, Geely’s subsidiary Aurobay — which develops engines for Geely and Volvo [VOLV-A.ST] — will be subsumed by Renault’s Horse, which began operations earlier this month. Saudi Aramco [2222.SR] is considering an investment in the as-yet unnamed entity.
Mercedes sales bolstered by 123% EV growth
Automaker Mercedes-Benz [MBG.DE] saw sales growth of 6% in the second quarter, driven by demand for both top-end and electric vehicles (EVs). The latter once again proved the main driver of growth — passenger battery-electric car sales were up 123% to 56,300 vehicles. The uptick was on account of increased sales of the EQA, EQB and EQE sedans, for which sales were up 73%, 83% and 157%, respectively. The German carmaker shifted 515,700 vehicles in all.