In today’s top stories, China’s video gaming giant Tencent posted its fastest growth in quarterly revenue for over a year. Elsewhere, automaker Stellantis has warned that electric vehicle manufacturing in the UK could become “uncompetitive and unsustainable”, while Elon Musk announced on Tuesday that Tesla is to launch its first advertisements. The US FTC is suing to block Amgen’s acquisition of Horizon Therapeutics on the grounds that it would stifle competition. Lastly, autonomous driving company Boldly is teaming up with Estonian start-up Auve Tech to bring self-driving buses to the streets of Japan.
Stellantis threatens UK factory closure
Vauxhall maker Stellantis [STLA] has issued a warning to the UK government: renegotiate a Brexit rule on where parts are sourced from, or its UK factories could close. The current terms of the rule stipulate that, to avoid tariffs, from 2024, 45% of the value of an EV must come from parts sourced within the UK or EU. Stellantissays it cannot satisfy the requirements, and unless the rules change, electric vehicle manufacturing in the UK will become “uncompetitive and unsustainable”.
Amgen–Horizon deal in doubt
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is suing to block Amgen’s [AMGN] $27.8bn acquisition of Horizon Therapeutics [HZNP] on the grounds that it would “stifle competition for thyroid eye disease and chronic refractory gout treatments”. While biotech M&A activity has been picking up, with several big pharma companies striking deals, the FTC argues that “rampant consolidation” has given the industry an excuse to “exorbitantly hike prescription drug prices”. Amgen’s share price fell 2.4% Tuesday.
Softbank-backed self-driving buses
Autonomous driving company Boldly, which is backed by investment powerhouse Softbank [9984.T], is teaming up with Estonian start-up Auve Tech in the hope of speeding up efforts to bring self-driving buses to at least 50 locations in Japan by 2025. In an interview with Bloomberg, Boldly CEO Yuki Saji said: “SoftBank’s biggest strengths are in mobile networks and, going forward, cars will be among the products most in need of both mobility and connectivity.”
Tencent boosted by 11% revenue growth
China’s video gaming giant Tencent [0700.HK] posted its fastest growth in quarterly revenue for over a year. Sales in 2022 had been hampered by Beijing’s freezing of gaming licences, which had prevented new titles from being released. But the regulatory picture has improved since the start of 2023. Tencent also benefitted from “domestic consumption recovery” in the three months to the end of March, chairman and CEO Ma Huateng said in a statement alongside the results.
Tesla targets advertising
Elon Musk announced on Tuesday that Tesla [TSLA] will launch its first advertisements. Speaking at the company’s investor day on Tuesday, Musk said that “there are amazing features and functionality about Teslas that people just don’t know about”, but promoting these via traditional channels, like the company’s Twitter account, is “like preaching to the choir, and the choir is already convinced”.
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