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THG share price jumps 3% on Maximo ecommerce deal

In today’s top stories, THG has inked a deal with beauty ecommerce retailer Maximo Group which could add more than £150m in gross merchandise value per year to its Ingenuity platform. Elsewhere, Vedanta are struggling to find a technology partner to secure financial incentives for a $19bn chipmaking plant in India; US advertising spend on TikTok grew 11% during March, notwithstanding the prospect of a ban; and the Saudi Public Investment Fund’s Savvy Games Group has acquired Scopely, a US-based games developer, for $4.9bn. Lastly, on Wednesday Google unveiled an AI supercomputer which the company says outperforms rival Nvidia’s systems.

Chips are down for Vedanta venture

Seven months on from announcing a partnership with Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. [2317.TW], Anil Agarwal’s Vedanta Resources [VED.L] has struggled to find the technology partner the venture needs to secure financial incentives for a $19bn chipmaking plant in India. Indian chip exports to the US increased 34 times last year, while Cambodia’s increased by 698%. Allianz Global Investors [ALV.DE] is positioning itself for a recovery in chip sales in the second half of 2023.

Advertisers unfazed by TikTok’s ticking clock

Despite increasing calls for a ban on the app, US advertising spend on TikTok grew 11% during March. Pepsi [PEP] and DoorDash [DASH] were among the biggest spenders, according to data from Sensor Tower. Joshua Lowcock of ad agency UM Worldwide told the Financial Times that an immediate ban on TikTok was “unlikely”, and a protracted legislative process would give advertisers “ample time to plan alternative strategies”.

PIF acquires Scopely in Savvy play

Savvy Games Group, owned by the Saudi Public Investment Fund, has acquired Scopely, a US-based games developer, for $4.9bn, subject to regulatory approval. The acquisition is Savvy’s third of the year and reflects a push from the Saudi kingdom to diversify its revenue streams away from oil. Saudi Arabia is expecting gaming revenue to contribute 1% of GDP by 2030.

Has Google lost its AI lead?

Google [GOOGL] unveiled Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) v4 on Wednesday, an AI supercomputer which the company says outperforms rival Nvidia’s [NVDA] systems. Google has been developing TPUs since 2016, but within the company a “code red” effort has been underway this year to prove it hasn’t squandered its lead on AI. Meta [META] CEO Mark Zuckerberg is reportedly focusing most of his time on AI, which chief technology officer Andrew Bosworth has said should benefit its metaverse efforts as well.

THG inks 10-year Maximo agreement

THG [THG.L] has entered into an agreement with beauty ecommerce retailer Maximo Group which could add more than £150m in gross merchandise value per year to its Ingenuity platform over ten years. Maximo Group’s All Beauty and Fragrance Direct websites will initially be replatformed onto Ingenuity, in a move that will see THG become Maximo’s key UK partner as part of its expansion plans.

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