Highlights of the year 2018 – Brexit, trade talks and green finance

The year 2018 was a year of Brexit, electric cars and trade talks. It included special moments in the financial markets and in the company side. Green Bonds and Green Finance were getting more attention in the markets and trade talks and Brexit were the topics during the year 2018 along. Climate Change and low carbon landed also in the agenda of central banks.

Investors were also asking what is the role of the City as a global financial hub. Should it have its own rules in spite of the Brexit? In the financial hub competition, Frankfurt and Paris were the European cities to get more new financial offices as financial companies were moving some operations to the EU side.

The UK Parliament is expected to vote of the Brexit during Janury 2019 after very intensive debate about the deal during the year.

Climate Change has become part of the everyday life in the financial markets and for example one of the biggest insurance companies in the US, Berskhire Hathaway informed in February 2018, that it has got 3 billion dollars losses of the natural catastrophies, the hurricances in the US. Several central banks, including the European Central Bank and some Asian ones, have also agreed about the co-operation in the climate issues and how to monitor the impact on the markets.

In the tech-side augmented reality and ioT were the themes for the year. Apple, Amazon, Google, Tesla, Intel  and Samsung  were one of the tech-companies to deliver new services related to the new technology. On the other side of the topic, Facebook was dealing with the privacy issues globally. New tech- companies listed in the markets were for example Spotify and Xiaomi.

Year 2018 was a year of electric cars in many countries. The e-cars breakthrough with charging issues was one of the tech topics as well. Telsa founder Elon Musk was the leading industry sector figure as he estimated that Tesla would make one million cars by 2020 in February 2018.

Also the German automakers announced new investments and concept cars. For example the BMW Group launched an autonomous driving campus in Munich in March 2018.

Year 2018 was also a year for luxury goods and services. The Basel World 2018 -fair announced its good selling and for example the CEO of Hublot, Ricardo Guadalupe,  told ComteamPUB+ that the company expects double digit growth for the year and that the Chinese customers will be the leading segment.

In the debt markets the US Uber and Netflix issued their junk bonds to investors. Uber, the ride-sharing company, is said to plan an IPO for the year 2019 according to the secret filings to the SEC.

One of the biggest infrastructure projects ever, the China Silk Road, is getting more attention from the green investors side, while the organization made its first announcement of the green principles for the project co-operation and operators. The ancient Silk Road is expected to rise the GDP growth by 4 % or 240 billion dollars in the countries invlolved according to Credit Suisse analysis.

The aim of the Roman time Silk Road is to connect the western Europe with the eastern coast of China and to renew the infrasturcture in between. This means also that the 10 world largest container ports are located along the route.

Trade talks between different countries have continued lively during the year. US and China have been in the headlines, but also the EU with its agreement with Japan.  The political situation and rising volatility in the financial markets tell the direction for the next year. Geopolitical easing is needed.

Päivi Härkönen, co-founder, ComteamPUB+

 

 

Business Finance Lifestyle

Spotify to start trading April 3 in NYSE

spotify_logo_rgb_green

Music streaming company Spotify will start trading in the New York Stock Exchange on the 3rd of April. According to the company and Wall Street Journal the trading code  in this direct listing will be “SPOT”.

Spotify is having about 159 million active users monthly and majority of the revenues comes from the premiun packages. The average revenue per premium user (ARPU) has declined to 5,32 euros last year from 6,20 euros in 2016.

Spotify´s revenue was 4,1 billion euros last year, up 39 % from year earlier. The loss was 1,24 billion euros, up from 539 million euros in 2016.

According to the company, Spotify is planning to increase its R&D team in London and make it a global R&D hub for the group. Spotify spokespersons comment that the car will be an important part of the company growth in the future, while 30 % of music listening will happen in the car. Spotify has also a venture with Tesla Europe.

Business Tech

Smart Mazda CX-3 for safe driving

IMG_0019.JPGThe Mazda CX-3 is a new innovation from the Japanese manufacturer. According to the company, the new model was launched globally in June 2015. There are plenty of new elements embedded in the car for secure and safe driving. The car itself is a good example of the new wave of sport utility vehicle, which can offer you different new technology innovations. The aim is to lower the CO2 levels and increase the safety and comfortability in the car.

”Skyactive-technology” in the car

According to Mazda the ”Skyactive-technology” is a comprehensive design philosophy, which offers you economic and lower CO2 emissions, but still having the same driving experience and usability. After the test driving I can say the usability and steering of the car is good, reversing and parking are easy to handle because of the great view from mirrors.

This kind of easy driving but safety embedded is a good choice for weekend and city driving, but it also gives easy access to a cottage road, because of high ground clearance. We recommend the car would be equipped with four-wheel drive. The CO2 emissions are from 105 to 150 g/km according to the company information (different models) and the consumption is around 6 liters per 100 km.

Safety on the roads

Mazda has developed several different smart solutions for safety. For example the sensors in the car makes driving safer, because the system alarms you if there is another car next to you when you are about to change lanes or if you are near to exit your lane on the road accidentally.

Then there are small, but important things like automated wind stoppers during the rain, engine stops automatically when you are stopped on red lights, Bluetooth – integration for your own music like Spotify and automated braking in low speeds if there is possibility of an accident.

The new Mazda CX-3 is very easy to drive and the dashboard is well-organized, it is easy to access every button while driving. Navigation is a supplementary element, so it is not integrated.

Testcar used had 120hp, which accelerates the car from 0 to 100 km/h (0-60mph) in 9 seconds, so it manages well with different occasions on the road.

We liked the overall design of the car, it is sporty and modern, but still somehow unique. The safety software and low CO2 emissions are elements one can enjoy, when using this car during for example the weekend travels.

Päivi Härkönen

Technical details of the test car:
Mazda CX-3 Skyactive G (2,0) 2015
Fuel: Petrol
Consumption: 5,9 liters (Combined)
CO2 g/km: 137
Hp: 120
Front-wheel drive
Manual transmission

#Mazda
#Bluetooth
#Spotify

Business Design Tech

Spotify market valuation to 8,4 billion dollars

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Swedish music streaming service Spotify is near to rise 400 million dollars in a new deal, which would mean the market valuation of 8,4 billion dollars. According to the newspaper, Goldman Sachs and Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund would be the main financiers and this deal would place Spotify as one of the high-valued tech companies.

Finance Tech