Category: Business Breaking News

Will Tesla’s cybertruck recover from its shattering start?

By Natalie ShermanBusiness reporter, New York

Watch: Musk attempts Cybertruck window stunt again

The last time Tesla boss Elon Musk took the stage to promote the electric car company’s planned “cybertruck”, its window ended up being smashed.

It was a shattering debut for the vehicle, meant to stake Tesla’s claim to the lucrative US truck market.

Four years later, as the company starts delivering the futuristic product to buyers, that problem has been fixed.

But questions linger over whether the truck’s unusual design will help or hurt its chances of success.

Mr Musk has said the truck – which is angular and made of rocket-like, bullet-proof steel materials – might be the company’s “best product ever”.

But speaking to Wall Street analysts last month he also said he wanted to “temper expectations”, warning there would be “enormous challenges” before the company was producing the vehicle in big numbers and turning a profit.

“It is going to require immense work,” he said. “It’s not a demand issue, but we have to make it, and we need to make it at a price that people can afford – insanely difficult things.”

The “bells and whistles” of the truck, which starts at a higher-than-promised list price of roughly $61,000 (£48,320), have complicated manufacturing and added to cost, he added later.

“We dug our own grave with the cybertruck,” Mr Musk said.

Trucks are among the most popular vehicles sold in the US – with traditional sedans so out of favour that some carmakers have stopped making them for the country.

But Tesla’s offer is entering the market at a difficult moment – some two years behind schedule – as the highest interest rates in decades dampen buyers’ ability to make new purchases.

In recent months, rivals such as General Motors and Ford

Charlie Munger death: Warren Buffett’s business partner in Berkshire Hathaway passes away, aged 99

New York

Billionaire investor Charlie Munger, the long-time friend and business partner of Warren Buffett, has died. He was 99 years old.

Berkshire Hathaway, the investment firm where Munger served as vice chairman, said in a press release that Munger passed “peacefully” on Tuesday morning in a California hospital. No cause of death was given.

Charles Thomas Munger, known by his nickname, “Charlie,” was born on January 1, 1924, in Omaha, Nebraska. Munger served in the US Army during World War II after leaving the University of Michigan in 1943 at the age of 19. Following the war, Munger attended Harvard Law School and graduated with honors in 1948 and moved to Southern California, where he practiced real estate law.

Wall Street mourned Munger’s passing and his astonishing run at Berkshire Hathaway.

“Berkshire Hathaway could not have been built to its present status without Charlie’s inspiration, wisdom and participation,” CEO Warren Buffett said in the release.

“For so many decades, the two of them led an investment powerhouse that significantly improved so many people’s lives … and, in the process, they repeatedly showcased the prowess of collaboration, synergies, and common sense. May you RIP, Charlie,” said Mohamed El-Erian, Allianz chief economic adviser, in a post on X.

“His impact went far beyond the investing world. People discovered him, thinking that they would learn about ways to make money, but they got so much more,” Whitney Tilson, an investor and expert on both Buffett and Munger, told CNN. “He said if all you have is a hammer, the world looks like a nail.”

Munger, who was worth $2.7 billion, according to Forbes, was still commenting on global markets as recently as a few weeks ago. He told the Acquired podcast, for example, that Buffett’s decision to invest billions

Record-breaking number of businesses showing LGBTQ+ allyship

New data shows a record-breaking number of businesses are displaying true LGBTQ+ allyship to their employees, proving they “aren’t buying” mounting anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation issued its Corporate Equality Index (CEI) this week, and determined that the workforce is “more allied than ever before.”

The CEI, launched by the HRC Foundation in 2002, is a survey that measures company policies and practices regarding LGBTQ+ equality. 

In its first year, 319 businesses participated to determine if their policies were up to scratch. This year, 1,384 companies took part in the review – and the results were overwhelmingly positive.

The CEI reports that a record-breaking 95 per cent of businesses reviewed have non-discrimination protections in place specifically regarding gender identity. That’s an exceptional jump from 2002’s five per cent.

A man in an office with a laptop looking stressed
A record-breaking number of businesses are displaying true LGBTQ+ allyship to their employees. (Getty Images/PinkNews)

Equally as promising is the 94 per cent of businesses that offer transgender-inclusive health insurance coverage to employees, compared to 0 per cent in 2002.

Noting that these exceptional figures come at a time when the LGBTQ+ community is under attack by people “hoping to eradicate our identity and push us back in the closet”, HRC President Kelley Robinson said that it looks like “businesses aren’t buying it.”

“The future workforce is more out and allied than ever before in our nation’s history, and this year’s CEI shows a business community looking for ways to further support LGBTQ+ workers and their families,” she added.

This year’s review also found that 70 per cent of CEI-rated businesses have guidelines and supportive policies and guidance in place to pro-actively support employees going through a gender transition, as well as their managers

How One MSP Founder Is Breaking The Mold, Harnesses DEI And Started His Business Out Of Spite

Channel News

CJ Fairfield

‘I’m looking forward to really engaging on being a business owner. So really engaging, leaning forward to being that business owner and strategic leader, versus being influenced by everything else and being more reactive — really focusing on that proactive approach is what I’m looking forward to,’ says Paco Lebron, founder and CEO of Chicago-based MSP ProdigyTek.


Thirty-seven-year-old Paco Lebron started his MSP business out of spite.

He started his career in technology as a database manager and moved over to help a buddy with their break-fix and printing business.

“Through some disagreements, and out of spite, I ended up starting my own business so that I could do it better and prove that the way I envision an IT service business would run in that way,” Lebron (pictured), founder and CEO of Chicago-based MSP ProdigyTeks, told CRN. “It was myself from 2013 until about 2020. As unfortunate as COVID and shelter in place was, it allowed me to grow with a lot of the requests.”

Over the summer of 2020, Lebron hired five employees and is now running a seven-person shop. In fact, his entire team is Latino or Hispanic, with four of them being women, and he’s using Open AI to assist the team internally.

“I have a tech in Venezuela, I have a tech in Argentina and our dispatch coordinators are between Mexico and Texas,” he said. “What’s amazing about that is some of them are Spanish-speaking first and the English language comes second. When you Google translate something, it’s that literal Spanish whereas the [Microsoft] Bing AI can you help translate in dialects. That has really assisted my team talking to each other because some are Spanish-speaking first but

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Berkshire Hathaway’s Charlie Munger dies at age 99

Berkshire Hathaway's Charlie Munger
Charlie Munger, vice-chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, attends the annual Berkshire shareholders meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, on May 3, 2019. Munger died on Nov. 28, 2023, at the age of 99, according to media reports. Photo by JOHANNES EISELE/AFP via Getty Images

Charles Munger, the alter ego, sidekick and foil to Warren Buffett for almost 60 years as they transformed Berkshire Hathaway Inc. from a failing textile maker into an empire, has died. He was 99.

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Bayer CEO Says Breakup Wouldn’t Fix All of the Company’s Ills

A stream of negative news has rekindled calls from investors for Bayer to unlock value by spinning off its units into separate businesses. But in an interview with The Wall Street Journal this week, Anderson said the company couldn’t be distracted from the tough restructuring to fix the businesses.

“If we don’t have the most agile and responsive approach to product development, customer proximity and how we run our businesses, breaking [the company] into pieces isn’t going to solve things,” he said. “No structural options are going to make up for lack of great execution.”

Over the past week, the German company canceled a clinical trial for a drug it had hoped would underpin future profit. Bayer, whose products include aspirin and the Roundup weedkiller, was also ordered by a Missouri court to pay $1.56 billion to four plaintiffs who claimed Roundup caused their cancer—a decision the company is appealing.

The court decision reminded investors that Bayer still faced unquantifiable liabilities stemming from its 2018 acquisition of Monsanto. And the abandoned clinical trial dashed hopes Bayer had found a successor to lucrative drugs whose patents are expiring soon.

The combined news sent Bayer shares tumbling on Monday. By the end of the week, Bayer’s market capitalization fell 8.7 billion euros, equivalent to $9.5 billion, to €32 billion, lower than the company’s net debt of €38.7 billion at the end of third quarter. Bayer shares have lost 21% of their value since last Friday’s close.

The company reported a net loss of €4.57 billion for the third quarter on losses in its crop-science business and declining sales and earnings in pharmaceuticals.

Anderson, who became CEO in June, has been tasked to clean up his predecessor’s disastrous Monsanto acquisition and re-energize Bayer’s pharma-to-consumer businesses.

After joining Bayer, the Texas native appointed a

OpenAI Debacle Was a Test for Meta’s Threads. It Passed.

  • Threads was a great place to get news on the OpenAI drama over the weekend.
  • Meta execs have said they don’t plan to focus on news on Threads.
  • And X still had crucial parts of the story. It’s also where most OpenAI leaders posted themselves.

Imagine a technology that, once it has achieved a certain amount of momentum in growth and advancement, becomes sentient and no longer tethered to the commands of its human creators — even acting in ways that those human creators believe will harm them.

No, not “unaligned” artificial general intelligence, the figurative boogeyman of the OpenAI board. (In the fullest sense of the word “figurative.” The chief scientist reportedly burned a wooden effigy of “unaligned AGI” at a corporate retreat).

I’m talking about Threads, which over the weekend actually became a useful place for news — despite the apparent wishes of Meta executives.

Not long after Threads launched this summer, Instagram head Adam Mosseri posted that he doesn’t plan on leaning into “news” on the Threads platform:

Politics and hard news are inevitably going to show up on Threads — they have on Instagram as well to some extent — but we’re not going to do anything to encourage those verticals.

Then, the biggest recent breaking news story in tech and business unfolded over the weekend with Sam Altman’s shocking exit from OpenAI.

It was the perfect test to see if Threads was up for a breaking news event. It passed.

X, formerly known as Twitter, still won as the more crucial platform.

X is where Altman and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella made official announcements, and where other tech leaders posted in

Energized shoppers break one-day holiday sales record


Whether they jostled through brick-and-mortar stores or toggled between tabs and virtual carts, holiday shoppers were eager to participate in Black Friday this year.

Both in-store and online retail sales increased year-over-year unadjusted for inflation, according to Mastercard’s SpendingPulse insights, which noted that apparel, jewelry and restaurant categories saw considerable spikes. In-store sales jumped a little more than 1%, while e-commerce led the charge with an increase of 8.5%.

However, Sensormatic Solutions, which tracks shopper traffic at brick-and-mortar stores, found that visits on Black Friday were up 4.6% from 2022. This is a turnaround for retailers, the company said, as foot traffic has been down an average of 2.4% this year.

“Though we anticipated an increase, in-store shopper traffic outperformed our expectations,” Grant Gustafson, head of retail consulting and analytics at Sensormatic, said in a statement. “Consumers are again finding joy in brick-and-mortar shopping, seeing it as an experience to be shared with loved ones. It’s a testament to the hard work retailers have done to streamline journeys and deliver satisfying experiences.”

Adobe Analytics, which tracks US online shopping, reported a record $9.8 billion in Black Friday sales, up 7.5% from 2022, driven by surging demand for electronics such as televisions, smart watches and audio equipment.

Most shoppers did their browsing and buying on their phones, with mobile purchases accounting for $5.3 billion in sales. Adobe expects that purchases made through smartphones this holiday season will overtake those made by desktops for the first time.

Online shoppers also made considerable use of “buy now, pay later” (BNPL), installment payment plans that allow consumers to split their online cart total into four payments typically due several weeks apart. While some BNPL lenders charge interest or late fees, for major purchases or big spending days, these mini-loans can help stretch

Tax break for businesses made permanent

By Michael RaceBusiness reporter, BBC News

Getty Images Warehouse workersGetty Images
The manufacturing industry called for the policy to be made permanent

A tax break which allows businesses to deduct the full cost of investing in machinery and equipment from their tax bill has been made permanent.

In his Autumn Statement, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt called it the “largest business tax cut in modern British history”, but this was disputed by an economics think tank.

Big business groups praised the policy, which had been due to end in 2026.

It is hoped it will encourage firms to invest and lead to economic growth.

Mr Hunt said the policy – known as “full expensing” – would mean that for every £1m a company invests, it would get £250,000 off their tax bill in the same year.

Under full expensing, companies can deduct the costs of various equipment from their tax bills, including machines from computers to lathes, office equipment such as desks and chairs, as well as vans, tractors, large construction equipment and tools.

Mr Hunt said the move – which has been supported by Labour – would cost £11bn per year.

According to research by the British Chambers of Commerce, the policy has benefited 34% of businesses since it was temporarily put in place in April.

However, the UK’s official economic watchdog, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), has forecast that business investment could fall in the short term due to firms no longer having to ensure investments were made before the previous 2026 deadline. Ultimately, the OBR estimates the policy will drive business investment up by £3bn a year.

The OBR has forecast the UK’s economy will grow more slowly than previously thought over the next two years due to inflation – the rate prices are increasing – taking longer to fall.

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