“If you are open-minded and you let the universe come in, you never know where things might go.” — Adam Neumann
Good Morning! JPMorgan is trying out some old-school growth strategies like building bricks-and-mortar branches. Meanwhile, Disney’s feud with its activist investor Nelson Peltz is heating up. The University of Kansas is launching an economics class focused on Taylor Swift. And Super Bowl advertisers are sticking to the script and playing it safe. Plus Bill Ackman’s top 9 investing reads, and how to use the 60% calendar rule to manage your time.
2024 Comp Survey: It’s that time of the year again. Please fill out our compensation survey here. Every response makes the overall results more accurate, so please submit a response if you can (all responses are strictly confidential).
SQUEEZ OF THE DAY
Adam Neumann wants to buy WeWork back, the now-bankrupt coworking company he founded.
WeWork was the poster child for unprofitable startups in the low-interest rate era. And Adam Neumann built the company by schmoozing and taking tequila shots with VCs, ultimately raising $13 billion and propelling WeWork to a $47 billion valuation.
But while Neumann was pitching investors to think of WeWork as a disruptive tech company, it was bleeding cash left and right. Ultimately, WeWork’s 2019 IPO flopped.
Neumann got pushed out for practically making sh-t up (community-adjusted EBITDA, anyone?) and, after getting caught hotboxing on the company’s private jet, he got one of the largest severance packages of all time at $1.7 billion.
WeWork has struggled since the pandemic (you can find our full breakdown here) and filed for bankruptcy last November.
Neumann is now looking to team up with Dan Loeb’s hedge fund Third Point to purchase WeWork out of bankruptcy. WeWork is not being very cooperative though, adding to broader frustrations from creditors and landlords about the slow progress in WeWork's revival since its bankruptcy filing.
Takeaway: If Neumann can successfully buy WeWork back, it would be a hilarious turn of the tables. Many of WeWork’s investors still blame Neumann for running the company into the ground - and the optics of his $1.7 billion severance package from a now-bankrupt company don’t look great, either. But on the other hand, it could be Neumann’s last shot at rebuilding WeWork into his original vision. In any case, this is going to be one helluva movie when all is said and done.
RAD AI is an essential AI technology that tells brands who their customer is, and how to best create content that significantly boosts ROI. And 3X revenue growth this year suggests it's working.
Major clients like Hasbro, MGM, and Sweetgreen — 6,000+ investors already trust RAD including VCs, Fidelity and execs from Google/Amazon. Over $27M invested, backed by Adobe Fund for Design.
Get in on the ground floor! Learn more and invest here.
83% Subscribed, Invest Before Feb. 16th, Closing Soon.
Disclosure: This is a paid advertisement for RAD AI’s Regulation CF offering. Please read the offering circular at invest.radintel.ai
JPMorgan is growing the old-fashioned way (WSJ)
ESPN, Fox, and Warner Bros. launch joint sports streaming platform (CNBC)
Super Bowl advertisers are playing it safe (NYT)
Spotify rebounds after cost-cutting (YF)
The Taylor Swift Economy is now a high school curriculum (Axios)
Does the music industry need TikTok? (BB)
Asset managers bet on infrastructure investment shops (WSJ)
Credit card delinquencies surged in 2023 (CNBC)
Disney's feud with activist Nelson Peltz is heating up (YF)
Traders betting on Tesla rebound pile into leveraged ETF options (YF)
Stocks closed higher after an earnings surge.
(+) Palantir ($PLTR) +30% after the software company reported a revenue beat, and strong demand for AI.
(+) Coherent ($COHR) +17% because the semiconductor company beat top and bottom line estimates.
(–) Docusign ($DOCU) -2% because of layoffs, stalling deal talks with private equity firm.
Novartis bought MorphoSys, a cancer biotech, for $2.9 billion
CBRE Group bought J&J Worldwide Services for $1.05 billion
NinjaOne, an IT platform for endpoint visibility, raised $231.5 million
Starship Technologies, a delivery robot developer, raised $90 million
Ambience Healthcare, an AI operating system for healthcare companies, raised $70 million
Heura Foods, a plant-based foods maker, raised $44 million
For more PE, VC & M&A deals, subscribe to our Buysiders newsletter.
BOOK OF THE DAY
How To Make A Few Billion Dollars
During his more than four decades as a CEO and serial entrepreneur, Brad Jacobs has created seven flagship companies across different industries, delivering tens of billions of dollars of value to shareholders. In How to Make a Few Billion Dollars, Jacobs defines the mindset that drives his remarkable success in corporate America―and distills a lifetime of business brilliance into a tactical road map.
From provocative recommendations for “rearranging your brain” - an essential prerequisite to accomplishing enormous goals―to practical advice for dealing with colleagues, Jacobs will have you rethinking what it means to win big. He explains why it’s critical to spot key trends and capitalize on them, including the biggest trend of all―the rapid evolution of technology relative to human development.
How to Make a Few Billion Dollars is an inside look at how this entrepreneurial titan leads with humility, compassion, and accountability, while running hard toward the American Dream. If your personal dream is to create wealth through free markets or to triumph in sports, the arts, politics, philanthropy, or any other part of your life, this book will help you make that a reality.
“Brad is a brave thinker who challenges others to do the same.”
Average Number of People per Household Declining
The average family size in the US has declined from 3.3 in 1960 to 2.5 in 2023
SPONSORED BY CAPTIRA
Effortlessly Resolve Overdue Payments with Captira
Are you a business owner grappling with the headache of overdue, unpaid accounts?
Captira is here to streamline your collections process, ensuring you get paid without the hassle.
Automated Reminders & Escalation: Captira seamlessly integrates with your existing business process, sending automatic reminders and escalating actions for overdue invoices.
Affordable Solution: At just 99c per invoice, Captira offers an economical approach to managing unpaid bills, eliminating the need for a debt collector.
Effective negotiation is a skill that can lead to better outcomes in both business dealings and personal relationships.
It involves communication, empathy, and compromise to reach an agreement that is acceptable to all parties. Successful negotiators understand the importance of listening actively, articulating their needs clearly, and finding common ground.
By approaching negotiations with an open mind and a focus on mutual benefit, individuals can build stronger relationships, avoid conflicts, and achieve goals that might otherwise seem out of reach.
Developing negotiation skills can therefore have a profound impact on various aspects of one's life, leading to more favorable and harmonious interactions.
Short Squeez Picks
Memes of the Day