Thursday, May 24th, 2018

Apple is Reportedly Partnering with Volkswagen to Build Self Driving Vehicles
The New York Times

According to a report by the New York Times, the plans to partner with Volkswagen comes after the tech giant was reportedly unable to ink a deal with BMW and Mercedes Benz.

The company plans to customize Volkswagen T6 Transporter vans to be used as shuttles for Apple employees.

The company’s new self-driving program puts it up against rivals such as Waymo and Uber.

Rideshare Company, Lyft, Invests $100 Million in Driver Support Centers
Lyft COO Blog Post

According to a blog post by Lyft COO, Jon McNeill, the company looks to double its operational hours at all our current Lyft Hub locations, in 15 cities across North America.

Lyft Hub centers offer drivers heavily discounted oil changes and basic vehicle maintenance, electric vehicle charging stations, SUV and Car rentals courtesy of their partner Express Drive, Tax Help and Career support, and communal areas such as restaurants.

Krogers Buys a Meal Kit Company
Company Press Release

According to a company press release, Krogers has purchased Home Chef, a private meal kit company.

The deal is worth $200 million with an opportunity to potentially earn future payouts of $500 million over five years if certain milestones such as: significant in-store growth and increased online meal kit sales are achieved.

Home Chef is headquartered in downtown Chicago and employs approximately 1,000 employees. The company operates three distribution centers in: Chicago, San Bernardino and Atlanta. Home Chef’s distribution centers reach 98% of all continental U.S. households within a two-day delivery window.

Once the deal is complete Home Chef will become a subsidiary of The Kroger Co.

Chipotle Announces a New HQ
Company Press Release

The company announced on Wednesday that it plans to relocate its headquarters from Denver, Colorado to Newport Beach, California.

The Newport Beach location will serve as the corporate center for the company’s corporate functions including operations, business development, and marketing.

The transition is expected to affect approximately 400 employees in Denver and New York in Q4 2018.

Macy’s Signs on a New CFO
Company Press Release

The company announced on Wednesday that it has appointed Paula A. Price as its new Chief Financial Officer where she will be overseeing the company’s finance, accounting, investor relations and internal audit teams.

Price has 30 years of finance experience in retail and consumer facing businesses. She currently lectures on accounting and management at the Harvard Business school.

Price will replace Karen Hoguet who announced plans to retire at the end of the 2018 fiscal year.

The new appointment is effective July 9th, 2018.

The Government of Canada Has Blocked a China-based Company’s Takeover of a Canadian Construction Company
Aecon Group Company Press Release

The Aecon Group announced on Wednesday that the Governor in Council has issued an order under the Investment Canada Act directing CCCI not to implement its proposed acquisition of Aecon.

The Aecon Group is a Canadian leader in construction and infrastructure development. CCCI is the international investment and financing arm of the China Communications Construction Company Ltd., It is one of the world’s largest engineering and construction development companies.

The deal will not proceed.

Deutsche Bank Announces Major Job Cuts
Company News Release

The bank announced today that it will significantly reshape its Equities Sales & Trading business resulting in a reduction of its headcount by 25%.

Germany’s biggest bank stated that the number of full-time equivalent positions is expected to fall from just over 97,000 currently to well below 90,000.

The move part is of an accelerated effort to bring down costs.

Tourism Vancouver Plans to Attract More Chinese Tourists
Tourism Vancouver Media Article

Tourism Vancouver, a destination marketing organization that represents approximately 1,000 members in tourism and related industries and activities, announced on Wednesday that it has signed a deal with Chinese technology giant, Tencent.

The deal will launch Canada’s first official WeChat city app to provide real-time services to Chinese tourists.

Vancouver is expecting to see over 300,000 overnight visitors from China in 2018. According to Tourism Vancouver, the tourism industry contributes approximately $4.8 billion to the Metro Vancouver economy annually and provides over 70,000 full-time jobs.

Paddy Power Betfair Buys FanDuel
Company Press Release

According to a company press release, both companies plan to merge their US businesses.

The transaction combines FanDuel’s technology, brand, and user base with Betfair’s horse racing betting network, media business and online casino business in New Jersey.

The deal provides opportunities for the combined businesses to capitalize on the sports betting market opportunity in the United States. Earlier this month, the US Supreme Court allowed states to legalize sports gambling.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in Q3 of this year.

Tinder Introduces Places, a Feature That Connects People Who Share the Same Activities
Company Blog Post

Tinder announced on Wednesday that it is rolling out a new feature that allows individuals to discover new relationships while at the places they frequent the most, such as bars, yoga studios, and libraries.

The technology is powered by Foursquare and Mapbox and will be tested and made available in Sydney and Brisbane, Australia and Santiago, Chile.

Snap Launches Yellow, a Media Company Accelerator
Company News Release

Snapchat’s parent company, Snap, announced on Wednesday that it will be launching Yellow, a launchpad for creative minds and entrepreneurs focused on building media companies.

The accelerator will select individuals and teams from around the world to join the three-month program. Snap will invest $150k in each group that is accepted.

Participants will receive funding, mentorship, and introductions to industry veterans. They will be provided with workspace at Snapchat’s headquarters in Venice, California.

Facebook Rolls Out a Feature That Helps You Find Your Next Plumber
Company News Release

Facebook announced on Wednesday that it is working with Handy, HomeAdvisor, and Porch to provide its users with the ability to discover US-based professionals that specialize on home services, such as house cleaners, plumbers, and contractors.

Users will be able to get quotes, chat with the service provider, and view ratings and reviews all from within the Facebook Marketplace.

The rollout will be available across the United States over the coming weeks.