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  • Buying Sony At The Price Of Nintendo: A Comparison With A Focus On Video Games [View article]
    Update November 2014:

    SNE product outlook for FY 2015 and beyond:

    " Sony reportedly planning stylish watch made entirely out of e-paper
    Company cutting smartphone and TV lineups "

    "Sony's startup-style Seed Acceleration Program, announced earlier in the year, allows employees to pitch ideas to people either inside or outside the company with the goal of receiving funding. According to an internal document seen by Bloomberg, Sony received 187 applications during the first round in June, and 80 advanced to the next stage.

    News of Sony's plans to encourage internal innovation comes as the company says it will cut its poor-performing portfolios of TVs and smartphones in order to reduce spiralling costs. "We're not aiming for size or market share but better profits," said new mobile chief Hiroki Totoki in comments from an investors' conference reported on by Reuters."


    "Sony to cut TV, smartphone lineup; sees growth in PlayStation, image sensors"

    I think this a very good change as long as the execution succeeds. The weaker JPY in late 2014 should also help SNE.
    Nov 26, 2014. 09:03 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Sony sees big jump in device revenue; more restructuring at TV and phone units [View news story]
    Overdue move, Sony had too many cheap, bland products in TVs and mobile phones in recent years.

    It also had too short product cycles. Apple has shown that it's enough to update hardware once a year, SNE tried it twice a year.

    SNE should concentrate on the higher end and get rid of the low-end products with no differentiation in its electronics division. This also means fewer products and SKUs.
    Nov 26, 2014. 02:00 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Recent Tesla Developments And Their Implications Going Forward [View article]
    JRP wrote: " The falcon doors are simply not the issue you wish to make them out to be. "

    In my opinion, these doors would have been long scrapped/redesigned were they not a personal pet project from CEO Musk. Because of these and other design quirks I wouldn't be surprised if (meaningful) volume deliveries of Model X will be postponed until early 2016.

    Same for the upcoming Model 3 car. I wouldn't be surprised to see it delayed until 2018-19.

    That gives the competition time to launch more and more EVs/PHEVs in all price categories.
    Nov 24, 2014. 10:22 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Recent Tesla Developments And Their Implications Going Forward [View article]
    Another important issue on battery supply:

    With USDJPY near 120, it remains to be seen how much the "main" (and so far only!) Gigafactory partner Panasonic is willing to invest in the coming years in NA.

    I doubt Panasonic or other Japanese companies could hedge this huge FX spike in the last weeks. For years, their main issue was a strong JPY, now the tables have turned.

    For each new factory outside of Japan, the numbers look quite different for Panasonic (as I think the JPY could continue to move lower over the coming years, 150 or even 200 is not out of question).

    This comes on top of potential battery technology change risks (and TSLA overinvesting in current Li-Ion battery tech).
    Nov 24, 2014. 09:32 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla, BMW in talks over possible collaboration [View news story]
    John, adding additional plants (in Europa and Asia) for sure makes sense once TSLA manages to sell 500k cars per year and is in line with their previous statements.

    But each new battery plant will cost billions of USD and battery tech evolves. Expanding car production also takes billions of USD for a mass-market car like the Model 3.

    The operational cash flow is not there and the risks remain huge (especially since Audi and others prepare their own longer-range EVs around 2018-2020).
    Nov 24, 2014. 07:38 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla, BMW in talks over possible collaboration [View news story]
    Thanks for the link, solucky, it's what I expected:

    "A spokeswoman for Tesla in Germany later described the discussions as informal.
    "The conversation between Elon Musk and BMW has been a casual conversation, and not about a formal cooperation," spokeswoman Kathrin Schira said."
    Nov 24, 2014. 06:03 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla, BMW in talks over possible collaboration [View news story]
    It certainly wouldn't be the first time Musk/TSLA annoyed car partners and investors (Daimler, Toyota...).
    Nov 24, 2014. 02:14 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla, BMW in talks over possible collaboration [View news story]
    These talks already took place in summer of 2014, maybe they are in talks again. Who knows. Car companies talk to each other all the time and Tesla seems to be getting the cold ahoulder from the likes of Daimler and Toyota recently.

    Here's what Musk said in the interview (original text, you can run it in Google Translate):

    "SPIEGEL: Sie sprechen auch mit BMW.

    Musk: Ja, wir reden darüber, ob wir bei der Batterietechnik oder den Ladestationen zusammenarbeiten können. Außerdem hat BMW eine relativ kostengünstige Karbonfaserproduktion. Das könnte für unsere Karosseriebauer interessant sein."

    (Spiegel is the name of the German weekly who conducted the interview.)

    Nothing more than this short blurb. In addition, he also talked about opening a battery factory in Europe in 5-6 years:

    "SPIEGEL: Wäre es schlau, auch in Deutschland eine Batteriefabrik zu bauen?

    Musk: Ich gehe davon aus, dass Tesla auf lange Sicht eine Batteriefabrik in Deutschland errichten wird. Nach meiner Schätzung in fünf, sechs Jahren."

    Of course he didn't talk how he would finance this second battery factory. Is the first one even fully financed? A few billion here, a few billion there.

    Musk keeps promising a wide range of stuff in different interviews with very optimistic (to put it mildly) timeframes.

    How about Tesla first finishing and selling the Model X and then the Model 3, both projects have been delayed for years. The Model X was once supposed to ship in 2013, the Model 3 in far, we haven't even seen a picture of the Model 3.
    Nov 24, 2014. 01:51 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Audi Confirms 300-Mile Range EV, Plans To Compete With Tesla [View article]
    "In addition on Feb 20th they claimed that Asia and Europe would account for two thirds of demand by the end of this year. They now say that NA will be over 50% of total demand."

    That's a very good point. Suddenly the new markets (especially China) are not so relevant (replay the last conference call) and TSLA says it can sell the same revenue into North America.
    Nov 23, 2014. 12:01 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple And New Markets: IPayments? [View instapost]
    Square will accept Apple Pay in 2015 with new readers:
    Nov 23, 2014. 01:23 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Audi Confirms 300-Mile Range EV, Plans To Compete With Tesla [View article]
    PGVO, do you have any sources for that battery 2.0 with details pr are these just rumors?

    As long as TSLA doesn't change the chemistry, simply using a slightly larger cylindrical cell is not revolutionary, as others pointed out.

    The big change will come with different chemistry (Li-S, Li-Air...) or at least different cathodes and anodes, that is some years out for mass production.
    Nov 23, 2014. 12:15 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Audi Confirms 300-Mile Range EV, Plans To Compete With Tesla [View article]
    To add a number to my comment above:

    VW will invest over 100 billion (!) USD in its cars and brands over the next five years, that includes various EV programs

    100 billion USD within five years is an incredible number, they can ramp up EV and PHEV production or build charging networks etc. as needed for a fraction of that sum.

    Underestimating VW and other car giants is dangerous, they may be slower to change and adapt to new trends, but once they are in motion they can crush smaller competitors.
    Nov 23, 2014. 12:04 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The Fallout At GTAT - Lessons Learned (And The Impact For Apple) [View instapost]
    "Existing Apple suppliers say GT Advanced promised too much, didn't diversify enough

    In the wake of the collapse of sapphire maker GT Advanced Technologies, longtime members of Apple's supply chain have characterized the iPhone maker as a tough but fair partner who offers component makers a chance at success, provided they take proper precautions.

    Officials from Pegatron and other unnamed Apple suppliers spoke with The Wall Street Journal about their relationship with the Cupertino, Calif., company, and gave some of the lessons they've learned over the years. The key takeaways were that suppliers should not promise things they cannot deliver, and that Apple partners should diversify and make arrangements with other companies.

    Nov 22, 2014. 04:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • SolarCity: How Much Value Does Elon Musk Add? [View article]
    SII wrote: "He was talking about standard efficiency panels, Silevo will be making high efficiency panels."

    But as I pointed out above, many Chinese solar companies are already offering >20% efficiency panels (as of today, late 2014) well before SCTY can source from its new plant in 2016.

    Large US solar companies (SUNE, FSLR and SPWR to name the biggest three) also have in-house panel production and will be upgrading their lines if/once the market demands so.

    Solar equipment vendors such as Meyer-Burger will offer hardware to all solar makers to achieve >20% efficiency on new production lines:

    "The target upon further process optimisation is to reach a PV module efficiency of 21% but with a production cost below 0.6CHF/Wp (US$0.62/Wp). HJT cells are said to achieve an efficiency of more than 22% in lab conditions. "

    I don't see SCTY's / Silevo's long-term advantage in this market with low margins and very intense competition.
    Nov 21, 2014. 09:26 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Long-Term Macro Trends Supporting $310 Price Target For Tesla Motors [View article]
    "We didn't go for "proper DCF" methodology"

    So why do you call it DCF in the article? That and the 2035 timeline assumptions will create huge variations in TSLA's valuation.

    As I outlined above, the car industry could look VERY different in 20 years (we may have automated pods in many countries, less car ownership etc.)

    Why project car sales 20 years out? Even 5-10 years is quite hard given the delays Tesla is facing with each new car model and competitor dynamics.

    I will have to repeat myself:

    Ramping up is VERY hard and VERY cap-ex intensive in the car industry, especially since TSLA also vertically integrates its battery production.

    PS: And what about battery storage in the DCF by 2035? Many Tesla bulls dream that will be the major revenue source for TSLA long-term. Will Tesla still create cars in 20 years? Will it even be around? Nascent industries are full of risks...most pioneers don't make it.
    Nov 21, 2014. 03:58 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment