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Things I Learned​ This Week – November 12th, 2017

|About:, Inc. (AMZN), F, GM, GOOG, MSFT

Traditional Automakers Vs. Tesla.

Cloud Computing Leadership Battle between Amazon, Google, Alibaba, & Microsoft.

Profitable Giving The Salesforce Way.

Barron’s magazine has published a concise round-up of the auto companies titled – Back to the Future: How Traditional Auto Makers Could Speed Past Tesla and Google. The future potential of the auto companies need to be measured across three criteria:

  • Electric Vehicles
  • Ride Sharing
  • Autonomous Driving

General Motors (GM) seems to be doing well in both electric vehicles and autonomous driving. GM acquired Cruise Automation to spearhead its autonomous vehicle ambitions.

The article also makes the argument that currently all the traditional auto manufacturers are very much undervalued. They have had good cash flows, have large amounts of net cash, and are making good strides in introducing electric vehicles. Tesla’s woes in manufacturing prove that it’s not easy to manufacture quality cars in large volumes.

Many of the traditional auto companies have large truck divisions that they could sell or spin-off. The author makes the point those truck manufacturers sell at a higher multiple (Paccar (PCAR) sells for 17 times earnings). Some traditional automakers have been selling for 6 times earnings.

The companies covered in this article are:

  • General Motors
  • Ford Motor Company (F)
  • Volkswagen
  • Daimler
  • BMW
  • Toyota (TM)
  • Tesla

Bloomberg Businessweek has published a comic-book type introduction to containers and Kubernetes (K8S). It provides a concise overview of containers and the way to manage containers at scale using K8S.

Businessweek has also published an article about how Singles Day (a shopping holiday dedicated to the nation’s unattached) is the ultimate test of the company’s cloud computing prowess. Alibaba is rapidly expanding its cloud computing division. It now has data centers on five continents and eight countries. Alibaba is miles away from catching Amazon. It controls just 3% of the cloud market while Amazon has a market share of 44% in Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS).  Alibaba has one million customers.

In an article titled, How to Catch Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Businessweek discusses the competition between Amazon (AMZN), Microsoft (MSFT), and Google (GOOG) in the Cloud Computing market. Microsoft and Google seem to be growing fast in the Cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) market. But, Microsoft has $1.6b and Google has ~$500m in revenues from their infrastructure business.  Amazon has a reputation for being a market leader and there are benefits that come with that title.

(Source: Bloomberg Businessweek)

Nicole Lee of Workato has written about Salesforce and its effectiveness in charitable giving and community building. I like to call it – profitable giving. I believe that profitable giving will be the future for strong organizations. People like to create great products and wish to be well rewarded for their efforts. But, they also wish to see and be part of positive changes in peoples lives within their community and across the globe. Profitable giving starts with having a strong corporation that’s a leader in its industry. I think that is essential for companies to have the strength and energy to make a positive, charitable impact on the world.

Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.