#1 | Shares of Zoom opened 81% above their IPO price
Shares of Zoom surged on its first trade to $65 a pop, 81 per cent higher than its initial offering price. That puts the company’s valuation at $16.6 billion, well above $1 billion valuation reported in 2017 during the last round of private funding. The video conferencing giant, which priced its offerings fairly conservatively, also claims that much of private capital it raised in recent years remains on balance sheet. And along with its healthy revenue growth, Zoom is well positioned to continue developing its business in years to come.
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#2 | Musk promises a robotaxi network by 2020
Car maker Tesla plans to launch robotaxis in 2020, as part of a broader push for the creation of the autonomous ride-sharing network. CEO Elon Musk says that the company will enable owners to add their vehicles to its own ride-sharing app. Regulatory approval remains one of the challenges, although Musk didn’t specify exactly which regulations he refers to. Tesla vehicles are equipped with a self-driving computer chip and fulfill many of the requirements for autonomous driving.
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#3 | Amazon and Google’s free music services spell trouble for Spotify
Spotify considers its freemium, ad-supported tier as a key differentiator and an edge over the competition. It enables the Swedish company to attract ‘free’ users and eventually convert them into paying customers. But things are about to change as Amazon has launched its own free streaming music tier that’s available to Alexa-enabled devices. Google too has entered the ring and launched the free voice-activated music streaming service available on its Home devices. And although these free services might not offer the same features as Spotify app, this is a clear signal that tech giants have set their eyes on audio advertising. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2GGF11H href=”http://bit.ly/2J2wwjn”>http://bit.ly/2J2wwjn <
#4 |Uber’s autonomous vehicle unit valued at $7.25 billion
Advanced Technologies Group (ATG), Uber’s autonomous vehicle unit, has raised $1 billion from a group of investors led by SoftBank Group Corp, Toyota Motor Corp, and Denso Corp. ATG is valued at $7.25 billion and new funds will help the company to cover the substantial cost of developing self-driving technology. Meanwhile, Uber is preparing for a May debut on the NYSE as it expects to reach a $100 billion valuation and raise close to $10 billion.
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#5 | Walmart turns to robots to improve efficiency
Walmart spent a whopping $11.7 billion on IT in 2018, and a significant portion of it was dedicated to cutting-edge robotic technologies. For instance, robots produced by Bossa Nova Robotics are now roaming the aisles in 50 Walmart stores in North America scanning shelves, finding product and display discrepancies, and notifying managers of any problems. Also, Walmart uses robots that help unload trucks and sort the items on the pallets faster. And the retailer is using VR goggles to train thousands of its employees and help them do their job better. Clearly, technology is critical in improving the efficiency of various operations and ensuring that Walmart remains competitive.
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