Benzinga Before The Bell: Elon Musk Confirms Tesla AI Day Part 2, Dogecoin Scam, BioNTech Q2 Earnings Shocker And Other Top Financial Stories Monday, August 8


Celsius Withdraws Motion To Rehire CFO

  • A court filing submitted Friday in the Southern District of New York states that the bankrupt cryptocurrency lender Celsius has dropped its plea to reinstate former CFO, Rod Bolger.
  • The withdrawal notice was published just before a Monday, August 8 hearing to review it.
  • A week ago, the company had approached Ex-CFO Rod Bolger to come back and work with Celsius in exchange for $92,000 monthly pay, prorated over a minimum of six weeks.


GM, Toyota, Other Automakers Oppose US's EV Bill: Report

  • A group representing General Motors Co GM, Toyota Motor Corp TM, Volkswagen AG VWAGY, and others saw the U.S. Senate's $430 billion bill jeopardizing the country's electric-vehicle adoption targets for 2030, Reuters reports.
  • "Unfortunately, the EV tax credit requirements will make most vehicles immediately ineligible for the incentive," said the Alliance for Automotive Innovation's chief executive, John Bozzella, adding the bill "will also jeopardize our collective target of 40-50% electric vehicle sales by 2030."
  • The group had warned that most EV models would not qualify for a $7,500 tax credit for U.S. buyers under the bill.

Wall Street Journal

CVS Said To Be Eyeing Bid For This At-Home Healthcare Tech Firm

  • Healthcare and drug store chain CVS Health Corporation CVS is considering a bid for Signify Health, Inc. SGFY, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the matter.
  • The Journal reported last week that Signify is exploring strategic alternatives, including a potential sale.
  • Signify provides a value-based care platform that uses advanced analytics and other technology to shift health services toward homes.


This Asian Crypto Exchange To Partially Resume Bitcoin, Ether Withdrawal: Report

  • Asia crypto exchange Zipmex Pte will partially allow users to withdraw Bitcoin and Ether from their trading accounts starting August 16 and 11, respectively.
  • Around 60% of users will get some of their tokens back.
  • Zipmex halted withdrawals in July due to a liquidity crunch, being one of the several firms hit by the $2 trillion meltdown.
  • Zipmex recently started to unlock some altcoins.


UPS Bolsters Healthcare Logistics Capabilities Via This Acquisition

  • United Parcel Service Inc UPS is planning to acquire multinational healthcare logistics provider Bomi Group. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
  • The deal will add temperature-controlled facilities in fourteen countries and nearly 3,000 highly-skilled Bomi Group team members to the UPS Healthcare network in Europe and Latin America.
  • Key Bomi Group leaders, including CEO Marco Ruini, will continue their roles after the deal closes.

BioNTech Earnings Shocker: Posts Lower Than Expected Q2 Profits, Revenues Fall

  • BioNTech SE BNTX has reported Q2 FY22 revenues of €3.19 billion, down from €5.3 billion a year ago and €6.37 billion in Q1 FY22.
  • BioNTech believes the development of the pandemic remains dynamic, causing a re-phasing of orders and leading to fluctuations in quarterly revenues.
  • The company and its partner Pfizer Inc PFE signed an agreement with the U.S. government to provide additional 105 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine with an option for another 195 million doses.

Tata Motors Acquires Ford India's Sanand Plant For $91M

  • Tata Motors Limited TTM said its Tata Passenger Electric Mobility Limited (TPEML) and Ford India Private Limited (FIPL), have signed a Unit Transfer Agreement (UTA) for the acquisition of FIPL's manufacturing plant situated at Sanand, Gujarat.
  • The deal is valued at about $91 million.

Elon Musk Confirms Tesla AI Day Part 2 Coming Next Month: Could It Catalyze EV Maker's Shares?

  • With the annual shareholders' meeting in the rearview now, Tesla, Inc's TSLA next stock catalyst could be its second AI Day.
  • CEO Elon Musk on Sunday confirmed on Twitter that AI Day 2022 will be held on Sept. 30. The first AI Day took place on Aug. 19, 2021, in which the billionaire said he wanted to take Tesla beyond just electric cars with "deep AI activity in hardware on the inference level and on the training level."

OZ Minerals Rejects BHP's $5B Takeover Bid

  • BHP Group Ltd BHP was rebuffed in its A$8.34 billion ($5.8 billion) takeover bid for OZ Minerals Limited OZMLF, in a setback as it pushes to secure copper and nickel assets for a shift into clean energy and the electric vehicles (EVs) market.
  • Australia's OZ Minerals said the A$25 per share unsolicited, conditional, and non-binding indicative offer undervalued the nickel and copper miner and was "opportunistic" when copper prices and its stock price have fallen from recent peaks.
  • BHP's offer marked a 32% premium to the closing price of OZ shares of A$18.92 on Friday.

This Internet Giant Has Secured China's First-Ever Fully Driverless Robotaxi License

  • Chinese internet giant Baidu Inc. BIDU said on Monday it has secured the country's first-ever permits to commercially offer fully driverless robotaxi services to the public on open roads in Chongqing and Wuhan.
  • Service Start: Apollo Go, Baidu's autonomous ride-hailing service will start fully driverless robotaxi services in designated areas in Wuhan from 9 am to 5 pm, and Chongqing from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm, with five Apollo 5th gen robotaxis operating in each city.
  • The company said this would mark a key turning point for the future of mobility in China, leading to an eventual expansion of driverless ride-hailing services to paying users across the country.

Pfizer Scoops Up Sickle Disease Player For $5B

  • Pfizer Inc PFE has agreed to acquire Global Blood Therapeutics Inc GBT for $68.50 per share in cash, for a total enterprise value of approximately $5.4 billion.
  • The acquisition complements and further enhances Pfizer's more than 30-year heritage in rare hematology.
  • GBT developed Oxbryta (voxelotor) tablets that directly target the root cause of sickle cell disease (SCD). Oxbryta is approved in the U.S., Europe, the UAE, Oman, and Britain.

Carlyle Initiates Search For New Chief As Kewsong Lee Abruptly Departs; Acquires This Advanced Irrigation Systems Manufacturer

  • The Carlyle Group Inc CG board and CEO Kewsong Lee mutually agreed to part ways effective August 8.
  • CG appointed William Conway, Co-Founder, Co-Chair, and former Co-CEO, as Interim CEO.
  • The board formed a committee to drive the search for a permanent successor.
  • CG agreed to acquire a controlling stake in Ocmis Group, a leading manufacturer of advanced irrigation systems.

This Dogecoin Scam Making Rounds On Twitter

  • The official Twitter account of Dogecoin DOGE/USD announced on Saturday that it had been exposed to a new scam and warned followers about the scheme to steal their funds.
  • The official account requested people avoid communication that pretends to be a technology support account or team from Dogecoin.
  • They mentioned that no such Dogecoin support Twitter account exists except @Dogecoin.

Mop Or Map? How Amazon Has Struck 'Digital Gold' In Smart Homes With iRobot Buy

  • There is more to, Inc's AMZN acquisition of Roomba-maker iRobot Corporation IRBT in a $1.7 billion deal than meets the eye.
  • The robot vacuum cleaner company reportedly has reserves of knowledge about floor plans of homes and changes made by people to their interiors.
  • On the latest model of the Roomba, the J7, iRobot affixed a front-facing artificial intelligence-powered camera that has detected more than 43 million objects in people's homes, according to the company's CEO Colin Angle, reported The Verge.

SoftBank Vision Fund Loses Over $17B In June Quarter As Recession Fear Erodes Portfolio Holdings

  • SoftBank Group Corp. SFTBY on Monday registered a ¥2.33 trillion ($17.23 billion) loss in its vision fund unit during the June quarter, mainly led by a slide in share prices of portfolio companies due to growing fears of an economic recession.
  • Vision Fund 1: The SoftBank Vision Fund 1's realized net loss stood at ¥30.5 billion, mainly due to the monetization of investments in public portfolio companies. Unrealized loss on valuation (net) totaled ¥1.2 trillion, mainly due to the decline in share prices of public portfolio companies, the group said in a release.
  • SVF1 made follow-on investments in existing portfolio companies totaling $0.06 billion in the first quarter and held 80 investments as of the first quarter-end, the firm said.

Warren Buffett-Backed BYD To Set Up New Factory Base In China With $2.2B Yearly Sales Target

  • China's largest manufacturer of new energy vehicles (NEV) BYD BYDDY BYDDF, named on the Fortune Global 500 list earlier this month, is planning to set up a new commercial vehicle and parts production base in Huai'an, eastern Jiangsu province, CnEVPost reported.
  • According to a post on Huai'an city's official WeChat account, the firm and the local government launched a strategic partnership in 2017, and the latter is providing strong support for BYD's development, as per the report.
  • The firm's commercial vehicle and parts production project will be able to hit an annual sales of RMB15 billion ($2.2 billion) when it is fully operational, according to the report.

Photo via Blomst via Pixabay

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