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Ford and Chevrolet the Worst Hit by Microchip Shortage, almost 370,000 Vehicles Taken Out of the Production

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ford - Investors King

Carmakers across the globe have been struggling to meet customer demand for new cars as the shortage of critical microchips led to plant closures and left dealers with a shrinking inventory. Unfortunately, the US automakers seem to be the worst hit by this situation.

According to data presented by BuyShares, the US car brands Ford and Chevrolet have taken the worst hit by the global microchip shortage, with almost 370,000 vehicles taken out of the production as of May.

Ford F-Series the Worst Hit Model, Production Cut Down by 110,000 Vehicles

When car factories in the US and across the globe closed in the early days of the COVID-19 last spring, many carmakers made what has turned out to be a critical error. They canceled orders for the microchips essential to the manufacture and operation of new cars.

Although demand for new cars has returned, the microchips, vital for everything from a vehicle’s onboard computer to safety features and infotainment system, have been in short supply around the world for months, and the problem could take a couple of years to resolve.

The fire at an automotive chip plant in Japan, tighter supply chains after the Ever Given grounding in the Suez Canal, and the lack of oil for the plastic used in chips all came as a new shock after the pandemic, causing carmakers huge problems with sourcing the microchips.

An AutoForecast Solutions report showed Ford had been the hardest hit by the global microchip shortage, taking over 230,000 vehicles out of production. Chevrolet took the second-hardest hit among the US carmakers, with its production cut down by 140,800 cars. Jeep follows with around 138,700, respectively.

When it comes to the worst impacted models, the Ford F-Series pickup comes first, with its production reduced by 109,710 units due to the microchip shortage. Statistics show 98,584 fewer Jeep Cherokees are planned, while Chevrolet Equinox production will fall by 81,833, ranking as the third worst impacted model.

Combined Market Cap of “Big Three” US Carmakers Plunged by $18.8B in a Month

The global microchip shortage and the massive production cuts significantly impacted US carmakers’ stock prices. The YCharts data show Ford’s market capitalization dropped by $7.8bn in the last month, falling from $63.7bn in June to $55.9bn last week.

General Motors, the US multinational corporation that manufactures Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, and Cadillac, has taken an even heavier hit. Statistics show the market cap of the US market leader in terms of light vehicle sales plunged by $8.4bn in the last month.

Chrysler Stellantis lost $2.6bn in market cap in this period. Statistics show the combined market cap of General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler Stellantis as the “Big Three” US carmakers plunged by $18.8bn in the last month.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Startups

Sorry Trump Media & Technology Group, but unicorns aren’t rare anymore, says GlobalData

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Truth Social

Following the news that Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG) has entered into agreements to raise around $1 billion from a group of unidentified investors; Dr Lil Read, an Analyst in the Thematic Research Team at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers her view:

“Reaching the unicorn club used to be a notable figure of success. However, it must be said: Sorry Mr. Trump, but unicorns aren’t rare anymore. GlobalData figures show that, there were 826 unicorns — privately held companies that are valued at >$1 billion — as of the end of September 2021, and 751 of these were tech unicorns. The term ‘unicorn’ may be born from the rare, mythical creature, but unicorns are everywhere when it comes to business. Maybe we need a new measure of success.

“As for TMTG’s wish to stand up to the ‘tyranny’ of big tech with its TRUTH social media launch, the company has bitten off more than it can chew — as demonstrated by the way Twitter users were able to create ‘@donaldtrump’ and @mikepence’ accounts, exposing simple vulnerabilities. While these accounts were swiftly banned, it should highlight to the TRUTH Social team that building and maintaining a social media platform is not a simple task. Or, perhaps creating an entirely new platform is not the way to deal with misinformation.

“Whether or not TRUTH Social has sophisticated algorithms and teams of content moderators, misinformation and fake news will breed on the platform under the guise of free speech. The risk is that TRUTH Social will become an outpost for lies.”

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HealthPlus ePharmacy And First-Ever Digital Prescription Website Launched

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HealthPlus, Nigeria’s first integrative pharmacy has made history by launching West Africa’s first-ever ePharmacy and digital prescription Platform. Nigerians located anywhere in the country and indeed anywhere in the world can get a prescription from a certified pharmacist and have the medicines delivered promptly. 

This game changing application will facilitate the interaction between patients (customers) and health-service providers nationwide. It also marks a big step in the democratization of health in Nigeria and providing unprecedented healthcare access for Nigerians in all geographical locations.

The HealthPlus  ePharmacy is attributed to a rise in the number of internet consumers, increased access to web-based and online services, and the rising implementation of e-prescriptions in hospitals and other healthcare services.

With 108 million internet users in Nigeria and an estimated 120 million mobile phone holders, HealthPlus is now able to connect more Nigerians to qualified pharmacists and fast track the provision of efficient health care.

In a statement by the Chief Transformational Officer at the launch of this unique service, Mr. Chidi Okoro remarked: “Pharmacists are the first point of care for many Nigerians and are critical to ensure access to essential drugs. The HealthPlus ePharmacy platform is following the mission to enhance access to wholesome medicines and good pharmacy care services. Customers can now access professional pharmacists online from the comfort of their homes using mobile devices.”

Nigeria is also severely under served in the aspect of pharmacy stores locations. Only 25% of Nigeria’s local governments have any sort of pharmacy. That means, 70% of Nigeria’s local government areas have no access to a pharmacist.

Chidi Okoro pledged that “HealthPlus will help bridge this gap. Furthermore Nigeria has one of the lowest productivity rates in the world. This is due to absenteeism  and inadequate health care. If more Nigerians have access to health  and we take a more proactive approach, productivity will increase significantly.

“In keeping with its commitment to raise the standard of care, provide safe access to wholesome medications and reduce wait times, HealthPlus is utilizing the latest technology to consolidate the compendium of care and expand our vision to our customers’ mobile devices.”

Ernest Eguasa, CFO HealthPlus Limited added that “this is a very exciting offering that combines technology and the capabilities of fast-growing sector dynamics of Healthcare and eCommerce in synergy to deliver high-quality customer-centric customer patient care. It gives our customers a channel to conveniently get a wide array of their medical needs with the added benefit of One-on-One pharmaceutical consulting through our bespoke “Chat with a Pharmacist” functionality that ensures patients are getting exactly what they require for their optimum health.”

Afsane Jetha, Managing Partner & CEO Alta Semper and HealthPlus’s private equity partner stated that  “Healthcare in Africa is at an inflection point and has proven its ability to leapfrog traditional business models; it is becoming more consumer-focused and precision-driven. With this technology and platform, we are increasingly focused on preventative care and patients’ well-being, in providing access at their fingertips and the last mile.”

HealthPlus’s commitment to superior quality at reasonable cost maintains the Company’s vision to be West Africa’s most trusted healthcare retail brand, Zachary Fond, Managing Director at Alta Semper also remarked , “HealthPlus is at the forefront of being able to respond to this industry evolution, given the strength of the Company’s brand and its growing footprint nationally, we plan to dedicate further efforts to transformative initiatives aimed at integrating end-to-end healthcare services for our customers”.

The HealthPlus ePharmacy service is available on URL https://www.healthplusnigeria.com and for a limited period, our customers can access up to 10% discount on selected items.

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Waffarx, First-Ever Cashback Website in North Africa, Raises New Capital

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WaffarX

WaffarX, the first-ever cashback shopping service in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, announces it has completed a multi-million dollar financing round led by the Silicon Valley venture capital firm, Lobby Capital – for whom it is their first investment in the MENA region.

The endorsement by San Francisco-based Lobby Capital is significant for WaffarX. Lobby Capital is experienced in investing in successful cashback platforms, having been an early investor in the US firm Ebates, which was successfully sold to Japanese company, Rakuten, in 2014 – in what was Japan’s largest ecommerce deal at the time.

WaffarX will use the proceeds to expand its platform, drive user acquisition and enter new markets in the MENA region.

Founded in 2018 by Ezz Fayek, Mahmoud Montasser and Ahmed Kamal, WaffarX uses cutting-edge technology to distribute cash back rewards, helping shoppers save on every dollar they spend. WaffarX’s secure channel helps brands shift advertising spend directly to consumers via cashback rewards. This creates deeper loyalty for brands, whilst customers monetize their own data, instead of third parties.

Consumers want seamless, personalized engagement rather than disruptive advertisements – with easy-to-achieve, tangible cash rewards – transforming everyday transactions into savings. Brands want cost-effective digital advertising solutions and loyalty programs which focus on customers first and resonate with them. Brands can then incentive customers without discounting or devaluing products.

WaffarX has grown exponentially, and now has over 260 merchant partners and over 450,000 members. The company’s cutting-edge technology provides what modern consumers and merchants/brands want, and benefit both groups.

Ezz Fayek, Co-Founder and CEO of WaffarX, said:

“We’re delighted to have completed this latest funding round. The support of an esteemed Silicon Valley firm such as Lobby Capital, and existing investors – A15, are a huge endorsement of WaffarX’s business model and strategy.

“We have always been pioneers in our industry and our solutions are a win-win for consumers and brands. This capital raise will help us maintain our market leadership, break new ground in our platform, increase our user base and expand our geographic presence.”

David Hornik, General Partner of Lobby Capital, commented:

At Lobby Capital, we know the power of the cash back shopping model to drive growth for merchants, savings for consumers, and positive returns for investors. We also know the benefit of working with great founders like Ezz Fayek. We are very excited that the right business model and right people can come together for Lobby’s first investment in the region.

Karim Beshara, General Partner of A15, commented:

As early investors in WaffarX we are excited to see their continued success. Ezz and the team have been thought leaders in the cash back space in MENA and we are excited to see how they continue to innovate and bring new, exciting products to market.”

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