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Investments driving the change to a greener auto sector in Ontario – CollingwoodToday.ca

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Earlier this year, Unifor members voted almost 91 per cent in favour of approving General Motors Canada’s plan to invest $1 billion in its CAMI plant in Ingersoll to shift production to commercial electric vehicles (EVs).

Work will begin immediately to transform the plant in order to begin production in November 2021. Both Ford and Fiat Chrysler made similar announcements in October 2020. “When you see Ford, then Fiat Chrysler and then General Motors all within 30 days coming together and announcing $5 billion worth of investment in new auto in Ontario, that is unprecedented,” said Vic Fideli, minister of economic development, job creation and trade.

Sales of electric cars reached 2.1 million globally in 2019, a record that surpassed the previous record set in 2018, according to the Global EV Outlook 2020. Canada saw EV sales rising 25 per cent in pre-pandemic times although the number of plug-in vehicles in early 2020 was actually 21 per cent less than in December 2018. A study prepared by Dunsky Energy Consulting for Transport Canada indicated that more consumers were looking for and buying EVs in Canada at a time when there were fewer available.

These announcements are game changers, said Minister Fideli. “For instance, Ford is one of the most storied manufacturers in the world. They chose Ontario to get into the battery electric vehicle marketplace. When you think about it, since 2004, $15 billion has been invested in Mexico and only one billion in Ontario.”

It all goes back to Ontario being a high cost jurisdiction, he said. “There’s been $300 billion worldwide invested in EVs, but not one penny in Canada. Ford’s announcement of this almost $2 billion investment they made, before Fiat Chrysler, before General Motors, transforms Ontario into a global hub for battery EVs. That’s what’s so critical about this announcement.”

The federal government and Ontario have both made significant investments in the auto sector, but Ontario has also invested in reducing the cost of doing business, said Minister Fideli.

“We cut the WSIB premium, without touching the benefits, by almost 50 per cent. That’s over $2 billion a year in savings. We put something in called an accelerated capital cost allowance, which means the manufacturers can write off their new equipment purchase within the same year. That means a savings to them of a billion dollars, and that adds up to, just before Christmas, a savings of $5 billion a year.”

“Starting this Jan. 1, we reduced the cost of electricity by 14 to 16 per cent and we reduced business education taxes by $450 million. That energy savings is about $1.3 billion a year so with the education taxes savings of $450 million a year, altogether now we’re going out there and we’re unleashing Ontario with $7 billion of lower costs than when we took office and that’s what has attracted the auto sector back,” he said.

The Bank of Canada recently shared a study that shows the demand for EVs is projected to skyrocket by 2030, Minister Fideli said. “The range could be from 57 million, which would be four per cent of the market, to the 300 million range and that’s 20 per cent of the market. What we’ve done is turn the page, securing Ontario’s place in that massive EV space.”

It’s not just vehicles being manufactured in Ontario now. “We’re now eagerly looking for manufacturers of EV auto parts to work into the supply chain. We’re now pushing hard on mining the critical minerals that are going to be needed in Ontario. Nickel in Sudbury, of course. Cobalt in Cobalt.”

In December, the Ontario government announced a $5 million investment in First Cobalt, which has one of the only permitted smelters in North America. Graphite is being mined in Hearst and lithium is being mined north of Red Lake. These minerals have generally come from offshore, said Minister Fideli. Manufacturing batteries for EVs is another area that is growing. “This is exactly the kind of investments we’ve been looking to for years. It’s a huge turning point. It’s a huge sign of confidence.”

“I think that these examples show how our economic development goals in Ontario align with our long-term environmental strategy. We’ve accomplished this, in our opinion, in a better way by making investments in the manufacturing of battery EVs. Yes, we have made cash investments: Ford was $295 million. Governments around the world know the economic benefits of making an automotive investment. There’s a return on investment very, very quickly. The thousands of jobs created around the province are significant.

The Ford plant will employ 3,000 people. We’re now aligning our economic goal of job creation with our environmental strategy, creating battery EVs. We’re getting out of the demand side and we’re getting into the supply side. That’s the difference. We want our economic development initiatives to be on the supply side. We’ll put out the products that are, as the Bank of Canada said, going to be in demand.”

It’s a step in the right direction. Having enough EVs available for consumers to purchase will help increase market share over gasoline or diesel powered vehicles and may bring down the price of EVs as well. Other inhibitors to the adoption of EVs are range anxiety and lack of charging infrastructure. People are afraid to take longer trips for fear of being stranded due to a lack of chargers.

“I can talk a little bit about the charging stations,” said Minister Fideli. “Hydro One and Ontario Power Generation (OPG) are working together to install 160 fast chargers at 73 locations by the end of this year in addition to the almost 1,500 charging stations that they have across Ontario today. Of course, charging stations are also being installed by companies all across Ontario, including municipalities which are working on their own EV strategies that include their own charging stations.”

A broader adoption of EVs across the country is necessary if Canada is to meet its emissions targets. The International Energy Agency reported that Canadians drive the most polluting cars in the world, taking the top spot globally in tailpipe emissions.

Our growing appetite for big trucks and SUVs over the previous 20 years has led to an increase in carbon pollution from transportation by nearly 30 per cent. A 2019 survey revealed that most Canadians are leaning towards EVs for their next vehicle purchase and the majority see EVs becoming more mainstream.

That’s why it’s important that Ontario continue to reduce costs and support the auto sector through strategic investment, said Minister Fideli, adding “When you think about Ontario’s environmental plan, emissions are down 34 per cent since 1990, 19 per cent since 2005.

We’re conducting the first ever multi-sector climate change impact assessment in Ontario history and that is going to show us where we’re most vulnerable. That will help our decision makers in deciding how to protect communities and what climate change impacts are needed.”

– Lori Thompson, Local Journalism Initiative, Manitoulin Expositor

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Collaborative Fund Why this could be the right climate for investment – CMC Markets

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In part one of this two part series, Lily Bernicker at Collaborative Fund explores the climate investment landscape, looking at where it’s come from and where it’s going.

Climate technology has not been an obvious fit for venture capital. These businesses have rarely found a way to grow large enough, quickly enough.

That said, climate clearly satisfies the venture requirement for massive markets. And as the climate crisis is caused by and affects every part of our global economy, decarbonisation is the biggest investment opportunity for impact and value creation over the next decade.

Given this potential, the question of whether or not venture dollars can be responsibly invested into climate businesses is not if, but when?

2006 seemed like the right moment. An Inconvenient Truth just came out, oil crossed $75 per barrel, and VCs doubled their investments in clean energy in just a year. Investors then went on to put more than $25bn in the sector from 2006-2011 giving rise to the infamous clean tech boom.

But the rush was short lived, and mainstream interest in the sector quickly contracted after the financial crisis and a few high-profile shutdowns, driving early-stage investing down to just 35 deals in 2013.

PWC Analysis of Early-Stage Climate Tech Investments (2013-2019)

At Collaborative Fund, we’ve gradually ramped up deployment from our first major climate investment in Beyond Meat [BYND] in 2015. At the time, plant-based meat alternatives weren’t a radical innovation. They’d been around and geared towards vegans for years.

However, we recognised that demand for healthier substitutes and affinity for brands that align with how consumers see themselves couldn’t be satisfied with existing products, and would only grow. Beyond Meat was the first to make mass market consumers feel good about a healthy and more sustainable choice that doesn’t ask them to compromise on taste, nutrition, or value. This vision convinced us that they could become one of the biggest food companies in the United States.

Since then, we’ve been compelled to do more in the category, encouraged by trends like: increased spend on sustainable products, newly cost-competitive low-carbon technologies, and a wave of experienced founders entering the field.

These shifts have created new opportunities to invest in businesses where mitigating or adapting to climate change is a driver of performance rather than a limitation.

We’ve also been active through some of the industry’s big setbacks. Our first clean energy investment was Dandelion Energy’s seed round in 2017: the same month that the US announced its intent to leave the Paris Agreement and shortly after Solar City dodged a shutdown through their merger with Tesla [TSLA].

While the path to decarbonisation will never be a straight line, there have been irreversible advancements in technology and market pressures that make this generation of climate tech fundamentally different from the last.

As we’ve expanded our climate practice over the last five years, it’s helped us to consistently track how and to what extent the market has changed. Luckily there has been some great research on the first cleantech boom. And there is increasing consensus on why it failed to deliver the returns VCs require, namely: cheap competition, technical challenges, and lack of capital availability.

At Collaborative Fund, we use these challenges as a model to explore how the market has shifted over time.

In the short term, even climate businesses built on mature technology will continue to face financing risk. But as commercialisation timelines get shorter and venture-backed climate businesses start to break out across every industry (not just energy), we anticipate a wave of traditional funding will enter the field.

Businesses that scale by preventing or mitigating the impact of the climate crisis fit squarely within the Collaborative Fund thesis. Markets value companies that are the best at satisfying demand at scale. Markets don’t care (yet) how urgent the climate crisis is or how little time we have to deploy solutions to keep warming below 1.5°C.

Therefore, we don’t either. We’re technology and business model agnostic. We invest in deep tech, software, and everything in between. But we don’t invest in companies that require users to compromise on performance or cost in exchange for climate impact.

This article was originally published by Collaborative fund on 16 December 2020. In Part II, they share the framework that they use to evaluate climate opportunities and what they’re most excited for going forward.

Disclaimer Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results.

CMC Markets is an execution-only service provider. The material (whether or not it states any opinions) is for general information purposes only, and does not take into account your personal circumstances or objectives. Nothing in this material is (or should be considered to be) financial, investment or other advice on which reliance should be placed. No opinion given in the material constitutes a recommendation by CMC Markets or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person.

The material has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research. Although we are not specifically prevented from dealing before providing this material, we do not seek to take advantage of the material prior to its dissemination.

CMC Markets does not endorse or offer opinion on the trading strategies used by the author. Their trading strategies do not guarantee any return and CMC Markets shall not be held responsible for any loss that you may incur, either directly or indirectly, arising from any investment based on any information contained herein.

*Tax treatment depends on individual circumstances and can change or may differ in a jurisdiction other than the UK.

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Is Twilio Still A Good Investment After Smashing Earnings? – CMC Markets

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Twilio (NYSE: TWLO) is an American cloud-based platform-as-a-service business that enables software developers to use digital communication such as calls, texts, and emails to enhance the user experience. After reporting blowout Q4 2020 earnings, and the stock sitting close to all-time highs, is it still a good investment?

This article was originally written by MyWallSt. Read more market-beating insights from the MyWallSt team here.

 

Bull Case

Twilo has been one of the beneficiaries of the “shift to digital”, where companies would adapt to the internet and mobile in ways that could often take years in the past. Since COVID-19 hit, this timeline has been compressed to weeks and months and has acted as a secular tailwind for the company. This is demonstrated in a report published by Twilio last year surveying over 2,500 companies which found that 97% of companies found that the pandemic sped up this acceleration. Furthermore, companies’ digital acceleration strategy was accelerated by an average of six years. This acceleration has benefitted Twilio to date but looks set to continue in the coming years. 

Twilio reported $548.1 million in revenue, an increase of 65% year-over-year, and full-year revenue growth of 55% to $1.76 billion in Q4 2020. It has a diversified revenue base with 27% of sales generated outside of North America and spread across different business types and sizes. 

Whether you are aware of it or not, you have likely come across Twilio’s software in everyday life, whether to verify your number via Whatsapp or getting messages from Lyft or Airbnb.  Along with several high-profile customers, Twilio reported 221,000 active customer accounts as of December 2020, compared to 179,000 a year prior. Twilio has suffered from losing the business of large customers, such as Uber, which accounted for roughly 12% of revenue. However, despite a short-term fall in the stock price, Twilio continued to grow revenue and decrease its customer concentration levels. Today, its top 10 customers account for 13% of revenue, a 1% decrease YoY. The stickiness of its business and increasing spend by customers is demonstrated in its dollar-based net expansion of 139% in Q4. 

A passionate founding CEO is also a positive indicator. Twilio head, Jeff Lawson, has an impressive 95% approval rating on Glassdoor and still owns a large stake in the company. Twilio also has one of the most diverse leadership teams of any publicly-traded company, with women making up 6 out of 13 of its upper management.

Finally, Twilio has acquired SendGrid and Segment over the past 3 years, and while a strategy of growth by acquisition can be risky, it has demonstrated its ability to do so successfully.

 

Bear Case

Twilio’s valuation may be a cause for concern for investors as it is currently trading at roughly 37x price-to-sales ratio. This high multiple will mean that management will need to continue to execute on its forecasts. Twilio is also not the only player in the space, with Microsoft’s Azure Communication Services providing stiff competition. 

Twilio is also still unprofitable despite a great year of revenue growth, reporting a net loss of $490.9 million in fiscal 2020 compared to $307 million a year prior. On an adjusted basis, this loss is lessened due to excluding items such as stock-based compensation. Nevertheless, it is clear that Twilio has some way to go.

Twilio’s gross margins are not as high as other SaaS companies either, coming in at 56% for Q4, a slight decrease YoY. Although management expects 60-65% margins over the long term, this is yet to materialize, and investors should keep an eye on it. 

 

So, Should I Buy Twilio Stock?

Twilio is well-positioned to benefit from a shift to digital during COVID-19 and in a post-pandemic world and the visionary Jeff Lawson at the helm. Twilio has the numbers to back it up and could be a great addition to a portfolio. The stock is likely to be volatile due to the run-up in recent times, but investors should take advantage of any weakness in the stock as it is likely to continue to keep performing.

MyWallSt gives you access to over 100 market-beating stock picks and the research to back them up. Our analyst team posts daily insights, subscriber-only podcasts, and the headlines that move the market. Start your free trial now!

Disclaimer Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results.

CMC Markets is an execution-only service provider. The material (whether or not it states any opinions) is for general information purposes only, and does not take into account your personal circumstances or objectives. Nothing in this material is (or should be considered to be) financial, investment or other advice on which reliance should be placed. No opinion given in the material constitutes a recommendation by CMC Markets or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person.

The material has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research. Although we are not specifically prevented from dealing before providing this material, we do not seek to take advantage of the material prior to its dissemination.

CMC Markets does not endorse or offer opinion on the trading strategies used by the author. Their trading strategies do not guarantee any return and CMC Markets shall not be held responsible for any loss that you may incur, either directly or indirectly, arising from any investment based on any information contained herein.

*Tax treatment depends on individual circumstances and can change or may differ in a jurisdiction other than the UK.

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Investment Firm for the Ultra-Rich Opens Office in Hong Kong – BNN

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(Bloomberg) — Investment firm Cambridge Associates is opening a Hong Kong office, ramping up its focus on Asia amid a surge in wealth in the region.

The Boston-based company that serves clients such as endowments, family offices and pension funds already has offices in Singapore and Beijing. It hired Edwina Ho in February as senior director of business development for Asia and relocated its head of the global private client practice, Mary Pang, to Singapore from San Francisco, according to a statement Monday.

“Asia has long been a key market for Cambridge Associates and we are very excited to be expanding in Hong Kong as the next stage in our mission to provide strong investment performance and excellent service to clients across the region,” said Aaron Costello, the firm’s regional head of Asia, in the statement.

Wealth growth has surged in the region in recent years and the number of people with more than $30 million is forecast to outpace the rest of the world through 2025, according to a Knight Frank report last month. The richest Asia Pacific billionaires are worth a combined $2.5 trillion, almost triple the amount at the end of 2016, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Cambridge Associates, which has more than $38 billion under management, serves over 230 wealthy individuals and families globally. The company’s owners include the Hall family behind Hallmark greeting cards, the Rothschilds and the Boels of Belgian investment firm Sofina SA.

The rapid wealth growth in Asia has pushed financial firms to turn their focus to the region. HSBC Holdings Plc said it would shift billions of dollars of capital from its investment bank in Europe and the U.S. to fund the expansion of its Asian businesses. Singapore’s DBS Group Holdings Ltd. has seen a rise in accounts for family offices.

The world’s ultra-rich have also flocked to the region to establish their wealth-management shops. Google co-founder Sergey Brin set up a branch of his family office in Singapore, while Bridgewater Associates’ Ray Dalio said in November it would open one there. Vacuum-cleaner mogul James Dyson is another who has his firm in the city-state.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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