Thursday's Headlines: Under Armour Finds its New CEO
Here were the biggest movers in the MyWallSt shortlist yesterday:
Moving Up ⬆️
Nike (NKE) +12.2%
Baozun (BZUN) +9.9%
Etsy (ETSY) +5.7%
Hasbro (HAS) +5.3%
Under Armour (UAA) +5.2%
Moving Down ⬇️
Calavo Growers (CVGW) -14.4%
Upstart Holdings (UPST) -2.6%
CrowdStrike (CRWD) -2.3%
Redfin (RDFN) -1.3%
Under Armour Finds its New CEO 🙋♀️
On Wednesday, Under Armour (UAA) announced its new CEO would be Stephanie Linnartz, current President of Marriott International. This draws to a close more than seven months of searching, triggered by the sudden departure of former-CEO Patrik Frisk in May.
While moving from hospitality to apparel may seem like a big leap, Under Armour founder Kevin Plank stated Linnartz was selected out of more than 60 candidates for her expertise in “digitization, product, and brand.” Under Linnartz’s leadership, Marriott grew its Bonvoy loyalty program to 173 million members and developed lucrative partnerships with the NFL, the NCAA, and the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team. Those types of deals are right up Under Armour’s alley.
Linnartz will take over the position in mid-Febuary, allowing acting CEO Colin Browne to return to the position of chief operating officer.
Time will tell if the addition of Linnartz will calm investors’ fears. Many thought Under Armour’s rebirth would occur under Patrik Frisk, who turned around The North Face and Timberland, but his quick exit left many shaken and sank the stock by more than 35%.
Tesla to Lay Off Workers, Freeze Hiring 🥶
Tesla (TSLA) is set for another round of layoffs in the next quarter according to a report from Electrek — a news website dedicated to electric vehicles.
The report, citing sources familiar with the matter, says Tesla has confirmed that more jobs will be lost in the coming months and that a hiring freeze is now in place. In June, the company announced it would be cutting its salaried workforce by 10%.
The news comes as Tesla CEO Elon Musk faces continued criticism over his new role at social media company, Twitter. On Tuesday, Musk was forced to defend Tesla’s falling share price, blaming macroeconomic conditions, rather than his acquisition of Twitter. Musk has been forced to sell shares in the electric automaker in order to fund the deal.
This is worrying news for Tesla shareholders. The company is currently facing weakening demand in China — one of its most important markets — and has yet to have its factories in Germany and Texas reach full production.
Investor Ross Gerber, a long-time Tesla bull, claims Tesla is now without leadership and has launched an informal campaign to be elected to the board of directors.
Shares of Tesla are down about 58% since Musk first initiated his takeover of Twitter, more than twice that of any other major automaker. The S&P 500 is down about 12% over the same time period.
Palantir Lands a Huge New Contract 💰
Deep data analytics company Palantir has announced the signing of a three-year deal with the UK Ministry of Defense. The Denver-based software firm will provide support for intelligence and military operations in an agreement worth just over $91 million. Palantir stock rose 3% yesterday on the back of this announcement, as it continues to fortify and expand its foothold across Europe.
The onset of the war in Ukraine brought a few stark realities to the fore for many of the world’s most powerful nations. Advanced technology and, in particular, data analytics are now crucial in trying to obtain the upper hand in the ever-evolving warfare landscape. Palantir has already proven its worth by collaborating with many government agencies on a wide variety of operations, including tracing COVID-19 infections throughout the pandemic and even aiding the locating of Osama bin Laden in 2011.
This isn’t Palantir’s first time linking up with the UK’s armed forces, with it already having worked with the Royal Navy in previous years. In fact, Rear Admiral Jim Higham has stated that “Palantir Foundry is critical to the Royal Navy's transformation driving radically improved availability of its ships and submarines.”
Despite deals such as this, Palantir has still suffered massively this year at the hands of a rotation away from more speculative tech stocks. After yesterday’s slight bump, it still remains down almost 65% for the year-to-date, and over 81% off all-time highs witnessed in January 2021.