WTF is happening at Tesla?

PLUS: Numbers behind the eclipse, "KISS" holograms are coming

Yesterday’s market performance 🏆️ 

S&P 500: -0.04% 📉 
Nasdaq: +0.03% 📈 
Dow 30: -0.03% 📉 
Russell 2000: +0.50% 📈 

WTF is happening to Tesla, Elon?

📸 Getty Images / Futurism

Over the past few months, many people, including us, have been worried about the rocky road Elon Musk is leading Tesla down.

Let’s take you down an average week for the mega-billionaire…

1️⃣ Tesla ($TSLA) is down -30.37% this year.

Tesla’s poor Q1 deliveries 📉 

  • First, as we mentioned last week, Tesla had its first quarterly delivery decline since 2019.

  • Tesla blamed a few things, from the Red Sea conflict to an arson attack at their Berlin Gigafactory.

Tesla is scrapping its $25,000 EV model  

Just a few days after the delivery miss…

  • An initial report by Reuters said that Tesla was scrapping plans for their long-awaited $25,000 EV model. 

  • The affordable model, often referred to as the “Model 2,” is a crucial element of Tesla's strategy to become a mass-market car manufacturer.

  • This means that scrapping it would be a major blow to the company and a bad warning sign for shareholders.

But not so fast, Reuters. Apparently, your pants are on fire... 😳

Soon after the Reuters article was published, Musk took to X, claiming Reuters was "lying" and denying the report that the company was scrapping plans for an affordable car.

  • Later that day, Elon announced that Tesla would be unveiling the long-awaited “robotaxi” on August 8, 2024.

  • We’ll take the billionaire's word for now, but the question remains, does anyone really know what’s happening at Tesla?

Whatever, it's fine, so that's it, right? Well, I'm afraid not.

OpenAI is poaching Tesla engineers. 😅 

Around this same time, Musk revealed that Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, is allegedly trying to poach Tesla’s AI engineers left and right.

  • Maybe it's to get back at Musk for suing him or simply because Tesla has great engineers. Either way, Sam is causing Elon some real headaches.

  • Musk wrote on X that "They [OpenAI] have been aggressively recruiting Tesla [AI] engineers with massive compensation offers and have unfortunately been successful in a few cases."

In order to retain his talent, Musk has been forced to bump the salaries of some of Tesla’s engineers (W for the engineers!), adding more fuel to the fire.

2️⃣ Musk currently operates at least five billion-dollar companies: Tesla, X, SpaceX, Neuralink, The Boring Company.

👨‍🎤 Pophouse Entertainment is creating holograms of the legendary rock band “KISS”

Legendary rock band KISS is selling its song catalog, personal branding rights, master recordings, and publishing rights to Pophouse Entertainment Group for over $300M.

That’s a lotta dough, but who’s Pophouse, and why should I care?

Well, Pophouse Entertainment Group is actually an incredibly dope company known for creating immersive live music experiences. It combines music with advanced technology like avatars and holograms for one-of-a-kind performances.

Yes, holograms, meaning the performers are NOT real people.

Their most notable project, which you may have seen before, is ABBA Voyage, a live show in London featuring avatars of the legendary Swedish pop group ABBA performing their greatest hits. 

1️⃣ Pophouse was founded by ABBA's Björn Ulvaeus and Swedish investor, Conni Jonsson.

And the show is doing VERY well…

ABBA Voyage is currently making $2 million a week in London (bonkers 🤯 ), and Pophouse clearly thinks they can replicate this success with KISS.

Man, we really hope these guys are able to bring this experience to the Las Vegas Sphere one day.

Now, that would be incredible.

🌒 The “Great American Solar Eclipse” was a huge moneymaker

📸 Getty Images

On Monday afternoon, many of us were lucky enough to watch the “Great American Solar Eclipse.

The total solar eclipse could be seen from Mexico through the United States to Canada, and if you unfortunately missed it, you won't be able to see it again in the U.S. until 2044. 

1️⃣ The eclipse’s path crossed 44 million people in totality.

2️⃣ 30+ million people from Texas to Maine were able to see the sun, moon, and Earth align perfectly.

While the eclipse itself was a showstopper, its impact on the economy might be even more impressive.

🏆️ Here are some crazy stats we found, including the biggest winners (yes, winners): Airbnb ($ABNB) and VRBO.

  • 92,000 rental properties were available on Airbnb and VRBO within the area affected by the eclipse.​​

  • The occupancy rate for these rentals is 92% for the night before the eclipse vs. 30% on a normal April weekend.

  • A $44 million revenue bump for Airbnb and VRBO.

  • The event is expected to deliver around $6 billion to the U.S. economy in total.

🌎️ Location, location.

  • Indianapolis had around 500,000 visitors, more than 7x the attendance of the Super Bowl it hosted in 2012.

  • Niagara Falls (the giant waterfall in Canada) hosted up to 1 million people for the eclipse.

Major Brands even made eclipse-themed items; here are some of our favs:

  • SunChips ($PEP) released “Solar Eclipse” themed chips right when the eclipse started in the US (2:33 PM EST).

  • Krispy Kreme ($DNUT) released the "Total Solar Eclipse Doughnut," which is a glorified glazed doughnut topped with an Oreo.

  • Warby Parker ($WRBY) gave away free solar eclipse glasses so you can watch the whole show.

Here’s what else you might’ve missed…

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company ($TSM), the world's top chipmaker, secures $11.6 billion to build 3 factories in Arizona.

A Boeing ($BA) 737 lost its engine cover mid-flight, forcing the plane to return to Denver International Airport.

Meta ($META) revealed how much Instagram makes for the company.

The Iowa-South Carolina national championship game averaged 18.7 million viewers, making it the most-watched basketball game in five years—men's or women's, college or professional.

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