|Bid||54.87 x 3200|
|Ask||54.94 x 1200|
|Day's range||54.74 - 55.40|
|52-week range||48.84 - 62.22|
|Beta (5Y monthly)||0.42|
|PE ratio (TTM)||12.37|
|Earnings date||24 Jul 2020|
|Forward dividend & yield||2.46 (4.49%)|
|Ex-dividend date||09 Jul 2020|
|1y target est||60.20|
(Bloomberg) -- Here’s a list of companies that are planning to halt spending on social media. Some have joined a boycott of Facebook Inc. after critics accused the social network of inadequately policing hateful and misleading content on its platform:Harley Davidson Inc. -- The motorcycle maker said in an email it was pausing Facebook ads in July “to stand in support of efforts to stop the spread of hateful content.”Pernod Ricard SA -- The French distiller of Jameson whiskey and Absolut Vodka, which spends more than 1.5 billion euros ($1.69 billion) on advertising annually, is boycotting Facebook and some other U.S. sites through July 31 and working with partners on an app to help victims of online abuse.Daimler AG -- The Mercedes-Benz maker is pausing its paid advertising on Facebook platforms in July, while adding that it expects to the relationship to resume because it’s confident the social-media company will take “necessary steps.”Molson Coors Beverage Co. -- The brewer is choosing to pause advertising on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter while it reviews its own standards and ways to protect the brands and guard against hate speech, Chief Marketing Officer Michelle St. Jacques said in an internal email.Constellation Brands -- The maker of Corona beer and Kim Crawford wines is pausing Facebook ads for the month of July.Dunkin’ Brands Group -- The donut chain is temporarily pausing its paid media on Facebook and Instagram, a spokesperson says, adding that it’s in discussions with Facebook about efforts to stop hate speech and thwart “the spread of “racist rhetoric and false information.”Lego A/S -- Stopping all advertising on social media for at least 30 days to review its standards and will “invest in other channels” during that time.The Body Shop -- The beauty chain says it’s halting paid activity on all Facebook channels and asking the social-media company to enhance and enforce its content-moderation policies.Starbucks Corp. -- Pausing advertising on all social media platforms. Will post on social media without paid promotion.Microsoft Corp. -- Paused global advertising spending on Facebook and Instagram because of concerns about ads appearing next to inappropriate content, according to a person familiar with the matter.Unilever Plc -- Halting advertising on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter in the U.S. through Dec. 31.Volkswagen AG -- The ad stop on Facebook affects the direct ad accounts of the German manufacturer’s brands, including Porsche, Audi and Lamborghini. VW, its ad agencies and the Anti Defamation League will enter talks with Facebook over how to deal with hate speech, discrimination and false information, according to an emailed statement.Mars -- Starting in July, a pause on paid advertising globally across social-media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.Target Corp. -- Pausing ads on Facebook in July.Coca-Cola Co. -- Pausing advertising on all social media platforms.Clorox Co. -- Will stop advertising spending with Facebook through December.Conagra Brands Inc. -- Will stop advertising in U.S. on Facebook and Instagram through the rest of the year.Ford Motor Co. -- Halting U.S. social media for 30 days, won’t purchase social media ads for Bronco unveiling.Honda Motor Co. -- “For the month of July, Honda will withhold its advertising on Facebook and Instagram, choosing to stand with people united against hate and racism.” Acura, a Honda brand, said in a tweet that it was “choosing to stand with people united against hate and racism.”Hershey Co. -- Will halt spending on Facebook in July and cut its spend on the platform by a third for the remainder of the year, according to Business Insider.Diageo Plc -- Pausing paid advertising globally on major social media platforms beginning in July.PepsiCo Inc. -- Pulling ads on Facebook from July through August.Verizon Communications Inc. -- “We’re pausing our advertising until Facebook can create an acceptable solution that makes us comfortable and is consistent with we’ve done with YouTube and other partners,” said John Nitti, chief media officer for Verizon.SAP SE -- “We will suspend all paid advertisements across Facebook and Instagram until the company signals a significant, action-driven commitment to combatting the spread of hate speech and racism on its platforms.”Levi Strauss & Co. -- Pausing all paid Facebook and Instagram advertising globally and across all brands through July.Diamond Foundry Inc. -- Pulling all of advertising from Facebook, including Instagram, for the month of July.Patagonia Inc. -- Will pull all ads on Facebook and Instagram, effective immediately, through at least the end of July, pending meaningful action from Facebook.Viber Media Inc. -- The messaging service, owned by Japanese conglomerate Rakuten, plans to cut ties with the social network entirely, according to the Guardian.VF Corp. -- The North Face will pause ads on Facebook for the month of July. Vans, another VF brand, will also pull ad dollars from Facebook and Instagram next month, and said it will use the money to support Black communities through empowerment and education programs.REI -- “For 82 years, we have put people over profits. We’re pulling all Facebook/Instagram advertising for the month of July.”Upwork Inc. -- No Facebook advertising in July.Eileen Fisher Inc. -- Pulling ads from Facebook through July.Adidas AG -- Will stop ads on Facebook and Instagram internationally through July, according to Adweek.Puma SE -- Will stop all advertisements on Facebook and Instagram throughout July.Madewell Inc. -- Will pause ads on Facebook and Instagram through July.Pfizer Inc. -- Removing all advertising from Facebook and Instagram in July, calls on Facebook to heed the concerns of the StopHateForProfit boycott campaign “and take action.”Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. -- To pause Facebook advertising beginning July 1, according to an email.Chobani -- The Greek-yogurt company paused all paid social-media advertising.Peet’s Coffee -- Paused advertising on Facebook.Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc. -- ”In support of the StopHateForProfit campaign, we have globally suspended our Facebook and Instagram activity, including advertising and non-paid content, until the end of July.”(Updates with Sony Interactive Entertainment)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
While Verizon (VZ) boycotts advertising campaigns in the social media platform of Facebook, Nokia (NOK) secures 5G deal with Taiwan Mobile.
Marketing veteran and entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk weighs in on the controversy swirling around Facebook.
Imagine co-founder and former long-time Unilever CEO Paul Polman speaks out on Facebook's recent actions.
Holding a stock over a very long period of time allows us to look past the day-to-day volatility of the market and allow a company to grow into what it can be years or decades from now. With that time horizon in mind, Disney (NYSE: DIS), Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), Verizon (NYSE: VZ), Visa (NYSE: V), and Axon (NASDAQ: AAXN) are my buy-and-hold-forever stocks. Cable has been disrupted by streaming, and new entrants like Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) are now among the strongest players in the industry.
In the latest trading session, Verizon Communications (VZ) closed at $55.13, marking a +0.8% move from the previous day.
Verizon (VZ) will power Cooler Screens' digital media and advertising platform through LTE connectivity, IoT condition-based monitoring, integrated service desk and field services support.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Mark Zuckerberg has a problem, and he can fix it.Public furor over Facebook Inc.’s content policies has led some of its biggest advertisers to take action, with brands from Starbucks Corp. to Unilever, Coca-Cola Co. and Verizon Communications Inc. all vowing to pull ads from the social media giant’s namesake Facebook platform as well as Instagram for at least the month of July. The move was initially spurred by a campaign led by a coalition of civil rights groups — including the Anti-Defamation League and NAACP — to force Facebook to do more to curb hate speech and language promoting violence. As the effort has gained traction, the numbers joining the boycott are increasing on a daily basis. On Monday afternoon alone, Best Buy Co. said it would pause its ad spending on Facebook, while Axios reported that Microsoft Corp. had suspended its advertising as well.Facebook has come in for criticism about its practices before and got past it largely by riding out the negative publicity while offering some incremental fixes. For example, Facebook already survived the Cambridge Analytica data-privacy scandal a couple years ago without serious long-term ramifications. And so, Zuckerberg may be tempted to hunker down this time as well.On a purely short-term financial basis, it would make sense. According to Pathmatics data, the top 50 advertisers on Facebook accounted for just 4% of the company’s sales last year. The vast majority of the rest comes from millions of small- and medium-sized businesses that are less affected by any public shaming from activists, and arguably more reliant on the exposure they get from buying ads on Facebook and Instagram. But a decision based purely on dollars and cents would be short-sighted in this instance, and bad for business.More and more, it’s becoming clear that the recent wave of protests over racial injustice isn’t a short-lived phenomenon, but one that appears to reflect a sea-change in perception and beliefs, and — like the MeToo movement before it — demands a change in behavior. The backlash that started at the grassroots level and moved on to corporate action is likely to move next to the political and regulatory sphere. Wouldn’t it be better for Facebook, already in the public glare, to bend and make its own meaningful policy changes instead of being forced to accept more punitive prescriptions and further potential damage to its reputation and business?Facebook is already facing increased regulatory scrutiny in the U.S. Politicians from both sides of the aisle have made proposals to reform Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which shields internet companies from legal liability over user-generated content. For now, Republicans and the Department of Justice are focused on issues of conservative speech censorship, while Democrats have asked for the faster removal of misinformation and false claims inside political ads.The disparate points of emphasis likely means nothing will happen in Congress before the November election. However, if one party controls both houses of Congress and the White House next year, the probability of regulation will rise considerably.In the near term, the risk for Facebook may be greater from Europe than the U.S. The region’s authorities have identified antitrust as the more effective way to tackle Silicon Valley’s shortcomings than regulation, whose limits have been exposed by the General Data Protection Regulation that kicked in two years ago. GDPR has done little either to change the business practices of Google or Facebook, or to reduce their market power. And discussions about data or content are always questions of regulation, rather than antitrust.But antitrust is far more of an existential threat to Facebook than is regulation. That’s not simply because it could, in the most extreme circumstances, result in a breakup of the company. It’s because antitrust by definition seeks to tackle its business practices.Just last week, Germany’s highest civil court ruled that Facebook must stop logging browsing activity outside of its platforms without users’ explicit permission, and that such permission couldn’t be a condition of using its other services. Crucially, though, the decision was based not on data protection but antitrust laws. It said Facebook was abusing its market power to force users to accept the terms because it is the dominant social network. And the ruling fundamentally attacked the company’s business model, which is built on using such data to target ads effectively. An effort by Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority is even less ambiguous: It’s carrying out a study into online platforms and digital advertising.While the U.K. is no longer a member of the European Union, the bloc’s regulators are following the findings of the study closely. After years of tackling Google, Facebook is now high on the European agenda. The two firms’ dominance of digital advertising is fueled by their low incremental costs. Tackle their business models, and you might resolve the harmful content problem, runs the argument. The EU plans new rules by the end of the year on content regulation and platform liability, while Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s antitrust and tech chief, is seeking new powers to break companies up. And the European Commission has more power than U.S. regulators: It can impose decisions unilaterally, which companies can then challenge in court. In the U.S., regulators generally need court approval first before any ruling is imposed.So, Zuckerberg needs to acknowledge the growing uproar is symptomatic of new and lasting societal, political and regulatory crosscurrents. While he has long been adamant it is not Facebook’s job to be the “arbiter of truth,” there is no better climate, in the face of pressure from advertisers, politicians and civil rights groups alike, to alter that stance — he can change tack without losing as much face.Serious changes are needed — from being more effective in taking down hate speech quickly to clamping down on false claims and disinformation from all users. Such moves would help the company get ahead of future actions from regulators. That would be wise as government regulation will likely be far more punitive – whether it be from the European Union or a potentially new American administration.Simply, Facebook’s traditional hands-off approach isn’t good enough anymore. It’s time for Zuckerberg to show some real leadership.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Tae Kim is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering technology. He previously covered technology for Barron's, following an earlier career as an equity analyst.Alex Webb is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering Europe's technology, media and communications industries. He previously covered Apple and other technology companies for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Older Americans rely more heavily on news and current events to make financial decisions than the younger generation, according to a new Yahoo Finance-Harris poll.
Marc Benioff doubled down on his years-long criticism of the social network, which is being battered by a new controversy.
Mark Zuckerberg announced measures to tackle hate speech and voter suppression.
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc. shares tumbled Friday after Unilever, one of the world’s largest advertisers, said it will halt all U.S. advertising on both platforms, fueling concerns that other major consumer brands may follow suit.Unilever, which owns names like Hellmann’s mayonnaise and Axe shower gel and has an annual advertising budget of almost $8 billion, said it won’t advertise on Facebook, Twitter and Facebook-owned Instagram for the rest of the year because of the hate speech and polarized politics that users often post.“Continuing to advertise on these platforms at this time would not add value to people and society,” Unilever said in an emailed statement. “We will be monitoring ongoing and will revisit our current position if necessary.”Facebook shares extended a decline after the news. The stock had dropped 4.6% earlier Friday, then fell 8.3% to $216.08 at the close. Twitter shares dropped 7.4% to $29.05.Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg responded Friday to the growing criticism about misinformation on the site, announcing the company would label all voting-related posts with a link encouraging users to look at its new voter information hub, and expanded its definition of prohibited hate speech for in advertising.Unilever’s decision follows similar moves by a growing list of high-profile consumer companies, including outdoor gear company Patagonia and Verizon Communications Inc., which claim that technology platforms -- particularly Facebook -- profit off user posts that promote hate and spread misinformation.A consortium of civil rights and other advocacy groups, including Color of Change and the Anti-Defamation League, have called on advertisers to stop spending on Facebook-owned platforms for the month of July to protest the company’s policies. Honda Motor Co.’s U.S. unit said Friday that it would join the boycott and halt advertising on Facebook and Instagram in July. Unilever’s commitment extends that pledge through 2020, and adds rival social network Twitter to the mix, which has also struggled to deal with offensive posts but has recently taken a more active stance than Facebook in some cases related to U.S. President Donald Trump.More brands joined the fray as the day wore on. Coca-Cola Co. said it will pause paid advertising on all social media for at least 30 days. Hershey Co. intends to halt Facebook spending in July, according to Business Insider.So far, the boycott organizers say that more than 100 companies are participating.“We invest billions of dollars each year to keep our community safe and continuously work with outside experts to review and update our policies,” a Facebook spokeswoman said in a statement, adding that the company has banned 250 White supremacist organizations from its platforms. “We know we have more work to do, and we’ll continue to work with civil rights groups, GARM, and other experts to develop even more tools, technology and policies to continue this fight.”Facebook has had a rocky relationship with civil rights groups for years, which have fought to diversify Facebook’s board of directors, accused the company of enabling voter suppression tactics, and took issue with Facebook’s decision to name the Daily Caller, a right-wing news outlet with ties to white nationalism, as one of its formal fact-checking partners in 2019.Frustrations were renewed after Zuckerberg said that a series of posts from Trump about race-related protests were not a violation of the company’s rules. In one last month, Trump said that “when the looting starts, the shooting starts,” a post that was flagged on Twitter as a violation but not on Facebook. A number of unhappy Facebook employees staged a walkout to protest the decision.As the boycott has grown over the past week, Facebook has been reaching out to advertisers to share details about the company’s existing policies, and its efforts to automate the flagging and removal of hate speech on its service. It’s also been highlighting its work to increase voter registration, and on Friday Zuckerberg said the company would now prohibit ads that target certain races or ethnic groups as dangerous. In an email to marketers this week, the company said that it bases its policies on principles, not business interests.Twitter, which has not been the target of the formal ad boycott but has faced similar criticisms as Facebook over the years, says that Unilever reached out to alert the company of its decision before making the announcement publicly.“Our mission is to serve the public conversation and ensure Twitter is a place where people can make human connections, seek and receive authentic and credible information, and express themselves freely and safely,” said Sarah Personette, Twitter’s vice president of global client solutions, in a statement. “We are respectful of our partners’ decisions and will continue to work and communicate closely with them during this time.”(Updates with Coca-Cola and Hershey in eighth paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. will begin labeling all posts that include information about voting with a link encouraging users to get facts from the company’s new voting hub, and expanded its prohibition on hate speech in advertising.The new policy on voting announced Friday by Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg means Facebook will label future posts from U.S President Donald Trump, and everyone else, about mail-in ballots or other voting-related issues, regardless of whether they contain misleading information. Facebook will funnel users to a voting information hub meant to provide facts from state authorities. Users will also be able to register to vote using this hub. Facebook has set a goal of helping register 4 million new voters before the 2020 U.S. election in November.“There are no exceptions for politicians in any of the policies I’m announcing here today,” Zuckerberg said.The social network has been criticized in recent weeks for allowing false or misleading voting information, including posts from Trump about mail-in ballots that Twitter Inc. flagged as inaccurate. Zuckerberg has said repeatedly that he doesn’t want to remove posts from elected officials, but would rather let users to make up their minds about the content.A number of civil rights groups, including the NAACP and the Anti-Defamation League, are among those unhappy with Facebook’s history of allowing posts they say encourage voter suppression. Those groups have organized a Facebook advertising boycott for the month of July, and a number of well-known consumer brands are participating, including outdoor gear company Patagonia, Verizon Communications Inc. and Unilever.Facebook will now prohibit ads that paint anyone from a certain race, ethnicity, gender identity or sexual orientation as dangerous. The company will expand those policies to better protect immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers from ads that say these groups of people are inferior.The company will also label posts that it keeps up even though they violate policies, if they come from a newsworthy source, such as the president. “We’ll allow people to share this content to condemn it, just like we do with other problematic content, because this is an important part of how we discuss what’s acceptable in our society -- but we’ll add a prompt to tell people that the content they’re sharing may violate our policies,” Zuckerberg said.(Updates with hate speech policy in the sixth paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Advertiser momentum against Facebook's content and monetization policies continues to grow. Last night, Verizon (which owns TechCrunch) said it will be pausing advertising on Facebook and Instagram "until Facebook can create an acceptable solution that makes us comfortable and is consistent with what we’ve done with YouTube and other partners." Then today, it was joined by consumer goods giant Unilever, which said it will halt all U.S. advertising on Facebook, Instagram (owned by Facebook) and even Twitter, at least until the end of the year.
The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Verizon, Lockheed, American Express, Boeing and Micron
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- It’s good that big brands like Verizon Communications Inc. and Unilever NV are pulling ads from Facebook Inc.As my colleague Sarah Halzack has written, the way to make the adtech giant change its approach to tackling hate speech and misinformation is to target how it makes money. (A similar effort worked at Google’s YouTube unit.) But Mark Zuckerberg and co. will still make $77 billion this year from advertisers. If brands really believe in this crusade, they should get off Facebook entirely.On Thursday, Verizon became one of the biggest brands to announce it will pull ads from Facebook in July, joining the likes of Patagonia Inc. and Recreational Equipment Inc. in a month-long campaign called Stop Hate For Profit. The movement is being led by groups such as the Anti-Defamation League and Color of Change, and is channeling momentum of the Black Lives Matter movement to realize real change. On Friday, Ben & Jerry’s, Hellman’s and Dove parent Unilever announced it would halt ads on Facebook and Twitter Inc. in the U.S. for the rest of 2020.It’s a commendable effort to force Facebook to remodel its practices, but there’s a business incentive too: An ad appearing alongside a conspiracy theory is not a good look, particularly if a slice of the revenue goes to the maker of the video. A group of brands with a combined advertising budget of $97 billion is already pushing for better controls. More of them should follow Verizon’s lead, not least the handful of other telecoms operators in the U.S.Arguably, the main reason Verizon even needs to advertise on Facebook is because its rivals AT&T Inc. and T-Mobile U.S. Inc. are both doing so too. Since competitive intensity has been significantly reduced by pandemic lockdowns, now seems a particularly good time for mobile operators to cut marketing spend.If firms are serious about upping the pressure on Zuckerberg, however, they should abandon their presence on the social network completely by deleting their Facebook pages. That might seem like a brand cutting off its nose to spite its face, but as long as it has a Facebook page, then the advertising boycott looks like an empty threat.That’s because the ad spend will ultimately return after the boycott. There’s little point in maintaining a corporate Facebook presence without paying to promote content, due to the limitations of what’s known as organic reach, or how many users see a post without a company or individual paying to get it in front of them. Without paid promotion, just 1% of a page’s followers are likely to see a given post, according to digital agency Jellyfish. It wasn’t always this way. In the early days, Facebook lured brands by showing how many customers they could reach by setting up a page. Then the Menlo Park, California-based firm changed its algorithm so that very few people would see a company’s posts if it didn’t pay for promotion. It was the classic Silicon Valley bait-and-switch. UniCredit SpA, Italy’s biggest bank, bit the bullet and ditched its Facebook presence a year ago. It had already stopped paying for Facebook ads, which meant that very few of the 546,000 followers of its UniCredit Italia page actually saw its content — perhaps just 5,500. Its resolve is so far holding: It hasn’t returned to the social network yet.Being on Facebook can also present more of a risk than an opportunity, especially for an incumbent brand like a bank or telecoms giant. UniCredit’s followers probably represented a significant cross-section of its consumer banking customers, which therefore served as a handy list of people for challenger banks like N26 or Revolut to target with ads and try to steal away. Plus, if a company has a Facebook page, it still has to regularly post new content and interact with customers — both of which cost money. If it doesn’t, the page will likely fill up with customer complaints, which would show up at the top of online search results. The business reasons for big-spending incumbents to leave Facebook might be almost as good as the ethical ones.Zuckerberg needs financial incentives to be more proactive about managing content effectively, partially because his lodestar has long been user engagement. And more polarizing content drives more user engagement. The Wall Street Journal reported in May that a report commissioned by Facebook in 2018 found the platform often did aggravate polarization and tribal behavior, yet the firm decided not to tackle the issue.Regulating content directly often means impinging on thorny free speech issues. It’s a troublesome affair. Far better to find market-based, commercial incentives that mean the issue must be taken seriously. Will enough brands use these to make a meaningful difference? Probably not, but they have the opportunity to give Facebook the firmer poke it needs.This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Alex Webb is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering Europe's technology, media and communications industries. He previously covered Apple and other technology companies for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Verizon's (VZ) voice of dissent is likely to encourage other blue-chip firms to follow its footsteps and exert pressure on Facebook to fall in line.
Verizon is the biggest yet to join the advertising boycott, which has gained the backing of dozens of U.S. companies, and its announcement was a blow to Facebook's efforts to contain the growing revolt. "We're pausing our advertising until Facebook can create an acceptable solution that makes us comfortable," a Verizon representative said. The Anti-Defamation League said in a letter to advertisers on Thursday it had found a Verizon ad on Facebook appearing next to a video containing anti-Semitic rhetoric from conspiracy group QAnon.
(Bloomberg) -- Verizon Communications Inc. said it is pausing the placement of ads on Facebook Inc. and Instagram until the social networks can get better control over posts that spread disinformation.“We have strict content policies in place and have zero tolerance when they are breached, we take action,” Verizon Chief Media Officer John Nitti said in a statement. “We’re pausing our advertising until Facebook can create an acceptable solution that makes us comfortable and is consistent with what we’ve done with YouTube and other partners.”Verizon is one of the largest advertisers to pull its ads from Facebook as part of an effort by civil rights organizations to pressure the social-media company to take action on hate speech and misleading content. Groups including the Anti-Defamation League and Color of Change started the campaign, called Stop Hate For Profit, to encourage advertisers to boycott Facebook ads in July. Verizon’s move follows participation by Recreational Equipment Inc., Patagonia Inc., Upwork Inc., Ben & Jerry’s and other brands.“We applaud Verizon for joining this growing fight against hate and bigotry by pausing their advertising on Facebook’s platforms, until they put people and safety over profit,” Jonathan Greenblatt, chief executive officer of ADL, said in a statement. “This is how real change is made.”Facebook has been telling advertisers that it bases its policies on principles, not business interests, according to its communications with marketers. The Menlo Park, California-based company has been reaching out to advertisers to discuss its recent initiatives on registering voters and distributing verified election information.But it’s not just advertisers that are upset. U.S. lawmakers have also put pressure on Facebook, Twitter Inc. and Google to combat disinformation, including during a House Intelligence Committee hearing last week.“We respect any brand’s decision, and remain focused on the important work of removing hate speech and providing critical voting information,” Carolyn Everson, vice president of Facebook’s global business group, said in a statement. “Our conversations with marketers and civil rights organizations are about how, together, we can be a force for good.”Verizon’s move was reported earlier by Ad Age.(Updates with ADL and Facebook comments starting in fourth paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Top Analyst Reports for Verizon, Lockheed & American Express
While Verizon (VZ) expands virtual networking capabilities, CenturyLink (CTL) extends partnership to better serve customers.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- As Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp. unloads about 200 million shares of T-Mobile US Inc., more investors get a chance to own a top-performing stock that had been hogged by insiders. SoftBank’s fire sale isn’t a knock on T-Mobile, but rather a reluctant move by billionaire Masayoshi Son to shore up his own troubled conglomerate. Indeed, his loss will be someone else’s gain. Son took control of Sprint Corp. in 2013 and then spent years pursuing a merger between the beleaguered wireless carrier and its stronger rival, T-Mobile. He finally got his way thanks to the Trump administration’s lax regulators at the Justice Department and Federal Communications Commission. Their focus on America’s standing in the so-called race to 5G, the next generation of wireless connectivity, overshadowed the antitrust concerns. Sprint officially became part of T-Mobile in April, handing SoftBank ownership of about 25% of the combined company; another 44% is owned by Deutsche Telekom AG. Until this week, that left only a small public float for a stock that’s long been the envy of its industry — and will likely continue to be.After the implosion of office-space rental company WeWork Cos. and the Covid-19 pandemic, SoftBank suffered record losses from its investments and is in need of cash. In turn, the company is undertaking a series of complex transactions to exit most of its T-Mobile stake, generating about $20 billion in proceeds. The deal involves a public equity offering, a rights offering to existing shareholders, a private trust vehicle and a call option for Deutsche Telekom to increase its ownership of T-Mobile down the road when its own balance sheet is in better shape. The transactions are structured so that even though more T-Mobile shares will be available to the public, the total number of shares outstanding won’t change. T-Mobile also gets $300 million for playing banker. T-Mobile’s stock price closed at an all-time high of $107.16 on Tuesday. After the market closed, the shares SoftBank is selling priced at $103 apiece, according to a CNBC report.T-Mobile’s subscriber base, revenue and stock price are all expected to continue growing for the foreseeable future at a faster clip than that of its two larger rivals, Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T Inc. Its consumer appeal comes from offering cheaper data plans on a network that has improved tremendously over the years, as well as a friendlier customer-service experience. Led by a larger-than-life CEO whose magenta wardrobe made him a walking T-Mobile billboard, the company was able to distinguish itself over time as a fun brand in an otherwise drab industry. That CEO, John Legere, left after sealing the Sprint deal and was replaced by Mike Sievert. The SoftBank share sale is also a farewell performance for Braxton Carter, T-Mobile’s pink cowboy hat-wearing chief financial officer, who retires next week. The Sprint merger fundamentally changed the industry by eliminating a low-cost rival that T-Mobile competed with most. T-Mobile’s own porting ratios, a measure of how many customers one carrier steals from another, showed that it was consistently taking a bigger bite out of Sprint’s subscriber base than either Verizon or AT&T’s. Now that the deal is done, T-Mobile would seem to have two options: 1) Given that there’s so much extra capacity on its network to handle more subscribers, it could cut prices even more. That would supercharge its own growth while putting pressure on AT&T and Verizon. 2) Instead, T-Mobile could keep prices flat or even raise them to improve profit margins more immediately, leaving competition more stagnant. The latter option is the less innovative, less consumer-friendly route that was feared by opponents of the Sprint takeover. (T-Mobile’s 13-hour outage on its network last week also doesn’t help to quell the fear that the industry is insufficiently regulated.) Here’s how different T-Mobile’s profitability might look if it were to adopt AT&T’s pricing:In either case, it may be a win-win for investors. T-Mobile executives predict that it will save more than $40 billion in costs due to the Sprint deal, much of which will come from job cuts and shutting stores in overlapping locations (another reason the transaction was criticized). Wireless carriers also rely on costly ad campaigns to promote their networks. The combined T-Mobile-Sprint will now be able to save about $700 million a year just from lower advertising expenses, according to a report earlier this month by Jonathan Chaplin, an analyst for New Street Research.Chaplin expects T-Mobile to pursue the less aggressive avenue of growth, but even then he sees its stock price doubling over the next three to five years. Analysts are generally less optimistic about AT&T and Verizon, as one undergoes a difficult transformation into a communications and entertainment colossus, while the other remains almost singularly focused on 5G with a less-than-ideal set of wireless spectrum. After buying Sprint, T-Mobile’s future looks to be either grow fast or grow faster. Still, this week’s news shows that for a merger pumped up on American 5G zeal and patriotism, the biggest beneficiary just might be a Japanese billionaire short on cash.(Adds pricing information in the fourth paragraph.)This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Tara Lachapelle is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the business of entertainment and telecommunications, as well as broader deals. She previously wrote an M&A column for Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Amazon launched a $2 billion venture capital fund Tuesday to invest in technologies and services aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Speaking to Yahoo Finance, Amazon’s Head of Worldwide Sustainability Kara Hurst said the move was yet another step to use the e-commerce giant’s 'scale for good' as it sets aggressive targets to become carbon neutral by 2040.