MarketLine Blog

Posts written in April 2019

Revolut: the Uber of financial services

MarketLine

Traditional banks have long been at an advantage when it comes to customer data due to having access to vast amounts of information that financial technology (fintech) competitors cannot obtain. However, this situation has been changing recently, especially in Europe. New European legislation that was introduced in 2018 called Payment Services Directive (PSD2), and it has put traditional banking products and services under a threat from a new type of digital-first startups. A handful of them have already seen a big growth in users and have broken even operationally. What… Read more

McDonald’s: Tech-heavy strategy at the forefront of driving growth

MarketLine

McDonald’s recently announced its purchase of tech start-up Dynamic Yield Ltd for a price tag of $300m, making it the company’s biggest deal in decades. The fast food giant isn’t best known for embarking on M&A activity, but it has been investing heavily in more recent years in a bid to bring technology to its services, indicating that tech lies at the forefront of the McDonald’s future. McDonald’s recent acquisitions are the latest in a string of digital investments which have taken place over the last few years, which have… Read more

The Entertainer continues expansion with ELC acquisition: Retailer bucking the high street trend

MarketLine

The UK high street has seen a number of casualties in recent times, with many retailers collapsing and others significantly scaling down operations. In the toys & games market, Toys ‘R’ Us has been the stand out casualty with the retailer closing all of its stores in the UK during 2018 following bankruptcy. Prior to this, Toys ‘R’ Us had been the leading toy retailer in the UK for most of its history after entering in 1985. The Entertainer seized this opportunity, making 2018 the year for expansion. The retailer… Read more

Primark: Fashion giant continues to break the rules of retail

MarketLine

Associated British Foods, the parent company of Primark, announced in late February that it expects profits will be “well ahead” of last year despite a drop in underlying sales in its stores. The company also managed to perform well in 2018, despite the retail environment being particularly tough, with revenues reaching £7.4bn ($9.8bn), 6% ahead of last year at constant currency rates. Primark believes future growth prospects lies in further expanding its store portfolio and has ambitious plans to open more stores in the coming year, including 19 across, France,… Read more

AstraZeneca agrees $6.9bn deal with Daiichi Sankyo: UK drug maker could dominate the future breast cancer therapy market

MarketLine

The joint development and commercialization of a new breast cancer therapy indicated for the treatment of HER-2 positive breast cancer has the potential to help the AstraZeneca in its quest for a larger oncology market share. If approved, it will join Lynparza (olaparib) – a PARP inhibitor marketed by AstraZeneca for the treatment of HER negative breast cancer. The addition of a new breast cancer therapy to the AstraZeneca product portfolio will almost certainly increase the company’s market share. Roche currently dominates the treatment of HER-2 positive breast cancer with… Read more

Micro-transactions dominating the gaming industry: Gambling becoming a major issue

MarketLine

Micro-transactions have dominated the gaming industry in recent years, largely due to their ability to generate an income for games developers throughout the life-span of a game, rather than being dependent on the one-off payment at the point of sale. This new model facilitated revenues to sharply increase and has begun a new wave of ‘free-to-play’ games, whereby developers make profits based upon the additional features players can purchase within the game. From a business perspective in-game purchases have been a tremendous success; some companies have doubled their profits. However,… Read more

Saudi Aramco financials released: Despite huge net profit, financials reveal fundamental problems

MarketLine

For the first time in over four decades of operation state-owned oil major Saudi Aramco released financials, revealing the firm to have produced the highest net profit of any company in the world. Despite the attractiveness of headline figures, the financial condition of the firm falls far short of the $2tn valuation the government declared when launching an IPO was first mentioned publically. Evidence on which that valuation could be supported is lacking, exacerbating the economic problems the state has experienced of late, thus revealing the need for diversification. In… Read more