MarketLine Blog

Posts written by MarketLine Analyst

Tablet market decline continues: Strong demand for substitutes and low innovation resulting in falling sales

MarketLine

The tablet market has undergone consecutive years of decline in recent years, and the market is expected to continue declining in the coming years as well. This has put intense pressure on players operating in this market, and many such as Dell and HTC have decided to pull out. Overall the market is dominated by Apple, Samsung and Amazon. Several reasons have been given to explain why the tablets market after such a promising start has succumbed to this pattern of decline. An important reason is the way in which… Read more

Daniel Wellington: The fastest growing private European company in 2017

MarketLine

Daniel Wellington is a Swedish watch making company that has been placed at the top of the “Fastest Growing European Companies” list. Started by Filip Tysander in 2011 using his own money, the company has since witnessed impressive growth thanks to a very successful social media marketing strategy campaign. Rather than engaging in traditional marketing in a rather congested market where giants like Rolex and Tag Heuer exist, Daniel Wellington instead has sought to utilize the power of social media in order to boost its brand awareness. It has done… Read more

Post-Christmas Results: Discounters achieve massive sales growth over the festive period compared to last year

MarketLine

December is the most prolific season in the UK and in many other areas worldwide for retailers and consumers and this is demonstrated by shopping behavior during this time. Retailers are in the process of revealing their Christmas sales over a period where we can compare results to last year, and understand why certain areas have achieved, and why some others have not. For Christmas 2017, discounters have enjoyed great growth, despite consumer spending remaining weak overall. Department stores and luxury food retailers on the other hand, have experienced the… Read more

YouTube TV expands its presence in the US: Changing consumption patterns reduce demand for cable TV

MarketLine

A major shift is currently underway as an increasing number of consumers switch over from cable/satellite TV to online streaming. 61% of young adults for example today watch TV online, as compared to around 10% of the 50-64 age group. YouTube therefore in April 2017 launched its live online streaming service in five major urban areas in the United States. The service has seemingly been a success as by the end of the year, it has been expanded to more than 80 urban areas across the US. YouTube TV provides… Read more

Bitcoin: Bitcoin to reach a value of $100,000 per coin over the next five years

MarketLine

The term cryptocurrency has become widely spread amongst the investment news world in recent times due to its increasingly fast growth in value. Although the phenomenon began in 2008 with the release of Bitcoin, more and more cryptocurrencies have now established their presence in the market, reaching massive market values already, with thousands of investors purchasing coins on a daily basis. With large growth forecasted by analysts worldwide, regulations in this ‘currency’ market are not to be seen, but the UK treasury is working with the EU to tighten up… Read more

Huawei second bestselling smartphone brand in mid-2017

MarketLine

In June and July 2017, Huawei was found to be the second bestselling smartphone brand globally. Whilst the race to become the top smartphone brand has usually been a two way race between Samsung and Apple, the inclusion of Huawei into this race at least temporarily is indicative of future trends. The company’s fast growth in the most populous parts of the world, namely China and the wider Asia-Pacific region suggests that Huawei is certainly a force to be reckoned with in the coming years. The strong growth potential in… Read more

Airforce modernization picks up pace in the Middle East

MarketLine

Tension in the Middle East has been expanding in recent years as the emergence of a new de factor leader in Saudi Arabia has led to the country reacting aggressively to what it perceives to be an expansion of Iranian influence and power in the Middle East. This tension is ultimately leading to a de facto arms race between the two powers wherein both also seek to stay ahead of the other from a technological point of view. Sanctions whilst holding back Iran in recent years have now been removed,… Read more

Elon Musk brand continues to grow: Heavy public profile and revolutionary products amplify Musk’s popularity

MarketLine

Elon Musk’s brand image has evolved strongly over the past two decades, and he is today one of the most recognizable and admired CEOs globally. Whilst some of the major companies he owns such as Tesla are still very small compared to their market competitors Musk’s popularity only seems to grow. This is primarily due to two major reasons. The first is that Musk’s companies are engaged in the manufacturing of products that do not only carry financial benefits to the owner, but also do the wider society some good, whether… Read more

Spain in turmoil: Catalan parliament declares independence from Spain

MarketLine

The Spanish region of Catalonia, on October 1, held a referendum on independence, despite fierce opposition from the central government, which said the vote violated the Constitution. The vote was held even after being suspended by the Constitutional Court. The decision to go forward with a vote descended into chaos, with hundreds injured due to clashes with the police and now a mass conflict has appeared between the Spanish authorities and the Catalonians. Catalonia’s withdrawal from Spain would impact the Spanish economy negatively let alone the European Union, but without… Read more

Shinzo Abe reelected as tensions in Asia rise

MarketLine

Japan has in the past decade been hit by two major financial crises. The first one was the global financial crisis of 2008 and the second one came about following the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster. The latter resulted in a nuclear meltdown and forced the Japanese government to immediately cease operations at all other nuclear power plants in the country, which together generated almost a third of all electricity consumed in Japan. As Japan increasingly relied on fossil fuel powered electricity in the aftermath of Fukushima, increased imports of… Read more

eSports continues to grow in popularity: However challenges like match-fixing amplify the need for more regulatory bodies

MarketLine

eSports has grown at an impressive pace in recent years, and this rise has attracted the interest of globally recognized sponsors and sporting clubs. As the speed of internet has increased as have broadband connectivity levels, and the ease of playing games online has substantially increased. Sensing this opportunity brands like Intel and Red Bull as well as sporting clubs like Paris Saint-Germain and the Philadelphia 76ers have entered eSports as sponsors. However as the popularity of eSports has increased, so have the challenges it faces. One notable example is… Read more

Puerto Rico Reform: Doomed before Hurricane Maria even struck, but plans to bring back prosperity begin

MarketLine

On the evening of September 16 2017, Puerto Rico was struck by Hurricane Maria. With a huge economic downturn over the last decade and a $70bn debt bill from the US, this has added greatly to the Puerto Rico’s current problems. President Trump has spoken clearly about the debt problem and has shown little empathy to the US territory. The damaged infrastructure on the island has attracted  commercial interest from the likes of Google and Tesla, with companies like these speaking about plans to help  Puerto Rico reform. The Puerto… Read more

Uber: Revoking Uber’s London license prompts consumer backlash

MarketLine

Transport for London is facing accusations that its decision to revoke Uber’s license in the British capital was politically motivated rather than based on safety concerns (concerns on which the capital’s transport regulator partly based its reasoning Uber’s). Uber’s cheap and efficient transport offering is popular worldwide and has been used on a mass scale within all of London’s major areas, including the suburbs and villages that surround it. With the black cab business taking a hard hit since Uber’s formation, the decision is music to their ears and also… Read more

KPMG South Africa involved in “Zuptagate” scandal: Senior staff fired as audits fall “short of the quality expected”

MarketLine

In May 2017, a series of emails were leaked which showed a very close relationship between the Gupta family and the incumbent South African President Jacob Zuma. Opposition parties and civil rights groups claimed that this close relationship had resulted in a whole host of government contracts being given to the Gupta family without the proper procedures being followed. In the midst of this scandal were caught major multinationals like KPMG, McKinsey, Bell Pottinger and SAP. All of them have been associated with the Gupta family’s activities in South Africa… Read more

Melting ice opens up Arctic shipping route for longer periods

MarketLine

As the melting of ice in the Arctic region intensifies due to increased human activity in the Arctic region, the possibility of using the region for marine transportation purposes also increases. Whereas in the past vessels would have to be escorted by heavy ice breakers, the complete disappearance of or reduction in size of ice has resulted in customized transportation vessels that can also act as moderate ice breakers to emerge. These customized vessels require no escort and have been able to cover vast distances in the Arctic region in… Read more

iPhone X: After healthy sales historically, $1,000 price tag does not justify the technological difference over previous generations

MarketLine

Apple was once known for its innovative developments and breakthroughs in the computer and music market. With the release of the iPhone in 2007, it broke records in terms of sales growth for a phone. Year on year growth for the past 10 years has been extremely impressive and this is due to a variety of quality factors associated with Apple’s brand. With strong brand loyalty associated with Apple, customers have become fans and many enjoy upgrading their phones every year seeing as there is a new iPhone released every… Read more

World’s largest airport under construction in Istanbul

MarketLine

Turkey, and Istanbul in particular, has seen a strong rise in the number of passengers using air travel in recent years. This has been most evident in the case of Ataturk Airport which as the hub of the country’s national airline company Turkish Airlines, has seen its capacity limit pushed to breaking point. With the 2016 terrorist attack at the airport also showing its security vulnerabilities, the city authorities as well as the national government were therefore very keen on building a new airport which could deal with the strong… Read more

Governments to ban the sale of petrol and diesel cars: Regular fueled vehicles not to be sold from 2040 onwards

MarketLine

Following recent announcements to ban the sale of regular fueled (Petrol & Diesel) vehicles (RFVs) in France by 2040, the UK’s Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has announced plans to achieve the same goal by the same date. The UK has become heavily polluted over the years, especially in some areas in London such as Brixton, where levels of pollution are borderline illegal. There has been a greater push for the use of electric vehicles (EVs) over recent years, through financial incentives which aim to drive… Read more

Discovery Communications seeking to merge with Scripps Networks Interactive

MarketLine

Due to the emergence of online streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu, the demand for traditional TV broadcasting has taken a hit. As consumers especially those belonging to the younger demographic have slowly made their way towards substitutes, advertisement too has followed suit. In fact according to some sources 2016 was the first year in which online advertisement overtook the value of traditional TV advertisement, clearly emphasizing the change that has taken place. Given these recent developments in the TV broadcasting market, it comes as no surprise… Read more

Ambitious Trans-Iran Canal still waiting for construction to begin: “Competitor” to Suez Canal unlikely to see construction begin any time soon

MarketLine

Despite having been officially announced for several years now, construction on the Trans-Iranian Canal Project has as of July 2017 still not begun. A number of reasons have been given to explain this delay including the high fixed costs required to build this canal. Official estimates put the cost of the project in the range of $10bn but other estimates suggest the figure could at least be double the amount. Whilst the authorities claim the returns from this project will justify the high cost of the project for the construction… Read more

AT&T and Time Warner looking to complement each other as part of merger deal

MarketLine

In October 2016, Time Warner and AT&T agreed to merge as part of a deal which would see AT&T paying $85.4bn for the merger to take place. The total transaction value would further take the deal up to $108.7bn adding in Time Warner’s debt. Despite the hefty cost, the merger deal makes perfect sense from a business point of view since through a merger with telecommunications giant AT&T, Time Warner is able to broadcast its globally recognized digital content to a much wider audience. AT&T meanwhile will be able to… Read more

Nicaraguan Canal project loses momentum: Expansions to Panama and Suez Canal reduce need for a second canal in Central America

MarketLine

The idea behind the Nicaraguan Canal dates back centuries, but has always been beaten back by the Panama Canal, initially by the latter’s construction, and secondly by its expansion, which has made the construction of the Nicaraguan Canal less desirable. Whilst the Nicaraguan government has declared the importance of the construction of the canal for the nation’s economy the Hong Kong Nicaragua Canal Development Group (HKND), which is in charge of the construction of the canal, has yet to initiate this construction five years after the project’s announcement. A number… Read more

Snapchat: Popularity germinates, safety concerns arise

MarketLine

Snapchat, the billion dollar social media company has grown substantially in value terms and very quickly over the past five years. With an increasing amount of new developments, Snap Inc. has somewhat introduced a new development which could revolutionize users’ experience with the smartphone’s interference with regards to day to day activities. Snap Map reveals a user’s location in real time to his/her friends or public in a design friendly interface which could mean friends can track exactly where their friends are at any point of time. With some positive… Read more

‘Energiewende’ boosts German renewable sector but change in policy leads to growth deceleration

MarketLine

Germany has set some of the most ambitious green energy targets for itself, not only in Europe but also the world. This decision has come about due to strong public opinion in favor of green energy in the country, especially as an increasing percentage of the population becomes aware of the negative consequences of global warming on the planet. Liberal feed-tariff rates have subsequently pushed Germany to become one of the largest producers of renewable energy in the world, with the country ranking third globally with regards to total cumulative… Read more

China’s OBOR project: Threatening the Singaporean transportation sector

MarketLine

Singapore’s location at the southern tip of the Strait of Malacca has allowed the country to position itself as one of the world’s major transportation hubs. Through this Strait travels practically all trade between the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and therefore trade going in and out of countries such as Japan and China will more likely than not pass through Singapore, especially if headed towards Europe, the Middle East and Africa. To emphasize its importance, almost half of all Chinese oil imports pass through Singapore, and the figure is even… Read more

M&S and Debenhams: Online retail to continue its surge while retail outlets continue to close

MarketLine

The growing popularity of shopping via the internet, coupled with both the younger and older generations becoming increasingly tech-savvy, has led to a massive surge in shopping online A bit of rewording would be good so it reads better. – whether it be essentials such as food or clothes, all the way to smaller items. The convenience of doing so has meant that fewer sales have been achieved on the high street for major retailers, and sales revenue have transferred to online equivalents. After recent announcements from M&S and Debenhams… Read more

Medicaid: Trump’s budget proposal will not pass congress

MarketLine

It is that time of the year, when the White House is to put forward a proposal to congress underlying the US budget for FY2018 which is to set itself up for the next ten years. It is the first budget submission since Donald Trump took up presidency and there has already been speculation regarding his gloomy views on previous policy that aimed to benefit the less fortunate citizens of America. With the Affordable Care Act (nicknamed Obamacare) set up to help millions of Americans at potential danger of further… Read more

Baltic nations agriculture and transportation sectors suffer due to Russian sanctions

MarketLine

Western sanctions on Russia due to the events that unfolded in Crimea in 2014 resulted in Russia only days later reciprocating and introducing its own sanctions on the EU and the US. Whilst the EU sanctions have focused on oil companies and Russian banks, Russian sanctions on the EU have focused on the agricultural sector. This has been bad news for players in the agricultural and transportation sectors in the Baltic nations. Russia has historically been a key export market for Baltic exporters and the two have a long history… Read more

New potential OPEC-Russia deal to cut oil production levels: Other producers likely to boost supply in case of such a deal

MarketLine

The steep decline in the price of crude oil that began in the latter half of 2014 and reached its lowest point in early 2016 caused great disruption in countries for which oil exports constitute a major portion of total exports. Countries in this group include the OPEC nations as well as other major non-OPEC oil producers like Russia, Brazil and Canada. In December 2016, a Saudi led OPEC effort was finally able to come to an agreement with Russia and several other oil producers in the region such as… Read more

Car manufacturing sector booming in the UK: Weaker pound boosts exports, yet Brexit worries persist

MarketLine

2017 has been a good year for the UK car manufacturing sector as far as production levels are concerned, with the country manufacturing cars in March 2017 at a level last seen in the year 2000. Manufacturing levels have been boosted by a strong rise in exports of cars, which has come about due to the weak pound, low crude oil prices and rising demand for British cars in the Asia-Pacific region, as well as in the United States. However all of this has been happening among the backdrop of… Read more