Tesla Expands Charger Access
Google Offers a Concession
Ford's China Troubles
According to a White House memo, Tesla will allow non-Tesla EVs to use its Supercharger network by the end of this year.
The Point: Let's focus on what this means for Tesla. Tesla will charge non-Tesla EV owners for using its Superchargers. That means there's money to be made here. And that revenue opportunity will continue to grow as EVs gain wider adoption. Also, in doing so, the company will be able to access some portion of the $7.5 billion the U.S. government has set aside to expand electric vehicle charging infrastructure (a condition for getting this money was that chargers had to be open to all makes and models). That's the good news. But here's the potentially bad news: Tesla's expansive network is, by some accounts, already struggling to keep up with demand. Secondly, Tesla's charging network has always been part of its sales pitch. By opening the network up, the company risks undermining itself.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Google has offered to split part of its ad business into a separate company to satisfy antitrust regulators.
The Point: The Department of Justice (DOJ) filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google in 2020, alleging the company has created an internet search monopoly. The DOJ is also reportedly working on another case focusing on the company's digital advertising practices. Google's reported offer to break out its ad business into a separate entity, albeit one still under the umbrella of its parent company Alphabet, is meant to preempt this second potential antitrust action. Whether this satisfies the DOJ or not, the result will surely impact the company’s stock.
The automaker saw sales in China plunged by 22% in Q2 from the year prior.
The Point: The 120,000 vehicles sold was the worst total since Q1 2020. General Motors reported similarly weak sales in the most populous country a few days before Ford's announcement. Ford chalked the poor numbers up to China's Covid-19 lockdowns and supply chain bottlenecks. On the positive side, Ford said the easing of lockdown restrictions in the country led to June sales surging by 38% compared to May. "The pandemic's resurgence in the past few months challenged us to overcome supply chain and logistics obstacles to positioning Ford for growth in the second half of the year," said Anning Chen, president and CEO, Ford China. "Ford's business recovery in China is proceeding at full speed as vehicle production has reached pre-pandemic capacity and customer traffic at our dealerships has progressively improved."
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