Home Money Rocketing share price of Trump’s social media firm is nothing short of weird, says ALEX BRUMMER

Rocketing share price of Trump’s social media firm is nothing short of weird, says ALEX BRUMMER

by Elijah
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Rocketing share price of Trump's social media firm is nothing short of weird, says ALEX BRUMMER



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Valuing technology companies is more of an art than a science. It’s possible to understand why Nvidia, valued at £1.9 trillion, was the star player in New York this year.

The technology company has an iron grip on the development of semiconductors based on artificial intelligence (AI).

It’s harder to understand day one trading in Trump Media & Technology, DJT, Donald’s social media answer to Twitter.

In volatile trading, the stock climbed to $79.38 per share at one point, valuing the company at more than £7 billion and taking the Republican presidential candidate’s stake to almost £5 billion.

The timing is helpful for Trump as he scrambles to pay legal fines after a civil lawsuit in Manhattan over alleged inflation of the value of his New York real estate empire went against him.

Rocketing share price of Trumps social media firm is nothing

Good timing: Donald Trump’s social media companies soared yesterday on the first day of trading in New York

It often takes technology companies many years to realize their potential.

It took 13 years for Jeff Bezos’ Amazon to make its first profit as a publicly traded company. Investors rightly had confidence in it, because Bezos built an unparalleled retail, marketing, logistics and cloud computing group.

So far, Trump’s Truth Social is looking a bit rackety. Since the launch of the platform in 2021, approximately 8.9 million accounts have been created.

Yet its income is low: it has earned just US$3.3 million in the past nine months, while losing US$50 million ($39.1 million) in the last full financial year.

DJT’s success is based on a large group of Trumpers who are willing to entrust their money to the big phenomenon with the orange faces.

In a world where bitcoin has rocketed into the stratosphere, despite massive fraud on sites like Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX, anything is possible.

Still, DJT’s rising stock price is nothing short of weird.

Communal undertaking

Archie Norman has done wonders in restoring confidence in M&S.

The biggest deal on his watch, the £750 million joint venture with online shopping pioneer Ocado, was a disappointment.

Despite the digital food presence it gave M&S during the pandemic and affluent Central Britain’s commitment to both brands, M&S has struggled to make headway with the most innovative and higher-priced items in the Ocado basket.

Finally, there are signs that change is coming. Investors in Ocado and M&S could see value in the restored deal.

M&S’s decision to bring Hannah Gibson into the joint venture as CEO is paying off.

Market research group Kantar found that Ocado was the fastest growing UK retail company over the past three months, with sales up 9.5 percent on a year ago.

The decision to cut prices and participate in promotions appears to be finally paying off, with customer numbers growing to more than a million and revenues rising by almost 11 percent to £645 million.

Once online shoppers switch to Ocado-M&S there is little turnover. Waitrose, Ocado and M&S’s main food rival, struggled as food prices rose.

Food costs are now moderating, having risen just 4.5 percent in the past month. The higher shopping basket costs were driven by Britain’s sweet tooth for chocolate confections, which pushed up the cost of living, while cocoa prices soared on global markets.

Sweet treats are offset by lower prices for butter, milk and toilet rolls.

Private equity-owned Asda, controlled by the Issa brothers, is struggling. Morrisons, led by Rami Baitieh, with an intense focus on customer experience, is turning things around.

It goes without saying that Tesco has gone from strength to strength with a market share of 27.3 percent. Wow.

Fight back

A brief thought from takeover land.

Amid other excitement, Currys and Direct Line have shown in recent days that British boards are not obliged to lay down their arms and beg for mercy when the first shot rains down on their heads from bidders and activists.

Determined, old-fashioned resistance is possible.

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