A humorous look at the companies that caught our eye, for better or worse, this week
Unilever PLC (STAR)
Morning routine of Unilever’s ideal customer: apply Degree deodorant to armpits; pour cup of Red Rose tea; finish off tub of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream in freezer. Shares of the British consumer products company – whose stable of familiar brands also includes Dove, Q-Tips, Vaseline, Hellmann’s, Popsicle and Lipton – jumped after it named activist investor Nelson Peltz to its board. With Mr. Peltz’s Trian Fund Management now owning a 1.5-per-cent stake, this could be the push that Unilever needs to add some Vim to its growth.
Joy: A feeling of great pleasure or happiness. Joyy: A company that was filling investors with nothing but sadness this week. Shares of the Singapore-based social-media company sank after first-quarter revenue slipped 3 per cent and average monthly active users tumbled 19.2 per cent, driven by weak results from its Likee short-video sharing app and Hago social-gaming and chat platform. With the shares losing about three-quarters of their value from their 2021 peak, there is no joy in Joyy-ville – investors have struck out.
Peloton Interactive (DOG)
There once was a business named Peloton
Hard times, this bike maker had fell upon
With interest rates rising
And fewer folks riding
The stock was caught up in a sell-a-thon
Business quiz! Shares of Chewy rose after the online retailer of pet food and accessories: a) was acquired by Kraft Heinz, which plans to introduce Kraft Dinner for Dogs and Heinz Ketchup for Cats this fall; b) announced a licensing deal with Canada Goose Holdings to produce branded winter doggie jackets starting at $999.99; c) announced that first-quarter net sales rose to US$2.43-billion – up 13.7 per cent from a year earlier – even as pet adoptions slowed, helping the company post a surprise profit. Answer: c.
Lion Electric (DOG)
When is a cat a dog? When its name is Lion Electric. Having already plunged by more than two-thirds in the past year, shares of Montreal-based Lion – which makes electric buses and trucks – lost more ground after CIBC World Markets analyst Kevin Chiang cut the company to “neutral” from “outperformer” and dropped his price target on the shares, which are listed in both Toronto and New York, to US$9 ($11.33) from US$11 ($13.85). With rising interest rates compressing price-to-earnings multiples of growth stocks and economic uncertainties growing, this Lion has lost its roar.
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