// HAPPENING TODAY
- DirecTV, Expedia, LinkedIn, Samsung, Tesla and Time Warner Cable all report earnings.
- NASA is remembering the 50-year anniversary of the first moon mission photos.
- Yelp’s shares are trading lower, though the company beat consensus estimates in earnings and revenue.
Spider-Man Helps Pull Sony’s Chestnuts Out of the Fire
Sony, which has lately been papering Wall Street with profit warnings, surprised its long-suffering shareholders this morning by returning to a profit. Posting second-quarter earnings this morning, the stumbling electronics giant reported $261 million in net income, which was more than double what most analysts had expected it to lose. Evidently, gains in Sony’s console game business and the success of “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” were enough to offset deteriorating results in the company’s albatross of a mobile unit — for this quarter, anyway. Sony still cut its sales forecast for smartphones for the fiscal year by 14 percent.
Well, That’s One Way of Lowering Your Cable Bill …
UPI: “A New Mexico woman is accused of pulling a gun on a Comcast employee after he informed her about some fees that she didn’t know about.”
In Other News, Samsung Invests in Unobtanium Mine
Kim Hyun-Joon, SVP at Samsung’s mobile-communications business, told investors on an earnings call today that one of the company’s new smartphones will be made with “new materials.”
“Do You Want to Sell Sugar Water for the Rest of Your Life, or Do You Want to Come With Me and Change the Target Dollar Spot?”
Target named a new CEO this morning, PepsiCo exec Brian Cornell. This is the first time the retailer has looked outside its own walls for a supreme leader. But with declining foot traffic at its brick-and-mortar stores, a botched expansion into Canada and the fallout from that nasty security breach still undermining its fortunes, it’s likely a savvier move than promoting an internal candidate.
Presumably, This Will Be the State Song of One of the Six New Californias
Joel Stein, Businessweek: “There’s a song about Tim Draper, called ‘The Riskmaster.’ It’s a song he wrote and sings in public. On YouTube you can see him sing it at a conference, in front of a huge image of him arriving at a party on an elephant. He acts out the best parts and has created a dance for it that sadly hasn’t caught on. The chorus goes:
He’s the riskmaster.
Lives fast, and drives faster.
Skates on the edge of disaster.
He is the riskmaster.
Hendrix at Woodstock, Draper at Hero City …
Incidentally, if you haven’t seen Draper perform “The Riskmaster” live, there’s this. My apologies in advance.
After 22 Years at Microsoft, Robbie Bach Wants Your Braaiiins
Microsoft veteran Robbie Bach, who stepped down as the head of the company’s Entertainment & Devices group in 2010, is embarking on a new career: “Civic Engineer” and, judging from the photo on his new website, Chief Zombie.
Welcome to Apple, I’ll Be Your Layoff and Outplacement Assistant
Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr: “We’re excited to have the Beats team join Apple, and we have extended job offers to every Beats employee. Because of some overlap in our operations, some offers are for a limited period and we’ll work hard during this time to find as many of these Beats employees as we can another permanent job within Apple.”
Yes, but Myspace …
Dan Frommer, Quartz: “An investment in Snapchat at a $10 billion valuation may prove to be a great deal. When Microsoft invested $240 million in Facebook — at what seemed like a mind-blowing $15 billion valuation in 2007 — many scoffed. But Microsoft did great on that investment. Facebook’s market capitalization today is $195 billion, according to Yahoo Finance.”
Of Course That’s the Assumption. What’s Your Point?
John Scalzi on Amazon’s call for lower e-book prices and a 30 percent cut of sales: “I think Amazon’s math checks out quite well, as long as you have the ground assumption that Amazon is the only distributor of books that publishers or authors (or consumers, for that matter) should ever have to consider.”
According to the American Meat Institute’s Recommended Animal Handling Guidelines You Must Seat Me in First Class
Tim Winship, FrequentFlier.com: “According to the American Meat Institute’s ‘Recommended Animal Handling Guidelines & Audit Guide: a Systematic Approach to Animal Welfare,’ a swine or sow weighing 200 pounds should be allocated four square feet of space when being transported by truck during the summer months. How does that compare to the space occupied by the typical coach-class airline passenger?”