Day: February 2, 2023

Born Again. Is Tech Back?

This post is by Keith Teare from That Was The Week

A reminder for new readers. That Was The Week collects the best writing on key issues in tech, startups, and venture capital. I select the articles because they are interesting. The selections often include things I disagree with. The articles are only snippets. Click on the headline to go to the full original. My editorial and the weekly video are where I express my point of view.



Essays of the Week

  • The Big Tech Rebound is Underway -

  • Mark Zuckerberg says Meta is making this the ‘year of efficiency’

  • A New Bubble Is Forming for AI Startups, But Don’t Expect a Crypto-like Pop

  • The Why of Tech Layoffs -

  • What are we going to do about Generative AI content farms?

  • ChatGPT reaches 100 million users two months after launch @Dan Milmo

News of the Week

  • Introducing Substack Pledges -

  • and in Conversation (Video)

  • OpenAI Announces Paid Subscription for ChatGPT

  • Facebook now has 2 billion users - Karissa Bell @karissabe

  • Meta lost $13.7 billion on Reality Labs in 2022 as Zuckerberg’s metaverse bet gets pricier - Jonathan Vanian @JONATHANVANIAN

  • Musk’s Twitter Scores Super Bowl Deals, a Boon for Struggling Ad Business - Erin Woo

Startup of the Week

Tweet of the Week

  • Twitter Itself…


What a difference a week makes. From last weeks “Unicorns are Dying” headline we are forced to ask “Is Tech Back” this week.

That Was The Week is a reader-supported (Read more...)

Disagreements and First Principles: The Pushback on my Tesla Valuation

I wrote about my most recent valuation of Tesla just over a week ago, and as has always been the case when I value this company, I have heard from both sides of the Tesla divide. Some of you believe that I am being far too generous in my forecasts of revenues and profitability for a company that is facing significant competition, as it pursues growth, especially with questions about who's in charge of the company. Others, just as passionately, have argued that I am under estimating the company's capacity to grow, enter new businesses and generate additional profits, and have pointed to my history of undershooting with the company. I am not defensive about my valuations, and am completely unfazed by the pushback, but I do think that since some of the pushback revolves around first principles of intrinsic value, rather than specifics about the company, there is value in discussing the issues raised.

My Tesla Valuation: Filling in the Missing Pieces

    When I posted my Tesla valuation, I hoped, perhaps naively, that it would be self-standing, with the combination of the valuation picture and the spreadsheet filling in the details. Based at least on the reactions, I have realized that some may be misreading my story and valuation, ore reacting just to a picture in a tweet. To fill in the missing pieces, I redid the valuation picture, adding the revenue growth rate, by year:

Download spreadsheet
As you look at the sheet, it (Read more...)

Mapped: GDP Growth Forecasts by Country, in 2023

This post is by Dorothy Neufeld from Visual Capitalist

Mapped: GDP Growth Forecasts by Country, in 2023

Mapped: GDP Growth Forecasts by Country, in 2023

This was originally posted on Advisor Channel. Sign up to the free mailing list to get beautiful visualizations on financial markets that help advisors and their clients.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine early last year, talk of global recession has dominated the outlook for 2023.

High inflation, spurred by rising energy costs, has tested GDP growth. Tightening monetary policy in the U.S., with interest rates jumping from roughly 0% to over 4% in 2022, has historically preceded a downturn about one to two years later.

For European economies, energy prices are critical. The good news is that prices have fallen recently since March highs, but the continent remains on shaky ground.

The above infographic maps GDP growth forecasts by country for the year ahead, based on projections from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) October 2022 Outlook and January 2023 update.

2023 GDP Growth Outlook

The world economy is projected to see just 2.9% GDP growth in 2023, down from 3.2% projected for 2022.

This is a 0.2% increase since the October 2022 Outlook thanks in part to China’s reopening, higher global demand, and slowing inflation projected across certain countries in the year ahead.

With this in mind, we show GDP growth forecasts for 191 jurisdictions given multiple economic headwinds—and a few emerging bright spots in 2023.

Country / Region2023 Real GDP % Change (Projected)
🇦🇱 Albania2.5%
🇩🇿 Algeria2.6%
🇦🇴 Angola3.4%
🇦🇬 Antigua and Barbuda5.6%
🇦🇷 Argentina*2.0%
🇦🇲 Armenia3.5%
🇦🇼 Aruba2.0%
🇦🇺 (Read more...)

Greylock’s Yuliya Mykhaylovska | Early Career Recruiting

This post is by Greylock Partners from Greymatter

Current economic conditions have put thousands of highly qualified candidates in search of new roles. In just a few months, the population of job-seekers will further expand as a wave of fresh graduates – many of whom will be taking on the first serious role of their career – enter the market. The dearth of open roles can be discouraging to any candidate, and those at the beginning of their careers may feel this even more acutely. A bright spot is early-stage startups in need of talent to build core teams, and for many, the best match may be the newest job seeker. Yuliya Mykhaylovska, who leads university recruiting for Greylock's talent team, shares how to evaluate and recruit candidates at the earliest stages of their career, and outlines how startup founders can best structure the role to allow flexibility and growth along with the company. You can read a transcript of this interview here:

The Why of Tech Layoffs

This post is by Om Malik from On my Om

pink arrow neon sign
Photo by Ussama Azam on Unsplash

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that “tech layoffs” have been on my mind, and I wrote a column for The Spectator to explain “the why of these layoffs.” An unprecedented boom in Silicon Valley that started with the once-in-a-generation convergence of three mega trends: mobile, social, and cloud computing, has peaked. It started in 2010, and it has been bananas around here for the past decade or so. The FAANG+Microsoft companies saw their revenues go from $196 billion to over $1.5 Trillion. Let that sink in. Booming stocks helped create an environment of excess like never before. 

The companies got into the business of what Paul Kedrosky calls “people hoarding.” The pandemic and the resulting growth revved up the hiring machine even more. The over-hiring of talent has led to wage inflation, which had a ripple effect across the entire technology ecosystem. Technology insiders are happy to tell non-tech companies to use data and automation as tools to plan their future. It is easier to preach than practice. 

Why does Google need close to 200,000 employees? Or does Microsoft need 225,000 people? Salesforce, till recently, had about 73,500 employees. Profitable as these companies have been, it is also clear that they have become sloppy and bloated. I don’t want to undermine the misfortunes of those losing jobs. A lot of the blame is on the leaders of these companies, who were asleep at the wheel. The reality is that when it comes to business, (Read more...)

Clash of the Oracles

Joseph's recent post reminded of Thiel's comments about another well known oracle.

From Caleb Ecarma writing for Vanity Fair.

 It doesn’t matter if you’re a fellow billionaire, in Peter Thiel’s book, you either see cryptocurrency as the future, or you’re an “enemy.” “Enemy number one: the sociopathic grandpa from Omaha,” Thiel, the billionaire PayPal cofounder and pro-Trump Republican mega-donor said in an address at a cryptocurrency conference in Miami this week, sneering at business magnate and Nebraska native Warren Buffett. Thiel, whose current firm amassed a substantial Bitcoin fortune, also condemned JPMorgan Chase chairman Jamie Dimon and BlackRock CEO Larry Fink as two other “enemies” of Bitcoin, dismissing Dimon, Fink, and Buffett as a trio of geriatric tyrants standing in the way of progress. Thiel’s comments were his latest attempt to turn crypto into a right-wing culture issue, hailing Bitcoin as a revolutionary conservative movement fighting against “woke” corporations and the financial establishment.

 Here's what we had to say about this conference at the time.

We'll probably do another post of this article by Emily Shugerman [we did -- MP] focusing on the politics of this 2022 bitcoin conference (Jordan Peterson, Peter Thiel, you see where this is going). Most of the well-written piece focuses on less famous and far more likeable characters. Much of it is funny. Most of it is sad. This will not work out well for these people.

Jump cut to 2023.