LONDON, May 19, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The economy is reopening, stock markets are already bouncing back in a hedge on the future, and we're about to see the biggest shift in capital in years. It's a big money shift away from tradition and towards a future in which retail investors - and major hedge funds - demand that their investments go into companies that are sustainable. Mentioned in today's commentary includes: Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), TOTAL S.A. (NYSE: TOT), General Motors Company (NYSE: GM), Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA).
It's not politics or ideology. It's not right or left. It's pure free-market sentiment dictating what happens after the lesson the market has learned before and during a global pandemic:
Welcome to the $30-trillon-plus mega trend of sustainable investing, otherwise known as ESG (environmental, social and governance) Investing. And welcome to one of the new companies positioned to give big capital exactly what it's looking for: Canada's Facedrive (FD,FDVRF), the competitor to Uber that's working to turn ride-sharing into a sustainable, more carbon-neutral industry.
Even better, while Uber has been burning cash like crazy for a decade and still isn't profitable, Facedrive has an entire ecosystem of revenue generation setups that treat ride-sharing as much more than a ride: It's a high-tech business segment that has many ways to generate revenue while the wheels are rolling.
Where Big Money Will Go To Multiply
Even before COVID-19, Big Money was shrugging off tradition, increasingly in favor of ESG investing, which hit $30 trillion even before the pandemic.
What the pandemic did was bring the enormous potential threat of climate change into clearer focus. The new investment thesis rationale is this: If we weren't 100% sold on the threat of climate change, we also weren't 100% sold on a global pandemic after so many previous scares that turned out to be overblown.
The new investment thesis ties into risk mitigation and reputation. Companies that can't withstand a crisis aren't good investments. Likewise, companies that will be continually called out in social media for contributing to crises are also taking on too much risk in relation to future returns.
Gone may be the days when everyone across the board will throw endless amounts of cash at companies with a massive carbon footprint. And no one knows this better than big tech.
It's no secret that Apple (AAPL) has always thought outside of the box. And when it brought back Steve Jobs in 1997, the company really took off. Jobs also paved the way to a greener future for the company. From the products themselves, to the packages they came in, and even the data centers powering them, Steve Jobs went above and beyond to cut the environmental impact of his company.
After his passing, Tim Cook took these principles to heart, and picked up the torch, transforming all of Apple's operations into models of a sustainable future. Now, all of Apple's operations run on 100% renewable energy.
"We proved that 100 percent renewable is 100 percent doable. All our facilities worldwide—including Apple offices, retail stores, and data centers—are now powered entirely by clean energy. But this is just the beginning of how we're reducing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. We're continuing to go further than most companies in measuring our carbon footprint, including manufacturing and product use. And we're making great progress in those areas too."
Energy companies are doing their part, as well. As one the world's leading renewables producers, NextEra Energy (NEE) is literally building the path towards sustainability. To make matters more exciting, the company was the number one capital investor in green energy infrastructure, and the fifth largest investor across all sectors.
In addition to its already massive impact combatting the world's looming climate crisis, it has ambitions of investing an additional $55 billion in infrastructure in the next two years in the United States. And while it helps deploy the world's new energy reality, it has also committed to weaning itself off foreign oil. And shareholders are all in. Over the past 15 years, shareholders have seen 945% returns.
Even Big Oil supermajors have been diving head first into the ESG trend, diversifying their portfolios and to hedge their bets in the rapidly changing new reality of energy. And no other oil major takes this more seriously than Total (TOT). maintains a 'big picture' outlook across all of its endeavors. It is not only aware of the needs that are not being met by a significant portion of the world's growing population, it is also hyper-aware of the looming climate crisis if changes are not made. In its push to create a better world for all, it has committed to contributing to each of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.
Total checks every box in the ESG checklist. It is promoting diversity and safety, making massive changes in its day to day operations to ensure that its business is environmentally sound, and has even committed to going carbon neutral by 2050 or sooner. It's no surprise that shareholders are loving its forward-thinking approach.
Even automakers are getting involved. General Motors (GM) is laying the foundation of an all-electric future. It's focus on new electric vehicles is reshaping the auto-market. Its strategy is to paint with a wider brush than some of its competitors, with a wide range of vehicles and a key spotlight on battery technology. It's even getting into the electric bicycle game!
General Motors created its own brand of electric bikes, called Ariv. The bikes were just launched this year, but have already captured the attention of the European market. While they err on the side of pricey, coming in at $3,800 per unit, they do boast a high top speed and can travel a modest distance on a single charge The kicker for many, however, is that they can fold into an easily carriable pack, making them the perfect choice for a lot of commuters. Especially in big cities like London or Berlin.
Perhaps no other automaker is taking greater steps towards sustainability than Tesla (TSLA), however. For a company that was once given an outside chance against deep-pocketed ICE heavyweights, Tesla is suddenly being hailed as a clean energy revolutionary and Wall Street cannot seem to get enough of the EV maker. Coronavirus aside, Wall Street is exceedingly bullish on Tesla right now. Musk is likely to emerge with three crowns on the ground: EVs, solar, and clean energy. Each revolutionary.
It may seem easy to overlook Tesla's solar business considering that the solar panel and battery segment brought in just six percent of the company's revenue in 2019. But with the meteoric rise of ESG investing over the past couple of years, many companies, including traditional fossil fuel companies, have been investing in clean energy projects including solar and wind energy at an unprecedented rate. But Musk's big picture transportation transformation bid is in outer space, through his private company, SpaceX.
Facedrive too knows sustainability. Its business model is about "people and planet first". It also knows risk mitigation, views its drivers as integral stakeholders, and views ride-sharing in general as far more than a way to get from Point A to Point B. It's targeting multiple revenue streams.
The Risk Mitigation Ride
Facedrive is transforming the ride-share space into something that everyone can get on board with. It's the first platform to offer a carbon-neutral solution by giving riders a choice of EVs or hybrids, and by planting trees along the way to offset emissions for any conventional rides.
A highly strategic acquisition in March also saw Facedrive expand far beyond the first-and-last mile that is usually associated with ride-sharing. Facedrive acquired HiRide, an innovative new Canadian startup that emerged from Ontario's "Technology Triangle" to rewrite the rules of long-distance car-pooling and bring it into the high-tech mobility fold.
Now, Facedrive covers every mile, and it's about to expand into the United States and Europe. Along the way, it's unleashing plans for revenue stream after revenue stream because it doesn't view ride-sharing as a simple "ride".
Facedrive's entire ecosystem is about earning revenue from the rider relationship, keeping in mind that millennials want an all-inclusive experience. The innovative high-tech mobility company has also rolled out Facedrive Foods, focused on sustaining relations between local food suppliers and restaurants and the communities they serve. And in line with the sustainability and impacting investing theme, they aim to provide riders with healthy choice deliveries.
Facedrive Foods, which is now piloting in six cities in Ontario and will expand to other regions soon. But this week, Facedrive Foods provided a glimpse as to how serious the company is in targeting the Canadian food delivery industry. To kick-off its aggressive expansion drive in the segment, Facedrive Foods entered into a binding term sheet to acquire assets of Foodora Canada. This move is especially significant because Foodora Canada is a subsidiary of Delivery Hero, a $20 Billion European multi-national food delivery service that operates in over 40 countries internationally and services more than 500,000 restaurants.
Facedrive Foods acquisition of Foodora Canada's assets would give Facedrive a billion-dollar boost and huge jump on its major Canadian food delivery competitors such as Uber Eats and Skip The Dishes. Facedrive would obtain instant access to hundreds of thousands of Foodora Canada's customers, and 5,500 new restaurant partners. With this move, Facedrive Foods would overnight position itself into the top echelon of Canadian food delivery services and turn up the heat on major incumbents in the space.
Nor does the ecosystem end here: No successful millennial-driven platform is anything without their own "merch" to go along with it. That means celebrity tie-ins for big branding. Will Smith's Bel Air Athletics clothing brand is betting that Facedrive is the ride of the future. That's why he's co-branding an entire line of merch with Facedrive.
It's also why WestBrook Inc., the company Smith shares with his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, is partnering with this environmentally conscious startup that is now expanding globally to challenge Uber in more countries.
Some 1,000 new products co-branded by Bel Air and Facedrive are ready to launch, with pre-orders coming soon on the Facedrive website. And it's all sustainable, made in North America.
It's a lifestyle that is not only positioned to survive the coronavirus culling but to thrive in the new environment that has big money moving away from tradition and whole-heartedly towards companies who understand the risk we all face.
COVID-19 has shown us exactly how deeply interconnected our basic systems of survival are, whether it's to battle a virus or fight climate change. Facedrive figured this out back in 2016. Now it's ready to launch globally, and the timing is indeed evolutionary.
By. Paul Cantle
**IMPORTANT! BY READING OUR CONTENT YOU EXPLICITLY AGREE TO THE FOLLOWING. PLEASE READ CAREFULLY**
This publication contains forward-looking information which is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward looking statements in this publication include that the demand for ride sharing services will grow; that the demand for environmentally conscientious ride sharing services companies in particular will grow and take a larger share of the market; that Facedrive's marketplace will offer many more sustainable goods and services, and grow revenues outside of ride-sharing; that new products co-branded by Bel Air and Facedrive are ready to launch, with pre-orders coming soon on the Facedrive website; that Facedrive can achieve its environmental goals without sacrificing profit; that Facedrive Foods will expand to other regions outside southern Ontario soon; that Facedrive will be able to fund its capital requirements in the near term and long term; and that Facedrive will be able to carry out its business plan. These forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information. Risks that could change or prevent these statements from coming to fruition include changing governmental laws and policies; the company's ability to obtain and retain necessary licensing in each geographical area in which it operates; the success of the company's expansion activities and whether markets justify additional expansion; the ability of the company to attract a sufficient number of drivers to meet the demands of customer riders; the ability of the company to attract drivers who have electric vehicles and hybrid cars; the ability of Facedrive to attract providers of good and services for partnerships on terms acceptable to both parties, and on profitable terms for Facedrive; that the products co-branded by Facedrive may not be as merchantable as expected; the ability of the company to keep operating costs and customer charges competitive with other ride-hailing companies; and the company's ability to continue agreements on affordable terms with existing or new tree planting enterprises in order to retain profits. The forward-looking information contained herein is given as of the date hereof and we assume no responsibility to update or revise such information to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.
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