tv Tech Check CNBC July 29, 2021 11:00am-12:01pm EDT
and exciting we won't say who won gymnastics, but that was exciting. >> it has been exciting. >> yes. >> all right, we're also going to keep an eye out for first trades, robinhood. that does it for us here at "squawk on the street. "techcheck" starts now good thursday morning. welcome to "techcheck. i'm deirdre bosa with carl quintanilla, jon fortt and julia boorstin this hour, robinhood goes public we're live at the nasdaq with every angle on that ipo. latest indications there, 39.25, priced at 38 bucks early investor jason calicanis
weighs in. and scott sandell joins us as well and comcast chairman and ceo brian roberts is here as is qualcomm's ceo cristiano amon. and we'll talk about the fraud charges against ceo trevor milton facebook, didi, amazon, in what is an absolutely packed hour, jon. i don't know hour we're going to get through it all it will be fast, it will be quick, but there will be a lot to get through >> yes, we will get it all done, robinhood, though, is where we will start leslie picker is at the nasdaq with the latest there. leslie >> we're starting to get some indications coming in, still $39.25 at this point in time that implies about a 3% gain from where the company priced its shares last night at $38 a piece. it is something that we will be watching closely today because as the indications have been coming in, they have trended downward, first one came in around $42, a little after 10:00
in the morning, since then we have seen them tick down that aid, it is still early days, this process involves pairing shares, you have to get a certain number of shares paired before you can start to begin trading to open that stock for trading. so that's what we're keepi ing n eye on directionally they have been trending closer to that ipo price. i'm told it is a mix of institutional and retail orders that have been coming in very unique aspects to this deal on the demand side of the equation, you have a large amount of stock that is going to be going to retail investors we have learned that the range that they set between 20 and 35%, the actual allocation of the stock at the ipo price came in to the bottom side of the range, 20, 25% we don't know the exact number at this time i'm told it is toward the bottom end, not a third of the allocation being given to retail investors. and on the supply side of the equation, another unique process
is the fact they are lifting the lockup on 15% of employee shares so 15% of the holdings of employees of this company are able to sell on day one. typically, people who have been around this a lot longer than i have, will say the smaller retail allocation is usually done to minimize volatility on first day of trading as well as lockups. that's in place to minimize volatility on first day of trading. none of these are massive, massive changes. but the question is does it introduce additional volatility in this process? it could be a while before we see this stock start trading as a result now, in terms of volume, i'm told to expect a lot of volume heavy volume on this one, it is number one a retail name, but also those aspects of this deal that i told you about today. so certainly should be an interesting day here at the nasdaq guys >> leslie, this is really important for the market not just because it's a brand
that people know, but it is a brand that people know that is about trading stock, right so what does success look like here some people think a price spike is success not necessarily. what operationally, what sort of pace and process wise, maybe even smoothness of this going off, needs to happen for this to be considered a success, both for nasdaq and for robinhood >> yes, that's really, really a great question as i mentioned, they have got, say, a quarter of this deal allocated to retail investors. what i mean by that is that it is allocated to users on its platform and so what that means is that if the stock goes down on the first day of trading, it is not just, oh, a debut, you know, we're in it for the long-term, it is more about, okay what does that mean for the loyalty of the users on your platform, your business model for this company. that's really important. also, the fact that so much is allocated to retail investors, these retail investors have $2,000 on average in their
account. so you're going to see smaller share -- smaller amounts of shares being traded than you would typically in this ipo. that could put additional pressure on the infrastructure technology underpinning robinhood itself, carl. >> we're going to watch it with your help as we get closer and closer thank you for the indications. that's leslie picker big beat on the top and bottom lines and record broadband subs for the quarter driving shares of comcast to an all time high. got to 5970 this morning with us, comcast chairman and ceo brian roberts. welcome down to the exchange great to have you here. >> great to be back in person. >> nice to have you on set the quarter, streaming always makes all the headlines. but the distribution part is really the thing to talk about, first, i think, right? high speed, the video subs coming in a little bit lighter on a loss than we thought. can you talk about that as a driver for the company right now? >> absolutely, first of all, we're about 70% a broadband
company, so we are -- that's where we should start. it was an amazing quarter. they were the star the record net ads in the second quarter that we ever had in broadband, 350,000 customers, 11% revenue growth, 15% ebitda growth, the whole cable company. so we really have two broadband businesses one is serving residences, we obviously know during this pandemic how important that is we're seeing also business services taking our business broadband products, so that business is now $9 billion a year from zero, organic revenue growth using broadband and commercial enterprises and that's growing almost double digits again this quarter. that was great mobile, our best wireless mobile sales quarter since we launched the business and is profitable and theme parks came out of the pandemic with a pent-up demand
there is a lot of good news, a lot of momentum, it was a fabulous quarter >> what are you seeing, i guess, at the household level when it comes to some of these high speed metrics. last year it seemed like we understood the story, we need this, we need the connectivity because we're at home. the thinking was how are they going to comp this next year. >> that's the best part of what we said this morning on earnings we now predict for the balance of this year we will not only be doing what we're doing, but if you look back at 2019, we'll beat 2019 by mid teens in terms of the growth, before we thought maybe the same as 2019 we see the momentum continuing and why is that? well, we have invested in our broadband network. we have the best speeds, the best capacity. people have about 15 devices in their home or more and they're using eight at any one time they use wi-fi, so critical to
be great and reliable and during this last year and a half it has done nothing but work. we pulled forward our demand but we still see growth ahead. and customers want the best product, and the innovation with something like flex where we give you streaming for free if you take our broadband so we have converted the company from a video centric business to now we almost have twice as many broadband customers as we do video. it is the core of the company, both -- i couldn't be more pleased. >> when it comes to video, and as i said, the losses coming in lighter than expected, are we approaching some point in which those who are left are going to want that baseline cable access? >> i think it will continue because in some ways, but, yeah, there has to be a point at which -- >> capital formation in progress as we get traeger opening up
>> there you go. that's the back of our business in television, and that's what i think there will be a base, but we pivoted our assets so that we can get to a place that we truly are indifferent. we don't care if you're taking broadband only or if you take our full package or you frankly want to mix and match. if you're mobile, and that's the most important device you have, we want to have the best mobile offering, the highest customer satisfaction with our wireless, the same with our broadband, and we're doing all that with less cost so if you take just broadband, we're not paying for the video, you're paying for it directly. so the model is shifting, the key for our company that makes it somewhat unique is streaming is our friend, powered by broadband, we have our own streaming initiative with peacock, which had a great quarter, and at the same time we're trying to be the best consumer company you want to do business with our customer service and our customer satisfaction scores reached an
all time high. so real momentum in all those categories. >> so that leads us into the streaming discussion i know on the call, jeff shell of nbc said we like the mix of assets we have still this ongoing debate about whether or not you can truly marry content and distribution, given the tough lessons from verizon and at&t you think you want both? >> we do we think it worked extremely well this quarter showed it peacock was invented basically one year ago no one heard of the brand. but xfinity really put it front and center and today we announced that sky is launching in their 20 million homes, we used the sky technology to power the creation of peacock. we used the top peacock executive came from comcast cable, matt strauss. so there is a -- we're one company and it is functioning extremely well i think we have the scale. we don't feel we need to do m&a. what we think we can do is look for ways to grow organically, which is what we did this
quarter, and we have been doing all year and also if there is partnerships that can accelerate streaming particularly internationally where nobody has all the peace parts unto themselves >> 54 million signups. >> that's up 50% in 90 days, the monthly actives. what that means is people who are using the service or subscribing to the service, that's being powered by a lot of different ways, one is movie like "boss baby," if you're a peacock customer, you get "boss baby," a new show like "dr. death," fantastic residents in the last few weeks. but the olympics and some day our hulu content, which is our premiere content from television is pledged to hulu eventually probably that will come back to peacock in some form and then new movies and new content like yesterday or a couple days ago, the announcement with the exorcist films. we're all over with sunday night
football, looking forward to that, and premier league soccer. so peacock has something for everybody and is creating digital advertising inventory, which as we saw with the tech company and their results, how valuable that is to advertisers, so we had a fabulous up-front selling peacock for first time and over 500 million for a product that didn't exist a year ago. i think we see a lot of opportunity ahead. >> has the olympics -- i mean, it always generates all kinds of headlines about broadcast, viewership, versus 20 years ago, viewers, i mean, i think investors don't have a good sense of true impressions, true engagement how would you characterize it? >> i just came back from tokyo, it is, first of all, it is a proud moment for the company, and the team that is committed to living there, working there and producing 7,000 live hours of television, it is hard to fathom what an operation it is
and how well the team does it dominates the 17 days, the landscape, and the highs and the lows and the emotional dramas and the incredible feats and heroic achievements. and we now have it on so many platforms that how to judge success, we will be profitable in cash, but we will also use it as an opportunity to tell customers and potential customers all the different ways to do business with our company, and our networks carry the olympics, streaming carries the olympics, xfinity carries the olympics, on demand, our voice remote, all the social media, can't go anywhere, so if you combine all the other broadcasters and triple it, on certain nights, that's what this is so it is a great platform, stage, to innovate for our company, to represent our nation, and to help the world come together, hopefully in a thoughtful way and it has been a tough olympics for sure, but
we're pretty proud and i think it is going great. >> you mentioned films the window continues to be a topic of discussion. i know rich galfant of imax said when disney looks back at the post pandemic, they're going to realize in his view that the way to maximize value is to have a true theatrical release. do you think some of your competitors are doing it right by two tracking? >> my whole life, i love movies, my wife and i love to go to the movies, and i fully hope and believe that will be a big part of our society for generations to come. and we're certainly excited to do that and work in that way at the same time technologies allowed us to build and comcast did this for years, we built 35 million home theaters potentially and with consumers and you want to sometimes stay home so finding ways to adjust the windows, and i think our team,
jeff shell came out, and donna langly, you know, with trolls, one of the first to say you can do it both at the same time. other companies like disney and others you mentioned are experimenting. i think that's what's going to happen but great content has great value and that value resonates for years and years and finds ways to replenish itself whether that's new windows, sequels, or other opportunities. so our strategy is pretty simple let's have a company where we go make the absolute best content, do it globally and then we can find ways to evolve and remain entrepreneurial and flexible and one example of that is we took all our movies the last 25 years at universal and they're on hbo. now we announced that we're going to have three windows for what was one it will come to peacock for four months it will go to prime or netflix for ten months and back to peacock for four months that normal 18-month window will
take in more cash from the ten months, plus we'll have peacock on the two book ends that's creative. my hat is off to the team. it is going to evolve like that and you want to go make great content. customers want it. value follows. >> that's interesting. two more questions one on theme parks and covid in general, disney yesterday said masks indoors once again anaheim and orlando. and film production. do you think covid's going to disrupt the two in the near future >> well, i think we learned how to work remotely so broadband business for one second, i think work will be a hybrid for a long time, if not forever. so having innovation, great network, and reliability and the best broadband maybe in the world right here in america and right with xfinity, that's job one for us i think theme park, we have had no international visitors and our orlando theme park is basically back or ahead of 2019
visitation levels and we have done it safely and thoughtfully. if masks are the right protocol, we'll follow that protocol in due course but i think getting everybody vaccinated and that's what our company has been about, we're very much leaning into public service, to help education folks in the country about the importance of us all, considering getting vaccinated and getting vaccinated and i'm optimistic that, yes, there may be some starts and stops, but we're heading in a great direction and our businesses have a pent-up demand to take advantage of what's coming >> okay. finally. i notice the buyback resumed earlier than people thought. good news for investors there. has the pandemic made you think of balance sheet issues, capital return, leverage, any differently? >> i think we -- it reminded me in the beginning how important it is to have a strong balance sheet because you have no idea what might have happened it allowed us to play offense,
invest, give great service, take care of our employees, take care of the communities where we work, we pledged a billion dollars over ten years to help broadband affordability and accessibility and a number of initiatives and i'm proud of that but what was important, we called it getting back into balance and balance for me was we increased our dividend for 12 or 13 years in a row, 10% or so, one of a handful of companies to do that, to buy back stock but most importantly invest in our business so we were investing in our business, and we increased our dividend, but weren't buying back stock we're now doing that i feel really that that was a very important and continues to be an important balance for our company. and then we'll hopefully have the high class problem of what do you do with various successes and i think that we have done that thoughtfully over the years, our goal to create value for shareholders, been doing this since my dad took the
company public in 1972 and we had a very solid return on the stock and that's thinking long-term has yielded the kind of results i hope we can continue to have. >> at 59 and change, that is the highest price since that ipo in '72. brian, thank you for coming in thank you for dealing with -- >> i love it. >> -- big crowd noise. brian roberts. comcast is the owner of nbc universal, the parent company of cnbc d? >> and, carl, we love to hear the busy we'rekeeping a close eye on robinhood, indicating at $38.25 now. the last 15 minutes or so it has been edging closer to that $38 ipo price set out last night meantime, let's get to facebook. down this morning after earnings and julia has more on the quarter. it is interesting to see what some of these megacap companies are talking about on their earnings call for google or fail bet. the focus is on the youtube opportunity for facebook, all about the metaverse.
>> all about the messe taverse. what i think is so interesting is about the vision for metaverse is two of his other priorities for facebook right now, content creators and commerce, also fit into the metaverse. so what he's really seeing here is an opportunity to not only to get people to spend money on facebook now, to buy things, to get content creators to be trying to directly connect wit their fans and generate revenue from that, but he sees bringing those two things, the content as well as the commerce, into this metaverse, this immersive world where we're all going to be entertained, living our lives, buying things in this immersive world, likely wearing those headsets or that's what mark zuckerberg would like. >> yeah, all hooked up to them more broadly on the core, julia, alphabet was a very tough act to follow beat revenue expectations by $6 billion. facebook right after that didn't seem as robust, is there anything to read into that, the fact that they didn't beat by as
much, expectations were so high going into this quarter. >> well, here's the thing, deirdre, they did beat both the bottom line and the top line facebook grew its revenue 56% in the quarter, the strealso blue t earnings expectations. the thing that was putting pressure on the quarter was the guidance for the third and fourth quarter they said they do expect revenue growth to decelerate in the third and fourth quarter because of regulatory head winds and ad targeting head winds, referring to the operating system change that apple implemented that reduced their ability to target ads. i think that was the pressure on -- in terms of guidance, but the other thing i would point out is that the user base in the u.s. and canada, obviously very valuable market for facebook, that user base did not grow in terms of monthly active or daily active users between the first quarter and second quarter those numbers were flat. the other thing that analysts are honing in on and not
necessarily a negative thing, but worth noting, the growth really came from the price of ads. 47% increase in the price of ads were the total ads increased by 6% there is not a ton more inventory, just able to generate more revenue from that inventory. so that really explains why they're looking to some of these new areas such as commerce and content creators to drive more growth, guys. >> yeah. makes sense. julia, thank you qualcomm's ceo cristiano amon is next an update on robinhood's upcoming first trade, indications still $38.25 we're back in two.
four bucks? that's tough to beat. relax people, my wireless is crushing it. okay, that's because you all have xfinity mobile. it's wireless so good, it keeps one upping itself. welcome back a big quarter for qualcomm and a big guide, sending shares higher today, up more than 5.5% as chip sales lead to a 63% pop. year over year, in revenue qualcomm's ceo cristiano amon joins us now, another cnbc exclusive interview. cristiano, great to have you i want to start with the star of the quarter, which i would say is everything else besides phones when we talked at the beginning of the month, when you took over as ceo, you said your biggest
challenge was to get people thinking of qualcomm beyond phones the numbers certainly start to do that. so what is the momentum in that business and what's driving it >> well, good to see you and good talking to you. we're very happy and, you know, we -- as we said before, we got the numbers we just are on track to get $10 billion and nonhand set revenue. what's very interesting about that, jon, is when our hand set business is growing and growing because of 5g, the nonhand set business is growing at 1.6 times and is now in this quarter 40% of the total chip revenue. so we're very excited about that it is growing across all business and talk about the trends, it is very diversified we see digital transformation, really driving a lot of demand
for our technology in iot, across networking, industrial, consumer, and the big transformation automotive is also a big factor. so we're very happy and it is just the beginning of a lot of growth and we have more than one factor of growth outside hand set >> so we got to talk about hand sets too, though you have unique insight into what's happening there globally. particularly snapdragon playing at the premium end in smartphones. how is the surge in some places of the delta variant affecting that market overall and give us a sense of how that's playing out geographically, particularly china. >> happy to do that. i will say that since the beginning of the whole pandemic, back then in early 2020, we have seen the 5g as being extremely resilient. and we have -- we stated the numbers in 20 in the beginning of the pandemic. they came out true
and same true in calendar '21. we're tracking to about 450 to 550 million 5g hand sets in 2021 and upward bias inour guide. here is the interesting data and you touch on two important points one, which is happening in flagship, we see a lot of changes in the market. when you go back to china, which is your question, in the month of june, 79% of all hand sets sold in china is 5g. and the attraction of 5g is incredible despite what we have seen with the economy and how the economy recovers, it is 5g is just showing how important the connectivity is. there is 169 operators and 70 countries now that allow 5g. there are 443 operators in that 133 countries investing in 5g and of that, there is a big
number, 180 in 45 countries investing in 5g. so it is a great story in 5g and hand sets as well. >> right, right. you talked about how your take in 5g is bigger because of the amount of intellectual property that you have there. talk about the chip shortage because you said you're still supply constrained the whole industry is, you guys were up 5.5 plus percent today on earning and amd is up 5% plus again. some companies are managing to outperform in this environment, despite the shortage how is qualcomm managing to do it >> we're doing well. i would think we're doing probably better than many. we utilize our scale to design products across every available capacity, we resource many of
our products m snapdragon was already launched this quarter and was completely new foundry. and we put a lot of capacity planning in place. we have a lot of demand. we have a great quarter, great results in q3, demand is still outpacing supply across every one of our business segment. if you look at our guide, in the next quarter, it reflects what we said before we expect as we get to the end of this calendar year material supply improvements and we're going to start to see ourselves out of -- we're happy. >> that supply story is so important. talking about apple, they said supply constraints they expect to affect them maybe beyond that you're powering through it cristiano amon, ceo of qualcomm, thank you. >> thank you, jon. good talking to you. we got more indications on
robinhood. back down to $38 leslie picker has more >> that is notable because $38 per share was the ipo price. so as it has been trending downward, really since indications opened after 10:00 a.m., started at $42, now down to $38 this is the process from which the shares are being machtched y buyer and sellers. this is the behind the scenes process that takes place it is a little wonky, but at least in terms of the orders coming in, they are being matched at this $38 price, which is the ipo price if things continue in the way that they have been trending this morning, it would imply that this share -- the shares could indeed open downward now, just thinking about other noteworthy ipos that open down on their first day of trading, or at least they close that way on the first day of trading, we think back to an uber, for
example, rack space was a big deal last year that opens down on its first day of trading, you got chegg, smile direct club, these companies come to mind when you think about declines on the first day of trading this doesn't happen very often, especially with some of the higher growth companies, venture-backed companies up 68% on average last year you tend to see more of -- more on the pop side than the decline side on the first day of trading with these deals but, you know, it is still early, you never know what can happen, deirdre. >> i'm glad you bring that up, leslie some other ipos that broke issue, but went on to do very well, square is another name that i think -- meanwhile, the u.s. department of justice charging trevor milton with fraud. that press conference ended just a moment ago phil lebeau hasall the details the list of false and misleading statements in that indictment were really something. >> i've got about 29 pages here
worth of examples according to the u.s. attorney's office where trevor milton was lying about the development of vehicles at nikola we're not going to go through all of them. it comes down to this. according to the department of justice, trevor milton since basically 2018, 2019, right around that time period as they were going through the process of putting a spac merger together through when he left the company, they say he repeatedly lied about the development of vehicles, like the one behind him, the nikola 1 hydrogen fuel cell semi. the charges revolve around three product areas. one being that nikola one, the semitruck they had on stage there, and they said was a functioning vehicle, it was not functioning. also there was the badger electric pickup truck, which according to the u.s. attorney's office, they didn't even have renderings of it and he was on social media saying, yeah, the prototypes are built, and then finally the question of hydrogen
supply, they say that trevor milton lied about whether or not nikola had hydrogen supply ready to go. in the indictment, the doj says during the course of the fraud, milton, who was fired to be listed among forbes 100 richest people saw the market value of his interest in nikola rise substantially. in fact, at one point, it was valued at more than $3 billion in terms of his stake in the company. so for trevor milton and for nikola, this is perhaps the last chapter of his time at the company. by the way, we reached out to nikola nikola issued a statement and emphatically saying these charges are with trevor milton they are not against the company. we have nothing to do with trevor milton anymore. as for trevor milton, cnbc reached out to his representatives, we have not heard a statement from him i suspect that he will be making some type of an appearance, whether today or the next couple of days, but, guys, this is a chapter that not a huge surprise given the allegations that were first laid out by hindenberg
research, a short seller, which ultimately led to milton leavin nikola motors last year and now the u.s. attorney's office filing charges, saying front and center, he lied repeatedly about the development of these vehicles >> phil, an incredible story and that stock was around $80 at one point. thank you. we know you'll bring us any more developments let's get back to robinhood. early investor jason calacanis with us now. we're looking at the early indications, but how do we judge this ipo and its pricing, if it opens at $38, which it is indicated to do so, was if priced exactly right, but does the risk consumer loyalty from users that got an allocation and were counting on a pop, especially given what we have seen from other big ipos over the last year or so?thanks for e in terms of the pop, nothing would be better than for it to
be priced perfectly and stay the same price for a couple of months it would be a great lesson for them to buy and hold things for a-long time. that is really where the great wins could from, i've been lucky enough to be an investor in two of these companies that have gone public in the cycle, uber and now robinhood. i missed airbnb. if you look at the three companies, they changed the world and if you are lucky enough to get into them, i think holding them for a decade is the right move we have seen that with amazon, netflix, you know, google, facebook a lot of times the gains don't just happen in the private markets. they happen in the public markets over decades so i'm still long the company. 22 million -- 22 million customers, robinhood is doing phenomenal and i'm interested to see what they do next. >> jason, we talked in the past about the regulatory risks, the business model payment for order flow the bull case, it is young, huge
customer base. how do you make sure robinhood doesn't become a feeder for other financial firms, not traditional banks, but more established finteches like paypal and square that have built up customer loyalty over many more years? >> you know, we have a very vibrant competitive marketplace here in america. and where these companies have to keep performing, so you're exactly right. if they don't keep delighting their customers, there are plenty of people who will delight the customers. one of the great things is the amount of trust robinhood felt despite some of the game stop things that have happened and the issues around payment for order flow, which seem to be an issue for some group of people, but not for the actual customers of robinhood i think if you look at what they can add to the product, bank accounts, mortgages, 401(k)s, roths, retirement, 529s for people's kids, we have a generation of people who now have learned finance at a very young age by doing it. and that's something here on
cnbc you've been talking about, having more market participants and when i invested in the company, the idea that 20 more retail -- 20 million more retail investors were joining the party and, you know, started investing in stocks and take control of their financial destiny, which is really what this is about, that is the goal of the company, for people to take control of their financial destiny and have agency and financial markets that are competitive and complex. >> it is a great point, jason. we would -- everyone would love to see stock participation and aggregate go up and help people take advantage of the markets. i want to ask you about the competition and when tenant was asked about what the moat was, he said it was the brand, to your point not like other companies don't have carefully tailored brands that they have been refining over decades and decades of work i mean, is that like trying to sell an oldsmobile to a young guy right now? >> i do think you make a good point there at the end, sometimes the paradigms shift and brands just have a hard
time, you know, appealing to the next generation whether it was yahoo! or aol. they just didn't cross the chasm and make it to that next group of customers so i think this group of customers in their 20s and 30s, they're just starting and probably getting started ten years before all of us did, who are watching on the show or maybe 20 or 30 years before some of us did. and so that really is the upside this is a company that has always operated with a sense of urgency, and by building absolutely stunning gorgeous experiences for users, which reminds me of airbnb and google and facebook and uber the quality of the product is paramount in this industry because it is so competitive and you have to constantly be offering new things he talked about maybe there is more products to come and when he pitched it to me in the early days before the product was launched, he did have a very, very big vision for the company. >> jason, yeah, i mean, is there
a brand message mismatch here to some degree? like, what gamification, robinhood got popular selling pizza, but saying the future is broccoli in a way and that healthy behavior you mentioned, that you want to see robinhood have, that model is not how robinhood grows and makes money. they make money off of options trading and people buying and selling often and playing momentum, not necessarily buying and holding. what does that mean for this as a stock? >> i had a lot of pizza when i was young and a lot of broccoli now. i think people's lives change over time and maybe they want to be very active trading stocks every day, and, you know, even crypto because they can do it 24 hours a day and they like the rush of that and rolling up their sleeves and placing bets whether on sports, crypto or stocks at a certain point, you realize, sold that stock too soon and you got to ride your winners and it is about the amount of time in the market, not timing the market and that's just a natural
evolution. i think a lot of people are, you know, hating on a company that is really doing aphenomenal jo of educating folks and they will come to this conclusion on their own, when they have a child, they need an apartment, young people say, you know what, what is that 529, how does that work? how does a roth work how did peter make so much company? he was investing in companies? i got it that's the education we're seeing here. yes, i know it is new. yes, i know gamification, all this stuff but if you go to -- tell me the throttling we're putting on young people going to vegas before they go play craps for first time or roulette or a poker tournament explain how the nba and fantasy and wagering sites are throttling young people when they start engaging on those wagering platforms they're not. they're not. and i think people have to have agency and learn for themselves. >> yeah, but -- i agree with that, but at the same time i think that casinos -- >> that is a good thing to learn how to do. that's my position
you should learn how to bet on stocks as a teenager. >> casinos and betting sites aren't painting themselves as democratizing finances, the same kind of philosophy that robinhood may be putting out there to its users >> that's because the casinos are rigged against the users and equities are rigged for consumers. >> a discussion for another time, jason. some might argue the payment and work flow could have issues like that we'll talk to you soon >> sure. >> jason, all good points, provocative stuff. when we come back, is didi going private or not d. has exclusive reporting on that next. way off of the levels when that journal headline hit this morning. more robinhood as we wait for the open we'll talk to the ceo of nasdaq and deena friedman there with our friend jay heller head of capital markets and ipos "techcheck" is back in a moment.
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didi up 20% this morning on a journal report it may be considering going private as chinese regulation continues to pressure the company post ipo. gains have eased on a denial from didi, cut the gains to about 10%. meanwhile, uber lower by about 5% we reported last night that softbank is selling a large chunk of its uber stake in part i'm told by sources to make up for heavy losses in didi and other chinese investments. as beijing's scrutiny of tech companies shows no letup over there, softbank held alibaba down 26% over the last six months ed tech names also under pressure and anticipated ipos from bytedance that may have provided liquidity, those derailed by that crackdown from beijing. the uber divestiture is significant, that's a third of softbank's stake, but it follows a trend of selling a source tells me that softbank is down to less than 100 million uber shares. but to put this in broader
context, carl, with the pressure on softbank, we may start to be seeing the contagion effect of this chinese sell-off that we have been reporting on over the last weeks and months and that is forcing other investors and other geographical areas like japan and the u.s. to sell out of winning positions to compensate their losses in china. >> that was a great scoop last night, d and goldman, though they did reiterate overweight on a shares in china, they did take their offshore equity. we're watching robinhood still, one of the largest investors sits on the board, general partner scott sandell is next. indication around $38. that would be a flat open. don't go anywhere. (sound of people returning to the workplace) (sound of a busy office) (phones ringing, people talking, meeting) the company we've trusted to keep us working remotely, is the same company we'll trust to bring us back together.
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visit indeed.com/hire welcome back robinhood still sbaking at $38 per share. the open could be moments away joining us now board member. scott sandel nea holds about 13% of robinhood ahead of the ipo scott, great to have you as we wait for this pretty historic moment, wondering on behalf of the retail investor, maybe you can put this into some context. robinhood's already saying that the crypto activity helping drive the last leg of growth
isn't likely to continue at the same rate in the near term given that, how should public investors model robinhood's advantages, especially since it's up against the likes of coinbase and square, for the next generation as a money app >> yeah, jon, first thanks for having me on the show. great to be here as you said this is a wonderfully historic moment for the company. i think the thing that distinguished robinhood is that the company set out to democratize finance, that means all of finance starting of course with free stock trading. and now has over 22 million customers. i think the thing that will propel the company forward and serve as a basis for considering investment if you are a retail investor is clearly a belief in what they're doing and the way they serve the customers and create a safe environment for trading for everyone
>> i wonder what their differentiator is there. because, as they are going from kind of doing some gamification which made this more engaging, also the free trading which made it more accessible, into talking about safety, they are going up against your squares and coinbases on the one side and van guard andfy delts on the other. what's the secret sauce that allows them to grow at a good margin and maintain that brand >> well, jon, i don't think it's a winner take all market i think -- but robinhood is already one of the largest retail brokerages and enjoys more recognition than -- than most of its competitors. and i think the focus on the user experience and really helping the millennial generation understand and have access to the financial markets is something that i don't think these other companies are really focused on and i think is going to serve them well
>> scott, vlad tenev his interview said this morning said his philosophy appear the philosophy of robinhood is to make it as easy as possible for people to invest does that come at the expense of growth since we know robinhood makes better margins and short-er term trading like options and crypto >> as you heard from vlad earlier, i think there are two primary growth factors, i mean, 22 million customers is a lot. but the market is extremely large. and there are many more customers to serve, not just in the united states but around the world. and then, you know, as vlad mentioned, you know the goal of the company really is to create the trusted place where people manage their money and not just stock trading. so i think it doesn't stake a particularly large imagination to see what might be upon the road map for robinhood in terms of ways they can serve their customers in the future.
all of those things add up to i think a large opportunity >> great, so, scott, do investors that may be thinking about buying into the ipo need to be patient, especially as robinhood and vlad tenev say they want to focus on educating investors, having them, you know, invest more for the longer term is that going to hurt growth in the short-term as it goes head to head with other financial products, against established players like square and paypal >> well, you know i've been on the board since 2016 the thing that's always astounded me about robinhood is that it just keeps growing and growing and growing and growing. you can see the numbers. clearly what they are doing is working. and it a very popular way to the access the financial markets i don't see any reason why that won't continue >> scott, finally we've been talking about risk factors all morning, regulations and all the rest, competition. but i wonder how you think about
the possibility, hopefully nothing we would ever experience soon anyway -- but a large downdraft in either markets, market activity, the economy, household balance sheets where would those -- would those consumers that are in robinhood now would they just stop trading, go to more legacybrok ramblings to manage money? do you worry about that? >> well, you know, i worry about a lot of things in general because the future is uncertain. but what gives me confidence is that every year there seems to be some new source of growth which was completely unanticipated at the start of the year, because i think generally speaking, just providing access, you know, very visible now access to the financial markets is very appealing to a growing number of people and so i can't be sure what source of growth will come in the future but from what i've seen so far, it always seems to come. >> scott, when it comes to fintech overall, give us some
perspective, because nea is deep in the category. what matters most right now differentiationwise investing for the future >> well as you say, we've made a lot of different investments in the area, because we think financial services is ripe for disruption and there is -- there are a lot of middlemen that aren't necessarily the most efficient way for people to access the financial markets. robinhood is just one example. so i think what matters in fintech really is to identify a way that you can serve those consumers and frankly cut out a lot of middlemen along the way and at the same time, you know, for good reasons financial services are a highly regulated market and it's superimportant to understand and comply with the regulations. >> scott, really appreciate it especially on a day like this. thanks so much for your time >> thanks so much for having me.
>> keep our eye on the indications out of robinhood by the way, it's sort of got lost today but the market has been remarkably resilient backup dow around a 200 point gain. s&p 24 be 44 and vix at 15.5 tmo, skyworks. gilead let's get to the judge >> thanks so much. welcome to the "halftime report." i'm scott wapner front and center robinhood ipo frve blowout earnings and the count down to amazon numbers after the bell. our investment committee breaking down it all, debating all of it as well. with me for the hour today josh brown, steve weiss carrie firestone, jon najarian and good to see everybody. new records for the dow, s&p today. investors dieting those earnings reports as i said. we're getting to those in a moment but first the big ipo robinhood going to public. let's bring in leslie with the latest as we wait for the first trade. we've seen a lot of activity where u