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tv   Best of Bloomberg Technology  Bloomberg  January 28, 2017 11:00am-12:01pm EST

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♪ >> i am caroline hyde. this is the "best of bloomberg technology" where we bring you all of our top interviews this week from tech. the tech earnings season heats up, alphabet, microsoft, intel reporting. this is the dow clocks in above 20,000. plus, verizon targets an acquisition, but will it help verizon keep pace with at&t? cisco swoops in, how a $3.7 billion acquisition terminates
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the first major tech ipo of 2017. first, a huge week for tech earnings. this of course in a week where the dow average marched beyond 20,000 for the first time. let's kick things off with alphabet. take a listen. >> you have to take a step back. here is a company that has massive levels of growth and yet people are finding those little areas. the problem is always expectations. the ad click numbers are clearly a challenge for them. what's good is we are seeing them spend money on some other pests that i think will pay off. in the short term, there is extra money being spent, but they have very interesting
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opportunities. alphabet has to extend beyond the advertising business model. these bets will start to pay off. we are starting to see spending in those areas where we will see growth. caroline: i'm seeing cost per click falling 15%? they are still managing to lure in more people to buy those adverts. >> conversion rates are still low on mobile devices, so therefore the advertisers that are marketing those businesses are less inclined to pay up for clicks on mobile devices. the bigger question is the click metric in general, how valuable clicks are overall.
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caroline: explain that. >> the search engine is google's cash cow. the default behavior for an ad on a search engine is to click on those links. in youtube, you are viewing an ad. that could be good for google, opening up a new range of verticals. the click metric will end up getting a lot of noise. caroline: we are just hearing from the ceo saying the key trends, youtube, cloud, and hardware. let's dig in on the cloud and
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hardware. cloud they say is their fastest-growing area of business. they have tough competition. >> they do. microsoft also showed big growth, but it is a large area with a lot of opportunity for everybody. this is a case of raise all boats kind of thing. we will see google continued to expand that cloud business, leveraging ai and machine learning. that offers them a way to differentiate from microsoft and amazon. each one has their own special sauce, special flavor. on the other side, this is a company that is hardly dependent on one area. it does raise some concerns long-term.
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so let's look at what they are doing. they spent a lot of money advertising pixel. we have all seen the ads, nice piece of hardware. google home looks like a nice piece of hardware. they have daydream on the virtual reality side. they will take a while, but they are laying a foundation to do some nice growth in hardware and additional services on top of that. caroline: back to the youtube element, do you think this could become the powerhouse going forward. when does it start to show its dominance? they don't really break it out for us. >> it is a huge opportunity. where people get it wrong or diminish the opportunity is thinking of it as tv dollars moving through online video. it is a growing the pies scenario, because there are businesses where the owner has an iphone 7 and can create a quick video and promote that on youtube and facebook. that is an example of an
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advertiser who never would have ought a tv ad, so all those tv ads will likely move towards digital, but it opens a new set of demand because of lower friction and lower barrier to entry. caroline: that was adam burke and bob o'donnell. speaking of alphabet, the company ended its 12 year relationship with one of washington's most prominent lobbying groups. the podesta group had long-standing ties to the democratic party and hillary clinton. this change coincides with google's bid to hire someone for conservative outreach, and of course as a republican administration takes the white house. sap raised its targets for 2020, citing a surgeon customer purchasing. the updated outlook came out
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with the company's fourth-quarter sales, which were in line with estimates. sap is transitioning from software to online cloud computing tools. the ceo spoke with bloomberg tv about the company strengthened the u.s. marketplace. >> clearly any enterprise company operating in the global economy is almost always running sap, so we like to think our purpose in the united states will only get stronger because we can only help the new president and focus on growth. that is why you need mobile players like sap to be great partners, and we will be. caroline: still ahead, appdynamics was on track to be the first major u.s. tech ipo, that was before cisco snapped it up this week. we speak with the cisco ceo later this hour. another possible megadeal as verizon approaches charter about a possible tie up.
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all the details, head. this is bloomberg. ♪
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caroline: and now to some big deal news of the week, verizon ceo has approached liberty media about a possible tie up with charter communications. a verizon-charter combo would create a giant, bolting the company to the number one spot of u.s. internet providers. here is some of the background behind this move. >> verizon a combination of an charter would not be a merger. it would be a megamerger, and not the first one we have seen recently. like at&t's bid for time warner. now valued at 103 billion dollars, this acquisition may charter the second-largest cable operator in the u.s., just behind comcast. verizon is the number one mobile care and the number two
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telecommunications provider, but the company has been facing a slowdown. this proposed deal would bring together thousands of miles of fiber-optic cable at a time of soaring demand for faster broadband. the industry gets more saturated and consumers cut the cord. caroline: quite a bit of information to go through in this potential tie up. joining us -- and has a neutral rating on verizon. welcome to the show, walter. verizon numbers weren't looking to pretty in terms of earnings. with this type be helpful? >> the tie up with charter would not cure the ills of the wireless business. competitors are offering unlimited plans, and verizon has resisted that probably because they have 100 million customers and it is unclear whether the network could handle that kind of usage. that is a section of the market,
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it is unclear how high quality charter's assets are. it doesn't really sure of anything. it just adds a different business and one that generates its own free cash flow. caroline: we are starting to see the ranks of what the best tactic is for the future. here we seem to see a deal that once the infrastructure, but you're saying infrastructure is not up to much. >> the ceo of verizon's strategy was to go wireless, and all of a sudden you have an issue where wireless is not the only thing for them to do, so there seems to be pressure on the company in order to make a changing transaction for them.
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alex sherman talk today about them looking at 10 companies. that makes a lot of sense to us. they have issues in the wireless business. there is a whole host of companies they are looking at, and there tends to be this anything goes mentality where you can proceed with any type of transaction at this point, right? caroline: maybe not an at&t-time-warner one. what about the other 10 companies that verizon could be looking at? >> one company would make more sense if they want to fix their wireless business and her t-mobile's ability to get capacity, then they should buy dish. if they want content, maybe they should look at disney. if they want to diversify the slowing business they have, maybe they should look at vodafone. there are so many different options that verizon could look at going forward. the fact they are talking to
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charter, i think it is interesting. it is not surprising given the challenges they face. if we are in an anything goes environment, why shouldn't they also be looking at charter. this is liberty saying to comcast why don't you take a look at us, and really all these deal start together some pace. caroline: so regulatory hurdles, fewer amid this new administration? or is the land not clear yet? >> the land is not clear. doj should have major issues with these print-t-mobile transaction, and yet the market thinks that transaction can get done. with our new chairman of the fcc, i think the perception is that there will not be as much
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problem with the transactions, using the power they have to evaluate these things based on the public interest, but the doj is a methodical organization, so we are skeptical that if sprint and t-mobile tried it that they would be successful. if we are wrong and the market is right, why shouldn't comcast be looking at charter? caroline: back to earnings, and main story and tech this week. cory johnson joined us with bob bowdon on to dig through the takeaways. >> the azure business continues to grow. there is no sign of that slowing down. there is a huge opportunity, amazon, google, and microsoft. a lot of interest there, and we are seeing each of these vendors trying to focus on adding interesting artificial intelligence, speech recognition capabilities, so that other developers can take advantage of this if they're going to use microsoft's cloud services, so we will see more exciting developments.
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the office 365 business is interesting because they successfully moved from this model where we used to pay for a copy of office to now paying for a subscription, and that has nice financial benefits. we are starting to see some opportunities from that as well. interestingly enough, even the windows business did ok. of course they are heavily involved with gaming, so they are nicely positioned as we move forward. caroline: what about the acquisition, linkedin, did we get any hints about how that's adding? >> they are very much separate businesses. microsoft more than any company has screwed up merger after merger going back decades, so can this one be different? they hope so. they plan to keep this as a separately operated company. the results in the first quarter, but how much will it be in the future?
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>> with office 365, there is an interesting mix between some of the linkedin capabilities with office as you tie contact information from outlook and other things into linkedin. we will see what happens. caroline: what about intel? >> intel is really interesting. with all the companies we are talking about today, we are talking about this seismic change in computing, moving from companies buying lots of equipment to borrowing equipment and doing it over the cloud, so intel tried to wrestle with that issue where they had this profitable business, pc
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contracting, server business profitable, trying to move into a lower margin environment. when i talk to the ceo, what he had to say to us about the pc market was interesting. intel saw rising sales into a shrinking market with pcs, so we have a cautious view. they expect pcs to continue to contract, but at the same time, they think their datacenter business might be strong, so when they look at how it they can guide towards flat margins and growth that is still growing in a shrinking industry, that is by selling better stuff in the data centers and keeping the margins together on the other side.
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the average selling price will be better for all of their products as they bring new products for the data center business, then looks down market and at the same time looking at hargrove for low-margin products. more low-margin, which will hurt their high-margin business. caroline: that was editor at large cory johnson and bob o'donnell. coming up, china's biggest internet giants are vying for the attention of smartphone users for the lunar new year holiday. we will take you inside the tencent headquarters in shenzhen for a closer look at mobile payment strategy. all episodes are now live streaming on twitter, check us out weekdays at 5:00 p.m. in new york, 2:00 p.m. in san francisco. this is bloomberg. ♪
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caroline: it seems samsung isn't the only company with battery issues. hp over recalled over 100,000 batteries. it is an expansion of the 41,000 recalled in june 2016. the reason for the recall is possible overheating that can pose fire and burn hazards. hp said it will provide a free replacement for each eligible battery. the chinese lunar new year tradition of handing out red envelopes has entered the 21st century. millions of people are expected to send gifts to digitally this year. according to tencent, users sent more than $8 billion in one day last year. bloomberg news reporter tom mackenzie went inside tencent's headquarters in shenzhen.
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♪ >> chinese new year is a boon for mobile payment companies, thanks in part to this. well over one billion mobile transactions are expected this year as people fire off virtual red envelopes via their phone. valued at $32 million in 2012, china's mobile payment market was worth $1.8 trillion last year. tencent's wechat and alibaba's affiliated alipay are the two biggest rivals in this space. their absolute allow you to do everything from buying a latte to taking out a personal loan. it is all about getting an edge. >> in recent years we have seen many players emerging in the mobile payment market, including banks and other third-party payment platforms. the competition is so fierce that it is almost brutal.
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>> alipay and wechat have come to dominate with 90% market share, and that has drawn the attention of regulators who are expected to ramp up controls this year. the people's bank of china wants companies like ant financial to register. it is also developing its own crypto currency to be used in online transactions. >> we follow all guidelines, and as that adapts and will continue to adapt, we adjust our models to reflect with the regulations require. >> china's banks are feeding the pain. lenders here lost about $22 billion in payment revenue to alipay and wechat in 2015. that disruption is not stopping at china's borders. ant financial is trying to
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capitalize on the 150 million chinese who travel abroad each year. it has also invested in india's paytm and is eyeing expansion elsewhere. >> we look closely at the u.s., europe, and what is the right strategy there as well, so we have a global perspective and global ambitions and we will roll that out as we determine the right partners. >> china's mobile payment giants are on a roll, but succeeding abroad is likely to be the biggest challenge yet. caroline: bloomberg news reporter tom mackenzie joins us live from beijing. thank you for getting up early. you talked in the piece, you interviewed a lady who spoke about the brutal competition. who are the key competitors to alipay and wechat? tom: there is a lot of
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bloodletting between alipay and wechat, and wechat has expanded its market share from 11% to 20%, whereas alipay has seen its market share falloff. you have the other competitors, apple pay, they launched. we also have huawei, they have their own payment system. samsung, they have android. you have with a jd finance, the wealth management side of things. in terms of what alipay and wechat are offering, they have an ecosystem, so it makes it easy to use their mobile payment systems to do these different things, whether managing wealth or buying flights to travel abroad. they have to take on that
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element of things. apple has the brand strength, but they use these nfc codes instead of qr codes, so it will be a challenge for apple to carve out market share. caroline: you mentioned global expansion, india. what is happening there? tom: alipay have been leading the march, teaming up with banks in europe, stores in london. they have also teamed up in the u.s., so alipay making a big push on this. it comes down to branding and brand recognition and can they take on apple pay in the u.s. caroline: that was bloomberg news reporter tom mackenzie from shenzhen, china. up next, appdynamics' ipo was officially squashed. we will see what this means for pending tech ipos. check us out on the radio. this is bloomberg. ♪
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download the xfinity tv app today. caroline: welcome back to the "best of bloomberg technology". i am caroline hyde. cisco is making an acquisition, acquiring appdynamics for $3.7 billion. cisco snapped of the software maker before it planned to go public this week. bloomberg's daybreak american team spoke to the ceo of cisco on the news. >> yesterday was a great day for us. we had two great levers on how we drive innovation. in the morning, we launched cisco smart board, which will revolutionize meetings and business.
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one of the headlines is that it was one of the coolest products cisco has built. in the afternoon, we made the acquisition of appdynamics, a fantastic acquisition for us. in reality, what they do is they translate application performance into his news insights for the customer, and they do it across private and public cloud, so we think the synergy of what we see at the infrastructure level and they see at the application layer creates visibility that no other company in the industry can provide to customers. i was there yesterday. 15 minutes after we made the announcement, i address the employee base, and i think they are excited. >> i have a couple of questions about the deal itself. you paid a pretty high price, $3.7 billion. the reports were the ipo would
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be something like half of that. is it dilutive, the price right, and at what point does it become accretive? >> when we looked at the company, there were a few things we looked at. first, they are the best company in the space. secondly, they are growing twice as fast as their nearest competitor. third, they are growing faster than any public traded software company today. the record-breaking sale valued appdynamics -- congratulations. how much did you put into series a? >> we made an investment in april 2008 for $5.5 million, and this company was invited at
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$12.5 million at the time. caroline: it is valued at $11.5 million, now valued at $3.7 billion. that must be such a reward for you. when did you get the offer on the table? >> we signed the agreement with cisco minutes before we announced yesterday. we were proceeding down the path to be a public company, and the strong belief in the company management team and the board that this could be a multibillion dollar business going forward. this is when the company did not know each other. a few days ago, the ceo of cisco invited the ceo of appdynamics, and that led to intense conversations. the cisco team and the appdynamics team came to the
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conclusion that merging with cisco could accelerate the mission of the company and gain market share faster. caroline: do you think it would have got a $3.7 billion valuation anytime soon? >> we did not go public, but the ipo roadshow was very strong. within a couple of days, the offering was completely subscribed. if we had gone public tomorrow, it would have been a very strong ipo and likely traded up. caroline: it is fascinating. you have been on the board of appdynamics, in fact, greylock helped this company grow. they were working with you when this company was first born in 2008. do you think apart from the price tag, cisco is the right way to go rather than listing? >> i think every company has to
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make their own determination whether they become a public company or are required at some point in the lifecycle. appdynamics is a world-class technology company and world-class reached, so i think cisco can be an excellent home for appdynamics, both in terms of extending reach for the product line, and also in terms of synergy. so combining that data with the application and business performance data that appdynamics has can be powerful looking forward. caroline: what does this say to the highly valued unicorns out there at the moment looking at the market and weathering whether to ipo, wondering whether to be acquired?
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do you think this might put off others going public? >> i don't think so. the indication from the roadshow the company undertook is that the public market seems to be very open and very receptive for the best of technology businesses. i was in a group luncheon san franciso two days ago, and it was standing room only. the room was full of public market investors. just this morning, my email is full of messages from investors around the country saying congrats. we really wanted to purchase stock in this company. caroline: with the first major tech ipo down the train, what is next for tech companies pondering going public? will this spark a flurry of tech m&a? >> cisco did come in at $3.7 billion, higher than the $1.7 billion they were going for, but this is not a common occurrence. we saw bluecoat get bought by
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symantec, but they were not on the road yet. appdynamics had done their meetings and road shows, and investors were excited, and i guess cisco was more excited and willing to pull the trigger on a buyout. caroline: could this be a theme, roadshows making it hot to buy in and then take them off the market? >> there are 30-40 companies we are expecting to have a good chance to come out this year, but we purposely use the language that they will have an exit this year. a lot of those companies, especially the mid range group, not the big names, a lot of those companies are absolutely willing to do a dual track and see what their options are. caroline: there's one man out there who is hoping this does not become a theme. we spoke to tom farley earlier. have a listen.
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>> we are expecting 10 ipos and the next three weeks, including four on friday, three ipos and a closed end funds. those 10 ipos, they are really big ipos. caroline: this must have got bankers concerned? >> it does. the deals tom is talking about, those are companies outside of tech that we have been waiting to see for a while. they are clearing out the pipeline, because last year was so choppy in equities, and now we have this trump rally and the are taking advantage of it. it is a different story was some of these growth tech companies. investors want to buy in, but there is no supply. we've heard about these companies going public, but it will be interesting to see who tests the waters next. all of these smaller names, but to your point, they are also the ones that when the strategics
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feel like they're willing to write the checks that make the valuations, these are the same enterprise companies we might see get bought out by the likes of cisco. >> i agree. last year was a record year after a record year, but there was something interesting about that record last year. a lot of the big-name technology companies were not the ones doing the buying. you go off the traditional serial acquires, they were not buying. and yet, they have the funds to do it. they are interesting and see these companies bringing disruptive technologies, cloud, ai, deep learning. those are a attractive assets disrupting every industry, and so it is not even just the cisco, hp, it could be the walmart, ford, p&g as well. caroline: coming up, more on
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president trump's meetings with business leaders this week. how some tech companies are aligning themselves with the administration. plus, president trump making good on his pledge to take down his predecessors initiative, but there is one that might be embraced by the new administration. more on that story, next. this is bloomberg. ♪
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caroline: president trump met with business leaders at the white house monday morning. tech companies around the world are eager to align themselves with the new administration. let's focus on foxconn and ibm. foxconn, the biggest manufacturer of apple devices may build a u.s. factory, a major investment for the company that could create tens of thousands of jobs.
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then there is ibm. it pledged to hire 25,000 workers and the next four years, but a new report from bloomberg found big lou cutting jobs as it touts its hiring plans. we discussed president trump's job agenda in a roundtable. >> alternative facts are not limited to the white house press conference. the notion ibm is hiring and making press releases and talking a trump tower, talking about adding jobs, spending a billion dollars to do so, but at the same time, the company has been cutting jobs, and cutting them rather aggressively. if you look at the number of employees, what we see -- it looked good with that company out with a press release saying
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they would hire more in the u.s. and spend $1 billion on training, and we see ibm cutting. the number of employees has been cut dramatically over her tenure as ceo. if we go to the bloomberg terminal, ibm loss, which you see is a list of all the job cuts. we can scroll through there and the list goes on and on. what has happened to the stock prices you can see coming down over time even as they have been buying back shares and cutting jobs, that's another way to visualize those job cuts. lowering the number of shares out there, and even then it has not helped the stock. caroline: foxconn, you put out a brief on bloomberg gadfly. you are not buying all the pr around what seems to be a deal
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coming from foxconn and touting apple might support them in building this big factory in the united states. >> foxconn chairman on the weekend pointed out that it is a wish and not a promise. that is an important caveat from the billionaire chairman of foxconn. he has make governments around the world believe he may invest in their countries, but has not always followed through. you can't blame him for that, because governments and officials and the governments are getting ahead of themselves, but he has been patient, but also aggressive, going to various governments and saying if you want me in your backyard, you have to offer incentives. he said that at the year end party, that he would be looking at stakeholders in the u.s. for the best deal.
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that means tax incentives, cheap land, electricity, all those things that cost money. if he can get a good deal, then he will consider it. caroline: tit for tat, not all one way for donald trump. david, give us your view on all this pr and whether ceos are learning a new way to a job hirings and firings. >> we are living in a world where appearances seem to matter more than ever, and sometimes more than fact. in terms of foxconn building a plant in the u.s., i think it is an interesting possibility. it would be politically hugely advantageous for apple if they could point to a considerable amount of their own sourcing coming from the u.s. from a prominent plant. as tim points out, these are auctions where companies are asking people to bid for their
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business, and from foxconn's point of view, it only helps to have these reports out there. a plant like this is so automated today, that increasingly these companies don't care where it is. in the past, they might need it in china because it was a labor intensive business, but increasingly it will not be labor intensive, and so were not talking about the number of jobs bandied about, and i think it is a matter of where they get the incentives. it is not about labor cost because automation is what determines the success of these plants. >> one reason they remain in china is because the labor is so cheap. they created a process that was labor intensive, but as the cost of labor has risen in china, there is more use of automation. that worldwide decline in manufacturing jobs is something
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that even alternative facts can't rescue us from, but is an important issue in the politics. caroline: staying with the new trump administration, one important issue may looks like it may continue under president trump, obama's tech surge. bloomberg's head of global technology coverage brad stone explains. >> the tech surge, who will trump appoint? on the policy side, there are plenty of questions. the ftc chair seems against net neutrality. all these other issues where silicon valley politically differs even at the same times as they look forward to tax holidays and a lower corporate tax rate. caroline: it is fascinating what is going on on twitter, but elon
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musk tweeting a bloomberg reporter, saying he's backing rex tillerson. there we have it. elon musk starting to get in bed with the u.s. administration. does that surprise you? >> that has been his primary communication mechanism for so long. it is a mouthpiece directly to the people. of course the masses aren't necessarily on twitter, but it allows him to get an unfiltered message out there. we are seeing elon musk and other business leaders take a role in the administration, taking the opportunity to get their policy priorities passed
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in this new environment, so there is cautious outreach on both sides, and twitter is the venue of choice. caroline: will it be adopted more widescale by other politicians? >> trump is singular in his ability to get attention. he tweets are impetuous. we also looked at whether this is good for twitter, and i don't know that it is. caroline: for more, catch the latest episode of our podcast. you will find new episodes on itunes every tuesday. coming up, online pharmacy shaking up the pharmacy business. we visit the pharmacy startups headquarters next. this is bloomberg. ♪
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caroline: spending on prescription drugs in the u.s. hit a record $425 billion last year and the demand for pharmacy is growing, and yet 54% of americans fail to take their drugs correctly. pill pack seized the opportunity to simplify the process. bloomberg visited the startup's headquarters in somerville, massachusetts. ♪ >> pill pack is taking on the neighborhood pharmacy. >> they don't think about the overall value of the consumer. >> the online pharmacy has a different approach. >> you get one of these boxes. >> that boxes delivered every few weeks. pills are sorted in individual packets by the time and date they should be taken.
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>> this is one for 8:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 8:00 p.m. >> the ceo is focused on 30 million americans who take five or more prescriptions a day. parker launched pill pack in 2014, now with $120 million in funding. >> from 200 people a year ago to 600 today. >> it recently expanded to a 50,000 square foot distribution warehouse in manchester, new hampshire. ♪ >> robots help sort pills, and the majority of employees handle claims, shipping, and program its online tools. >> how hard would it be for another player to just replicate that exact model? >> the automation, the system, all of that having to build from
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scratch, so if they had to build an equipment, they could do it. it would just take a long time. >> a bloomberg intelligence analysts sees little reason to mimic the model. >> they have their work cut out if they want to tackle this problem and pushed cvs and walgreens off the pedestal. 90% of that is going to the retail corner pharmacy. >> and just like those competitors, he'll pack labels in itself an online retail pharmacy, not simply a mail order service. >> this is a business definition that varies. we do not fit in any of the existing buckets particular he well. >> that distinction is at the center of the public contract dispute with express scripts. cvs caremark, united health, and
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express scripts -- >> mail order pharmacies are reimbursed at a lower rate than retail pharmacies or a specialty pharmacy, so my guess is pill pack is at higher rates than we see out there. >> part of that negotiation was around rates, but that was not the core negotiation. the core negotiation was do consumers ultimately have the ability to choose what pharmacy they want to use. >> another battle is helping patients take the drugs they are told. it costs the u.s. $300 billion a year. >> there are a handful of startups doing same day deliveries, but we think that is a different solution. the secret sauce of pill pack is not delivery.
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>> pill pack's goal is to make taking medicine easy. caroline: a story to leave you with, a disturbance in the force at disney this we can be described in one word, excitement. that is after the announcement of the next installment of the star wars saga, star wars, the of the next installment of the last jedi. the last jedi will hit u.s. theaters on december 17. that does it for this edition of "best of bloomberg technology". next week, we have a terrific lineup of exclusive interviews, including dropbox and slack. remember all episodes of bloomberg technology are live streaming on twitter.
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check us out. that is all for now. this is bloomberg. ♪ ♪
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>> coming up, the stories that shaped the weekend business around the world. trump administration is the ground running, acting swiftly on several campaign promises. >> what leaders to create jobs in the u.s. >> you will get favor shakes and better deals with trading partners. >> a lot of people were hoping he would start with tax reform. >> the industrial average is 20,000. we asked what is in a number? >> we expect 10 ipo's in the next few weeks. >> greed eventually comes back. >> parliament will get to vote on brexit. >> it is similar to a


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