Thematic Reads: July 12, 2021

Thematic Reads: July 12, 2021

Thematic Reads

Each week Team Tematica consumes an immense quantity and range of content as we look to stay on top of the latest data and mine it for tailwind and headwind signals for our investment themes and indices.

Cleaner Living
Growing demand for items that claim to be better for you and the planet:

Beyond Meat (BYND) today announced the arrival of its new plant-based Chicken Tenders at upward of 400 U.S. based restaurants. The news follows continued growth for the California-based faux meat giant, which includes expansion to Walmart stores, Taco Bell restaurants and a big push into China over the past year.”
Beyond Meat launches-plant-based chicken tenders at US restaurants

Tesla (TSLA) has signed what could be described as a breakthrough deal to deploy solar roofs and Powerwalls on a “large scale” in a new community being built by Brookfield Asset Management (BAM) and Dacra in Austin. They confirmed that the first phase of installations already started last month, and they are starting with Tesla Solar Roof tiles V3 and Powerwall 2 home battery packs.
Tesla signs breakthrough deal to deploy solar roofs and Powerwalls on ‘large scale’ in the new community

“Shoppers are expanding their commitment to healthier lifestyles when they’re shopping for soaps, shampoos, skincare, and other body care items that are less toxic and harmful for their bodies and for the planet. Today’s savvy shopper has their eye on functional wellness when it comes to their personal care products.”
Savvy Shoppers And Functional Wellness In Body Care

“I’m so proud to relaunch Kylie Cosmetics with all new formulas that are clean and vegan,” said Kylie Jenner. “Innovation has come far in the past few years. When creating this line, it was so important to me to commit to using clean ingredients across the board, but to never sacrifice performance.”
Coty (COTY) Relaunches Kylie Cosmetics as a Clean, Vegan Brand

“As travel and tourism ramp up, aviation will again produce about 3 percent of total carbon emissions, plus other greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. Hybrid-electric and hydrogen-powered aircraft could help the industry reach the next efficiency horizon, but developing them could take ten to 20 years, and the technology will be initially limited to smaller aircraft.
Scaling sustainable aviation fuel today for clean skies tomorrow


Cyber Security & Data Privacy
Securing individuals and organizations against cyber threats and privacy violations:

“There’s a direct correlation. When you look at the rise of ransomware, it absolutely aligns with the rise of anonymous digital currencies.. It’s no question it’s an enabler that you can break in anonymously and be paid anonymously, and now you can commit crime from 10,000 miles away in a safe harbor,”
FireEye (FEYE) CEO Kevin Mandia

” Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) has agreed to acquire RiskIQ, a security software maker, as the tech giant tries to expand its products and better protect customers amid a rising tide of global cyberattacks, according to people familiar with the matter. San Francisco-based RiskIQ makes cloud software for detecting security threats, helping clients understand where and how they can be attacked on complex webs of corporate networks and devices. Its customers include Facebook Inc., BMW AG, American Express Co. and the U.S. Postal Service, according to the company’s web site.”
Microsoft Is Said to be Buying Cybersecurity Company RiskIQ

“From critical infrastructure to banks and financial institutions, and all the other companies in between just too big to fail; neglect has replaced sound computer network hygiene and security. The reasons are varied. Some companies have found it difficult to staff up across their enterprise, while others have balked at the costs of implementing proper security safeguards. ”
A rise in ransomware threatens America’s critical infrastructure

Cybersecurity researchers are warning about a new malware that’s striking online gambling companies in China via a watering hole attack to deploy either Cobalt Strike beacons or a previously undocumented Python-based backdoor called BIOPASS RAT that takes advantage of Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) Studio’s live-streaming app to capture the screen of its victims to attackers. The attack involves deceiving gaming website visitors into downloading a malware loader camouflaged as a legitimate installer for popular-but-deprecated apps such as Adobe Flash Player or Microsoft Silverlight, only for the loader to act as a conduit for fetching next-stage payloads.
Hackers Spread BIOPASS Malware via Chinese Online Gambling Sites

Swiss online consumer outlet Comparis has filed a criminal complaint over a ransomware attack on Wednesday that blocked some of its information technology systems, it said on Friday. “As far as we know, most databases do not seem to be affected by the incident. Unfortunately, first detailed analyses suggest that the perpetrators had access to certain customer-relevant data of sister company Credaris, whose systems are partly operated in the same server environment,” it said. Credaris is a financial brokerage.
Ransomware attack hits Swiss consumer outlet Comparis

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) warns cryptocurrency owners, exchanges, and third-party payment platforms of threat actors actively targeting virtual assets in attacks that can lead to significant financial losses… According to the FBI, attackers are using several tactics to steal and launder cryptocurrency, including technical support fraud, SIM swapping (aka SIM hijacking), and taking control of their targets’ cryptocurrency exchange accounts via identity theft or account takeovers.
FBI warns cryptocurrency owners, exchanges of ongoing attacks

“Audio device company Jabra has taken the first steps toward 100% sustainable packaging across its complete product range. Jabra has announced it’s created 100% recyclable packaging for its latest earbuds, the Elite 85t, half a year after the launch of the product. The Evolve2 headset range also has new eco-friendly packaging that combines a pouch and a paper bag. The company says the improved packaging for these two products is one of its steps towards achieving 100% sustainable packaging across all of its product ranges.
Audio company Jabra takes steps toward 100% sustainable packaging across entire product range


Digital Infrastructure & Connectivity
The Buildout and upgrading of our Networks, Data Storage Facilities, and Equipment:

“Hybrid work represents the biggest shift to how we work in a generation. And it will require a new operating model. Teams now has over 145 million daily active users, almost double the number a year ago. In markets where employees have returned to the workplace, including Australia, China, New Zealand, South Korea, and Taiwan, we have seen usage continue to grow”
Microsoft (MSFT) CEO Satya Nadella

“The markets today are more diversified than ever. Automotive, electric vehicles requiring more memory and storage — actually becoming data centers on wheels in the future — and certainly smartphones, data centers, gaming, industrial applications…We really see a healthier and more robust demand environment than ever.”
Micron (MU) CEO Sanjay Mehrotra

“The data center construction market in Western Europe is poised to grow by $6.72 bn during 2021-2025, progressing at a CAGR of over 9% during the forecast period.
The market is driven by the release of General Data Protection Regulation, growth of the Netherlands as an international hub, and free energy concept gaining prominence.”
“Data Center Construction Market in Western Europe 2021-2025”

“Singapore-based Princeton Digital Group (PDG), backed by private equity firm Warburg Pincus, said on Tuesday it was investing $1 billion to build a data centre facility in Japan, marking the company’s foray into its fifth market…The company is looking at deepening its presence in existing markets, and is considering new ones such as South Korea and other Southeast Asian countries.”
Warburg Pincus-backed Princeton Digital to invest $1 bln in Japan data centre

“Machines are no longer the bottleneck,” said Meltem Demirors, chief strategy officer at CoinShares. “Hosting facilities are. You just can’t build a massive co-location data center in a few months.”
Bitcoin Miners Thwarted by Data Center Crunch

“Swedish luxury automobile manufacturer Volvo Cars (VOLVY) and leading ICT provider Ericsson (ERIC) have taken an important step towards achieving seamless cross-border 5G connectivity in vehicles. Partners in the EU-backed 5GCroCo project, the two companies successfully tested the handover of connected cars between two national mobile 5G networks.”
Seamless cross-border 5G connectivity achieved in autonomous cars

The latest Marvel film scored $80 million at the domestic box office during its debut, the most of any film released in the wake of the Covid epidemic… Walt Disney (DIS) also revealed that it garnered more than $60 million globally from sales of the film through Disney+ Premier Access. This is the first time the company has shared information about movie sales earned from its streaming service.
‘Black Widow’ snags $80 million from its theatrical debut, $60 million from Disney+


Digital Payments & FinTech
Companies leveraging technology to disrupt and improve the financial services and payments industries:

“The global Payment Processing Solutions market size is projected to reach $52.1billion by 2026, up from $33.810 billion in 2019…” Major factors driving the growth of payment processing solutions market size are increasing eCommerce sales along with growing internet and smartphone penetration and embracing contactless payments globally and evolving customer expectations.
Payment Processing Solutions Market Size to Reach USD 52,060 Million by 2026

“Payments service providers are building an array of financial services to compete with financial institutions (FIs). Lending, bank account products, issuing, and other services that have been FIs’ bread and butter are being challenged in a bid to add more revenue opportunities and engender greater loyalty. These payment disruptors, such as Square (SQ), Stripe, and Shopify (SHOP), are using their existing relationships with small businesses to attract clients away from FIs and persuading them to use their own financial offerings.”
Key trends helping payments disruptors take on financial services

“Competition in payments has intensified over the past decade, with fintech players like Stripe, Jack Dorsey’s Square and Netherlands-based Adyen all vying for a bigger share of the $2 trillion market.”
This little-known payments start-up is now Europe’s third-biggest fintech


Sustainable Future of Food
Companies addressing the challenge of providing healthy, affordable and nutritious food to a growing global population amid dwindling natural resources:

“AI and Nanotechnology would help in “precision agriculture” and would help farmers know the right things to do or observe when farming certain crops. This would help ensure that no supplies and resources would get wasted and that it would help yield the best possible results at any given time of farming.”
AI, Nanotechnology May Help Solve World Hunger via ‘Precision Agriculture,’ Thanks to Research

“Autonomous vehicles poised to hit the mainstream alongside rapid growth in AI computing capabilities with improving commercials are offering enormous opportunities in the Smart Farming and Precision Agriculture market. Over the forecast period to 2028, we forecast the Smart Farming and Precision Agriculture market to regain growth momentum, mainly with support from developing markets.”
Worldwide Smart Farming and Precision Agriculture Industry to 2028

“L’Oréal, the world’s largest beauty brand, is paving the way for other cosmetics giants to up their environmental credentials with a new recycled cosmetics bottle made using enzymatic technology. Developed by biotech solutions provider Carbios, the new bottles will first be adopted by the company’s Luxury Products brand Biotherm.
L’Oréal pushes on with sustainable packaging goals using ‘disruptive’ enzymatic technology

“Making sustainability part of their business model is critical for online retailers, especially as the industry is coming under intense criticism for its heavy use of plastics in packaging.”
Singapore online retailers go green by merging fashion with sustainability

“Researchers from UC Santa Cruz’s ecological aquaculture lab won a three-year, $1 million grant from the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative at the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.This funding will support collaborative research to develop, test, and evaluate new low-polluting fish feed formulas for farm-raised rainbow trout.”
New research on aquaculture feed will test alternative ingredients to help minimize water pollution

“Aquaculture is expected to be the main driver for the increase of fish production globally, according to a new report by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). By 2030, global aquaculture production is projected to reach 103 Mt, 6 Mt more than the capture sector projected the OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2021-2030 report. Per capita fish consumption will increase in Asia, Europe, and the Americas, while it will remain stable in Oceania and decrease in Africa…”
Aquaculture main driver of fish production globally

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About the Author

Chris Versace, Chief Investment Officer
I'm the Chief Investment Officer of Tematica Research and editor of Tematica Investing newsletter. All of that capitalizes on my near 20 years in the investment industry, nearly all of it breaking down industries and recommending stocks. In that time, I've been ranked an All Star Analyst by Zacks Investment Research and my efforts in analyzing industries, companies and equities have been recognized by both Institutional Investor and Thomson Reuters’ StarMine Monitor. In my travels, I've covered cyclicals, tech and more, which gives me a different vantage point, one that uses not only an ecosystem or food chain perspective, but one that also examines demographics, economics, psychographics and more when formulating my investment views. The question I most often get is "Are you related to…."

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