CNN+ Is Minus, Cox Auto Insights, and Saving Energy for Crypto

April 22, 2022
Every time we get to tell the story of ASOTU, it brings so much energy to what we are doing today. Looking back, pressing forward, and living in the moment all allow us to keep the vision alive for you and for this industry! Disruption, business ebb and flow, and new trends are all a part of the show this morning, so buckle up and ride with us!
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CNN+ is no more after just a few weeks

  • Only 10,000 daily users 150k subs
  • Netflix 221M subs, Disney+ 129M
  • Move comes as Warner and Discover merge. New CEO, David Zaslav, who wasn’t pumped about the project said he will be working to merge all the companies streaming services into one (HBO Max, Discovery)

Cox Automotive released 10 key insights this week from its KBB Team

  • Toyota is still on top
  • EVs sales continue to increase
  • Only four brands delivered year-over-year sales gains: BMW, Genesis, Mini, and Tesla
  • Ford’s F-Series is still king
  • Fiat sold only 340 vehicles in Q1
  • Luxury brands grabbed more share in Q1
  • Tesla is still the dominant player in the EV market
  • Small vehicles are more popular than mid-sized, but the large are the most popular models
  • In luxury, new is important
  • Three segments account for 49% of US auto sales: Compact SUVs, Full-Size Pickups, Mid-Size SUVs

Times Square went dark as part of a marketing campaign by crypto mining company Algorand

  • The entire block went dark between 8 and 9 pm to conserve 23.4 billion joules of energy
  • That amount would only power 1.5 seconds of Bitcoin network operations and only 6 transactions…however, on Algorand, that amount would power 350 million transactions and 2 weeks of network operations
  • This is due to the manner in which the company authenticates transactions
  • The tech was developed by MIT professor Silvio Micali

Paul Daly  00:33

Yo, it is Friday. Finally, we made it to Friday, this has been a good week, we got a little bit more to go. Today, we're gonna talk about a couple of things, caught his top 10 list, like what things you should be paying attention to, we're gonna go through that for second.

Kyle Mountsier  00:51

Friday feel so good today.

Paul  00:54

I don't know. I don't know how everybody's Thursday was but ours was ours was lit, energizing.

Kyle Mountsier  01:02

Let's just say let's just say there's, there's some time in September, like, you may just want to make sure you're not going on vacation in September, you're not planning any random, you know, events or company picnics or anything like that. Because there may be something to do that may or may not be something to do with September, that may 

Paul  01:23

Specifically the second or third week. There may be somebody second or third week to be specific. But we're going to talk about it more soon. But boy, boy, is this undercurrent getting a little bit stronger. We'd like to talk about what we're doing with Automotive State of the Union like an undercurrent, right? Because there are so many people that are attached and involved in what we're doing, and what the dealer community is doing that no one has really seen yet. Right? When everybody paying attention and outsiders looking in, you might just not see it yet, but like an undercurrent, little by little, you see a person getting pulled out to the ocean, and then another one, and then another one, and then you're like, oh my gosh, there's something going on under the water. And then before you know it, everybody's in a frenzy. So that's how we think it's gonna go around here.

Kyle Mountsier  02:09

That's how it is going. And I'm excited about it. It's just like, everybody's going, yeah, there's something moving. And I feel it, and I'm a part of it. I don't really know exactly what I'm part of. But there's a big move. And I think that that's the energy. I mean, every time automotive gets together, I feel like we you know, it doesn't matter what event or what you know, clubhouse room or what live or anything like that, what what everyone comes out saying is like, there was a particular energy I don't really know how to put my finger on it. But it was

Paul  02:39

so common to hear that it's so common Kyle and I just spent a good portion of an hour this morning in a clubhouse room with a lot of our investors. Were there are other investors in it though, too. And boy, does that just get me fired up about what we're doing. One of the things we were talking about is May 9, we are having a live in person event, the first evening of digital dealer in Tampa, Florida, the ASOTU Family Reunion REMIX, tickets are starting to go now. So if you haven't gotten your tickets, go to click on the little banner at the top to get the details of the event. We're going to have a lot of special guests there you can see them listed out we're going to have a retail swag experience. So you're gonna get us so two bucks coming in and get to go shopping for some awesome swag. We're gonna make it hot. We're gonna have great food, great drinks, right? Great pictures, great social posts. And my favorite part, like we talked about this a lot. My favorite part is like spending five minutes with someone that you respect in the industry and getting some insights from them in person in five minutes is worth more than watching 10 hours of content online.

Kyle Mountsier  03:43

Exactly. Yeah, I think this is this is what a lot of people are like, mixers like leave business for the day leaves not a mixer. That is not that is not what we're after here. This is not a mixer. This is not like just like you know putz around a party and hopefully get a drink. This is intentional connection, that that you can like doing business being intentional about the way that you spend time with people is what we want to provide when we put on an event with ASOTU.

Paul  04:11

That's right. And so you know, when it's like, Hey, that was so that didn't feel like work. It's not going to feel like work. But you're going to realize you probably pull more value out of these couple of hours with all these people than you probably did in the last like four weeks. So hope you can join us. Again tickets sold out last year, they'll probably sell out again, if you're a dealer, our friends at AUTO Fi paid for all the dealer tickets. So if you're a dealer or you work for a dealership, go and register, it's still a ticketed event. Go to the thing register your ticket now but it's on our friends at AUTO Fi and if you're an industry partner, we're bringing you all the value for the ticket costs. So we had some some industry partners line up yesterday we're like yo, this is the place to be so just starting to start to buy some tickets. So I'm going to talk about that more a little bit right after this show today if you're on the live stream at nine o'clock Eastern we're jumping into the all things use car clubhouse room David Long has just puts together probably one of the most meaningful live pieces of content in automotive across the board every single week.

Kyle Mountsier  05:09

Yes. And we're talking about Brian Kramer's newsletter from LinkedIn this week, which was just unhinged, and so tight, and I can't wait. We're like, we got to get through this stuff right now so that we can get to that stuff. Yeah, of course, all much going on in the industry. It's crazy.

Paul  05:22

All right, let's talk about a few things. A little story. We've been following CNN+, we've been talking about the streaming, he laughs He laughs right out of the gate. So we've got him, we've been talking about streaming services, and the fact that it's no longer everyone subscribing to everything, because consumers are more price sensitive. They are more, you know, they're going through their budgets, saying this is matters. That doesn't matter. We'll see them put a whole lot of effort and a whole lot of money. They literally hired other news personalities away from other networks like Chris Wallace, they got him to go from Fox to CNN, that took a couple of bucks. Right? It took a couple of bucks. And CNN launched just four weeks ago, and they just announced that they're shutting it down after nobody wanted it. Yeah, talking about a market research miss. How does that happen? Well, apparently then what happened?

Kyle Mountsier  06:13

Apparently, they didn't find they didn't find the research on how Netflix was losing subscribers like crazy. Yeah.

Paul  06:20

Well, that we didn't know that at the time. But I'm thinking like, how does how does a network with the size and scope of CNN not understand what their consumer actually once? Right? It was like, 

Kyle Mountsier  06:33

 almost think about the niche. Think about when you need what CNN provides, right? It's very, it's a time based scenario. Like you're not, you're not looking for post streaming. You're not watching CNN. Two days later gone. Man, glad I know that now. The people that are watching CNN are looking for the on the moment news, and

Paul  06:55

which is typically, let's be honest, around CNN, there's just a lot of a lot of sell in the news, right? It's a lot of like, when something's falling apart, there's there's kind of like this level of use a heavy word, I kind of mean, it is like this fear mongering, right? And it's like, that's why people tune in, right? Because something's going on. I need information. 

Kyle Mountsier  07:13

My own boss, this, like the place that I was at. He had a TV in his office, and it ran CNN all day. Right? So he's not waiting for the streaming service, or like plugging that in at nine o'clock at night when he's, you know, hanging out, like, at home, you know, not to grab the family around to watch CNN+,

Paul  07:32

not not Oh, yeah, no, that's true. So what happened was, they only had got 150,000 subscribers total, only 10,000 of those were even tuning in every day. And to give you a little a thought of scale, and scope, Netflix has 221 million subscribers. Disney plus has 129 million subscribers. Right? And so, and you think of the value that brings to the whole family, right? Even if you're a CNN+, like, I'll tell you what news and my family, there's like one person that brings value to this guy, right? My kids, they want to watch, you know, Marvel and Mauna. And whatever else whatever else this place the

Kyle  08:11

end, and you put this in our show notes, but when Warner and discover merge, right, discovery and then discovery, and then so if you had like HBO, Max and discovery and CNN, like the thing that Apple or that. Sorry, Disney did with, I think it's Disney Hulu ESPN, yep. Right. And they plug that in for one monthly subscription. Yeah. And they raised overall monthly active users because of that. Yeah, that's that was the opportunity. And now they've got to go back and scrounge for that.

Paul Daly  08:42

Now they're backing up? Well, the new CEO, he's new, his name is David Zaslav. And he wasn't pumped about the project from the beginning. And now that he's in charge of the whole thing. He's saying, like, hey, I want to take HBO Max, I want to take Discovery level. And let's roll it all up. And let's get it under one service, which I mean, like, look, theyhave a lot of great content on those networks. Yep. You know, I'm a discovery plus subscriber primarily because the Magnolia network just has just moved over to HBO. So you know, it's not dead, but it's just, I think, a lesson for all of us. Now, look, a lot of people work really hard on it. And it's easy to sit in our seat, like you guys suck, right? But the truth is, a lot of people work really hard on it, and it failed and failing. If you're smart means you're gonna learn something and come back way better. And now you understand hard lessons. So hopefully we learn a little bit of a hard lesson from them. And I know we're railing on you a little bit but but you know, we love you. We love you for trying we love you and for trying. That's the best way to put it. We love you for

Kyle Mountsier  09:37

Swinging for the fences is kind of a motto of ours. Like go for it, you know, and

Paul  09:42

they did. And I did. Let's talk about COX. We have covered the story in our daily newsletter if you don't get it send out an email every single day with kind of a curation of stories in automotive and culture and crypto and all that. Cox Automotive released 10 key insights from the data that they're Kelley Blue Book team gathered pretty, pretty concise list of things. I like it. Anything on there Kyle that bounced out to you? Well, actually, let me read them. And here are the 10 insights and then we'll kind of drill into one or two. So number one, Toyota is still on top. EV sales continue to increase. You dont say only brands delivered year over year sales gains year over year sales gains BMW Genesis Mini and Tesla. That's an interesting group. We'll talk about that. Like, lean on that got me Yeah, that's not a surprise. Surprise. Ford's F series is still king. Okay, Fiat sold only 340 vehicles in Q1. That's like 340 no comma. Wow. I wonder how many they made. luxury brands grab more share. gonna hate so luxury brands grab more market share in Q1 So more people are into luxury than other things Tesla's still the dominant player in the EV market. Big surprise me. I don't small vehicles. Small vehicles are more popular than midsize vehicles. But the large ones are the most popular model still, even with gas prices interesting. In luxury. New cars are important, which makes a ton of sense, right? If I'm if I'm have the money to buy a luxury vehicle, like, you know, a lot of people want to know I drive a luxury car, but I did not buy it new. My next one, like if

Kyle Mountsier  11:31

I get a luxury vehicle, wait a second.

Paul  11:33

Hold on a second. I actually I actually bought a Navigator right when COVID hit and dealers were like panic selling. Yeah, I flew to Milwaukee to pick it up from New York and I drove it home when gas was like $1 a gallon. And even the toll booths were closed because of COVID. I didn't have to pay any tolls. Okay, one more. Three segments accounted for 49% of US auto sales. So those three segments are compact SUVs, full size pickups, and midsize SUVs. Alright, that's really the tech insights.

Kyle Mountsier  12:01

Here we go. Number 3 and number 10 are the most interesting to me. And I want to start with number 10. Look, gas prices were lower last year, but they were still not at all time lows or anything like that. It is very clear that the SUV and pickup segments are not going away in the US and they continue to stay strong. Even in a market where gas prices are up. Like I know, I know Nissan and Toyota dealers, and Mazda dealers that cannot keep CX fives robes. You know, that type of trim level that rav4 is in stock? It's not even possible.

Paul  12:40

What's the fuel mileage on a CX five? You should notice?

Kyle Mountsier  12:43

Yeah, depending on driving habits like 28 to 34 Right. So it's still good.

Paul  12:48

I mean, a really good that's you're used to have to buy a Honda Accord or a Camry to get through your mileage. That's crazy. That has changed quite a bit. Yeah. So either way

Kyle Mountsier  12:58

 I think that's I think that's interesting, like realizing that 50% of sales come from things that don't have to they aren't the you know, things that are that are the highest gas, you know, gas mileage, you know, miles per gallon, they're not that 40 That 45 the hybrid things like that the cars so I think that's really like just to key in on is the automotive segment ready for you know, it like do they even need the leap to evey because they're already willing to pay the gas prices in those segments? Yeah,

Paul  13:34

the interesting it is I mean, I think I think you're right there. I think fuel economy is going to be less of a conversation even though it's expensive. We talked about this I mean, the EV like what you get for what you pay for is so much more expensive. Yep. Right? Like a Tesla Model three is a lot more than a Toyota Corolla. Right? Or even a lot more than like, you know, entry level Lexus, right for what you get. So fuel maybe not the deal, but I'll tell you what, when that battery powered navigator comes out, I bet it's gonna be freaking awesome.

Kyle Mountsier  14:04

So, I know Alright, so for brands year over year sales games, we kind of talked about this earlier in the year a few months ago how luxury segments had the capacity to see gains because of increased cash in market people in positions where where the economy held strong in in executive positions in retail sales positions where he had the cash liquidity to purchase and the kind of like the moment is now to buy my luxury segment vehicle because of the cash in the market. And so to see things like BMW Genesis Mini and Tesla be the market movers in your view here sales gains is indicative of that nature of the market.

Paul  14:44

I think I think there's another element to it being they're not volume players. So I think they were able to increase production watching Yeah, because they didn't need to do it by a lot to get the allocation of chips in and and some things I think we I don't remember which super luxury was maybe was Bentley. But basically things Volkswagen was saying that they would allocate ships to higher margin vehicles. Right luxuries, higher margin. So I think it's those both of those elements probably have something to do with it. But I I'd be really surprised if that holds out this year. I think that was that was the that was the shot and they shot it. And they did a good, good, good.  Oh, we got one more, I think really fun story. We talk a lot about crypto, EV's kind of converged with the environmental impact on the planet. And last night time square went completely dark, the whole blocks all the flickering screens, that the multi story LEDs, they all went dark as part of a marketing campaign from crypto mining competing company algorand. So it went dark between eight and 9pm. And I love the visual that this gives right they give it some perspective. I think great education gives you a perspective. So they were like we saved 23 point 4 billion joules of energy. Okay, I still don't know what a joule of energy is. But it sounds like a lot, right? Sounds like a lot. And they said, that amount of energy that was saved in that one hour of all those screens being on would only power 1.5 seconds of bitcoins network operations. And that could only process six transactions. Why? I was like, Okay, well, maybe it is kind of an energy. All of a sudden, that's a lot of power. Why six trains? The point that I'm making notice that mean either and algoryn. So they're kind of like focused on renewables, but they have pioneered a different way to process the transaction. So they said, okay, so six transactions 1.5 seconds, traditional network, well, their way and that amount of power that they saved in that one hour would power 350 million transactions and keep the network up for two weeks.

Kyle Mountsier  16:53

Oh, that is a game changer for cryptocurrency game changer because everybody's talking about the suck on energy than necessity for solar energy or things like that, to be able to power cryptocurrency transactions and you know, mining fees and gas fees and stuff like that. And that's a tool. That's a game changer, because, like you think about that at scale. I mean, that's, uh, oh, gosh,

Paul  17:18

I wonder how many transactions are processed? I wonder how much it costs to process like a credit card transaction?

Kyle Mountsier  17:24

Yeah, once energy.

Paul  17:27

Because it's not nothing,

Kyle Mountsier  17:28

not your

Paul Daly  17:30

sale terminals. It's gotta go. You have these massive data centers, they're syncing up with banks. Like, it's not something

Kyle Mountsier  17:35

that just kindof like came into market slowly. And so nobody really even notice. It's just part

Paul Daly  17:39

of regular life. Right? Right. And so I mean, interesting things, but again, just highlighting the fact that this world is being turned upside down by technology, new ways of doing things, you know, shortages, environmental issues, new technologies hitting the market, and the only way to survive is to keep moving. There you go. That's it. Well, we hope we were able to help keep you moving today. Again, sign up Get on the email list. Come see us if you're in Tampa, we would love to meet you in person. Say hi. Got a little bit more go this week. But let's go with a little energy and pep in our step.