The NIH’s Top Vaccine Maker Wants Warp Speed To Be the New Normal

Are you concerned about the effect that use of the new vaccines will have on ongoing and future trials? I think the ethics of keeping trials going even when a vaccine is available are probably getting worked out now. But what about simply losing potential volunteers because they’re already getting other shots?

That issue will become front and center in the next few weeks. And I think it is a good problem to have. We have a vaccine that’s more effective than we even hoped for. And that means that we now have these ethical issues to address. How long can you really continue a placebo-controlled study, when you have good evidence that your vaccine works?

So what do I consider good evidence? Not a press release from a company, but the FDA looking at the data and saying, “Yes, we agree you have 95 percent efficacy, because we’ve looked

Read More

Amazon in Talks to Buy Podcast Maker Wondery

Amazon.com Inc.
is in exclusive talks to purchase podcast startup Wondery, according to people familiar with the matter, as the tech giant pushes further into the growing audio sector.

The talks value Wondery at over $300 million, the people said. Wondery’s last funding round, in June 2019, valued the company at $100 million, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The company is on track to increase revenue to more than $40 million this year, according one person familiar with the matter, with about 75% of that coming from advertising and the rest from licensing to TV, to subscription services like Audible and Stitcher Premium and to Wondery’s own premium subscription service, which launched this summer.

The deal talks are continuing and negotiations could still fall apart, the people said.

Closely held Wondery is the last large, independent podcaster on the market—and could present the final opportunity for a major tech

Read More

Chinese Smartphone Maker Xiaomi Sets Hong Kong Top-Up Record

Chinese mobile phone maker Xiaomi has raised US$3.9 billion in Hong Kong’s largest-ever top-up share sale. The company is looking to raise cash to allow it to expand at a time it is winning business away from rival Huawei Technologies.

Xiaomi shares, listed as HK:1810 with a U.S. ADR XIACY, were briefly suspended in morning trading Wednesday in Hong Kong. Details of the offer were announced at lunchtime, a weird break from the normal after-the-close practice.

The shares fell as much as 12% but recovered to a 7.1% loss by the close, not quite matching the 10% discount of the new shares. Xiaomi was the most active stock traded in Hong Kong, helping drag the benchmark Hang Seng index down 0.1% for the day.

Xiaomi in the third quarter became the world’s third-largest smartphone seller, with 13% of the market last quarter, according to Counterpoint Research. Its 46.2 million units

Read More

UPDATE 4-Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi raises $3.9 bln in equity deal – term sheet

* Deal is largest of its kind in Hong Kong to date

* Indicative price set at HK$23.70, lower end of range

* Convertible bond deal to raise $855 mln (Adds deal detail)

HONG KONG, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp has raised $3.91 billion as part of a deal that includes Hong Kong’s largest top-up placement, according to a term sheet seen by Reuters.

Potential investors have been told the price should be HK$23.70 for the 1 billion shares that are being sold down in the deal, the term sheet showed.

The price is at the lower end of the range flagged by the company on Tuesday when it said the deal would be between HK$23.70 and HK$24.50.

At HK$23.70, the placement would raise $3.06 billion.

A convertible bond deal to raise $855 million was also finalised Wednesday, according to the term sheet, to take Xiaomi’s

Read More

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi raises $3.9 billion in equity deal – term sheet

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp has raised $3.91 billion as part of a deal that includes Hong Kong’s largest top-up placement, according to a term sheet seen by Reuters.

FILE PHOTO: People are silhouetted in front of Xiaomi’s logo at a venue in Beijing, May 10, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon/File Photo

Potential investors have been told the price should be HK$23.70 for the 1 billion shares that are being sold down in the deal, the term sheet showed.

The price is at the lower end of the range flagged by the company on Tuesday when it said the deal would be between HK$23.70 and HK$24.50.

At HK$23.70, the placement would raise $3.06 billion.

A convertible bond deal to raise $855 million was also finalised Wednesday, according to the term sheet, to take Xiaomi’s total raising to $3.91 billion.

Xiaomi’s deal is the largest top-up placement in Hong

Read More

Tiger Global-Backed Hospital Software Maker Olive AI Reaches $1.5 Billion Value

(Bloomberg) — An Ohio startup that helps hospitals automate routine tasks is now valued at $1.5 billion after a funding round led by Tiger Global Management.



a man standing in front of a computer: A healthcare worker uses a desktop computer in the resuscitation department of the intensive care unit (ICU) at the Saint Joseph hospital in Marseille, France, on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. President Emmanuel Macron will present a strategy next week for the gradual ending of France's coronavirus lockdown, Le Figaro reported, citing sources it didn't identify.


© Bloomberg
A healthcare worker uses a desktop computer in the resuscitation department of the intensive care unit (ICU) at the Saint Joseph hospital in Marseille, France, on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. President Emmanuel Macron will present a strategy next week for the gradual ending of France’s coronavirus lockdown, Le Figaro reported, citing sources it didn’t identify.

Olive AI Inc. received an investment of $225.5 million in the round, which included new investors Alphabet Inc.’s GV, Sequoia Capital, Dragoneer Investment Group and Transformation Partners. Existing investors General Catalyst and Drive Capital also joined the round.

Columbus-based Olive has now raised about $385 million in financing in the past nine months and roughly $450 million since its inception in 2012.

The company’s software is used

Read More

China Vaccine Maker Applies for Public Use of Covid Shot

(Bloomberg) — A leading Chinese vaccine developer has applied for authorization to bring its Covid-19 shot to the market, seeking to get a jump on Western rivals as the race for a working inoculation against the virus enters the final stretch.



a group of items on a table: Technicians processing Covid-19 coronavirus tests at a laboratory in Tianjin, China.


© Source: AFP/Getty Images
Technicians processing Covid-19 coronavirus tests at a laboratory in Tianjin, China.

China National Biotec Group Co. has submitted an application to Chinese regulators, reported state media Xinhua Finance on Wednesday, citing parent company Sinopharm’s vice general manager Shi Shengyi. The application likely includes interim data from the company’s Phase III human testing conducted in the Middle East and South America.

Loading...

Load Error

Stocks related to Sinopharm Group, including its Hong Kong unit, surged on Wednesday after the news.

A CNBG spokeswoman said she had no further information when contacted by Bloomberg. Calls to Sinopharm Group went unanswered.

With the application, CNBG will likely become the

Read More

Small Covid Test Maker Is Going Viral

(Award-winning tech columnist Jon Markman publishes of Strategic Advantage, a popular daily newsletter about the digital transformation of business, entertainment and society — and how to invest in it. Click here for a free two-week trial.)

COVID-19 is surging throughout the country, creating an opportunity for agile diagnostic businesses. This is how one newcomer is building an empire.

Elon Musk made news last week when the Tesla ((TSLA) -Get Report) founder claimed to test both positive and negative for the novel coronavirus, twice. Forty five weeks into the global pandemic and the United States still has a testing problem.

Fulgent Genetics ((FLGT) -Get Report), a smaller company with a $908 million market cap that most investors don’t know, has a solution.

The problem, apart from the raging infection rates globally, is that not all tests are created equally.

Some, like the four given to Musk,

Read More

Fortnite maker Epic Games sues Apple in Australia for App Store ban

The company behind the popular online video game Fortnite is suing Apple in Australia for allegedly misusing its market power by taking a slice of all revenue earned by apps on iPhones, iPads and Macs.



a hand holding a cell phone screen with text: Photograph: ZUMA Press, Inc./Alamy Stock Photo


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: ZUMA Press, Inc./Alamy Stock Photo

Fortnite is a big money maker for Epic, with millions of daily users logging billions of hours on the game each month. It is forecast to bring in US$5bn in revenue in 2020.

Loading...

Load Error

However, Epic Games has long complained about Google and Apple’s policies of taking between 15% and 30% of all transactions made through apps on iOS, and Android devices.

Fortnite was kicked off both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store in August after Epic bypassed the companies’ in-app payment methods for their own cheaper direct billing that prevented Apple and Google taking a share.

Related: ‘This isn’t the

Read More

Why China’s Top Smartphone Maker Huawei Would Sell Its Budget Honor Brand

Huawei would divest its budget-brand smartphone unit to ensure revenue from smartphones that’s otherwise squeezed by U.S. legal barriers, analysts say.

The Chinese company that was once briefly ranked as the world’s largest smartphone maker plans to shed its Honor business, according to media reports earlier this week. Huawei hopes a sale would protect Honor from U.S. restrictions in the short term, while giving the company a welcome burst of cash, experts say. Huawei’s billionaire founder and CEO, Ren Zhengfei, said last year that U.S. sanctions will cause company revenue to drop by billions of dollars.

“The hope is that once under new ownership, the Honor business will no longer be subject to the same U.S. export restrictions that have hobbled Huawei, and the big cash infusion will help fund ongoing operations at

Read More