Brands are willing to pay top dollar to be viewed on the world’s biggest stage. And this year, not much has changed: the cost of one 30-second is a whopping $5m.
The Super Bowl is the most expensive event… by far
In comparison, a 30-second ad during Game 7 of the 2016 World Series was just $500k. And the 2018 Oscars are expected to cost close to $2.6m per 30-second ad.
For more perspective: Nick Foles, the Eagles’ starting quarterback of Super Bowl LII, made a base salary this season of 5 times less than the average $5m 30-second Super Bowl ad airing on Sunday.
As a matter of fact, only 13 of the 100 players on either Super Bowl team exceeded $5m this season.
Why so expensive?
Bottom line is, the Super Bowl is the most-watched event on Earth. Over the last five years, the SB has averaged more than 111m viewers, and this year, many speculate viewership will break records. That has execs licking their chops.
Amazon, for instance, will run at least 2.5 minutes’ worth of commercials on Sunday at a cost of $25m.
Funny thing is, these commercials historically haven’t yielded measurable results: in 2014, Ad Age reported that 60% of Super Bowl ads didn’t boost purchases; another study found that 90% of viewers did not feel more encouraged to buy something after seeing it in during the SB.
But networks on the other hand…
Last year Fox made an estimated $1.44B hosting the Super Bowl, and this year, NBC has the rare opportunity to air both the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics in the same month, enticing advertisers with a package deal…
A deal that should see the Peacock network making close to $1.4B in ad sales alone when all is said and done.
Break out your wallets
Shake-up at Airbnb: CFO leaves after butting heads with CEO for years
Yesterday, with rumors swirling, Airbnb announced via their blog that CFO Laurence Tosi is officially out.
Irreconcilable differences between Tosi and CEO Brian Chesky allegedly led to the split, with sources confirming the two clashed over some of Chesky’s ambitious goals for the company.
Putting the AIR in Airbnb
Tosi joined the company over 2 years ago and since has been hailed as bringing “financial discipline” and “new focus areas” to the short-term home rental company.
According to The Information, Tosi has been vying for more control at the company for some time, even pitching himself to become the COO of the company’s “homes” division in recent months.
Tosi and Chesky were reportedly at odds with how they should get into the space — Chesky wanting to go for broke and create their own airline, while Tosi looked to start smaller by integrating themselves with a flight-booking company.
Sooo, what now?
In the announcement, Airbnb said the ousting of Tosi was part of their plan to build a “21st century company.”
The post also stated that Tosi “has decided to dedicate his full time and energy to his investment fund, Weston Capital Partners, while Airbnb’s head of financial planning and analysis, Ellie Mertz, will take over as CFO in the interim.
As for Airbnb’s future in 2018, Chesky stated that the company will not be going public this year.
Quarterly report: Facebook exceeds on earnings, under-delivers on engagement
Yesterday was a big ol’ day for earnings calls: Apple reported record revenue (buoyed by $1k iPhone X sales), Microsoft beat expectations thanks to the cloud, and Alibaba fell short of analysts’ expectations despite hefty growth.
But the most interesting news of the day came from Facebook.
The social media behemoth managed to top revenue expectations in Q4, while simultaneously reporting a 5% drop in the amount of overall time users spend on the platform (that’s 50m hours per day).
Financial game: strong
At $12.97B, Facebook’s Q4 revenue was up 47% year-over-year (they were at $8.8B in Q4 ‘16). This handily outpaced Wall Street’s $12.55B projection, and led to a 5% stock spike in after-hours trading.
This also marks the company’s 11th consecutive quarter beating revenue expectations, largely thanks to gains in mobile, which made up 89% of all ad sales.
User stats: meh
On the flip side, recent changes to Facebook’s news feed seem to have caused a dip in the amount of time users are spending on the platform — to the tune of 50m hours per day. That’s about 2 minutes per day, per user.
In an investor call, Zuck brushed this off as a short-term loss in the quest for more “meaningful interactions” in the long term.
According to Forbes, Facebook’s year-over-year user growth, at 14%, is the “slowest rate of daily active user growth on record.” And in the US and Canada, total daily users fell by nearly 700k.
On a private airstrip in the pastoral hills of Northern California, a little startup called Joby Aviation has spent 9 years secretly developing a flying taxi prototype.
Now, the company has announced that it’s raised $100m from the likes of Toyota, JetBlue, and Intel to help it revolutionize air transport.
The Jetsons ain’t too far off
Joby Aviation was founded in 2009 by JoeBen Bevirt, a mechanical engineer who made millions selling camera tripods, then dumped it all into pursuing his true vision: the ultimate flying taxi.
Recently, Bloomberg got a peek at the working model and described it as a “cross between a drone and a small plane” — a fully electric, 5-seat air taxi, capable of flying 150 miles on a single charge and traveling at twice the speed of a helicopter (sans the noise).
The company’s ultimate vision: to build thousands of these things and create an air-based ride service that costs as much as an Uber, with landing pads scattered all around major cities.
They’re going to have a lot of competition
As The Verge reports, the flying car market is stacked with dozens of hopefuls: big boys like Boeing, Uber, and Google co-founder Larry Page (Kitty Hawk) have all heavily invested in prototyping.
Joby will use its new funds to hire another 100 engineers — software, electrical, mechanical, and aerospace — and fine-tune its prototyping process.
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