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Stocks making the biggest moves in the premarket: Campbell Soup, Coty, Tiffany, Zoom & more

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Take a look at some of the biggest movers in the premarket:

Campbell Soup (CPB) – The food producer reported quarterly earnings of 84 cents per share, 9 cents a share above estimates. Revenue also beat forecasts and Campbell raised its full-year guidance, noting an increase in demand across all its brands amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Canada Goose (GOOS) – The outerwear maker matched analysts’ forecasts with a quarterly loss of 12 cents per share, while revenue came in above estimates. Canada Goose also said the pandemic-related negative impact on its business would be most pronounced during the current quarter, traditionally its slowest of its fiscal year.

Warner Music (WMG) – The music publisher priced its initial public offering at $25 per share, compared to the expected $23 to $26 range, and also upsized the offering to 77 million shares from the original 70 million. The stock is set to debut on Nasdaq today, in the largest initial public offering of 2020.

Express (EXPR) – The apparel retailer lost $1.55 per share for its first quarter, wider than the 47 cents a share loss that analysts had anticipated. Revenue also came in below forecasts, as the pandemic closed the company’s stores. Express is not providing guidance for the current quarter or the full year at this time.

Coty (COTY) – The cosmetics company is in talks with Kim Kardashian West about a possible beauty products collaboration, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

Tiffany (TIF) – Tiffany remains on watch this morning following a Women’s Wear Daily report that the planned $16.2 billion dollar takeover by France’s LVMH may not go through. LVMH is said to have called a Tuesday board meeting to discuss the matter, amid deteriorating U.S. market conditions.

Zoom Video (ZM) – Zoom reported a quarterly profit of 20 cents per share, more than double the 9 cents a share consensus estimate. Revenue was also well above Wall Street forecasts and Zoom nearly doubled its annual revenue outlook, as it continues to benefit from the increase in remote working.

Lyft (LYFT) – Lyft said rides booked through its platform jumped 26% in May compared with the previous month. Demand has begun to rebound, with Lyft’s ridership figures rising for seven straight weeks. The May figure was, however, 70% below year-ago levels.

Amazon.com (AMZN) – Amazon is planning a “Summer Sale” event that would kick off June 22, according to a document viewed by CNBC. The event is designed to help sellers who have been hurt by the pandemic and the postponement of Amazon’s annual “Prime Day.”

General Motors (GM), Ford Motor (F), Fiat Chrysler (FCAU), Toyota (TM) – Auto stocks are on watch after automobile research firm Autodata reported that May auto sales came in at a better-than-expected 12.17 million unit annual sales rate.

Boeing (BA) – Boeing struck a compensation deal with TUI Group, Europe’s largest travel company, involving Boeing’s grounded 737 Max jet. Boeing will provide an undisclosed amount of compensation to TUI and provide the company with credits for future orders.

Twitter (TWTR) – Twitter named ex-Google chief financial officer Patrick Pichette as its board chairman, becoming the first company outsider to serve in that role. Pichette had been Twitter’s lead independent director since 2018.

Alphabet (GOOGL) – Alphabet’s Google unit faces a $5 billion lawsuit for allegedly tracking user browsing habits even when the users are in “private browsing” mode. Google said it would vigorously defend itself against the claim.

CrowdStrike (CRWD) – CrowdStrike posted a quarterly profit of 2 cents per share, compared to expectations of a 6 cents per share loss. The cybersecurity company also reported better-than-expected revenue, pointing to a pandemic-related surge in demand as well as a more favorable competitive environment.

Cheesecake Factory (CAKE) – Cheesecake Factory said it hoped to have most of its restaurants reopened by mid-June, and that the locations that have reopened have pushed sales close to prior levels. However, the restaurant did say that sales have been hurt by the recent protests.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/03/stocks-making-the-biggest-moves-in-the-premarket-campbell-soup-coty-tiffany-zoom-more.html

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Pinterest is reportedly in talks to acquire VSCO

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So what can Pinterest do to jump higher up the list of social networking sites? According to a report by the New York Times, one possibility is acquiring the owner of VSCO, the app for editing / sharing photos and videos that has brought in-depth tools to mobile users for years. Neither side directly confirmed the negotiations, and there’s no word on a possible price, but maybe combining forces can bring some Instagram-like glow. 

As it is, Pinterest is still mostly known for planning and organizing, and as the NYT article points out, other than some recent acquisitions, VSCO is currently best known for the “VSCO girls” meme.

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Source: https://www.engadget.com/vsco-pinterest-014258107.html

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A sealed copy of ‘Super Mario Bros.’ just sold for $660,000

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A nearly perfect copy of Super Mario Bros. for the NES has sold for $660,000 at auction. In what turned out to be a 13-bidder contest, $550,000 went to the game’s original owner. The copy was one of the earliest shrink-wrapped versions of the games you could buy in the US (Super Mario Bros. eventually had 11 different box variants, according to WATA Games).

Heritage Auctions, the firm that oversaw the sale, told Ars Technica it dates back to late 1986. It was reportedly bought as a Christmas gift and sat unopened in a desk drawer for the better part of four decades. “I never thought anything about it,” the seller, who asked to remain anonymous, told the auction house.

The $660,000 this copy of Super Mario Bros. sold for is crazy when you consider the Nintendo PlayStation, a one-of-a-kind prototype representing a unique piece of gaming history, sold for $360,000 at auction last year. More recently, someone paid $156,000 to buy a pristine copy of Super Mario Bros. 3. It makes you wonder how much the owner would have walked away with had they simultaneously tried to cash in on the NFT craze somehow.

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Source: https://www.engadget.com/super-mario-bros-auction-000001095.html

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‘Lost Tapes of the 27 Club’ used Google AI to ‘write’ a new Nirvana song

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Were he still alive today, Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain would be 52 years old. Every February 20th, on the day of his birthday, fans wonder what songs he would write if he hadn’t died of suicide nearly 30 years ago. While we’ll never know the answer to that question, an AI is attempting to fill the gap.

A mental health organization called Over the Bridge used Google’s Magenta AI and a generic neural network to examine more than two dozen songs by Nirvana to create a ‘new’ track from the band. “Drowned in the Sun” opens with reverb-soaked plucking before turning into an assault of distorted power chords. “I don’t care/I feel as one, drowned in the sun,” Nirvana tribute band frontman Eric Hogan sings in the chorus. In execution, it sounds not all that dissimilar from “You Know You’re Right,” one of the last songs Nirvana recorded before Cobain’s death in 1994.

Other than the voice of Hogan, everything you hear in the song was generated by the two AI programs Over the Bridge used. The organization first fed Magenta songs as MIDI files so that the software could learn the specific notes and harmonies that made the band’s tunes so iconic. Humorously, Cobain’s loose and aggressive guitar playing style gave Magenta some trouble, with the AI mostly outputting a wall of distortion instead of something akin to his signature melodies. “It was a lot of trial and error,” Over the Bridge board member Sean O’Connor told Rolling Stone. Once they had some musical and lyrical samples, the creative team picked the best bits to record. Most of the instrumentation you hear are MIDI tracks with different effects layered on top.

One thing neither AI gave direction on is how exactly Cobain would have sung the song. Outside of cadence and tone, Hogan had to interpret how the grunge star, who famously suffered from crippling stomach pain, would have channeled his anguish into the lyrics.

Over the Bridge isn’t the first group to use AI to emulate a dead artist. But the intent here is different from similar past projects. “Drowned in the Sun” is part of the organization’s Lost Tapes of the 27 Club initiative. They set out to record AI-generated songs by musicians who died at the age of 27 to raise awareness about mental health resources musicians, and people more generally, can turn to when they feel they need help. The Toronto-based non-profit has a Facebook page where it offers support. It also offers online sessions and workshops.

If you’re experiencing thoughts of suicide or self-harm, you can reach the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or over an online chat.

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Source: https://www.engadget.com/over-the-bridge-lost-tapes-of-the-27-club-223000315.html

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Microsoft’s online-only Build conference starts on May 25th

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Spring is fully upon us, which means the calendar is starting to fill up with high-profile tech events. And the latest addition? Microsoft confirmed today that its online-only Build developer conference will run between May 25th and May 27th, though there’s still no word on when registration will open. (If last year is any indication, our money is on “the end of April.”)

“Microsoft Build is where developers, architects, start-ups, and students learn, connect, and code together, sharing knowledge and expanding their skillset, while exploring new ways of innovating for tomorrow,” the company’s events page explains. 

Unfortunately, Microsoft has yet to update its Build-specific webpage with information about this year’s priorities or schedule, but we’re almost certainly looking at another packed event. Last year, Microsoft went on (among other things) about improved collaboration tools for its suite of Office productivity apps, an AI-focused supercomputer running on its Azure cloud platform, and new cloud tools designed specifically for healthcare practitioners. 

Historically, spring and summer are been jam-packed with large, in-person events where app and software developers get their first glimpse at upcoming platform and strategy updates, attend workshops and code reviews, and generally mingle with their colleagues. Starting last year, though, the worldwide coronavirus pandemic has forced companies that stage these events to rapidly rethink their approaches.

Some, like Microsoft and Apple, quickly pivoted to informative online-only affairs that include full days worth of sessions, demos and fireside chats. (For what it’s worth, Apple announced this week that its own Worldwide Developer Conference will also proceed as an online-only event from June 7-11.) Meanwhile, Google has not yet confirmed whether it plans to stage its Google I/O developer conference at all this year — the company cancelled the show entirely in 2020, but said last month that it does plan to host some version of its annual Google Cloud Next event this October. 

Between a surge in COVID-19 vaccine production and news of relaxed restrictions for vaccinated travelers, Build 2021 may well be the last purely virtual developer conference Microsoft will ever need to put on. With any luck, devs will resume their pilgrimages to Seattle next year, and who knows — maybe those tiny emotional support horses from Build 2018 will show up again too.

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Source: https://www.engadget.com/microsoft-build-2021-may-25-to-27-developer-conference-official-212230206.html

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