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🌎 Shopify lost a bet

And 10% of its workforce is paying the price

Bennett Raglin
This story was published on our Quartz Daily Brief newsletter, The concise, conversational rundown you need to start your day.
  • Sofia Lotto Persio
By Sofia Lotto Persio

Newsletter writer and editor

Published

Good morning, Quartz readers!


Here’s what you need to know

The IMF cut its global economic forecast again. It predicts 3.2% growth for 2022 and 2.9% for 2023, but warned that results could be even lower.

Twitter scheduled a shareholder vote on the Elon Musk takeover. It’s due to take place on September 13, ahead of the trial to resolve the billionaire’s change of heart over the deal.

Shopify announced layoffs. Around 1,000 workers were let go as CEO Tobi Lütke admitted his bet on e-commerce’s fast-paced growth did not pay off.

Credit Suisse named a new CEO. Asset management head Ulrich Koerner replaced Thomas Gottstein at the top of the scandal-ridden Swiss bank.

Elliott Investment Management is building up its stake in Paypal. The activist fund seeks to accelerate cost-cutting measures at the company.

Teva Pharmaceuticals proposed a settlement of its opioid lawsuits. The multi-billion dollar deal includes the free provision of a drug that reverses overdoses.

Russia announced, yet again, that it will quit the International Space Station. The Russian space agency plans to build its own orbital station after 2024.


What to watch for

As Boeing releases its second-quarter results today, workers in its defense division, which makes military aircraft, drones, and weapons, are gearing up for a strike.

About 2,500 workers at three Boeing plants in the St. Louis, Mo., area plan to strike beginning Aug. 1, having rejected a contract offer from the company. The sticking point in negotiations is the company’s 401(k) proposal, which the union states would “put our members’ hard-earned retirements in jeopardy.”

Boeing said it has a contingency plan that will allow it to continue operations if the strike moves forward, but aerospace manufacturing workers have highly specialized skills and can’t easily be replaced.

Meanwhile, Lufthansa airline workers in Germany are also planning a one-day strike over pay today that’s expected to compound travel snafus in Europe.


A global atomic renaissance

Countries around the world are putting scrapped nuclear energy plans back on the table. It’s no wonder, given soaring fossil fuel prices, a European natural gas crisis, and the realities of climate change. Now, the cost-benefit analysis around nuclear power is getting a second look.

Here’s a look at some of the countries that are reconsidering nuclear:

🇳🇱 The Netherlands plans to build its first nuclear plant since 1973.

🇬🇧 The UK is constructing a nuclear power plant to power 6 million homes.

🇪🇬 Egypt is building its first nuclear reactor, in partnership with Russia.

🇯🇵 Japan is restarting idled nuclear power plants 11 years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

🇫🇷 France is nationalizing energy giant EDF to boost its nuclear energy industry.

🇺🇸 The US announced $6 billion to keep nuclear plants open.

🇺🇬 Uganda is seeking a partnership with Russia to develop a nuclear power plant.


Google’s next glasses won’t be so cyborg

Remember Google Glass? Well, the company probably doesn’t want you to recall the creepy device that could take pictures of strangers, but that’s not stopping it from taking another shot at tricked-out specs.

Though the details are fuzzy, it’s likely Google’s next pair of glasses will look much more like those from North, the Canadian smart glasses company it acquired in 2020. But Google’s decision to give smart glasses another try isn’t just about emerging wearable computing trends—it’s about data. A pair of glasses that integrates search and maps could become the most important wearable device on the market.

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Surprising discoveries

A fossil was identified as the earliest known animal predator. The 560 million-year-old creature has been named in honor of Sir David Attenborough.

Thailand debuted a non-stinky durian. The odorless variety of the infamously smelly fruit already has a trademark.

The Italian-Swiss border is shifting. A melting glacier has triggered a border dispute that runs right through a mountain lodge.

A Polish institute classified cats as a menace to society. Or more precisely, an “alien invasive species” given their deadly threat to wildlife.

“Parentese” is a global language. No matter where you go, people googoo and gaagaa at babies in similar ways.


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