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Wall Street skeptical of Tesla’s promise to post 3rd quarter profit

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Tesla is showing some promising signs that it will make money as advertised in the third quarter, but Wall Street isn’t buying it.

The electric car and solar panel maker delivered more than 80,000 vehicles from July through September, and CEO Elon Musk told employees late in the quarter that it was close to profitability.

Still, of 15 analysts who follow the company, not one expects Tesla to make money. As a group, they expect a net loss of $173.8 million, or 95 cents per share.

“We’d be really very surprised if they posted a profit for the third quarter,” said Garrett Nelson, an analyst for CFRA Research. “This is a company that lost over $3 per share each of the last two quarters. To go from that to all-of-a-sudden profitable would take a dramatic improvement.”

There also were warning signs from the company about reduced profit margins in China due to import tariffs charged by that country in response to U.S. tariffs, Nelson said.

Just 2 profitable quarters so far

Tesla has achieved profitability before, but only in two quarters since becoming a public company in 2010. It has never posted a full-year profit and it lost $717 million in the second quarter and burned through more than $739 million in cash.

In a cheerleading email to employees as the third quarter closed in September, Musk wrote that Tesla was close to “proving the naysayers wrong.” The company, he wrote, must execute well on Sept. 30, the quarter’s final day. “If we go all out tomorrow, we will achieve an epic victory beyond all expectations. Go Tesla!” wrote Musk, who has been pledging profitability since early May.

Musk and Tesla have defied the odds before by successfully upending how electric cars are designed, produced and sold. Last quarter, Tesla nearly doubled production of its crucial Model 3 sedan just as Musk had promised, hitting 53,000. The Palo Alto, California, company delivered more than 83,000 vehicles in the quarter, over 80 per cent of what it delivered in all of last year. There also were reports, however, that it was having trouble delivering Model 3s after producing them.

Series of controversies

The company has also been plagued with one controversy after another, much of it self-inflicted as a result of Musk’s erratic behaviour. During the last quarter, he ran afoul of the Securities and Exchange Commission, which filed a lawsuit alleging that he misled investors by falsely declaring on Twitter that he had lined up financing to take Tesla private.

The SEC wanted to oust Musk as CEO as punishment, but in a settlement, Musk agreed to step down as chairman for three years. Musk and Tesla will each pay $20 million to resolve the case, and he also must have someone monitor his company-related tweets.

Now all eyes are back on Tesla’s financial performance. Nelson said posting a profit under national accounting standards hinges on how much money the company made per vehicle. He also said the accounting standards allow for Tesla to take some sales from the fourth quarter and put them on the books for the third quarter in order to realize more revenue. But that would make it profitability harder in the fourth quarter.

Tesla’s stock soared 12.7 per cent on Tuesday to $294.14, largely because a longtime short-seller reversed course and said it would invest in Tesla for the long haul.

Taking sales from Toyota and Honda, short-seller says

Citron Research, which had bet against Tesla stock for years, wrote in a note posted on its website that Tesla is destroying the competition. It produced charts showing that the mass-market Model 3 was the top-selling U.S. luxury car during the first half of the year, more than doubling its closest competitor, the Mercedes C Class. Another chart showed Tesla’s Model S sedan atop the U.S. large luxury car market with an estimated 8,000 sales.

Citron wrote that Tesla is not just pulling customers from luxury automakers but also taking sales from Toyota and Honda.

“As much as you can’t believe you are reading this, we can’t believe we are writing this,” Citron wrote.

Tesla has $1.3 billion in debt payments coming by early next year, raising concerns from analysts that it will have to borrow cash or issue more stock. It’s already $10 billion in debt.

But Citron wrote that a strong quarter could make another capital infusion unnecessary. “Tesla will be generating more than enough cash to fund both aggressive growth plans and build cash on the balance sheet,” the company wrote.

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Real Estate

Couple from Toronto buys dream home in Mushaboom

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MUSHABOOM – A couple who lived and raised a family in downtown Toronto developed a five-year plan in 2015 to purchase their dream home.

In September they moved into the home – located on Malagash Island in Mushaboom on Nova Scotia’s stunning Eastern Shore – that met and exceeded their best dreams for their retirement.

The Camerons, Bruce and Tanya, decided in 2019 they would explore the Maritimes to see what real estate was available to become their potential retirement home. In the spring of 2020, during a global pandemic, the real estate boom hit their city, and they were hearing the same for Nova Scotia. Our province was their first-choice for attaining their desire for an entirely different lifestyle – away from the busyness of the city.

“We had $300,000 to $350,000 as a home value in mind to buy. Our semi-detached located off Danforth in Toronto was priced at $850,000. We wanted to come out ahead, so we would be secure in retirement,” Tanya said.

Their century-old home had prime location near the subway and GO Transit Line for a great 13-minute commute downtown.

“We enjoyed our community,” explains Bruce “… we had great neighbours, young children around and street parties – lots of social activity.”

Bruce says, “Our agent suggested a starting quote of $899,000. We did not do any renovations and only some staging. Fifty couples went through and we received four significant offers. Six days later we sold – with zero conditions – and a price of over a million dollars. We just requested a closing of September 2020 to get the kids off to school – which we got.”

The couple got more than they had anticipated.

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Real Estate

Rabobank Announces Leadership Changes in U.S., Canadian Offices

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NEW YORK, Dec. 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Rabobank, the leading global food and agribusiness bank, has appointed two of its top executives, Tamira Treffers-Herrera and Robert Sinescu, to become Co-Heads of North American Client Coverage, positioning the Bank for future growth in the region.

Treffers-Herrera has also assumed the role of Vice Chairperson and Head of the Atlanta office, where she additionally oversees Rabobank Mexico, which is led by Eduardo Palacios. Sinescu is the Head of the Chicago office, and also oversees Rabobank Canada, led by Marc Drouin, who was recently appointed as Canada’s General Manager.

Treffers-Herrera and Sinescu report to David Bassett, Head of Wholesale Banking North America, the Bank’s corporate and investment banking business for the region based in New York.

“Both Tamira and Robert have a demonstrated history of strong leadership, operational excellence and passion for our clients,” Bassett said. “Their broad experience and deep sector expertise will be invaluable in delivering dynamic results for clients while accelerating our growth trajectory in North America.”

Each office will have an even greater focus on key Food & Agribusiness sectors and clients: The Chicago office will drive growth in sectors including Dairy, Farm Inputs and Grains & Oilseeds, which are also key areas of focus for the Canada office. The Atlanta office will focus heavily on sectors such as Animal Protein, Beverages, Sugar, and Supply Chains, which are important sectors in Mexico as well.

“Rabobank is fully committed to our clients throughout North America, and we believe our new sector-focused coverage will improve our ability to provide knowledge-based, value-added solutions that benefit our clients,” Bassett said.

Treffers-Herrera was most recently based in London as CEO of Rabobank’s European Region from 2016-2020, where she took the organization through Brexit. Prior to that, she worked in the Atlanta office from 2002-2016. During her tenure in Atlanta, Treffers-Herrera served as Global Sector Head – Consumer Food & Beverages, and prior to that she was a senior banker for a portfolio of large beverage and consumer foods clients. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Kentucky, a Master of Arts from the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce and has studied at The University of Chicago Booth School of Business and Harvard Business School.

Sinescu has been with Rabobank for over 21 years and was previously General Manager of Rabobank Canada, where he oversaw all operations, business development, commercial strategy and relationships with regulators. In addition, he continues to serve as CEO of Rabo Securities Canada Inc. Prior to Canada, he was a senior banker, Head of Corporate Banking, European Sector Head for Sugar, and a member of the Management Team for Rabobank France. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business from the Bucharest School of Business, a Master of Business Administration & Management and a Master of Science in Banking and Corporate Finance from Sorbonne University in Paris, and has studied at Brown University.

Drouin has worked with Rabobank’s Canadian team for more than nine years and most recently served as a senior banker, Head of Rabobank Canada’s AgVendor Program and a member of Rabobank Canada’s Management Team. He brings extensive wholesale banking experience within the Dairy, G&O, CPG and Supply Chain sectors. Drouin holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from McGill University and a Master of Business Administration in International Finance, Marketing and Management from the Schulich School of Business at York University.

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Real Estate

Greybrook Realty Partners & Marlin Spring Brand Jointly Owned Asset Manager – Greyspring Apartments

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TORONTO, Dec. 14, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Greybrook Realty Partners and Marlin Spring are pleased to announce the new branding of their jointly owned investment and asset management firm, Greyspring Apartments. With a portfolio of more than 2,000 units and CAD$375 million in assets under management, Greyspring Apartments is focused on the acquisition and repositioning of multi-family assets throughout Canada.

The new name and branding is an important step in Greyspring’s evolution as an independent operating business. Formed in 2018 by long standing-partners Marlin Spring and Greybrook Realty Partners, Greyspring Apartments was established with the goal of building a leading asset management firm with a robust portfolio of residential rental real estate assets in primary and secondary markets across Canada.

Greyspring’s talented team of real estate, asset management and finance professionals is overseen and guided by the Management Board, whose members include Benjamin Bakst, CEO, Marlin Spring; Elliot Kazarnovksy, CFO, Marlin Spring; Sasha Cucuz, CEO, Greybrook Securities Inc.; Peter Politis, CEO, Greybrook Realty Partners; Chris Salapoutis, President & COO, Greybrook Realty Partners; Ashi Mathur, President, Marlin Spring; and Karl Brady. In addition to his role on the Management Board, Karl Brady leads Greyspring Apartments as its President. 

“We are pleased to announce the official name and branding of a business we formed with our partners at Marlin Spring a few years ago,” said Peter Politis, CEO, Greybrook Realty Partners. “Greyspring has been diligently focused on the execution of strategic value-add programs across its portfolio that are improving the quality of housing for tenants and overall asset values. For Greybrook investors, expanding from our core business in real estate development to the value-add space through Greyspring, has allowed us to provide our clients with investment opportunities that diversify their real estate investment portfolios.”

“Marlin Spring and Greybrook have partnered on many residential real estate projects in recent years,” said Benjamin Bakst, CEO and Cofounder, Marlin Spring. “To a great extent, Greyspring illustrates our approach to partnerships. We believe in, and strive for, responsible growth through deepening our relationships with our trusted partners. With Greyspring, we’ve formalized our focus on providing better and more affordable living experiences for Canadians. This vision aligns with our mission to deliver exceptional real estate value to all our stakeholders with an uncompromising adherence to our core values.”

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