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Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s next big bet rides on better batteries – Business News

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Tesla is working on new battery technology that CEO Elon Musk says will enable the company within the next three years to make sleeker, more affordable cars that can travel dramatically longer distances on a single charge.

But the battery breakthroughs that Musk unveiled Tuesday at a highly anticipated event didn’t impress investors. They were hoping Tesla’s technology would mark an even bigger leap forward and propel the company’s soaring stock to even greater heights.

Tesla’s shares shed more than 6% in extended trading after Musk’s presentation. That deepened a down downturn that began during Tuesday’s regular trading session as investors began to brace for a potential letdown. Musk raised those worries with a series of tweets Monday warning that Tesla’s new battery technology might not be ready for high-volume production until 2022.

Musk reiterated that timetable during Tuesday’s showcase and then added it might take up to three years before the battery technology translates into a new Tesla model selling for $25,000. That would be a dramatic markdown from Tesla’s cheapest car now, the Model 3, a sedan that starts at $35,000 but usually ends up costing buyers more than $40,000.

“We don’t have a truly affordable car and that is something we want in the future,” Musk said during an event shaped by the restrictions imposed by a pandemic that requires people to keep their distance.

Besides lowering the price, Musk promised the new battery technology would help Tesla reduce the size of its vehicles by about 10% and extend their range by 56%. That projection implies the Tesla cars using the new batteries will be able to travel 500 miles (800 kilometres) or more on a single charge, surpassing the distance many gas-combustion cars can traverse before needing to refuel.

Musk took the stage before a mostly online audience, although there was a small group of shareholders who won a lottery for the right to sit in Tesla vehicles parked in a lot near the company’s Fremont, California, factory located about 40 miles (64 kilometres) southeast of San Francisco.

“It is a little hard to read the room with everyone in cars,” Musk joked as he began his presentation during an early phase of the event that was devoted to Tesla’s annual meeting of shareholders.

But the shareholders in attendance frequently beeped their horns to provide a different form of applause as Musk rattled off Tesla’s accomplishments since the company held its last annual meeting 15 months ago.

Since then, Tesla has posted four consecutive quarters of profits to reverse a long history of losses, while boosting its production and laying the groundwork for future expansion by opening or beginning work on three more factories in Shanghai, Berlin and Austin, Texas. All that progress has caused Tesla’s stock price to soar by fivefold so far this year and boost the company’s market value to nearly $400 billion.

No one has benefited more from the run-up than Musk, who has seen his estimated wealth climbed to $89 billion — the fifth-largest fortune in the world, based on estimates by Forbes magazine.

“What happens when companies get bigger is things tend to slow down. We are going to speed up,” Musk said Tuesday.

He said he believes Tesla will remain a step ahead of its competition in the electric vehicle market and persuade more consumers to abandon gas-combustion cars with its new battery technology. The breakthroughs that he outlined Tuesday involve some highly technical changes to the composition and design of batteries, along with new manufacturing processes.

Even as Tesla tries to set new standards in batteries, Musk made it clear that the company will also continue to rely on Panasonic and other suppliers.

Musk has a history of being too ambitious in his promises. For instance, 17 months ago, he bragged that Tesla was on the verge of breakthroughs in autonomous driving technology that would enable the company to deploy a fleet of robotic taxis by the end of this year.

He has since backpedaled slightly from that goal, although Tuesday he said he believes Tesla’s $25,000 car will be capable to driving on its own.

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VIDEO: Robbery at downtown Kamloops business caught on camera; owners out $20,000 in gear | Radio NL

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VIDEO: Robbery at downtown Kamloops business caught on camera; owners out $20,000 in gear

UPDATE: 2 p.m.

A downtown Kamloops business owner says he’s out more than $20,000 after being robbed on Wednesday morning.

Lenn Korabanik co-owns RC Nation on Victoria Street West, and just opened his store after Labor Day weekend.

His security camera captured two people breaking in at 6:20 a.m. on Wednesday, who made out with a great deal of gear in less than three minutes.

“The door had been worked open. It wasn’t broken glass, but they actually used a power tool to grind through the lock protection stuff. And then a crowbar, basically to pry the frame away from the door to get thing open.”

He says they went immediately to the most valuable pieces in the showroom.

“They dragged out something in the ballpark of 15 to 17 RCs, we’re just finishing up the inventory on it here today. As well as a pile of accessories. Batteries, and an assortment or electronics that support the RC hobby.”

Korabanik says the culprits left without any remote controls and ironically won’t be able to use the cars they stole. He says they took off in a “rather unique” vehicle: a shuttle bus that was about 20 feet long, with an actual bus door on the side of it and an escape door at the back.

“It was white with smoked-glass windows and was relatively new-looking. So I’m guessing someone somewhere might’ve not had their shuttle bus where they thought it was going to be at 6:20 a.m. yesterday morning.”

He says Kamloops RCMP are following up but to date, no suspects have been apprehended.

“These two dudes were all hooded up with long sleeves. Really frankly hard to tell who they were. Somebody might recognize the way somebody moves, or the obvious logos on the one guy’s shirt. So maybe if somebody knows something and could let the RCMP know that’d be great,” Korabanik says.

Sgt. Darren Michels says those suspects actually broke into two other businesses as well yesterday morning.

Michels says an unnamed business in the 200-block of Lansdowne Street is out about $25,000 in items after the same suspects broke in.

Meanwhile, a 2006 Ford minibus was reported stolen from the parking lot of a business in the 900-block of McGill Road, and it has not yet been found. It has B.C. license plates of NT 4992. Police think the bus had been stolen the night before, and was used to break in to at the two businesses the next morning.

“We are interested in hearing from any additional businesses that may have been targeted by these thieves and have not yet initiated a police report,” Michels says.

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Credit card fraud resulting in loss for businesses

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Credit card fraud resulting in loss for businesses | 96.1 Renfrew Today



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Restaurants Retaining Business Despite Added Restrictions

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Despite additional restrictions for restaurants, many owners are making ends meet.

“It doesn’t affect us too much,” says Robert Manchulenko, Chief Officer of Hospitality and Support Services at Hespeler’s Cookhouse and Tavern. “What’s going into place today, we had already implemented back in August.”

Manchulenko says the greatest effect was with the initial restrictions that limited evening hours, especially on the weekends.

The restaurant is unique, in that, it is part of a social enterprise that sees the restaurant and event revenues utilized toward assisted living, supportive care, and personal care homes within the same building.

“The revenue that comes in through Hespeler’s and our events department, that goes back into seniors housing and keeping the rates affordable for everyone,” informs Manchulenko. “Without that revenue, we’re going to face some stark realities in the future about what we can and can’t do over time.”

Manchulenko says, with the loss of some events and revenue at the restaurant, they have already decided not to move forward on some projects this year.

“With the restaurant, if we’re forced to close again, then we’ll probably have to look at laying off some people,” he shares, “but how that impact would look on seniors housing, that we would have to determine at the time when it comes.”

Meanwhile, the owner of Thai on 59 in Ile Des Chenes, Peter Hounphan, says his business has been doing just fine.

“We decided to just leave it as take-out only”, he shares, “because even when we had the previous restrictions, we could only have like 10 or 12 people inside.”



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