⚡ Zash Community Update 20: UK Unicorns, Nexo, Coca-Cola-gate, Gareth Southgate

Building the future of retail investing

Dear All,

Here’s a quick update for you on latest happenings, developments, and more.

We’ve been doing this weekly since Feb! You can read all of our previous Community Updates here.

Creator of the Week 🧠

Emily Angel Hsu is Computer Science student at Stanford University and a Frontend Developer at Develop for Good.

What do you generally like to invest in?

I generally like to invest in companies in the tech sector. I have more experience in understanding how the manufacturing pipeline works in this sector, and I find that I'm able to better anticipate events that happen, which helps me to make more educated choices. 

How would you describe your investing style?

The bulk of my investments are made for the long-term. If I had to put it in numbers, I would say 90% of my investments have been held for about a year. The rest I use as an indicator to guide my decisions for what to do with the bulk.

What industry/company’s future are you excited by and why?

I'm excited about Advanced Micro Devices' (AMD) future because of how small the market they're competitive in is. The only other company producing comparable CPUs is Intel, and relative performances show that AMD is gaining the upper hand in the market. I have been investing in AMD and their main silicon supplier, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, and the performance of both investments has been great through the past year, especially as companies and individuals alike have transitioned from in-person work and schooling to remote options, necessitating more computers and associated hardware, which has driven the demand of these products up. 

What do you love about the Zash Community?

I love how tight-knit and welcoming the Zash Community is. The diversity in this community, comprised of people with a wide range of backgrounds and interests, excites me as I can learn about areas that I may not have had previous exposure to. Moreover, I find that the people at Zash are very open and willing to share with each other, regardless of investing experience.

Did Cristiano wipe $4 billion off Coca-Cola’s market value!? ⚽

Despite the hyperbole the magnífico actually had nothing to do with the fortunes, or misfortunes in this case, of Coca-Cola’s stock price.

Before Portugal’s first game at the Euros and during the pre-match press conference Ronaldo decided to move two bottles of Cola and ask for water instead. An innocuous action that ran a marathon in the news this week!

In fact, the lengths this story went to went beyond ridiculous with some reports suggesting he had wiped $4 billion from Coca-Cola’s market value! This of course isn’t true, but it is a great example of the Oxford English Dictionary’s 2016 word of the year - Post-Truth.

For more on this story check out this piece from the IESE Business School here!

For the sake of reason, here’s a look at Coca-Cola’s performance over the last month - FYI this graph is from our app 😎

All eyes on the UK 👀

This week fintech startup Tractable, and where Zash CTO and Co-Founder, Efe was an early-engineer at, reached a valuation of $1 Billion. By reaching unicorn status they became the 100th UK company to do so.

Tractable uses Artificial Intelligence for motor insurance claims Their $1 billion valuation also makes them the first computer vision technology unicorn!

This also makes it Entrepreneur First’s very first unicorn. This is a huge landmark for the ambitious programme that invests in talent before they have a company, facilitating growth through collaboration with other ambitious fledgling founders. A programme which Zash is also proud to be part of!

Smart Event Polls 🗳️

Last week we announced that we’d be running some experiments on our Slack community, well here’s an update!

We’ve been running polls all week as we experiment with some cool ideas, make sure to head over to our community to check out the results!

We’re asking all the important questions, from What Car Model Best Describes Your Portfolio to more detailed questions about Alibaba’s Potential To Become A Trillion Dollar Company.

So far we’ve seen are active users jump as a result of the polls, be sure to be part one of them. Next week we’re doing even more with the polls and you might not get another chance to vote 😉

Financial Institutions being Governed by the Community 🌎

Nexo is challenging traditional finance and recently held their first governance vote. The process and the company is changing how communities work, here’s a closer look!

London based Nexo is the worlds leading regulated institution for digital assets. They allow users to borrow against their crypto rather than selling it, the first institution to offer this service in the crypto space. Their instant credit lines allow users to take out a fiat loan by staking their crypto assets. T

What makes this digital bank particularly interesting is how significant a role their community plays. Nexo issues NEXO tokens and any holder of one of these tokens is entitled to a say in how the company is governed. At the beginning of June they held their first governance vote, on allow daily interest on NEXO Tokens (see below).

This passed emphatically and the opportunity to have a tangible impact on how financial institutions are run is sure to challenge traditional finance!

Similar companies in the UK include Blockfi, a crypto trading platform that enables users to earn interest the moment their trade is placed. They also recently launched a trading platform for institutional traders, find out more here!

An interesting report by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority estimated that 2.3 million adults here hold cryptocurrency. This figure is up from 1.9 million last year and provides a possible signal that widespread crypto acceptance is getting closer. As crypto popularity grows, firms like Nexo and Blockfi will almost certainly see increased demand for their services.

Zash Learn 🤓

This week on Zash Learn we’re covering Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) and Direct Listings. We’ll be looking at the nuances and intricacies of the two methods used to raise capital.

Over the past 18 months there's been an insatiable appetite for companies to go public public. In the US alone there’s been a 500% increase year-on-year in IPOs. Whats interesting is how this appetite has increasingly been satisfied in more exotic ways.

Most companies looking to raise capital by listing shares on a public exchange will go through an Initial Public Offering (IPO). This is handled by an underwriter(s) who work closely with the company to navigate any regulatory issues. They issue new shares and then sell those to investors through their established networks.

However, an alternative approach of Direct Listing has become increasingly more popular. This method excludes and doesn’t require any new shares to be created.

Both methods are explored through examples below.

Bumble, IPO

When Bumble, who's CEO is pictured above, went public in February they opened at $43 a share. This was above its target range and shares in the company closed up 63.5% on the first day of trading.

Their offering was led by a host of bulge bracket banks including, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan. Meaning they handled the due diligence, document prep, filing and issuance for Bumble.

This limits the risk for the issuer, in this case Bumble.

Coinbase, Direct Listing

When Coinbase went public in April they opted for a direct listing over a traditional IPO. This used to means that a company could only offer its existing shares, as opposed to creating new shares through an IPO.

Coinbase didn’t have to hire underwriters to handle the process and existing share holders benefited from a higher share price, a major benefit of direct listings. This also meant they wouldn’t dilute their existing equity.

Brass Tacks

The benefits of both options are clear, the traditional IPO route limits risk for the company while direct listings offer better value by not diluting shares.

Direct listings are becoming increasingly more popular, for instance, Wise (formerly TransferWise) plans to go live on the London Stock Exchange later this year through a direct listing.

Changing Pace 🎙️

To change the flavour a bit, and moving focus to the Euros, one podcast we enjoyed at Zash!

England Football Manager, Gareth Southgate sat down with TV Presenter Jake Humphrey and Professor Damian Hughes a couple of weeks back for an enthralling conversation.

You can listen here for some great tips on how to build high performance teams. Let's hope we see more of this come out in the England's remaining games…

Reading of the Week 💡

Last week we shared our Community Lead, Adam’s article on Blockchain in Action and blockchain’s application to IVF. During the week Charles Hoskinson, Ethereum Co-founder and Cardano founder, retweeted the piece after his company Input Output shared it!

  • PayPal Co-founder and early investor in Facebook Peter Thiel backed a new Decentralized Autonomous Organization, BitDao, this week as it raised $230 million!

  • Check out the DAOs and don’ts of community owned characters here, a new proposal that would see communities and fanbase have a greater say in their favourite franchises!

  • Hindenburg Research, a short selling investment research form, released a report on American gambling company Draft Kings this week and their recent SPAC transaction.

That’s all for now and we’ll see you next week,

Team Zash