Hi there 👋. This is a daily newsletter that covers the top business, tech and finance stories for today.
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Here’s whats happening:
- Tesla announces its latest recall in the United States
- Wickr’s messaging app will shut down in 2023
- FTX owes over $3 billion to creditors
- Speak, an English language learning platform secures Series B funding
- Bob Iger returns as Disney CEO
Tesla Announces Its Latest Recall in the United States 🇺🇸
Tesla is recalling more than 321,000 vehicles in the United States over a software issue causing the taillights on some vehicles to illuminate improperly, according to a filing with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
- Tesla’s latest recall covers some 2023 Model 3 and 2020–2023 Model Y vehicles.
- The electric vehicle (EV) maker will deploy an over-the-air update to rectify the rear light issue and said it has no reports of any crashes or injuries related to the recall.
Why does this matter?
- This is Tesla’s 19th recall this year. Recently, the automaker recalled almost 30,000 Model X cars over a glitch that could cause the front passenger airbag to work improperly in low-speed collisions, potentially causing an injury if a small child is in the front seat.
- Tesla also recalled over 40,000 Model X and S cars because of a problem that could cause the loss of power steering when driving over bumpy roads or after hitting a pothole.
Wickr’s Messaging App Will Shut Down in 2023 ❌
Amazon’s AWS-owned free encrypted messaging app “Wickr Me” is shutting down on December 31, 2023.
- In a blog post, the company said it would stop accepting new Wickr Me registrations after December 31, 2022, before discounting the service altogether on December 31st, 2023.
- The app’s closure won’t affect the AWS and Enterprise versions of Wickr.
- The company stated it would shift its focus on safeguarding its commercial and public sector clients’ data and conversations via its non-consumer premium platforms AWS Wickr and Wickr Enterprise.
- Before next year’s shutdown, Wickr would share information with users on how to save their data.
The bigger picture:
The announcement comes following reports that Amazon has not been taking enough steps to tackle the issue of people using Wickr Me to exchange child sexual abuse material. A few months ago, the platform was accused of becoming a “go-to destination” for those trafficking in that type of content.
FTX Owes Over $3 Billion to Creditors 💸
Sam Bankman-Fried’s bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX owes its top 50 creditors more than $3 billion.
Here are the details:
- According to documents filed in Delaware bankruptcy court, the exchange said it owes about $1.45 billion to its top ten creditors without naming them.
- The cryptocurrency exchange owes its largest creditor just over $276 million and its fiftieth-largest creditor around $21 million.
- The court filing showed that the debt does not involve anything owed to company insiders and is subject to change as more information becomes available.
However, FTX said that its debt figures might not be entirely accurate as there could be payments that have already been made out to creditors but aren’t reflected on the company’s books or records.
Speak, an English Language Learning Platform Secures Series B Funding 💰
Speak, a platform that uses artificial intelligence to help people learn English, raised $27 million in its Series B funding round.
The funding was led by the OpenAI Startup Fund, along with participation from Lachy Groom, Josh Buckley, Justin Mateen, Gokul Rajaram, and Founders Fund.
What will Speak do with the funding?
Speak intends to utilize the fresh proceeds to accelerate the development of new conversational language experiences, expand to new markets, as well as invest in text-generating models.
Moreover, the company also plans to hire more employees to support these goals.
Founded in 2016 by Connor Zwick and Andrew Hsu, Speak is a language learning startup that allows language learners to have conversations with an AI tutor while receiving feedback on their skills.
The platform has developed a collection of content experiences, allowing learners to practice conversing in English and modeling everyday scenarios & interactions.
Bob Iger Returns as Disney CEO 🎊
Former Walt Disney Co Chief Executive Bob Iger is returning as the company CEO less than a year after he retired.
Iger, who retired last year after 15 years as chief executive, has agreed to serve as CEO for two more years. He will replace Bob Chapek, who took over as Disney CEO in February 2020.
Iger’s reinstatement comes as several media companies contend with a rapidly shifting landscape, as ad revenues dry up and consumers increasingly cut off their cable subscriptions in favor of streaming.
That’s a wrap for today, ladies & gents. See ya tomorrow!
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This is a daily newsletter that covers the top business, tech and finance stories for today.