Ford is cutting production of its fully electric F-150 Lightning trucks, down to 1,600 models a week from 3,200.

0
29

Good morning, Quartz readers!


Here’s what you need to know

Ron DeSantis dropped out of the 2024 US presidential race. The governor of Florida said he saw no path to victory and endorsed former president Donald Trump.

The Palestinian death toll from the war between Hamas and Israel has topped 25,000. Israel announced the death of another hostage, while the US and its Arab allies are trying to broker a hostage-release plan that would eventually end the war.

Microsoft said state-backed Russian hackers accessed the emails of its senior leaders. The intrusion reportedly began in late November and was discovered on Jan. 12.

Libya said production has resumed at its largest oilfield after more than a two-week hiatus. Protesters had blocked the facility over fuel shortages.

French lottery operator FDJ offered to buy Malta-based Kindred Group for $2.5 billion. The deal would create one of Europe’s largest online gambling companies, according to The Wall Street Journal.


Electric trucks aren’t sparking a ton of buyer interest

Ford confirmed to the world what it told suppliers a few weeks ago, announcing a drastic cut to production of its fully electric F-150 Lightning trucks, down to 1,600 models a week from 3,200.

The automaker worded the production change as simply “matching F-150 Lightning production to customer demand,” which is code for “people don’t like electric trucks as much as we thought they did.”

Car companies love selling SUVs and trucks—which they’ve been doing a lot of in recent years—because those vehicles cost more and get bought by people with fatter wallets. Many players were pinning their hopes on repeating that pattern during the ongoing EV transition, but it hasn’t quite worked out the same way for trucks. Quartz’s Melvin Backman explains a couple reasons why.


Quotable: Apple has disrupted before—Why not with headsets?

“Apple’s not always the first company to come out with a product in this space. But they do make it so simple and innovative, able for my grandma to be able to use them, that all of a sudden, they become popularly accepted.” —Labor expert Peter Rokkos, a professor at Rutgers University, in an interview with Quartz about how Apple’s Vision Pro could change the workplace


The biggest IPO since Birkenstock is here

Kaspi.kz, a mobile super app company, launched an initial public offering on the Nasdaq stock exchange on Jan. 19, raising about $1 billion.

It’s the largest IPO since Birkenstock’s October listing, which raised $1.48 billion. But the shoemaker hasn’t taken off as expected, and is still trading around its debut share price.

Investors also had a tepid response to Kaspi.kz’s kickoff, even as the S&P 500 hit an all-time high, suggesting that they are still feeling cautious about new stock listings. Is this just the way it is for IPOs now? Anticipated filings by SKIMS, Reddit, and Shein may give us more answers about what it will take to reopen the IPO market.


Quartz’s most popular

🛢️ The US is drowning OPEC in oil

😱 An eerie tour of the world’s abandoned airports

🌍 6 takeaways from the 2024 World Economic Forum in Davos

🩴 Your Birkenstocks are about to get more expensive

🏙️ The US cities that researchers say will shrink—and the ones that will grow

🥤 Coca-Cola will invest $1 billion a year in India to “seize the moment”


Surprising discoveries

A college football player will kick off an unprecedented ninth season this fall. Assuming he finishes, it will only be his fourth season of play, though, thanks to injuries.

Male deer and other ruminants have evolved to grow bigger horns, while females in the same species have grown bigger brains. Male brains tend to stay the same size as females select for larger headgear.

Better Call Saul is the Emmys’ most snubbed show of all time. The series has nabbed 53 nominations and 0 wins.

Lots of people in Colorado, Oklahoma, and Wyoming think they live in the Midwest. Their reasoning is more about a state of mind (marshmallows go in fruit salad) than any state lines.

China used more cement from 2011 to 2013 than the US did in the entire 20th century. A key ingredient in cement is sand, and unsustainable demand for that material is spawning sand mafias.


Did you know we have two premium weekend emails, too? One gives you analysis on the week’s news, and one provides the best reads from Quartz and elsewhere to get your week started right. Become a member or give membership as a gift!

Our best wishes for a productive day. Send any news, comments, your Emmys picks, and hot dishes to [email protected]. Today’s Daily Brief was brought to you by Morgan Haefner (a real Midwesterner).

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here