There were plenty of winners and losers this week, with the world’s leading online auctioneer revealing long-overdue plans to separate into two companies and the top dog in single-cup coffee brewers taking another legal hit for questionable technology. Here’s a rundown of the week’s best and worst.
Tesla (TSLA) — Winner
The self-driving car may be here sooner than you think. Tesla CEO Elon Musk turned heads this week after an excerpt from a CNNMoney interview showed him promising that a Tesla that can drive itself 90 percent of the time will be available as early as next year.
Musk also tweeted about a car that the company will unveil next Thursday — along with other potential announcements. Tesla cars are as expensive as Tesla stock, but it’s hard to find an automaker raising the bar the way that Musk’s futuristic company is doing.
Pimco — Loser
It’s been a week since mutual fund manager Pimco saw Bill Gross — the legendary bond fund manager who made the Pimco Total Return Fund (PTTRX) a household name with more than $ 200 billion in assets — announce that he was leaving for a new gig at fund rival Janus.
Now we’re seeing the fallout. Days ago, we learned that a record $ 23.5 billion was withdrawn from the fund in September. It’s not just the retail investors who are clearing out now that the longtime manager has moved on. Reports on Thursday said Schwab (SCHW) was dropping the fund from its target-date funds, which aim to craft dynamic asset strategies that evolve based on a certain retirement year.
Netflix (NFLX) — Winner
The world’s leading premium streaming service has become even more of a juggernaut since rolling out original shows, and now it’s taking that strategy to the movies. Netflix revealed this week that it’s bankrolling the “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” sequel, making it available to Netflix subscribers at the same time that it hits IMAX screens next summer.
Netflix also said it would fund four future Adam Sandler projects. It’s not clear if these will be theatrical releases or if they will go directly to Netflix, but it’s still another example of the company leveraging its growing user base of more than 50 million streaming subscribers to score magnetic content.
Let’s just hope that the four Sandler movies aren’t “Grown Ups 3,” “4,” “5” and “6.”
Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR) — Loser
Keurig may have gone too far in designing its Keurig 2.0. Another java distributor is suing the company behind the leading single-cup coffeemaker for allegedly engaging in anti-competitive measures with scanning technology that ensure that its new brewers only accept licensed Keurig portion packs.
Canada’s Coffee Club is suing Keurig Green Mountain for $ 600 million. Even if Keurig Green Mountain prevails, reviews haven’t been kind to the machine, which was introduced this summer, primarily because it doesn’t accept older K-Cups or the refillable pods that coffee lovers use with their own ground-up beans.
EBay (EBAY) — Winner
After months of speculation and activist prodding, eBay is finally breaking up. The online marketplace giant announced on Tuesday that it will separate eBay and PayPal, giving investors the ability to purchase either the auction site operator or the faster-growing financial payments platform.
It seems a bit desperate coming on the heels of Apple (AAPL) Pay’s launch. It’s still the right call. Each company will be able to focus on its own objectives, which for PayPal is about to prove more challenging.
Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz owns shares of Keurig Green Mountain and Netflix. The Motley Fool recommends eBay, IMAX, Keurig Green Mountain, Netflix and Tesla Motors. The Motley Fool owns shares of eBay, IMAX, Netflix and Tesla Motors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. Check out our free report on the Apple Watch to learn where the real money is to be made for early investors.