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Bloomberg Businessweek

Bloomberg Businessweek June 14, 2021

Each issue of Businessweek features in-depth perspectives on the financial markets, industries, trends, technology and people guiding the economy. Get the digital magazine subscription today and draw upon Businessweek's timely incisive analysis to help you make better decisions about your career, your business, and your personal investments.

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United States
Bloomberg Finance LP
50 Issues

in this issue

5 min
fever pitch

The trip Tim Warrillow took in 2004 was epic: He flew from London to Nairobi, then hopped a flight to Kigali, then another to Kamembe. From there, he persuaded a taxi driver to take him through rural Rwanda and across the Congolese border. Along the way, he paid off militias armed with rocket launchers and gangs wielding nail-studded boards. Almost 24 hours after leaving his home in west London, he got to his destination, a cinchona plantation in eastern Congo. What was he after? Tree bark. The bark from the cinchona tree contains quinine, the bitter chemical compound in tonic water that balances the citrus from lemons and limes. As interest in artisanal gin surged, Warrillow had dreamed of creating a lineup of premium mixers. He sought an opportunity to displace…

4 min
where ha is no laughing matter

Zhao Yan built most of her $11 billion fortune selling cosmetics giants a chemical they can’t live without. Now she hopes to become even wealthier by going directly to the masses with the compound—hyaluronic acid, or HA—in her own line of skin-care products. “We can compete with the top brands in the world,” says Zhao, 54, chair of Bloomage Biotechnology Corp., which makes about half the global supply of HA. While the human body naturally produces the compound, cosmetology pros say an extra dollop a day can do wonders for skin tone, texture, and firmness. For years, the likes of L’Oréal, Estée Lauder, and Shiseido have used HA in moisturizers that can cost $100 or more for a tiny jar, but recently the stuff has started popping up all over the…

4 min
a pop-up store hits the road

A new type of store is popping up at a California mall on June 10. It looks a lot like a regular shop, full of handbags, small leather goods, and jewelry. Oh, except it’ll be outside, and the floors, counters, and racks all fit on a flatbed truck, to be transported and remade anywhere—some assembly required. Cuyana, a San Francisco-based premium fashion label, is taking its traveling showroom on a summer road trip. The portable pop-up presents retailers and malls with a new way to sell goods, gather data, and try out locations without committing to a larger lease or paying repeatedly for major renovations. Just load the whole thing onto a truck and plop it down somewhere. “Retail’s not going away,” says Shilpa Shah, co-founder of Cuyana. “It just needs…

14 min
king of cars

KEN GOLDIN ARRIVED AT HIS OFFICE in Runnemede, N.J., at about 8:30 p.m. on March 6 and ordered a Philly cheesesteak with pizza sauce from Luigi’s restaurant. Goldin is a former triathlete and normally a health freak, but he’s also superstitious, and the pizza steak—no onions, extra sauce on the side—had brought him luck recently. In November his company, Goldin Auctions, sold $16 million worth of sports memorabilia, a personal record at the time. In January he booked $36 million, more than he’d done in all of 2019. For March, Goldin had a bigger number in mind: $40 million. Thousands of potential buyers had started placing bids that week on more than 2,000 items, including a bat used by Cal Ripken Jr., sneakers signed by Michael Jordan, and at least five trading…

3 min
the glow of summer

This year we’ve never wanted it more: to make every lazy summer night outdoors last as long as possible. The best way to prolong an open-air evening, of course, is with some artfully placed lighting. So how to achieve that elegantly casual, thrown-together yet deliberate ambience? First, before installing anything, consider the entire area you hope to illuminate. “Lighting draws people’s attention to what you want them to see, vs. what you don’t,” says Sebastian Dostmann, whose company, Sebass Events & Entertainment in Greenwich, Conn., specializes in high-end alfresco functions. “An abundance of candles in the middle of a dinner table draws the eye away from the barbecue or hose reel.” Think layers, too, and mix brighter spotlights with twinkly, softer string lights. Highlighting the edge of a property will make even…

2 min
a food fight breaks out in the m&a market

Welbilt Inc. isn’t a household name, but most Americans have likely eaten a meal produced with its equipment at some point in their lifetime. The company makes griddles, soda dispensers, cold-brew taps, ice machines, and the technology that keeps salad bars chilled and buffets warm. Its customers include convenience stores, fast-food chains, hotels, and restaurants. And now Welbilt, based in New Port Richey, Fla., is at the center of a bidding war. Ali Group, a closely held maker of gelato dispensers, coffee machines, and doughnut fryers, is attempting to wrest control of Welbilt from rival Middleby Corp. The interloper confirmed on May 28 that it had offered to acquire Welbilt for $23 a share in cash, or $4.6 billion including the assumption of debt. The deal Welbilt agreed to with Middleby…