Trending up and rising numbers until the end of 2023 (and great investment deals)

About time for New Year’s resolutions?

Personally, I try to get planning sorted ASAP.

In fact, I’ve started my high-level 2024 planning back in September, opening up most of Q4 for strategy and roadmap development along with my two business coaches.

(Which seems to befuddle some of my peers. As a business advisor and an executive, I need to step up my game and stay accountable to others, too – just like my Growth Shuttle team needs to “walk the walk” by running weekly campaigns across virtually all channels, maintain scorecards, and iterate on what works and what doesn’t.)

Heading into November, the markets seem to be responding more positively to spend and the general consumer consensus. There are several objective reasons for that:

  • Q4 is halfway through. Even if October used to be slower, holidays are coming, and with multiple upcoming events consumers want to get traditional spend rolling as usual.
  • The Fed kept the interest rate intact. It’s not going down anytime soon perhaps, but at least it’s held steady so no surprises and some stability or predictability in place.
  • Q3 earning reports were mostly positive. A number of notable corporations reported higher earnings than forecasted and demonstrated strength on the economic front. Personally, I’m worried about the future Q4 results not hitting expectations; but with the right messaging and communication, this may retain the spending velocity traditional for November and December.
  • The stock market is recovering. October ended painfully, but soon after the earning calls, the index jumped back with approximately 7%. While bonds are trading at a great deal, business growth is promising enough for investors backing businesses up.
  • Stores are already seeing a rising number of shipments this month. Which is proving the point on buying habits.

Europe is still running slower than usual, though Bulgaria just elected a new capital mayor with an impeccable track record in entrepreneurship – a $265M exit 9 years back, a former managing partner for one of the largest VC funds, the founder of the largest tech academy here, among many other accolades.

That said, a great deal of positive changes are expected locally – and if the market moves upward in the coming months (Q1), this may give an extra push to the local economy, AI startups, and hundreds of global projects as a result.

Check out some detailed earning reviews further in this weekly blast, including the mixed Uber report and how WeWork is finally filing for bankruptcy. We’re not out of the woods yet, but investment opportunities are also trending up and I’ve listed down some great deals for angel investors and everyone looking to make a pivot in this space.


My Take 

✍️ Top 6 November Business Tips – Brutal October is over! Moving forward, a lot of business owners and investors would most likely focus on diversification and the preparation for the holiday season. This month we focus on actionable strategies to prepare for the season.

✍️ Find WooCommerce inside – WooCommerce has rebranded itself as Woo. While some members of the WooCommerce community have expressed dissatisfaction with the rebranding, others like Syed Balkhi, and myself express various insights and what the future holds for one of WordPress’ titan plugins.

✍️ doola’s “Business in a Box” – Every month, the US receives over 400,000 business applications, having gotten to 5M+ applications in 2022. It comes as no surprise that governmental bodies like the IRS take ages and an exhausting amount of documentation to validate and open your business. Incomes doola, who help you with LLC formation, State fillings, US Bank account creations, obtaining EIN, and payment processors, all the while not even having to be in the USA. Check them out and start your US business as easy as clicking a few “Next” buttons.

✍️ Centalize your equity management – Navigating the complexities of equity management and ESOPs in Europe’s intricate landscape can be daunting. Having experienced firsthand the challenges of cap table intricacies and investor communications, I’m thrilled to have platforms like Nimity. Nimity is tailored for European startups, understanding our unique challenges and opportunities.

Newsletter Recommendations

📧 Stacked Marketer – One of my go-to newsletters and a business that we’ve worked with a while ago on the DevriX front. It is loved by marketers who get hands-on with campaigns, who need to stay up-to-date with frequently changing platforms., who need to get an edge, and who need to achieve outsized results with limited resources, aka performance-focused marketers.

📧 The Average JoeMarket trends & insights that are simple, concise, and impactful. This newsletter stands out to me due to the 200,000+ audience that go through market trends and ideas together.

📧 The Early Bird – А special 7:00AM newsletter for those in the US, who feel to be at an information disadvantage. This newsletter covers early stories, that will impact the market every day.

📧 Morning Brew – Аn absolute classic, the Morning Brew delivers top news from a business-minded angle, and deliver it in a short, easy-to-read, actionable, and entertaining way.

 Business Strategy

📄 Uber’s Mixed Earnings – Uber Technologies Inc. reported a net income of $221 million, or 10 cents per share, in the latest quarter, compared to a net loss of $1.2 billion, or 61 cents per share, in the same period last year. The company’s Chief Financial Officer announced plans to provide an update on returning capital to shareholders in the next quarter as cash flow continues to improve.

📄 MuskGPTElon Musk’s AI chatbot named Grok, developed as part of his company X, aims to be an “anti-woke” alternative to other AI chat experiences by allowing less censorship on sensitive topics. However, due to its heavy reliance on a limited user base and potential biases, Grok may contribute to right-leaning misinformation and lack reliable fact-checking, raising concerns about its ability to spread accurate information.

📄 OpenAI announces GPT-4 Turbo – OpenAI announced its more powerful GPT-4 Turbo AI model, which provides answers with context up to April 2023 and accepts inputs of up to 300 pages in length. They also introduced the option for users to create personalized versions of their ChatGPT chatbot and announced plans to launch the GPT Store, their own version of an app store for AI chatbots.

📄 WeWork Files for Bankruptcy – Office-sharing company WeWork has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the United States and Canada due to financial losses and a drop in memberships. The company aims to restructure its capital and trim non-operational leases in order to strengthen its position and continue supporting its community.

📄 Yelp’s 12% rise – Yelp’s third-quarter earnings in 2023 have seen a substantial 12% increase in ad revenue to $330 million, contributing to a total net revenue of $345 million, with ad clicks also growing by 9% from the previous year. This uptrend suggests that advertisers are seeing a beneficial return on their investments on the platform.

Global News

📈 Stock futures are dropping and bond yields are pulling back. U.S. crude is under $80 a barrel after worse-than-forecast China exports signaled more economic bumps in the global growth engine. The dollar DXY is up.

  • S&P: 4,365 (+0.18%)

📈 The rise in mortgage rates comes alongside appreciating home prices, both of which have kept homebuyers on the sidelines. More than half of home purchase mortgages originated in July had a monthly payment greater than $2,000, according to Black Knight. Twenty-three percent of originations in July had a payment over $3,000. The affordability squeeze is stretching budgets, and keeping many first-time homebuyers out of the market altogether.

  • 30-year mortgage rate: 7.85% (-0.23%)
  • 15-year mortgage rate: 7.16% (-0.06%)

 📈 Market expectations that the Fed will hold interest rates steady at its December meeting stand at 90.4%, down from 95.2 on Friday but above the 74.4% a week ago. Expectations for a rate cut of at least 25 basis points have grown to more than 50% at the May 2024 meeting, according to CME’s FedWatch Tool.

📰 This week we see the war continuing to rage on, a development on 2 trials that shook the political and crypto worlds.

  • Hamas-run health ministry says more than 10,000 people now killed in Gaza since start of war
  • US jury finds FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried guilty of fraud in a case that shook the world of cryptocurrency
  • Donald Trump testifies under oath in the civil fraud trial that threatens his family business.

Investing Updates

  • CONTENTS– raising €15M for automating the content workflow. 
  • Okredo– raising €850,000 to scale its open data platform for sales increase and risk management. 
  • Statinf– raising €1M to scale its statistics modeling services for embedded systems. 

Note: Got a round going that you want to feature – your own business or a portfolio company? Get in touch.

  • Sustainable Cashmere Store– This is a successful store in the retail industry, selling high-end cashmere accessories, with a TTM revenue of $4.1M. It has multiple active sales channels and established suppliers in place.
    • Monthly Profit: $61.1K
    • Average Order Value: $169
    • Age: 6 years
  • Coding Courses Library– This website offers over 30 courses on coding for a popular visual programming tool. It offers a profit margin of 83%, generated a TTM revenue of $203.5K and has a YouTube channel with 16.2K subscribers.
    • Monthly Profit: $14K
    • Average Order Value: $156
    • Age: 2 years
  • Astrology Content Site – This is a thriving two-year-old content site in the popular astrology niche, with over 2.4M yearly views. It offers diverse services including personalized horoscopes, tarot readings and astrology articles.
    • Monthly Profit: $7.5K
    • Monthly Page Views: 207.6K
    • Annual Revenue: $158.1K

Need my Help? 

I’m involved with a number of initiatives – here’s what I can do to help you:

🌐 Scalable and secure WordPress? DevriX provides WordPress retainers to SMEs, publishers, eCommerce, SaaS, and more. Our plans start from $1,200/mo to $40K/mo for anything from support through engineering, CRO, performance, security, to fractional CXO services and managing the data stacks of large corps.

🛒 Running on Shopify? Set up Rush now and increase your revenue with post-purchase orders automatically!

🚀 Want to scale and optimize your business? Growth Shuttle offers personalized advisory plans starting at $600/hr. Tap into my personal pool of business know-how and my data warehouse of industry data.

👥 Want access to my blueprints/books and a weekly Slack planning session? Join my Community and grab my Entrepreneurship book

📈 Looking to start a US company? Check out doola and their “Business in a Box” model. Suitable for both foreigners and US citizens and both for residents and non-residents.

📊 Have you tried buying and selling digital property? Have a look at Flippa’s marketplace. They offer a vast variety of online businesses for any buyer’s interests. Or if you’re ready for an exit, Flippa provides you with the necessary tools to list your business and close the deal.

💼 Looking for investment opportunities? Check out SeedBlink and use Nimity to manage it.

💡 Eager to incorporate my recommended solutions? Track my angel investments. Sharing, applying for open roles, or writing reviews helps a ton.  And anything else I try to publish on my blog and my courses here!