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JUUL & Altria Deal Causes Storm Of Excitement

Daniel Chase

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From a very early age we were told that cigarettes were terrible for us and if we ever elected to take up such a habit, it would quite literally be the death of us. I remember, fondly, of a time in middle school, where we were shown a video of individuals who suffered devastating consequences to their health after years of smoking cigarettes. The idea that these little “cancer sticks” were the bane of human existence should have convinced us to avoid cigarettes like the plague,  and yet, like any rebellious twelve-year-old confused about their body and their life, we didn’t listen. Could you blame us for being curious? After taking a drag, we realized how terrible cigarettes were and many, but not all, of us never took up the habit. Years down the line, smoking cigarettes has lost its original glitz and glamor, but tobacco addiction has simply switched over to a more attractive, aesthetically pleasing vessel for middle school students to satisfy their collective nihilistic demeanor. 

Juul Labs Inc., a San Francisco-based company, is responsible for the creation of the aptly named  “Juul” e-cigarette. For those unfamiliar with the name of the product, I can almost guarantee you’ve seen someone using one of these devices on a city bus or sneakily taking a puff at a children’s dance recital. A Juul looks like a longer, thinner flash drive that glows when you take a drag from the device. At the end of the day, the Juul is a vape, with the purpose of delivering nicotine to the consumer. Avoiding the potential tangent regarding the addictive qualities of nicotine, Juul Labs received a $1.2 billion investment from Tiger Global Management several months ago, bringing the company’s valuation to $16 billion. Harmful chemicals aside, Juuls have become quite a phenomenon across the country. 

As the traditional act of smoking cigarettes as fallen drastically behind e-cigarettes and vapes, Altria Group (MO), in an effort to remain both relevant and profitable, announced on Wednesday morning that it was buying a 35% stake in Juul Labs Inc. for $12.8 billion. Juul Labs has recently come under mass scrutiny for the number of underage users of its products, and, in their announcement of the Altria (MO) deal, they explained that their “intent was never to have youth use JUUL products. Nevertheless the company agreed to a minority investment with Altria (MO), a company belonging to an industry notorious for corrupting youths with habitual cigarette smoking.

“Altria today announced a minority investment of $12.8 billion into JUUL for a 45% ownership in the company along with services to accelerate our mission. We understand the controversy and skepticism that comes with an affiliation and partnership with the largest tobacco company in the US. We were skeptical as well. But over the course of the last several months we were convinced by actions, not words, that in fact this partnership could help accelerate our success switching adult smokers.” 

Kevin Burns, Chief Executive Officer, JUUL Labs 

Juul Lab’s goal has always been to give smokers, of all age-backgrounds, an opportunity to avoid combustible cigarettes, replete with carcinogens and harmful chemicals. Tobacco giant Altria (MO) invested in JUUL because the company recognized that cigarettes, which account for killing approximately half a million Americans each year, are not as popular as they used to be. Altria’s (MO) chief executive officer, Howard Willard, stated that the company, by way of the JUUL Labs deal, will be able to take “significant action to prepare for a future where adult smokers overwhelmingly choose non-combustible products over cigarettes.” Willard went on to expound that Altria (MO) has “long said that providing adult smokers with superior, satisfying products with the potential to reduce harm is the best way to achieve tobacco harm reduction.” 

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Stock Price Newsletter – September 20, 2019

Joe Samuel

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defense stocks to watch

Microsoft (MSFT) Stock Price Jumps On Increased Dividend and Buyback Announcement

On Wednesday Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) shares gained 1% in extended trading after the company announced that it was raising its quarterly dividend by $0.05. But there’s more to this story than meets the eye.

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Multi-Billion Dollar Markets Are Ready For A Shake-Up; 1 Biotech Stock Could Hold The Key

There’s no denying that biotechnology is one of the hottest markets in the world. Right now a multi-billion-dollar segment is ready for a shakeup and one biotech stock could hold the secret to doing just that!

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Top 4 Penny Stocks To Watch Right Now

Penny stocks are some of the most active and volatile types of stocks in the stock market today. But what everyone knows about these is that they can break out in a big way. That’s why so many continue to look for the best penny stocks to buy.

See For Yourself

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Microsoft (MSFT) Stock Price Jumps On Increased Dividend and Buyback Announcement

Joe Samuel

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On Wednesday Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) shares gained 1% in extended trading after the company announced that it was raising its quarterly dividend by $0.05.

Share Repurchase Program

The company has also authorized a $40 billion stock buyback. Under the leadership of CEO Satya Nadella, the company has been buying back its shares. In the fiscal year ended June 30, Microsoft bought back it’s a stock worth around $19.54 billion. The year before stock buybacks were around $10.72 billion. In the last five years under the tenure of Nadella, the company has seen it’s stock almost quadruple and exceed a trillion-dollar market cap.

The company has aggressively been repurchasing its stock and at the current rate, they are likely to use all the $40 billion in the latest repurchase program within two years. The new share repurchase program does not have an expiration period but the company could choose to terminate it any time.

Growing Dividends

The company is increasing its dividends by 5 cents barely a year after increased them. The board of directors approved a $0.51 quarterly dividend which reflects an 11% increase over the quarter before. This translates to $2.04 annually. Microsoft has been paying dividends to stockholders since 2003 and it has been pumping up its quarterly dividend each year.

Microsoft has indicated that it will pay shareholders of record on November 21 a dividend of $0.51 on December 12. The 11% increase is an improvement from last year’s dividend increase of 9.5%. The increase is slightly more than the company’s average dividend growth percentage of around 10.4%.

The share repurchase program and dividend increase are a no brainer for Microsoft. In 2019 the company brought around $38.3 billion in free cash flow of which $13.8 billion was given to shareholders in the form of dividends. The company returned around $33 billion to shareholders this is inclusive of the cash spent on stock repurchases.

Considering how trivial the company’s dividends are relative to its free cash flow, it appears like Microsoft will keep increasing its dividends each year.

A Clear Focus On Groundbreaking Technology

Global spending on security solutions is projected to reach $7.4 billion in 2019 and increase to over $11.3 billion by 2025 with a CAGR of 8.2%.  The urban Security explosives and Weapons Detection market is slated to grow to nearly $7.5 billion by 2025 and is forecast to see consistent growth for the next several years [2].

What does this mean? Well, for investors it could signal big opportunities but with so many large companies targeting surveillance systems and weapon detection devices as a “go-to,” is there anything that could truly disrupt this market?

In short, yes

Liberty Defense (SCAN.V) (LDDFF) Is Positioning To Change The Face Of Threat Detection For Good

The truth of the matter is that mass shootings now happen more than once a day in the US and as we’ve come to find, there’s no real way to stop these attacks after an attacker enters a space. This is where the real opportunity is: stopping an attack before someone even enters a vulnerable space.

Liberty Defense (TSX: SCAN.V) (OTC: LDDFF) plans to do that using HEXWAVE, a next-generation high-tech security scanning system that will use advanced, low-power radar, 3D-imaging, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to screen people at public gatherings such as sports games, unobtrusively.

Liberty Defense (SCAN.V) (LDDFF) Is Positioning To Change The Face Of Threat Detection For Good

The truth of the matter is that mass shootings now happen more than once a day in the US and as we’ve come to find, there’s no real way to stop these attacks after an attacker enters a space. This is where the real opportunity is: stopping an attack before someone even enters a vulnerable space.

Liberty Defense (TSX: SCAN.V) (OTC: LDDFF) plans to do that using HEXWAVE, a next-generation high-tech security scanning system that will use advanced, low-power radar, 3D-imaging, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to screen people at public gatherings such as sports games, unobtrusively.

Liberty Defense WSJ

The advanced attack prevention system can detect if someone is armed before they enter a building using radar energy and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to detect weapons and explosives in real-time. You may be thinking that the processes and screening technology that you see in airports can achieve the same thing in our communities.  

Urban Threat Detection

But we’re talking about urban detection; where high people traffic flow and attempts to provide airport-like screening processes can be extremely disruptive to business activity because of security entry delays. 

As important to providing a higher rate of threat screening is that there also needs to be a way to detect other potential mass attack weapons including explosives, pyrotechnics and other non-metallic threats.

Utilizing a new disruptive technology under an exclusive global license from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Liberty Defense (TSX: SCAN.V) (OTC: LDDFF) is developing HEXWAVE.

Liberty Defense WSJ

The advanced attack prevention system can detect if someone is armed before they enter a building using radar energy and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to detect weapons and explosives in real-time. You may be thinking that the processes and screening technology that you see in airports can achieve the same thing in our communities.  But we’re talking about urban detection; where high people traffic flow and attempts to provide airport-like screening processes can be extremely disruptive to business activity because of security entry delays. 

As important to providing a higher rate of threat screening is that there also needs to be a way to detect other potential mass attack weapons including explosives, pyrotechnics and other non-metallic threats.

Utilizing a new disruptive technology under an exclusive global license from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Liberty Defense (TSX: SCAN.V) (OTC: LDDFF) is developing HEXWAVE.

Click Here To Learn More About Liberty Defense and its HEXWAVE

defense stocks weapons detection
Disclaimer: Pursuant to an agreement between MIDAM VENTURES, LLC and Liberty Defense Holdings Inc. Midam was hired for a period from 06/1/2019 – 9/30/2019 to publicly disseminate information about Liberty Defense Holdings Inc. including on the Website and other media including Facebook and Twitter. We were paid $250,000 (CASH) for & were paid “0” shares of restricted common shares. We may buy or sell additional shares of Liberty Defense Holdings Inc. in the open market at any time, including before, during or after the Website and Information, provide public dissemination of favorable Information. For previous compensation see our FULL DISCLAIMER HERE

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Stock Price Newsletter – September 19, 2019

Joe Samuel

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top biotech stocks to watch

Acadia (ACAD) Stock Price is up 60% This Month; Bullish Signal For Biotechs?

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ACAD) had been one of the better-known strugglers in the industry. That was reflected in the stock price as well. But recent developments have breathed new life in the stock, which could be an indicator for the biotech industry at large.

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Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) Stock Price Consolidates After the Recent Rally: What Next?

The Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) stock has now reached such a stage according to keen observers and hence the stock is now trading within a very narrow range as the squeeze continues. In such a situation, it is only natural for investors to wonder which way this whole thing is going to go in the short term.

See For Yourself


Multi-Billion Dollar Markets Are Ready For A Shake-Up; 1 Biotech Stock Could Hold The Key

There’s no denying that biotechnology is one of the hottest markets in the world. Right now a multi-billion-dollar segment is ready for a shakeup and one biotech stock could hold the secret to doing just that!

Read More

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