Discover more from The Coffee Break
☕️ 54% of Malaysians feel that they are unfairly paid - Randstad survey
AirAsia 🤝 Foodpanda as Uncle Tony gives up on food delivery business. Putrajaya mulling to extend highway concessions. YouTuber deliberately crashes plane for sponsorship, faces jail time.
1. MARKET SUMMARY 📈
2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE 🔢
More than half of Malaysians think they are not fairly paid — 54% to be exact, according to a 2023 Salary and Bonus Expectations survey (n = 302) conducted by Randstad Malaysia. Furthermore, 49% of Malaysian employees received only up to 5% of salary increments from their employers in the past three months. 9 out of 10 respondents said they will change employers if they are offered a higher salary. Nearly half or 49% of the respondents that changed employers in the past 12 months got a pay bump of 20%.
Netizens raised more than RM9 mil to help a 10-month-old baby who suffers from a rare disease, spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) Type 1. The crowdfunding drive was launched through a smartphone application known as Misi Rakyat on April 13 to raise enough funds for his son to get the Zolgensma one-off gene therapy injection, which costs USD2.1mil (RM9.28mil) to prevent further motor neuron and muscle degeneration.
Tesla broke ground on a Texas lithium refinery that will produce enough battery-grade lithium for 1 million electric vehicles by 2025. If the plant hits the milestone, it would make Tesla the largest processor of lithium in North America. Currently, Tesla is the only US automaker that refines its own lithium. The U.S. produces just 1% of the world’s lithium, with Australia, Chile and China leading the way.
Malaysia’s performance thus far at the SEA Games — 150 medals, with 29 gold; 41 silver and; 80 bronze.
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3. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾
Notable quotes from the Unity Government National Convention
Last night, leaders from 19 parties attended the Unity Government National Convention. Some party leaders took to the stage to utter some touching
PM Anwar Ibrahim: “I couldn’t form this government without Zahid’s dedication.” Anwar said the two of them were at loggerheads prior to GE15.
DPM Ahmad Zahid Hamidi: “I am confident that if we walk together with Anwar, I am optimistic that the idealism can be translated in a good manner under the unity government.” Zahid told Anwar to continue moving forward to lead the government.
MCA president Wee Ka Siong: “The people must be prioritised and we must close ranks for political stability.” Wee said the unity government had to resolve its problems and be responsive, progressive, inclusive and attentive to the wants and needs of the people.
DAP secretary-general Anthony Loke: “I am a little nervous. Normally I do not need notes, but I have notes today.” Loke described the day’s gathering as making political history.
GPS chairman Abang Johari Tun Openg: “GPS is backing the government so that it can focus on improving the country’s prestige on the international stage.”
Umno Youth chief Muhamad Akmal Saleh: “Better to be in a forced marriage with loyal partners than with a cheating partner.” Saleh added it was time to leave the past behind, citing an incident where PKR Youth chief Adam Adli Abdul Halim brought down a flag with the image of then prime minister Najib Razak.
AirAsia 🤝 Foodpanda
AirAsia Group and Foodpanda Malaysia have signed a partnership to offer food delivery and e-hailing services to their customers in Malaysia. The collaboration will allow AirAsia customers to order from Foodpanda’s range of restaurants and have their food delivered to their doorsteps. On Foodpanda, users will be redirected to the superapp for you to book your e-hailing ride — no in-app integration. The two companies aim to leverage each other’s strengths to expand their customer base and reach. AirAsia Food riders will be shifted to the company’s other services, such as Ride and Teleport.
One can only wonder what happened to AirAsia’s RM42 million acquisition of Delivereat.
Hydrate, hydrate and hydrate
The Malaysian Health Ministry's Deputy Minister said that 14 cases of heatstroke have been reported in the country as of May 12, 2023, with one casualty. The number of cases is expected to rise in the coming months as Malaysia faces higher temperatures due to the El Nino (pronounced el ni nyo) weather phenomenon. The Ministry has urged the public to take precautions, such as drinking enough water, wearing loose and light clothing, and avoiding prolonged exposure to the sun.
Putrajaya mulling extending highway concessions
According to a report, the federal government is mulling extending the concession periods of highway operators in the peninsula for up to 30 years. The purpose of the deal is to prevent future increases in toll rates or reduce current ones. However, the deal is under review as it has yet to get Cabinet’s approval.
State election sweets for Kelantan and Terengganu
Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim promises to resolve the water supply problem in Kelantan. He discussed the matter with Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad and Kelantan Mentri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob and presented the decision during an audience with the Sultan of Kelantan Sultan Muhammad V at Istana Kelantan. PM Anwar announced this during the Malaysia Madani Open House held at the Sultan Muhammad IV Stadium grounds on Friday (May 12). The open house was well received, with the attendance estimated to be 15,000 people.
The Terengganu government will receive an additional allocation of RM50 mil to assist those affected by last December’s floods. The announcement was made during the Malaysia Madani open house at Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UNISZA) on Saturday (May 13).
PM Anwar previously dismissed the allegations the Madani Aidilfitri open houses are politically motivated. The ‘timely’ announcements above seem to indicate otherwise.
Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) revealed that Malaysia’s economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), grew 5.6% YoY in 1Q2023. The growth was contributed by the expansion of household spending and strong growth in employment. BNM governor Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus said the country’s economy is projected by 4% to 5% in 2023.
Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Sdn Bhd (MBM) has started talks with Hap Seng Consolidated Bhd to shift from its present dealership distribution model to an agency model. While no details of the model were divulged, the shift to an agency model proposes the removal of middlemen — dealerships — in reaching out to the market. In Australia, Mercedes-Benz adopted an agency model where the car manufacturer retains ownership of the cars while dealers become agents that sold cars at a fixed price for a set commission. If this is indeed the same model Hap Seng is seeking, it will free up a lot of capital for the company as it would not need to hold inventory of the cars.
President of the Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association (Rehda) Malaysia NK Tong said the Malaysian property market will remain robust despite the rise in the overnight policy rate (OPR) to 3%. According to Tong, a survey carried out by Rehda showed that most of the developers were more optimistic about the second half of 2023. That said, that still doesn’t make a residential property a good investment — buy a home (to stay), not a house (to invest).
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4. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎
The neverending chaos in Gaza - Israel conducts “targeted killing” of militant leader
The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) announced that its air strike has killed a senior leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the second-largest militant group in Gaza after Hamas. The attack, which Israel called a “targeted killing”, has seen the tension escalate, with both sides firing missiles against each other. At least 33 Palestinians, about half of them civilians, have been killed since Israel carried out its air strikes.
Egypt has stepped in to mediate the tension, urging both sides to adhere to a ceasefire agreement. The truce started on Saturday evening, though both sides still kept firing for two hours after the truce started.
The IDF released the video (warning - graphic) of the strike, showing a missile being fired into a Gaza apartment
In the name of views and sponsorship - YouTuber crashed a plane, facing jail time of up to 20 years
A YouTuber pilot Trevor Jacob has pleaded guilty to obstructing a US investigation after he bailed out midair and deliberately sent his plane crashing into the ground. The whole incident, in and out of the plane, was recorded and has been viewed more than 4 mil times (watch it here). The US Federal Aviation Authority launched a probe into the crash and has ordered for the wreckage to be preserved, but Jacob told officials he did not know the location of the plane. However, he and his friends winched the wreckage out of the forest with a helicopter, cutting it up into small pieces and dumping the parts.
In his plea agreement, he admitted lying to federal investigators that his accident incident report falsely indicated that the aircraft experienced full power loss and that the video was created to make money through sponsorship with a wallet company.
The best YouTube comment in the video:
A slap in the face to pilots who have faced real emergencies and weren't so fortunate.
Twitter and Tesla in the spotlight
Elon Musk earlier teased that he has found a CEO for Twitter to replace him and subsequently shared who his replacement is — former NBCUniversal advertising chief Linda Yaccarino will take over the position in weeks to come, focusing on business operations and winning advertisers back to the platform. One would expect Musk to go back to focus on Tesla - that isn’t the case as Musk won’t completely hand over everything - he will still take charge of product design and new technology. More on Yaccarino’s profile here.
Tesla is making its second large recall this year as nearly every vehicle it sold in China is being recalled for potentially dangerous braking and acceleration defect. 1.1 mil Teslas out of 1.13 mil cars sold in China since 2014 are included in the recall. Fortunately, the fix can be ‘delivered’ via the Internet - Tesla plans to fix the issue with an over-the-air software update.
As US politicians keep politicking on raising the debt limit, the US is inching towards an imminent economic disaster. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected that there is a “significant risk” the US could default on its debt in the first two weeks of June if the debt ceiling isn’t raised.
Astronomers have discovered what is believed to be the largest cosmic explosion ever detected — 10x brighter than any recorded exploding star known as a supernova and 100x bigger than our solar system. The explosion has lasted more than 3 years, longer than most supernovae which are usually visible for a few months. The most mindblowing fact — the explosion is occurring 8 bil light years away. In other words, we are peering back 8 bil years back in the past.
One of the world’s youngest billionaires and the founder of self-driving car technology company Luminar Austin Russell has acquired an 82% stake in Forbes Global Media Holdings in a deal that values the company at nearly USD800 mil. The 28-year-old’s stake includes the remaining stake of the company owned by its namesake company.
Read: How Austin Russell became the youngest self-made billionaire
5. FOR YOUR EYES 📺
A timely tweet with the upcoming Fast X. Hilarious comments.
Why man’s best friend can’t take chocolate? It contains theobromine, a stimulant in the same family as caffeine that causes our heart to pump faster and too much of it could lead to convulsion, nausea and heart attacks. Fortunately, for humans, we can digest it effectively, but not animals, as it stays in their body much longer.