Afternoon Coffee: WSJ Says Apple’s Supply Chain Reeling from Cuts; Wonolo Raises $32 Million in Funding

Apple has thrown its supply chain for a loop by cutting production of its latest iPhone models, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing sources familiar with the situation. Apple declined to comment to the WSJ. But the news organization said this about some suppliers’ stock: “Last week, major iPhone suppliers including Qorvo Inc., Lumentum Holdings Inc. and Japan Display Inc. cut quarterly profit estimates, citing a reduction in previously placed orders from a large customer. Apple wasn’t named, but the iPhone maker accounts for a third to half of revenue for these companies, according to filings and estimates.” On Monday, Apple and Facebook stocks were among tech companies losing share price, Bloomberg reports.

Wonolo in Sweet Spot?

Wonolo, the online work platform that connects hourly workers with local temporary jobs/gigs, announced it has closed a $32 million Series C funding round led by Bain Capital Ventures. With the latest round, which is said to include new and existing investors, Wonolo will have raised $60 million in private equity since its first Angel round in October 2016.

According to the announcement, Wonolo's platform now connects about 300,000 “hourly workers with understaffed employers in retail, manufacturing, shipping and logistics, and other industries left behind by Silicon Valley's future of work technologies.” Wonolo, which operates in a growing number of metro areas across the U.S., “will use the new capital to expand its team and accelerate growth to meet the nation's high level of demand for a temporary staffing solution.”

Andrew Karpie, Spend Matters’ research director of labor and services procurement, commented: “Business’ use of online work intermediation platforms has been increasing over the past several years, and the recent Upwork IPO was another step toward mainstream. Wonolo focuses on what may be one of the sweet spots of these platforms: labor markets for temporary, on-demand, low wage (aka “commodity”) jobs. Growth of other platforms (e.g., Snag, Shiftgig) in this segment and the comparative advantages of these platform models over traditional industrial staffing models seems to bode well for new companies like Wonolo.”

Nissan Chairman Arrested

Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn was arrested Monday in Japan after the company alleged he had underreported his salary for years and misusing company assets, The New York Times reports. Nissan said in a statement that Mr. Ghosn, an American, and a director at the company had been involved in misconduct and recommended that both be removed from their positions, the Times reported.

For Holidays, Online Food Orders to Jump

And finally, an update on e-commerce: The number of Americans who plan to place online grocery orders this holiday season are expected to double, from about 20% in 2017 to 44% this year, according to a Supply Chain Dive report on a survey from technology firm Rich Relevance. “The most popular online purchases are ingredients for side dishes (56%), canned items (51%) and beverages, including alcohol (44%). Turkey (33%) and desserts (31%) are the least likely item to be purchased online, demonstrating consumer reluctance to purchase fresh items without seeing them first,” the Dive reported.

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