Pink's Bottom Line on Media, Money and Sports

Verizon sells its media assets, US employment numbers and the suddenly vulnerable Los Angeles Lakers

In today’s newsletter, I discuss Verizon’s sale of its media assets, US employment numbers and the suddenly vulnerable Los Angeles Lakers.

MEDIA: Verizon Sells Media Assets

Verizon today said it will sell most of its media business, Verizon Media, which is composed of AOL, Yahoo and other assets, to private equity firm Apollo.

Verizon will still keep a ten percent stake in the company after completing the deal with Apollo. (Click here to read Verizon’s news release on the sale.)

Pink's Bottom Line

AOL and Yahoo, two of the most venerable and dominant names from the first wave of Internet companies more than 20 years ago, today face a much different competitive landscape than they did in the 1990s and early 2000s.

Now, much of the digital media space — particularly in advertising — is dominated by Google, Facebook and to some extent, Amazon.

With Apollo soon controlling AOL and Yahoo along with Verizon Media’s other digital media assets, these outlets will have to develop strategies to meet today’s competitive challenges quickly or they could become irrelevant, something unthinkable just twenty years ago.

MONEY: Employment Report

The government releases its monthly employment report on Friday, and many experts expect that upwards of one million jobs were created in April.

That would follow March’s stellar jobs report that showed the economy generated more than 900,000 jobs, and that the unemployment rate fell to 6%. (Click here to read last month’s report.)

Pink's Bottom Line

The overall jobs picture in the United States clearly is improving as, in addition to that robust March jobs number, first time weekly jobless claims are declining, and wages and salaries are rising.

If April does indeed show that nearly one million new jobs were created and that pace of monthly job growth continues for the rest of the year, that would put the US economy on track to reach its pre-pandemic employment level around the end of 2021.

As such, Friday’s jobs report should be good indicator if we’re at the beginning of a trend of strong job growth — and hence, a strong economic recovery.

SPORTS: Los Angeles Lakers

The NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, the clear favorite to win the Western Conference according to most sportsbooks, suddenly look vulnerable.

The team has lost six of its last seven games, and now are sixth in the Western Conference with only eight regular season games to play.

Should the Lakers fall to seventh place or lower at the end of the regular season, the team would be part of a playoff play-in tournament, which is being held this year for teams that finish from seventh to tenth place in their conference.

Pink's Bottom Line

LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the two superstars of the Lakers, have each recently missed a number of games due to injuries though Davis has been in the lineup for the past six games and James for the past two.

James also reportedly will miss tonight’s game against the Denver Nuggets, currently the third place team in the Western Conference, and the schedule for the Lakers doesn’t get much easier for the next few games.

As such, tonight’s game against the Nuggets is crucial for the Lakers — it’s an opportunity for the team to begin to right the ship.

Otherwise, the Lakers just might be in trouble come playoff time though it’s never a good bet to count out a team led by LeBron James.

Jeremy Pink is currently COO of Geniecast, a leading virtual content and experience company. He is the former CEO of private-equity backed Broadcast Sports International where he helped lead the company to a successful sale and exit during his tenure there. He is also a former CNBC television executive in New York, London and Singapore.

The information contained in this communication is strictly for general informational and entertainment purposes and is not meant to be construed as financial, investment, tax, or legal advice. This communication is not a solicitation to buy or sell any securities. I am not a financial advisor or offering professional advice of any kind. Users should not act upon the content or information found within this communication without first seeking professional advice appropriate for their individual situation. Decisions based on information contained in this communication are the sole responsibility of the user, and use of this communication and its contents constitutes an explicit understanding and acceptance of the foregoing disclaimers.

(Newsletter Editor: Karina Pink)