Hey folks!

Snacking on hot samosas, vada pavs or kachoris is one of the best things to do on a rainy evening. With a cup of chai of course. But wait… When you buy these hot munchies, what does the vendor wrap them in?

If you said newspaper, then here’s what you should beware of. Printing ink has harmful colours, additives and chemicals that can leech into your hot food. So consuming snacks wrapped in newspaper can be hazardous to health. That’s a double whammy since oily snacks are already unhealthy.

Now, you probably know this.

But did you know that the FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) has strict rules for food packaging?

You see, for years the authority has continuously stressed on the health issues that arise from consuming ill-packed food. In 2019, it even amended its Packing and Labelling Regulations to ban the usage of non food grade plastic or newspaper in food packaging. And a couple of days ago the warning came in again.

But you still see a lot of food vendors, mostly in the unorganised sector wrapping away their products with prohibited materials. And that’s because despite having the rules in place, they aren’t being implemented effectively. The FSSAI may only take action if it receives complaints against vendors. But who’s going to do that right?

In fact, here’s a little tip. Instead of complaining, how about we talk to such vendors and educate them if we see them regularly? Now, you might say that it could be expensive for small vendors to get a packaging makeover. No problem. You can help. Just carry an empty steel or glass tiffin with you whenever you go to buy something from them. That way you can start a BYOD (Bring Your Own Dabba) revolution and reduce the hazards of ill-packed food.

What say you?

Here’s a soundtrack to put you in the mood 🎵

Mann by The Yellow Diary

This song has such a lovely storyline! Thanks for the recommendation, Pranshu Chakraborty 😊

A couple of things caught our eye this week 👀

Economics of the Cricket World Cup

The hospitality industry is lit these days. Flight prices are on the rise. Hotel room prices aren’t very humble. Heck! Even the beverage industry’s stocks have been fizzy. And a lot of this buzz is coming from the Cricket World Cup.

You see, India is hosting the Cricket World Cup after 12 years. So the frenzy coinciding with the country’s festive season is a great reason behind the big boom. As per a Jefferies report some flight and hotel fares can shoot up by an average of 80% and 150% respectively on the match days as compared to other days.

Stays around the Dharamshala stadium are apparently booked to the brim since these could be relatively cheaper than other cities like Hyderabad, Bangalore or Mumbai - some of the hosting cities.

Now all these folks travelling to watch matches are definitely going to plan trips and tours during their stay, further boosting the tourism industry.

And it’s not just the physical viewership that’ll create a ripple effect. Most people are obviously going to be glued to their screens throughout. Especially when India’s playing. And with many of these matches falling on a Sunday or closer to the weekend, you can only imagine how much ad revenue that’s going to generate.

Expectations are that the game season will bring in combined ad revenue of over ₹2,000 crores both from TV and digital platforms. That’s close to 50% higher than the ad revenues from the 2019 Cricket World Cup hosted by England.

And guess how much of an additional spending all this activity is going to create?

A whopping ₹13,500 crores if you include the BCCI’s (Board of Control for Cricket in India) stadium upkeep spends, boost to local vendors and purchase of merchandise.

That’s quite an economic impact. How excited are you for the upcoming Cricket World Cup?

***

What’s up with the Nissan-Renault partnership?

In the late 1990s Nissan, the Japanese car maker, was on the verge of bankruptcy! It had a debt of close to $35 billion. While its competitors were rolling out new cars every 5 years, it didn’t even have enough cash to invest in its outdated product line. This meant that losses were piling and Nissan couldn’t help but watch its cookie crumble.

But things took a turn in 1999. Renault offered to buy a significant stake in Nissan. And the latter couldn’t be any happier because the alliance gave Nissan hopes of a revival. Besides, Renault had great design capabilities. Nissan was known for the quality of its engineering.

In just about 3 years, the car maker turned a profit, eventually being joined by Mitsubishi Motors a couple of years later. The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance is now the 3rd largest global player, aiming towards becoming a world leader in EV (electric vehicle) manufacturing.

However, it wasn’t that easy for three brands from different countries and cultures to come together. See, Nissan roped in Mitsubishi when it was getting flak for a mileage cheating scandal. For 25 years the company used improper methods to test the fuel economy of cars sold in Japan. So when all these problems dragged down the brands' image, major overhauls had to follow.

Carlos Ghosn, the man who headed Renault was chosen to intermediate between the 3 companies. And he handled it quite smoothly. He downsized, reduced the chances of the company’s component rejection, closed down unviable plants and a lot more. He even took care of the alliance’s teams blaming each other when they missed targets.

And if you thought that was great, there’s a bombshell. In 2018 Japan arrested Ghosn for allegedly underreporting his salary for over a decade. Not just that, he was also believed to be misusing Nissan’s funds for his own purposes. Things soon went downhill again. The pandemic came unexpectedly knocking. Car sales dropped.

There were clashes between top managers too. Apparently, Nissan’s CEO Makoto Uchida launched a surveillance plan to keep an eye on its COO Ashwani Gupta. The story goes that Uchida wanted to oust him from the top because Gupta was coming in the way of Nissan’s renewed partnership with Renault, which was announced in February this year.

All of this meant that although the alliance proved to help in a certain way, it could cause a lot of damage to all three car makers in the long run. Maybe Nissan and Renault realised that. And they’ve now decided to part ways. Not completely of course. Renault will just reduce its stake in Nissan, while both brands will continue to have a cross financial interest in each other. They’ll also drop their common purchasing alliance and see how minimally they could interfere in each other’s automotive journeys.

Could this actually work? Well, only time will tell.

Jargon of the day ✏️

Money tips 💰

Making money has no shortcuts

The internet is a vanity of all things glittery. It tells you that making money is easy. That you don't have to do a 9-5 job to secure your future. You could simply sit at home and press a few computer keys and voila! You could be a crorepati!

A lot of influencers promote their own 3-hour masterclasses or even post trading strategies online through screenshots. It makes you believe that you can stop what you’re doing and join the little party.

But here’s the thing. All of this can be manipulated too. And the people who end up becoming rich in the process are these influencers themselves. Look, this isn’t a direct attack on influencers. It’s just a word of caution for you. Just think about the process of stock market investing itself. It’s not a cakewalk. And you cannot make money off it without knowing the nuances or just by copy-pasting what someone else does.

The real path to becoming a successful investor is learning. That way you educate yourself. You do your own research, maybe get some insights from reliable sources and then make calculated moves. Even then there’s no guarantee that your money will grow.

So, the best thing you could do if you’re passionate about the stock market is to begin with baby steps. Maybe set aside a small amount every month that you could use to learn how the stock market practically works. And when you do this, consider this money as an investment into your ‘education’. Or as an expense. That way even if you lose it, you won’t be disappointed. At least you spent it on learning a new financial lesson!

Growing your hard-earned money isn’t as easy as the internet paints it. If it was, wouldn’t everyone be driving luxury cars today?

Readers Recommend 🗒️

On the Shortness of Life by Seneca

This week our reader Anil Bhadu recommends a book based on letters Greek philosopher Seneca wrote to his friends. An inspiring piece of work, Anil says that it’s relevant in our lives even today. It doesn’t just motivate but also makes you think. He quotes Seneca and says “It is not that we have a short space of time, but that we waste much of it”. Isn’t that true for most of us?

Thanks for this wonderful rec, Anil!

Finshots Weekly Quiz 🧩

It’s time to announce the winner of our previous Weekly Quiz. And the winner is…🥁

Shubham Garg! Congratulations. Keep an eye on your inbox and we’ll get in touch with you soon to send over your Finshots merch.

And for the rest of you, here’s your next chance to grab the winner’s crown. Click on this 👉🏽 link, answer all the questions correctly and tune in next week to check if you got lucky.

Until then, don’t forget to tell us what you thought of today’s newsletter. And send us your book, music, business movies, documentaries or podcast recommendations. We’ll feature them in the newsletter! Just hit reply to this email (or if you’re reading this on the web, drop us a message: morning@finshots.in).

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