Business

The CRTC takes on Canada’s telecom giants

Not all heroes wear capes: Canada’s telecom regulator is trying to make your phone bill a little less daunting. 

What happened: The CRTC is forcing Canada’s biggest telecom companies to give smaller, independent competitors in Ontario and Québec access to their fibre networks — it’s the first move in the regulator's push to increase competition in the highly concentrated sector.

WeBankrupt

Raise your on-tap kombuchas for a toast to WeWork, which burned far too bright and way too fast. 

What happened: WeWork, the co-working company that once pledged to “elevate the world’s consciousness,” filed for bankruptcy in a U.S. district court, with plans to have the bankruptcy recognized in Canada. For now, its operations will continue mostly unchanged.

It’s the year of celebrity memoirs

Celebrity memoirs aren’t just a source of gossip-worthy headlines… they’ve also been giving the publishing industry a needed shot in the arm.

Driving the news: The Woman in Me by pop legend Britney Spears debuted at the top of The New York Times best seller list for non-fiction this past week, the latest in a steady stream of celebrity memoirs that have been hitting (and flying off of) shelves this year.

More strikes than a baseball game

Stellantis executives looked around, saw the numerous drawn-out strikes that have happened this year, and told striking workers, “Let’s get this over with.” 

What happened: Stellantis became the last of the Big Three automakers (alongside Ford and GM) to reach a tentative new deal with its employees, repped by Unifor, after a strike that was so short some workers wouldn’t have even gotten the chance to hit the picket line. 

Marty Weintraub on the state of Canadian retail

On this week’s episode of Free Lunch by The Peak, we sat down with Marty Weintraub to talk about the challenges and opportunities that are facing Canadian retailers these days. 

Carnival condemned for Covid cruise

Carnival Cruise Lines soon might have to spend a little bit less on cruise ship roller coasters and a little bit more on Covid lawsuit settlements.  

What happened: Australia’s Federal Court ordered Carnival, the world’s largest cruise line, to cover the medical expenses of a passenger who caught Covid during an outbreak aboard one of their ships in March 2020, which resulted in almost 700 Covid cases and 28 deaths. 

Doomsday kits are going mainstream

If you’re looking for some early Christmas gift ideas, nothing spreads holiday cheer quite like a doomsday survival kit. 

Driving the news: Driven in part by an increase in natural disasters, emergency prep is inching toward the mainstream, creating a not-so-niche market for everything from outdoor survival lessons to emergency essential kits, per The Wall Street Journal

NBA looks for slam dunk with streamers

While basketball fans will be focused on the NBA season tip-off this week, business fans will be more focused on the massive shake-up happening in media that’s set to reshape pro sports.

Driving the news: The NBA is heading into its first media-rights negotiations since 2014 when it was able to triple its media rights fees. The league is in a strong position to repeat that success, per The Wall Street Journal, even in a much-changed media landscape. 

It’s a bad time to be a big bank

Like a Transylvanian townsperson trying to ward off Dracula with garlic, Canada’s banking sector is trying to keep spooky times at bay with layoffs.

What happened: Scotiabank is the latest Canadian bank to roll out cost-cutting measures as the outlook for the economy worsens, moving to cut 3% of its employees (amounting to about 2,700 jobs) and bracing for a $590 million hit in restructuring charges this quarter.

Another day, another EV battery investment

Cigarettes. Hard drugs. Handing out electric vehicle (EV) battery plant subsidies. All of these are, apparently, highly addictive. 

What happened: The federal and Ontario governments have pledged nearly $1 billion in subsidies for a plant in Loyalist Township from Belgian EV battery group Umicore.