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Number Of The Day

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Number of the Day

One tech company filed the most. And it wasn’t Google.

Photo illustration with text “1% The decline in the number of patents granted in the United States last year. “
Photo illustration with text “1% The decline in the number of patents granted in the United States last year. “

1%: That’s the approximate decline in the number of patents granted in the United States last year, according to TechCrunch.

The drop in the number of patents granted — from 354,428 in 2019 to 352,013 — seems likely to be a side effect of the pandemic’s general drag on the economy, but it was milder than expected. Data tracker IFI CLAIMS Patent Services notes that the patent figure, which can be taken as a rough proxy for innovation, has been trending upward for a decade; even the slightly lower number in 2020 is 13% higher than the 2018 figure. And…


Number of the Day

Honoring the civil rights icon seems like the bare minimum — especially this year

45%: The share of U.S. companies that give employees a paid day off on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Source: CNBC
45%: The share of U.S. companies that give employees a paid day off on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Source: CNBC

45%: That’s the share of U.S. companies that gives employees a paid day off on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, according to a 2019 Bloomberg Law survey, as reported by CNBC.

Since 1983, the third Monday in January has been observed as a federal holiday that honors civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. — though it took until the year 2000 for the holiday to be observed in all 50 states.

While the number of companies that observe MLK day as a holiday has been trending upward (only 28% of companies gave employees the day off in 2009), and…


Number of the Day

Could VCs be part of the problem?

20: The number of women in the U.S. who led their companies from startup to IPO Source: Business Insider
20: The number of women in the U.S. who led their companies from startup to IPO Source: Business Insider

20: That’s the number of women startup founders who have led their companies to an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange — since its founding 204 years ago — or the Nasdaq, according to an analysis by Business Insider.

If you include companies that are no longer publicly traded, or which were led but not founded by a woman, that number increases slightly. But only 4 of the 442 companies that went public in 2020 were both founded and led by women. This major imbalance is driven in large part by the lack of venture funding that goes to…


Number of the Day

And it’s only picked up steam during the pandemic

“$44.1 billion — The size of the global market for instant noodles.” text on a  cup ramen background
“$44.1 billion — The size of the global market for instant noodles.” text on a  cup ramen background

$44.1 billion: That’s the size of the global instant noodles market, according to a report by Fortune Business Insights, a market research firm, which projects that number to grow to more than $77 billion in the next six years. At $2.3 billion, North America accounts for a small but steadily growing share of all that instant noodle buying.

The report, based on data from 2019, doesn’t account for the surge in demand that instant ramen saw during the pandemic. Nissin, the Japanese maker of the Cup Noodle brand, saw double-digit sales growth in the first five months of 2020. Other…


Number of the Day

You can be a billionaire too, if you leave your $600 stimulus in the stock market for a couple of centuries

“56 — The number of people who reached billionaire status during the pandemic” text w/ generic stock market graph background
“56 — The number of people who reached billionaire status during the pandemic” text w/ generic stock market graph background

56: That’s how many newly minted billionaires the United States gained between mid-March and December 2020, bringing the total number to 659, according to a report by the Institute of Policy Studies and Americans for Tax Fairness, per NBC News.

These individuals have seen their collective net worth increase by more than a trillion dollars during the pandemic so far. While Elon Musk took the top spot on that list on Thursday, most of the newer entrants to the billionaire’s club aren’t household names, and gained their billionaire status much in the same way that Musk became the wealthiest man…


NUMBER OF THE DAY

It’s the gaming platform all the cool kids are into this pandemic

“$29.5 billion — Gaming startup Roblox’s new valuation, following a $520 million private fundraising round” with Roblox photo
“$29.5 billion — Gaming startup Roblox’s new valuation, following a $520 million private fundraising round” with Roblox photo

$29.5 billion: That’s gaming startup Roblox’s new valuation, following a $520 million private fundraising round this week. Roblox — a platform that allows users to create their own games and socialize in virtual spaces like concerts and birthday parties — saw a sevenfold increase in valuation since its last funding round in February, Axios reports. Put in Roblox terms, the company is now worth nearly three trillion Robux, the in-game currency used by the platform. The company has seen rapid growth through the pandemic: It has over 150 million monthly active users, and as Scott Galloway wrote for Marker, American…


Number of the Day

Thieves don’t need to break windows or hot-wire cars if they can just hop in and drive away

Text “13%: The reported increase in car thefts in the second half of 2020 Source: New York Times” against car background
Text “13%: The reported increase in car thefts in the second half of 2020 Source: New York Times” against car background

13%: That’s the reported increase in car thefts from June to December 2020 over the same period in 2019, according to National Insurance Crime Bureau data cited by the New York Times. While pandemic downturn and tech-savvy workarounds to keyless ignitions have played some role in the trend, the Times reports that the major culprit is something else entirely: car owners simply leaving key fobs in their vehicles, sometimes in plain sight.

The uptick throws into reverse a trend dating back decades, and overall car thefts are still down more than 50% since their 1991 peak. As keyless ignitions caught…


Number of the Day

To the grifters go the spoils

Marker # of the Day text “$4.2 billion ” placed on a backdrop of rolls  of US dollars.
Marker # of the Day text “$4.2 billion ” placed on a backdrop of rolls  of US dollars.

$4.2 billion: That’s the value of 22,529 loans issued under the Paycheck Protection Program that were identified as being subject to “fraud, waste, or abuse” in an October report by the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis.

A separate investigation by the Wall Street Journal identified around $2 billion in PPP loans that had been issued to 1,500 companies facing allegations of violating government regulations or criminal conduct, and another 432 companies that laid off workers after getting approved for a total of nearly $1 billion in loans. …


Number of the Day

The Alibaba founder hasn’t appeared in public since he criticized Chinese regulators two months ago

Graphic asset for Marker # of Day — 74: That’s how long it’s been since Chinese billionaire Jack Ma was last seen in public.
Graphic asset for Marker # of Day — 74: That’s how long it’s been since Chinese billionaire Jack Ma was last seen in public.

74 days: That’s how long it’s been since Chinese billionaire Jack Ma was last seen in public.

On October 24, at the Bund Summit in Shanghai, the co-founder and former chairman of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba gave a speech in which he criticized China’s regulatory framework. This invoked the ire of Chinese government authorities, causing Chinese President Xi Jinping to personally intervene and cancel the highly anticipated IPO of Ant Group, Alibaba’s digital payments arm, in November. Regulators then instructed Ant Group to restructure its operations to comply with new anti-monopoly rules.

Alarms about Ma’s whereabouts weren’t set off until…


Number of the Day

A year after its infamous Christmas ad was torn apart by internet commenters, the fitness startup is having the last laugh

$3.9 billion — Peloton’s expected total revenue in 2021, after reporting Q1 sales growth of 232%. Source: CNBC
$3.9 billion — Peloton’s expected total revenue in 2021, after reporting Q1 sales growth of 232%. Source: CNBC

$3.9 billion: That’s the total revenue Peloton expects to earn in 2021 — nearly twice as much as it earned in 2020. In November, the at-home fitness startup reported eye-popping year-over-year sales growth: 232% for the first quarter of its 2021 fiscal year.

This surge in sales occurred less than a year after the release of Peloton’s now-infamous Christmas ad, featuring a woman whose partner gifts her a Peloton bike for Christmas. The commercial was torn apart by internet commenters and critics mocking the woman’s pain-stricken expressions and perceptions that the partner’s “gift” was effectively shaming her to exercise more…

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