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First Move with Julia Chatterley
Disgraced Theranos Founder, Elizabeth Holmes Heads to Court to Face Fraud Charges; Cryptocurrencies Face Uncertainty after El Salvador Milestone; BlackRock's $1 billion bet on China Faces Fierce Criticism. Aired 9-10a ET
Aired September 08, 2021 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ISA SOARES, CNN ANCHOR: Live from London, I'm Isa Soares, in for Julia Chatterley. This is FIRST MOVE and here is your need to know.
Tech on trial. Disgraced Theranos founder, Elizabeth Holmes heads to court to face fraud charges.
Bitcoin's bumps. Cryptocurrencies face uncertainty after El Salvador milestone.
And China clash. BlackRock's $1 billion bet on China faces fierce criticism.
It is Wednesday. So let's make a move.
Happy Wednesday everyone. Let's start with U.S. stock futures and having a look at how they are looking right now. As you can see, they are pretty
flat right across the board. Investors really awaiting the Labor Department's job opening data. The Federal Reserve, also, of course,
releasing what's known as the Beige Book report today, and that really is an assessment of the current state of the economy. So markets clearly
waiting for some guidance on that.
Meanwhile, as we are showing you, Bitcoin is trading below $47,000.00 as you can see -- a day after El Salvador became the first country to accept
the cryptocurrency as legal tender, down 44 percent or so, and there have already been some technical glitches. We'll have more on that a bit later.
Well, here in Europe, let me show you the stocks. They have been falling. FTSE down almost half a percent; Xetra DAX on percent, Paris CAC half a
percent, and the Stoxx index almost roughly the same. And really what they're looking at is tomorrow's European Central Bank meeting.
Now, Australia's Central Bank chief has said the E.C.B. could tighten policies sooner than many expected. So, of course, we'll keep an eye on
If I show you Asia, and let's see how the markets fared there. Japan's Nikkei as you clearly see continuing to rally gaining one percent, really
going against the rest of the market investors, hoping a new Prime Minister will introduce fresh economic stimulus. The Shanghai Composite as you can
see, Hang Seng all closed lower including the Seoul KOSPI.
Let's get to today's drivers beginning with the latest on the trial of Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of the medical startup, Theranos. She was
once hailed as the next Steve Jobs. Well, today, Holmes goes on trial accused of fraud, as well as conspiracy to commit fraud.
The prosecution alleges she deliberately misled investors about her company's blood testing technology. Dan Simon has the story for you.
ELIZABETH HOLMES, FOUNDER, THERANOS: So this are the little tubes that we collect the samples in, we call them the nano-tainer. They're about this
DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): She was the darling of Silicon Valley.
HOLMES: Technician operates them.
SIMON: Her technology billed as a revolutionary breakthrough and it made Elizabeth Holmes a media sensation.
QUESTION: In the year 2025, what's the thing you're most certain about?
HOLMES: More people will have access to their own health information.
SIMON (voice over): Holmes claimed that her company called, Theranos, a hybrid of therapy and diagnosis could take just a couple drops of blood and
test for dozens of diseases, including HIV, diabetes, and cancer.
HOLMES: It's an incredible honor to have this group of healthcare thought leaders here.
SIMON (voice over): In 2015, she appeared alongside then Vice President Joe Biden at the company's California lab.
JOE BIDEN (D), THEN VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Talk about being inspired. This is inspiration, man. This is inspiration.
HOLMES: No one has ever seen this, you are the first one.
SIMON (voice over): A year later, she gave CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta a tour of the lab and boasted that Theranos blood testing could be deployed pretty
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: You think people's homes should have these essentially, a clinical laboratory in their own
HOLMES: I think that's a very interesting space.
SIMON (voice over): At age 31, according to "Forbes," she became the youngest female self-made billionaire. A Stanford dropout, her black
turtlenecks and deep distinctive voice made her an even more intriguing figure.
But prosecutors say, it was all a scam.
QUESTION: Elizabeth, any comment today about the trial?
SIMON (voice over): And now, instead of walking into a lab, she is walking into a courtroom on trial accused of misleading doctors, patients and
Federal prosecutors charging Holmes with 10 counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud as part of an alleged scheme to
defraud her investors, which included the likes of Rupert Murdoch and Henry Kissinger.
JOHN CARREYROU, HOST, "BAD BLOOD: THE FINAL CHAPTER": Not a single one of those finger-stick tests done on proprietary Theranos technology was
accurate. They were all voided.
SIMON (voice over): John Carreyrou is the former "Wall Street Journal" reporter and bestselling author who exposed the alleged deception that
sparked Holmes' downfall.
CARREYROU: The gap between her representations and the reality became huge. She is very manipulative.
SIMON (voice over): Holmes has pleaded not guilty. She is expected to testify in her trial and blame her former boyfriend who was also the
company's President for alleged emotional abuse that impaired her decisions. If convicted, she could spend 20 years in prison.
Whatever happens, trial watchers say, could have loud reverberations across Silicon Valley, where startups often embrace a so-called culture of "fake
it until you make it."
CARREYROU: I think if she is convicted, then it's going to be a wake-up call for Silicon Valley. If she's not, if she is acquitted, then I think
you'll have young entrepreneurs running around Silicon Valley saying, "Yes, you know, I exaggerate, I hype, I push the envelope. But look at Elizabeth
SOARES: Dan Simon. Well, Clare Sebastian joins me now with more. And Clare, we will talk about what this means for Silicon Valley in just a bit.
But talk us through first what we could expect today, and who we're likely to hear from here.
CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Well, today, Isa, this is really the starting done for a trial that could last up to four months.
We're going to have opening statements from the prosecution and the defense.
The prosecution, the challenge for them, is not just to show that the testing -- the blood testing equipment that she promoted didn't work, but
also to show that she intentionally lied about it. Promoted it as something that would work to both investors and to doctors and patients, which
perhaps the most powerful part of all.
And so intent is crucial to their argument. They need to show that she did this on purpose. And this is where the defense may get interesting, because
according to documents unsealed just over a week ago, we know that one of the potential arguments that the defense is going to use is to pin the
blame on Sunny Balwani. He is the former COO of Theranos. He was actually Elizabeth Holmes' former boyfriend as well.
They are set to argue that she was subject to physical, emotional, and sexual abuse at his hands, and that that in some way, compromised her
ability to make decisions, deprived her in some ways of her free will, and that would sort of negate the intent argument of this.
So, this is tricky for a couple of reasons. One, because it flies in the face, really, of the image that she promoted for so many years of a capable
visionary entrepreneur, someone who sort of followed in the footsteps of the likes of Steve Jobs.
And secondly, because legal experts have told me, it will be something that's very tricky to prove. It's not going to be something you can prove
relying on documents or sort of concrete evidence. It may well require her to testify herself, and that will certainly be a blockbuster moment in this
SOARES: Yes, no doubt. Probably quite heated, too, Clare. But like you said, she was the darling and Dan Simon pointed that out. She was the
darling of Silicon Valley. She was incredibly a charismatic young leader.
What happens if she is convicted? Or even, you know, acquitted? What kind of ripple effects, Clare, are we talking about here for Silicon Valley, and
as well as other startups?
SEBASTIAN: You know, I think, this is something that will focus attention on the line that has so often been blurred between hyping up a product in
development stages and fraud essentially, and over, you know, sort of outright deceit.
I think, if she is convicted, it could put, you know, young entrepreneurs, new startups in Silicon Valley on notice that there is that line that now
has been drawn and you have to be careful what you promise.
If she is acquitted, though, that could have the opposite effect, that line could become even more blurred, and we could see more of this sort of over
promising, the fake it until you make it culture that has so long been a part of Silicon Valley.
Of course, it could not -- it could be that people look at this as not just a tech company, but a health company, and it's something potentially
different. But I think the other extraordinary part of the story, Isa, was the backers of Theranos. She managed to convince the likes of Henry
Kissinger, George Shultz, former Secretaries of State who were on her board, former Defense Secretary James Mattis. Rupert Murdoch, was an
All of these people were drawn in. You saw even then Vice President Joe Biden visiting Theranos several years ago and calling it inspirational. I
think this is also going to be a rallying cry for due diligence for people really understanding what they are investing in and its customers, what
they are buying.
SOARES: Yes, it will really was a technology that, you know, promised to change the world, but really clearly failed to deliver.
Clare Sebastian there. Great to see you, Clare. Thanks very much.
Well, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro struck a defiant tone amid huge protests we showed you yesterday where he called into question Brazil's
election process. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAIR BOLSONARO, BRAZILIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): We cannot have elections where there are doubts among the voters. We want clean, auditable
elections, and with a public vote count.
I cannot participate in this farce sponsored by the Superior Electoral Court President.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: Well, the embattled leader is facing crises on multiple fronts ahead of election next year, Anthony Wells joins us now for more from Sao
Paulo. So Anthony, you know, protests are now over and the work still remains. He still has to convince the rest of the population that he
deserves to be the next President come next year and crucially, he has a crippling economy and high inflation. For many no doubt, Anthony, that is a
huge concern right now.
ANTHONY WELLS, CNN-BRASIL REPORTER: Isa, how are you? You're absolutely right, he has to convince the Brazilian population. This, as his ratings
are nosediving due to a coronavirus pandemic that has claimed almost 600,000 Brazilian lives.
So, at the main protest in favor of President Jair Bolsonaro that happened here in the city of Sao Paulo, he projected only three alternatives for his
future -- prison, death, or victory in next year's presidential election; and then he added that he will never go to prison.
He also said that he will not bow down to the Brazilian Supreme Court, keeping in mind, Alexandre de Moraes, one of the Supreme Court justices is
investigating Jair Bolsonaro on a number of fronts, including the alleged illegal of financing of pro-government rallies, as well as the
dissemination of fake news.
Moraes has allowed the Brazilian Federal Police, for example, to raid the homes of numerous pro-Bolsonaro celebrities, as well as political figures
accused of inciting violence. And Bolsonaro once again, discredited Brazil's electronic voting system and spoke in favor of printed ballots, a
proposal that has failed to pass in Congress.
So his words yesterday were met with a widespread criticism from politicians across the nation who claim his behavior is unconstitutional.
The Governor of the State of Sao Paulo where we're actually live from right now is, Joao Doria, for example, one of the President's biggest rivals came
forward and for the first time said Bolsonaro should be impeached.
So yesterday, thousands of Brazilians took to the streets, both for and against the President here in the City of Sao Paulo, over a hundred
thousand people that participated in the rally, many of whom were cramped up in tight spaces without masks. Bolsonaro was actually fined for the
seventh time for not wearing a mask, and he has urged his supporters to show up at his rallies, this as I mentioned, in a moment, where his
administration is facing dropping ratings.
Polls show that over 60 percent of Brazilians would not vote for Bolsonaro, putting him behind former leftist President, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. So,
on Sunday, September 12th, a major anti-government demonstrations are scheduled across the nation and we, of course will be keeping a very close
eye on them.
Isa, back to you.
SOARES: Yes, it would be interesting to see -- thank you, Anthony. It will be great to see -- interesting to see what happens next around Doria, as
well as Lula, both been calling for impeachment, many calls for impeachment, but thus far, that has not gone anywhere.
Anthony Wells from Sao Paulo, obrigado, thank you.
Well, Bitcoin remains off its highs in May. Right now, it is holding steady around the $46,000.00 mark, and you can just see how volatile it has been.
Bad news of course for El Salvador, which has just adopted the cryptocurrency as legal tender. The move was met with protests and
technical glitches as our Rafael Romo now reports.
RAFAEL ROMO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It wasn't the stellar rollout that the Salvadorian President Nayib Bukele was hoping for. There were glitches with
the government's app designed for exchanging Bitcoin for dollars and vice versa.
Also, within hours, the cryptocurrency lost about 10 percent of its value. On the plus side, major fast food chains that operate in El Salvador like
McDonald's and Pizza Hut are already accepting Bitcoin.
The Salvadorian National Assembly has created a fund of $150 million, so that there's money readily available if people want to exchange their
Bitcoin. By midday, the government of El Salvador had already purchased 550 bitcoins, equivalent to nearly $26 million.
And even though El Salvador became, Tuesday, the first country to declare Bitcoin as legal tender, the reality is that a small coastal village in the
Central American country has been using it for years. It's called El Zonte and it is home to Bitcoin Beach, a locally led initiative supported by a
U.S.-based nonprofit organization that has been promoting the cryptocurrency as a way to empower those at the bottom of the economic
People dare including many small businesses have been using Bitcoin for daily transactions. Not everybody in the country is convinced though. There
have been at least two major protests against Bitcoin where one union leader compared adopting Bitcoin as gambling in a casino.
According to a recent survey conducted by the Central American University in El Salvador, seven out of every 10 Salvadorians would rather continue to
deal in dollars, even if Bitcoin is widely available.
Rafael Ramos, CNN, Mexico City.
SOARES: We'll keep on that story for you.
Now, BlackRock says its new investment fund in China has attracted about $1 billion, that's right, $1 billion from Chinese investors in its first week.
However, the renowned investor, George Soros is calling the BlackRock initiative, a tragic mistake. Anna Stewart joins me now with more.
So Anna, clearly, BlackRock is feeling very bullish about the growth potential in China, but Soros sees risk. Lay them out for us.
ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: Yes, there certainly are risks. But before I get to those, let's look at what BlackRock is saying. They are saying there
is huge reward here as well.
They point to the fact in their sales pitch that China is the world's second largest economy, its financial market is huge. But it's been largely
restricted from international investors until recently and it says, the cost of ignoring this opportunity could prove too high. They're not alone,
Fidelity picked it. Goldman Sachs are all encouraging their investors to invest in China, albeit, with varying levels of caution.
And perhaps the most caution, as you've suggested, has been thrown by George Soros in his op-ed in "The Wall Street Journal," absolutely slammed
BlackRock's decision here, and he really highlights risks, dual purpose, I say, first of all, from the sort of investor standpoint, but also more
broadly, he said in this op-ed, he said, "Pouring billions of dollars into China now is a tragic mistake. It is likely to lose money for BlackRock's
clients, and more important, will damage the national security interests of the U.S. and other democracies."
He says BlackRock has made a blunder here, and he says that all businesses, whether they are state owned or private are effectively instruments of
China's communist regime -- Isa.
SOARES: Well, of course, and all this, all this background, of course, as our viewers will know, comes amid a crackdown on the nation's technology
sector, stories that we have been showing here on CNN, and that has left Anna, investors unnerved, and there is so much we simply don't know as of
STEWART: You're absolutely right. I mean, the crackdown already has cost investors around $3 trillion. I mean, just consider that number. And
mostly, it is firms with an international listing or with operations overseas who have taken the brunt.
And just to give you a few examples, we had DiDi in July, you can see its share price, it IPO'ed on the nicey, just days later, China's regulatory
authorities removed its apps from the App Store. Look, its share price has not recovered.
In May, Alibaba was slapped with a $2.8 billion antitrust fine from authorities in China. And just months before that, its sister company, the
ANT Group had to shelve its IPO plans. And all of that, Isa, was actually before President Xi's Common Prosperity policy announcement that was made
in August, promising to redistribute wealth, and that could have major implications.
You could see many more fines of this nature -- bigger fines, perhaps -- and across different businesses and across different sectors. And it's just
the uncertainty of that, I think that makes investors a little bit uneasy. Is this the most attractive environment for investing in right now -- Isa.
SOARES: Yes, too much uncertainty at the moment, like you said, too many unknowns. Anna Stewart, thank you very much.
Well, these are the stories making headlines around the world for you. In France, the trial has begun of 20 men accused of directing as well as
carrying out the 2015 Paris terrorist attacks.
Earlier, the court heard from the only known survivor of the group that directly took part in the shootings and bombings. The trial, which is
expected to last nine months will hear testimony from hundreds of victims.
CNN's Cyril Vanier joins us now from the courthouse in Paris. And Cyril, give us a sense of what we can expect today and really a sense of the mood
in Paris as this trial, of course, this day of reckoning gets underway?
CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Isa, there is no doubt that emotions are running high in Paris, especially as you get nearer the
courtroom. As I got here, I heard a man wishing the death penalty upon the defendants here, the alleged terrorists, and he is probably not the only
one in the vicinity of this courtroom to feel that way.
The death penalty, of course no longer exists in France. Nowhere will the emotion be higher than inside the courtroom, the purpose built rooms to
accommodate this mega trial, Isa, the biggest criminal trial France has known this century, 1,800 victims. We're talking the relatives of the
people who were killed.
We're talking about the survivors, about those who were injured, almost 500 people. So they are victims taking part in this trial.
There are 20 defendants, alleged terrorists, and they're in the courtroom on day one. We could hear sobbing, according to our producer who is inside
the courtroom just a few moments ago as the names of the 130 people who were killed were being read in alphabetical order, just a very short while
VANIER: So emotions are definitely running high. We will probably get the best sense of the depth of those emotions at the end of the month. Five
weeks have been devoted to questioning and hearing from the victims those, who were in and around the attacks. And we know that these were horrific
The injured were being executed at point blank range on the streets of Paris only six years ago. So, they remember those vividly and we expect
them to describe in some detail what they experienced and that will be starting at the end of the month -- Isa.
SOARES: Goodness, how hard that must be for them. Cyril Vanier there for us in Paris. Thanks very much, Cyril. Good to see you.
And still to come right here on FIRST MOVE. U.S. manufacturers want clarity on COVID, and on China. I speak to the head of the National Industry Group.
And smartphone chip maker, Qualcomm pivots into cars. The CEO joins me next.
You are watching CNN.
SOARES: Now, the COVID-19 delta variant is driving a new surge of cases in the United States. On Thursday, the President will unveil a six-prong
strategy to combat its spread. This, of course amid fears that it is pushing the recovery at risk.
Earlier this week, Goldman Sachs downgraded its outlook for the U.S. economy for the second time in weeks saying the delta variant was to blame.
Joining me is Jay Timmons, the President and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers. Jay, good morning. Thank you for being on the
JAY TIMMONS, PRESIDENT AND CEO, NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MANUFACTURERS: Good to be here.
SOARES: If you don't mind, I'd like to start off with COVID because I know we've seen a number of companies as well as government entities I should
add, adopting strict coronavirus vaccine policies. You have also been mandating that. Tell us why you've made that decision?
TIMMONS: Well, at the National Association of Manufacturers, we believe in the safety of our employees. We understand that manufacturers are the ones
who are responsible for giving us this life saving vaccine that can literally save humanity.
So for us, there really wasn't any other choice. In fact, our team, I was so proud of our team. We are at 96 percent compliance with the vaccine
before we even issued a mandate, and when we issued the mandate, we are now at 100 percent.
TIMMONS: So, I'm very pleased that our team is safe, as much as you can be with the delta variant and others out there. But we're also still cautious.
We still wear masks around the office, and we're very careful around our members and our customers.
SOARES: Of course, there was no -- there are no exceptions with, you know, for religious or medical reasons, but explain, Jay, what would have
happened if an employee -- I know you've reached a hundred percent -- what if an employee had disagreed? Would you then let them go? Is it -- did you
feel that that was the priority?
TIMMONS: So, there are always -- in the United States, there are always the religious and medical exemptions that can be requested. And of course,
as an employer, you always have to honor those, as long as those religious beliefs are sincerely held, and as long as there are true medical
So, we understand that if employers mandate vaccines, that there may be those types of exceptions. But the point is, you get vaccinated to protect
those people who for whatever reason cannot be vaccinated.
And I would add into that the children of the world, those in the United States, 12 and under who can't get the vaccine. I have three of those. So,
we obviously want to protect folks, so they don't have to go through the horror of COVID. My own father died of COVID. It is a horrific, horrific
death. And we would not wish that on anybody.
The manufacturers want to lead the way in making sure the world can get through this.
SOARES: Our condolences, first of all, for your father, first Jay. But let me ask you this. Are your members, are they taking their cues from you in
terms of putting these policies in place? What are you hearing? What are they telling you?
TIMMONS: Yes, so as you might guess, with 14,000 members, we have a number of policies that are in place. There are many manufacturers who are trying
their best to figure out exactly how to encourage more and more of their employee base to get vaccinated.
We have some companies like Tyson's Food, for instance, Cleveland Cliffs, Pfizer, of course, and others who are mandating the vaccine. Others are
working with incentives to encourage their workforce to get vaccinated.
So, we're seeing more and more manufacturing employees getting the vaccine. And sadly, one of the reasons that so many are starting to get the vaccine,
we've seen this uptick, is because they've seen members of their own family getting very, very sick or even dying, or some of their co-workers and
colleagues getting this disease and dying.
And it's terrible when you know someone, and it becomes very personal. So, you're starting to see more and more take advantage of the vaccine. We have
75 percent of Americans who have now gotten at least one shot. That's a great number. I think we would all like to see that number increase.
But it's a great place for us to be, and now of course, we want to be able to see the rest of the world get vaccinated as well. It's the only way
we're going to get this under control.
SOARES: Yes, absolutely. And Jay, if I just switch gears slightly, let's talk if I may, manufacturing. I've been told that NAM sent a letter to
Secretary Blinken and others urging the Biden administration to act quickly on a China strategy. On that front, what are you calling for? What do you
want to see from President Biden in terms of policy here?
TIMMONS: Yes, so that letter actually went to the President, and I think the key thing that we need to see from the administration is clarity. So,
the last administration, we found ourselves being surprised, oftentimes, by certain things that came out of the administration.
We'd like to see some clarity about what the administration intends to do with China, who can be a trading partner and it can also be an adversary.
We know that China cheats on many things and I think the administration understands that. We understand that they are trying to figure out exactly
how to handle the problem that we've had with the theft of intellectual property and other problems that we've seen coming out of China for
manufacturers in the United States.
We would like to see how they intend to implement the Phase 1 Trade Deal that was signed during the last administration. We'd like to see if they
have some policy on exemptions from some of the owners' tariffs that were put on American manufacturers that were applied in a very uneven way to
manufacturers in the United States.
And at the same time, we'd couple that with domestic policy. So, as we're trying to -- as we're trying to compete with China and other countries
around the world, we don't want to see our legislators here in the United States impose onerous policies like tax increases on businesses, because
that will make us less competitive around the world.
So, there's a lot that I realized that is on the President's plate. We look forward to continuing to work with him on creating that certainty that can
let manufacturers succeed here in the United States.
SOARES: Yes, certainty and indeed clarity. Jay Timmons, always great to have you on the show, the President and CEO of the National Association of
Manufacturers. Thanks very much, Jay. Great to see you.
Now, you are watching FIRST MOVE. We will have the market open next. Don't go anywhere.
SOARES: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE, everyone. Well, let's have a look at U.S. stocks and see how they opened the day this Wednesday, probably a bit
flat. It's been a day after the Dow lost more than 250 points, and as you can see, pretty low open right across the board for the Dow Jones, NASDAQ,
Investors are waiting, as I mentioned at the top of the show, the Labor Department's job openings data. That is coming roughly in about an hour or
Shares of Nio are falling -- we are bringing those shares -- after the Chinese EV company announced a $2 billion stock offering as you can see
just over three percent. Coinbase also low, the cryptocurrency exchange has received a notice of possible enforcement action from the S.E.C.
And we have a look at Citrix, well, that's doing rather well, isn't it, almost eight percent following a report that activist hedge fund, Elliott
Management has more than $1 billion stake in the software company.
And Bitcoin is now trading around, well, $46,000.00, a bit down as you can see pretty flat. On Tuesday, if you remember, the currency dropped as El
Salvador adopted it as a legal tender.
Well, as demand for renewable technology soars, there is a rapidly growing need for the materials required to make green tech work. And that's where
KoBold Metals steps in.
Backed by the likes of Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates, the startup uses artificial intelligence to hunt down precious minerals. Today, it announced
that it is teaming up with the world's biggest miner, BHP for a joint exploration effort.
For more on this new partnership, I'm joined by the cofounder and CFO and CTO of KoBold Metals, Josh Goldman.
SOARES: Josh, great to have you on the show. Look, as I was reading this, Josh, I was struck by the line using artificial intelligence. Explain to
our viewers just exactly how this would work.
JOSH GOLDMAN, CFO, CTO AND COFOUNDER, KOBOLD METALS: Thanks. It's great to be here, Isa. As you said, to prevent climate change, we have to
manufacture billions of electric vehicles by mid-Century, and they all need big batteries. And to make those batteries as you say, we need lithium. We
need cobalt, we need nickel, we need copper, and we need a lot. More than $10 trillion worth of them.
The reason we're here is because nobody knows where those materials are going to come from, we have to find more. This is a really hard problem.
All of the places on the Earth where those minerals are at the surface, where you can see them with your eyes, someone has already found them and
already dug them up.
And the new sources that we need for electric vehicles, they're deeper underground. And so, we need better technology to see through the rocks and
find them. So KoBold is using artificial intelligence to use all the data that we collect from the ground, from satellites, from aircraft, from
boreholes to predict where under the ground these minerals are hidden all over the world.
And today, we're excited to announce our alliance with BHP, the largest mining company in the world, which has more than a hundred years of data,
and our machine learning technology uses that data to get new insights to accelerate our search for these critical materials for the clean energy
SOARES: And Josh, as you are talking, I am seeing a helicopter. I don't know exactly what's hanging off it, I imagine it is taking images,
snapshots of the Earth. When you look -- in terms of the exploration depth here, what are we talking about? And what discovery zones will you be
GOLDMAN: The helicopter is probing what's underneath the surface. It is transmitting pulses of electrical energy into the ground and listening for
reflections from the rocks that are underneath the ground. We ingest that technology -- we ingest that data with our technology. We use it the same
day to steer the helicopter to new locations, zoom in on the places that are most, most interesting, the best places to look.
And technology like this, we can probe hundreds of meters under the ground, through the plants, through the soil, through the rock that's under that
and we can predict where there might be ore deposits hidden underneath the ground.
SOARES: Yes, and I suspect, as you pointed out, as demand for kind of green energy as well as electric vehicles continues to surge, these
minerals could really be the driving force in the future as well as a drive in profits, I'm sure.
GOLDMAN: That's exactly right. And look, you know, there are -- the mines that we have today, they're going to produce enough vehicles for the raw
materials for electric vehicles made this year and next year and the year after that. But five to 10 years from now, if we haven't made new
discoveries, all the growth we're seeing in electric vehicle sales year over year, that's going to run out of juice, and our best chances for
preventing catastrophic warming are going to dim.
But there are new sources out there. They are waiting to be discovered. And the question is, are we going to find them in time? That's why we started
this company. Our machine learning technology is designed to help us discover new sources to find them faster and accelerate the clean energy
SOARES: I'm glad you mentioned this, Josh, because of course, I was wondering how much pressure you might be under to make this work because of
course, you're backed by big names -- Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates -- how worried are you, that -- you know if this fails?
GOLDMAN: You know, I think we're giving ourselves the best shot in the world. We've got industry leading technology. We've got some of the best
geoscientists in the world with BHP. We have enormous historical data. Everything that humanity has learned about the Earth, and this is going to
give us the best chance.
The materials are there to be found. The only question is, can we find them and we're up for the challenge.
SOARES: Very, very quickly. I noticed is an alliance with BHP. They have faced criticism, of course for its continued interest in fossil fuels. How
does that sit with you?
GOLDMAN: Well, what we're looking for with BHP and what we're looking for all over the rest of the world are these critical materials for batteries
for electric vehicles and renewable energy, and BHP has announced that that's a major corporate priority for them, that's well aligned with what
we're looking for, and we're using their expertise, our expertise, their data, our technology to go find new sources of these metals.
These are the materials of the future and many of us companies are focused on finding them.
SOARES: Josh Goldman, do keep us posted on how you get on. Josh Goldman, the cofounder and CFO and CTO of KoBold Metals. Thank you very much, Josh,
for joining us there.
GOLDMAN: Thank you, Isa.
SOARES: Now, I want to bring this, just in CNN, former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has posted an apology on Twitter for leaving the country as
the Taliban closed in on Kabul last month. I'm going to show you this tweet.
He posted a statement in English just recently, in fact, saying on Twitter that he left the country urging -- at the urging of the palace security.
Now, Ghani also denies in this tweet, what he calls baseless allegations he took millions of dollars belonging to the Afghan people out of the country.
In the end of the statement, it is quite a lengthy statement saying, "I apologize to the Afghan people that I cannot make it end differently."
Now, coming up right here on the show, Britney Spears fight in her conservatorship just got support from a very unlikely source. That is after
SOARES: Now, a worldwide pandemic has not only boosted e-commerce, it has also ratcheted up consumers' expectations with fast delivery becoming even
Well, in Dubai, one warehouse is racing to meet the extra demands with a fleet of robots.
Our Eleni Giokos has more for you.
ELENI GIOKOS, CNN BUSINESS AFRICA CORRESPONDENT (voice over): The humans here are outnumbered nearly three to one on the floor of this Dubai-based
warehouse. It's the Middle East first robotics fulfillment center and founder, Fadi Amoudi believes that this will become the new norm for e-
FADI AMOUDI, FOUNDER, IQ FULFILLMENT: Technology must play a vital role in shaping that new future of logistics because you're going to have to give
that level of satisfaction and service.
GIOKOS (voice over): With a simple click of a mouse, the hard work begins at centers like IQ Fulfillment, picking, wrapping and shipping up to 36,000
products a day from purchase to packaging.
AMOUDI: Now the shipping label is printed. Good.
GIOKOS (voice over): Amoudi says that items can be processed in five minutes, a crucial pace amid the pandemic as shoppers have grown more
AMOUDI: The consumer needs change because they are home. They want a better service basically.
AMOUDI: And for you to have your customer loyalty, you need to give them the best service out there.
GIOKOS (voice over): E-commerce giant, Amazon, paved the way for automation in 2012. Today, 50 of its more than 185 fulfillment centers use
robotics. But most operations at logistics warehouses around the world are still mainly manual, including countries like the UAE.
DEBASHISH MUKHERJEE, MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA LEAD CONSUMER AND RETAIL, A.T. KEARNY: In this region, it is not an automatic choice to go full robots or
full automation because labor is still affordable and available.
GIOKOS (voice over): IQ Fulfillment uses about 40 robots mainly to move products, which Amoudi says is three times more efficient than traditional
processes. The tech here is similar to what you'd find in the likes of Alibaba or Amazon. But the difference between IQ and these behemoths is the
business model because Amazon requires vendors to sell on its sites.
AMOUDI: IQ is open for everyone. You can sell with your Shopify account, Instagram account, or with your Amazon account. Our aim is to build an
ecosystem in order to enable e-commerce for all.
GIOKOS (voice over): IQ pioneered robotic fulfillment here back in 2019. Now, Amoudi says 12 countries have expressed interest in licensing his
model, meaning that robots might just become the mainstream.
Eleni Giokos, CNN, Dubai.
SOARES: Now, Britney Spears father, Jamie Spears is filing a petition to end the singer's 13-year conservatorship. It is an unexpected turn, well,
to say the least, Britney Spears has been fighting if you'll remember in court to take control of her life, her finances and healthcare. In the new
court filing, Jamie Spears says he believes she should get that chance.
CNN entertainment reporter, Chloe Melas is in New York for us. And Chloe, this took me by surprise. How do we go from Britney basically telling the
world what was happening to her was a form of torture to now this. What does he get out of this, Chloe?
CHLOE MELAS, CNN ENTERTAINMENT REPORTER: Thank you for having me. Britney Spears's father, Jamie Spears has been the conservator of her over $60
million estate since 2009 and Britney has said that she wants her father charged with conservatorship abuse, that she doesn't want him to be the
So, I think that many fans in the Free Brittany Movement were surprised to see her father to be the one to file a petition to terminate as opposed to
maybe her mother or even her own lawyer. But remember her attorney, Mathew Rosengart, has been putting major pressure on Jamie Spears to resign.
The next hearing is September 29th, and many were thinking that perhaps Judge Brenda Penny was actually going to suspend Jamie Spears. So, it looks
as though he is trying to get out of the line of fire, so to speak, by filing this petition to terminate.
But in a statement from Britney's attorney, Mathew Rosengart late last night, he said that, look, this is a victory. But on the other hand, they
still want to pursue potential conservatorship abuse charges and look into the management of how he handled Britney's finances.
So, this is far from over. We haven't yet heard from Britney Spears herself publicly. She hasn't yet posted on Instagram. And none of her family
members have said anything either.
But we're just a few weeks away from that big hearing in Los Angeles and we all want to know is Britney going to go? Is she going to speak again? Is
she going to call in again? So many questions.
And if the conservatorship is once and for all terminated, will Britney finally take the stage and perform again? Put out new music? Or will she do
what she talked about in her testimonies? Get married? Have a baby?
So a lot of questions, but it's a very exciting moment for Britney who has wanted out of this conservatorship for over a decade.
SOARES: Indeed, Chloe Melas for us in New York. Thanks very much, Chloe. Good to see you.
MELAS: Thanks, good to see you.
SOARES: Now, after the break, Qualcomm is changing direction, it's been heading into the car market in a tie up with Renault.
The CEO's view on the global chip crisis, that is next.
SOARES: Now Qualcomm, the world's largest smartphone chip maker has been turning its attention to cars. It is announcing a major tie up with Renault
to make semiconductors for its new electric SUV, Megane E-TECH has just been unveiled as you can see there at the Munich Auto Show, and the deal
comes as the world faces as we've told you here on this program, an acute shortage of chips, something that really major automakers have been telling
this show about. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HERBERT DIESS, CEO, VOLKSWAGEN: We think that we will overcome this situation towards the end of the month and then we should see a relief.
Semiconductors will be on short supply probably for several months.
OLIVER ZIPSE, CEO, BMW: We are working very hard to reduce the impacts on our growing market segments. But we foresee that the second half of the
year will be more difficult.
If you ask me how long this chip shorted period will stay on, I consider it will be the next six to 12 months. And after that, we should be over.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SOARES: So, six to 12 months, roughly. Well, let's get more. Cristiano Amon is the President and CEO of Qualcomm. Cristiano, thank you very much
for being on the show.
Look, earlier this year, I remember you signed a deal for chips with General Motors. Now you have a new client, you have Renault. Clearly
Cristiano, plenty of demand for chips, as we hear, of course, as we face a chip shortage. Is this foray into the auto industry a more exciting and
profitable one for you?
CRISTIANO AMON, PRESIDENT AND CEO, QUALCOMM: Well, we're very happy with the progress we're making in the automotive industry. Actually, we're
working with now 23 of the global 26 brands.
It's a record time that we expand into the automotive business. We just followed this trend of accelerated digital transformation everywhere.
Natural evolution of Qualcomm. We're always going to be in mobile. Mobile is always going to be a core business for us.
But like auto, we see a lot of growth opportunities as mobile technology goes everywhere. We have a $10 billion contracted backlog in Qualcomm that
is over in automotive and it's going to be over a billion dollar this year for us.
SOARES: Can you give us a little idea of -- I know you've given us the numbers of automakers, but any names that you're lining up with when it
comes to chip shortage in the auto sector?
AMON: Look, I think, you know, not to be pretentious, but I think the speed that we'll be able to expand in the automotive industry is
incredible. I think almost like the question is who is not working with Qualcomm? We've been working with 23 of the global 26 brands across
connecting from the Cloud, basically doing the change experience with what we call a digital cockpit and autonomy.
Chip shortage, it is not unique to the automotive industry. It is clear that is the accelerated pace of digitizing the economy, the Cloud base
economy increased the consumption of chips, but we're very fortunate that we have line of sights to get out of this crisis towards the end of this
calendar year, and we seize, you know, significant, at least for technologies we are providing, significant improvement in the supply chain
capacity and ability to meet difficult demand as we enter 2022.
SOARES: Now, Cristiano, I know you said that you're not hanging up the mobile -- you know, you're not hanging up on the mobile phone sector, but
many within the mobile phone industry are developing their own chips, I am thinking Apple here. Where does that leave you?
AMON: We're just at the beginning of our Apple relationship. When we settled our dispute with Apple, you know, we're reestablishing a
relationship. We have a multiyear contract. We just launched one phone, we have many phones to go.
But what is really more important and what's happening in the mobile industry is that Huawei, you know, declined their participation to market.
The winners in that market are Qualcomm customers.
It's kind of remarkable just looking in companies like Xiaomi in China. They are now the number two OEM in the world and just number one in Europe,
which is really a remarkable achievement, and we're just at the beginning of this opportunity for us with the Huawei addressable market.
Snapdragon, which is our flagship product became synonymous with premium smartphone technology in the Android segment, and even companies like
Samsung, they have their chip for many, many years, we see our position increasing.
So, we are very happy with the mobile opportunity we have in front of us.
AMON: But what's more exciting, as we said in the beginning of the conversation, even though we're growing mobile because of 5G, the non-
mobile business including automotive is growing at 1.6 times than mobile.
SOARES: Yes, I mean, it's fascinating to see how that sector is growing given, of course, the crisis we're seeing on the chip front.
Cristiano Amon, the President and CEO of Qualcomm, thank you very much for coming on the show. Appreciate it, Cristiano.
And that is it for this hour, everyone. I'm Isa Soares. Thank you very much for watching.
"Connect the World" with Becky Anderson is next.
Do stay right here with CNN.