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First Move with Julia Chatterley
Dozens Die As Migrant Boat Capsizes Between France And UK; France To Strengthen COVID Measures Again; Jamie Dimon Says He Regrets His China Joke; Africa's Access Bank Goes For Growth; Enel Plans To Abandon Natural Gas In 2040; Danish Fintech Unicorn Pleo Targets 1M Users By 2025; Crowds Return For Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Aired 9-10a ET
Aired November 25, 2021 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Live from New York, I'm Julia Chatterley. This is FIRST MOVE. And here's your need to know.
Crossing Crisis. President Macron urges EU action after migrants die at sea.
Burgeoning blacklist. The U.S. bans trade with more Chinese tech firms.
And apology accepted. Jamie Diamond's regret over his China joke gets Beijing's backing.
It's Thanksgiving Thursday. Let's make a move.
And welcome once again to FIRST MOVE.
And of course, it is Thanksgiving Day here in the United States. And if I start listing all the reasons, I have to be thankful, I might never stop.
So, I will start and finish by thanking all of you for joining us today and every day.
It also means we will be going live to the 95th Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade later on in the show. Maybe we'll even be lucky enough to see an
enormous Baby Yoda balloon new this year. Yes, the details (INAUDIBLE) and that is my favorite.
U.S. investors clearly therefore far too busy watching the parade and prepping for the day's turkey feast. So, markets here are closed. But I can
show you the price action for stocks elsewhere in the world. Though you have to expect a quiet day with investors in the U.S.
Out in Europe. All the main indexes are modestly higher following a positive finish in the United States. Yesterday, the lowest weekly
unemployment benefit claims since November of 1969.
Remember we discussed on the show yesterday. I think that's helping convince investors that the economy can withstand. Earlier rate visors and
perhaps we first thought. And the Vicor Korea just the latest to move in that direction too. The Kospi over in South Korea closing lower after the
BOK raised rates for a second time since August. It was, however, expected. And for now, at least it seems.
Global investors are shrugging off concerns about rising COVID cases and the growth impact of tightening restrictions in Europe.
Let's get to the drivers.
At least 27 migrants have died after their boats capsized as they attempted to cross from France to Britain. It's one of the largest losses of life in
the English Channel in recent years. France's president says the UK and France have to work together to dismantle smuggling networks and with a
dramatic increase in attempted crossings. It comes amidst simmering tensions over the crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EMANUEL MACRON, FRENCH PRESIDENT (through translator): We are holding this border for the UK. They don't want asylum in France. We will improve our
means to increase protection but we need to work as partners.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHATTERLEY: Cyril Vanier joins us now from Calais in France. Cyril, we can talk about the EU response. We can talk about the tensions between the UK
and France, but at the heart of this is 27 people who lost their lives.
CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely, Julia. And we wanted to get a better sense of the circumstances around this tragedy. And that's why we
came to this beach here about 30 minutes away from Calais on the French coastline. And really, just standing on this dune, you understand so much
Number one, Julia, I can see the cliffs of Dover from here. They are 27 nautical miles from where we are. You understand when you can see them,
when you can see the end destination for these migrants who though so desperately want to get to the UK. You can understand why people who are
desperate and have nothing to lose would come to this spot and use this as a - as a - as a staging area, if you like, to undertake this last part of
their journey which often began somewhere in the Middle East. Two of the people who survived from yesterday's tragedy are from Iraq and Somalia and
they were here, still are here in Northern France. That's the first lesson.
Second lesson of why this is such a good staging area, this whole part of the French coastline. Look around us. You see these dunes? This is a
natural reserve. I have no idea what's behind that dune 20 meters away. And indeed, migrants do use these to hide, so do the smugglers to hide their
equipment. It's very hard to police.
Now, we have seen local police. They walk around here. They have occasionally drones, still, it's very -- there is 200 kilometers of this
coastline. That's the second lesson that all of this provides an ideal -- a favorable ground, I should say, for smugglers to carry out their dirty
And the third and most important thing I want to show you is this. This is one of the boats that was provided by smugglers for migrants. This is 10
meters long, it's an inflatable dinghy. It can carry several dozen migrants, especially when you know that smugglers will definitely overload
these boats and charge even more. Every migrant who gets on this boat has to pay several thousand Euros. These are cheap to buy. They're easy to
hide. Local police tell us often they come in a flat pack and they're buried underground.
And when the time comes, migrants have the GPS coordinates. They can just unearth them. They can inflate them. They can build this. This is the
bottom of the boat. These cheap wooden planks here. They can build this. And then usually under cover of darkness when it's high tide as it's about
to be, they can set out at sea headed, Julia, for England right there.
CHATTERLEY: It's one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world. The water is freezing, and for anyone who has crossed that and sailed across it,
that's way too flimsy, to your point, no matter how many people you've got in there. Those kind of levels -- perilous is the wrong word. I'm sort of
lost for words, really.
So, let's talk about the official response, because we have seen the UK and France sort of bartering over who is most responsible. They do need to work
together. There needs to be an EU response to handle this type of thing. And the numbers, I think, have tripled this year in 2020. So, what -- what
are they saying about the response? What more can they do?
VANIER: Yes. Number one, Julia, these -- these boat crossings have tripled for a reason. And the reason is that the previous routes used by migrants
usually on trucks and on ferries, those are now much better policed than they used to be. I just spoke with local police and they told me it's now
impossible to get on a truck. So, all those scenes we used to see about migrants, you know, essentially hijacking trucks and getting on the back of
them, they can't do that anymore. That's why they're taking these boats. That's why that number has tripled.
As far as the politics of this, France right now would like you to think of this as purely a smuggling problem. It absolutely is a smuggling problem
because the smugglers are here. They're prospering. They're selling these tickets on these boats and they're making money off the death of children
in some cases.
But it's not just a smuggling problem, it's also an asylum and immigration policy problem. The reason these people are getting on these boats, Julia,
is because they don't have very many legal pathways to apply for asylum in England or even here in France in many cases.
And so, that is something that France is not talking about so much today. Hopefully they will in the coming days, and there is a meeting that is
being scheduled with the ministers of the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, all the neighboring countries that also see these -- these migrants go
through them. And they're going to be talking about that on Sunday. But it is not just a smuggling problem. Julia?
CHATTERLEY: No. It's a scene of desperation.
Cyril, thank you for bringing that to us.
Cyril Vanier there in Calais.
OK. Let's move on.
COVID-19 still surging in Europe. It's especially bad in Germany where the number of people who have lost their lives from COVID has now topped
In France, officials say current measures including rules on wearing masks will be toughened up, but there is no plan for new lockdowns.
CNN's Phil Black joins us now.
Phil, great to have you with us this morning.
Just compare if you can what we're seeing today versus what we were seeing this time last year in terms of numbers. Because obviously, far more people
now vaccinated whereas they won't before. How bad is this?
PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: By all accounts, Julia, it is - it's pretty bad. This is a challenging time, and it is different because you're right,
there is much more immunity in the population than there was a year ago. As -- as European countries headed into winter.
But the reality is that immunity, that vaccination coverage is still pretty patchy. So, it is a challenging time for Europe. The Delta variant is
spreading rapidly, vaccination rates are not consistent across the continent, let alone across countries. They can vary a lot between region
to region, and even in areas that do have high levels of vaccination, you're still seeing cases increase as well there, which suggest possibly
that vaccine immunity is beginning to wane and there is a greater, more urgent need for booster programs.
So, what to do? These are the challenges that European countries will be facing in the coming weeks. Today, as you touched on France, has declared
what it's going to do tactically, and that is essentially double down on its existing health pass system.
The French health minister says they don't want to do tough restrictions. They want to somehow balance responsibility and freedom to try and
reconcile those two ideas. The health pass system is the document that French people have to carry in order to access a lot of everyday stuff and
a lot of the things that they like doing as well. They have to be able to prove that they have been vaccinated or that they have natural immunity
through infection or that they have undergone a recent test.
Now, the changes will mean that for those documents to stay up to date, vaccinated people must also have a booster within two months of being
eligible. Those who are unvaccinated, well, their life is going to be even more complicated. Instead of being tested every 72 hours and ensuring that
that test is negative, they must now be tested every 24 hours.
What this is trying to do is not particularly settled from the very beginning. The health pass system is all about driving reluctant people
towards being vaccinated by simply making their lives more complicated, more difficult in various ways if they choose not to be vaccinated. As they
say, this doubles down on that idea. And as you touched on there as well, masks are back. They are going to be compulsory indoors from this weekend.
So, France hopes that will be enough in order to weather the coming difficulties of winter. There is reason to hope that France will be able to
do that because its vaccine rates were all very - were already pretty high as a result of the health pass system. Around 75 percent of the population
has been vaccinated. But the other countries where vaccine rates are lower, well, that perhaps suggests that as we've seen recently in Austria that
other non-pharmaceutical interventions, that is lockdowns and restrictions and so forth. They may be necessary to keep this under control to control
the spread and ease pressure on various health systems. Julia?
CHATTERLEY: Yes. I call it a weighty response from the French. We'll see how well it works. But life is going to get increasingly difficult if you
remain unvaccinated. I think that's the bottom line.
Phil Black, great to have you with us. Thank you for that.
OK. Let's move on.
Jamie Dimon walking back his controversial China comments, the CEO of JPMorgan, says he regrets a joke he made during a visit to Hong Kong. Just
take a listen to what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMIE DIMON, CEO, JPMORGAN CHASE: I made a joke the other day that I was just in Hong Kong. I made a joke that the Communist Party has celebrated
its 100th year. So is JPMorgan. And I make a bet we last longer.
I can't say that in China. They are probably listening, anyway.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHATTERLEY: Anna Stewart is on the story. We chose not to report on this yesterday. He was joking, but it is a little bit cringeworthy and he's
responded twice to apologize.
ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: Yes, the story has now developed to a point where I think you have to cover it. This was a comment made on Tuesday
night at Boston College. He said China may be listening. Well, they certainly did hear it, as did the rest of the world, due to the huge media
And there was actually more to it. Dimon also said that should the doors of America open up. A billion people would turn up. But would as many turn up
to China if the same were to be true. And he said, autocratic economies don't work as a country becomes more sophisticated.
What happened next was really interesting. That was Tuesday night. On Wednesday, initially Jamie Dimon released a statement that sort of walked
back the comments and explained this. Saying that the bank was just trying to - he's just trying to emphasize the bank's strength and its longevity.
And then just hours after that, a much fuller apology. This is what he said. "It's never right to joke about or denigrate any group of people,
whether it's a country, its leadership, or any part of a society and culture. Speaking in that way can take away from constructive and
thoughtful dialogue in society, which needed now more than ever."
So, he really doubled down here. He walked it back. He made a full apology. When you are the CEO of a big American bank with operations in China and
huge growth potential there, when you are accountable to shareholders and to your employees, you can't afford to make a comment like that.
Now, the Chinese foreign ministry have responded to all of this. A spokesperson has said that they really are kind of drawing a line under it.
They've said they just hope that the media hype stops. And I hope that we are explaining the story rather than hyping it. Julia?
CHATTERLEY: We're not adding to the hype, but it's a delicate balance. Isn't it? I think a lot of big business leaders would make these kinds of
quips, perhaps. They are very different countries, the United States and China, in private. But when you have big business interest and JPMorgan
does, you have to walk a very fine line. And whether you're a foreigner or you're also a Chinese person, there are those sorts of common to severe
pressure as a result of flouting the authority, well seeming to do so.
STEWART: Yes. And I don't think this would surprise anyone. This has been the case for some time. And of course, it changes depending on the
geopolitical context of the time, particularly for international companies, particularly for banks, I have to say.
There was of course, a "swinegate" for UBS just a few years ago.
The chief economist was suspended for a quip related to the inflator impact of swine flu. He was suspended. UBS lost a lot of business from Chinese
On the flip side though, more recently, when we talk about HSBC, they are often under a lot of pressure for being too supportive of Beijing,
particularly in terms of the national security law in Hong Kong.
So, it's not easy. It's not easy for domestic companies, either. Look at the crackdown on Alibaba and Didi. Much of that of course began when Jack
Ma was actually quite critical of China's financial regulatory system and what happens after that, Ant's IPO was pulled.
There is a balance here, though, between -- particularly for international companies, I think, for standing up for your corporate values, your
principles, but also protecting profits in a region that is so critical for so many companies. And some see it as do come out with some criticism.
I think the CEO Siemens as one that you mentioned to me earlier today. He was critical. That human rights abuses in China. But is also saying that
China is very important to them and their business. There is a balance here to be struck. Julia?
CHATTERLEY: Yes. Confident enough to make the comments. Confident enough to apologize, twice. Nothing hyped about our coverage.
Anna Stewart, we are hyped about our red choices though. Happy Thanksgiving.
STEWART: Oh, yes. Happy Thanksgiving.
CHATTERLEY: Thanks to you. Hang on. Thank you.
All right. Still to come here on "FIRST MOVE."
Access bank's big ambitions it sees. There will be the bankers to one in two Nigerians by next year. I speak to the CEO.
And catching up with Europe's fastest unicorn. The CEO if Pleo on scaling his startup to a $1.7 billion valuation in record time.
That's all coming up. Stay with us.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to "FIRST MOVE."
And to a tale of transformation in Africa's banking sector. Nigeria's Access Bank which has grown from a small commercial operation to a global
financial brand. Not satisfied by that. Access now wants to provide banking services to half of all Nigerians in 2022 and act as the continent's
gateway to the rest of the world.
Herbert Wigwe is the CEO of Access Bank and he joins us now.
Herbert, fantastic to have you on the show.
I think cool to being that payments gateway to the world is expansion. And you've had an incredible year expanding particularly into the south of
Africa, Botswana and Mozambique, Zambia, South Africa. Talk to me about what these expansions going to mean for performance.
HERBERT WIGWE, CEO, ACCESS BANK GROUP: Well, let me put it this way, Julia. It's something that we've been planning as part of corporate strategic
planning 2017 and the whole idea have been to support our correspondent banking business, to support our payments business and to basically ensure
that there is greater trade in the continent.
So, for us, what are we doing? We're basically making sure that we have a strong presence in all the major trade centers in the continent, to make
sure we can access UK as a strong encore that we can support correspondent banking. And that we can physically build you know that presence in the
continent that supports payment within the continent.
So, I think we're on track. I think in terms of profitability and different franchises are doing exceedingly well. And I think 2022 perhaps is actually
going to be a big, big year for the institution.
CHATTERLEY: You know the one that catches my eye is South Africa. This is a tough market. This is a mature market. It's undergoing significant digital
disruption as well in the financial sector space. What's the specific strategy there?
WIGWE: Well, you know, Julia, when I decide we went to the UK, it was a very tough market. And I think the market is to get South African bank in
the UK. Now, what are we doing in South Africa? We're basically going to ensure that it becomes a spot for the continental as far as correspondent
banking services are concern. We will help support corporate. Their interest in niches in that market that are yet to be served. We will help
to ensure with our financial (INAUDIBLE).
Without having so much more of a strategy, there is - there are interesting markets that have not been served that will basically (INAUDIBLE). But
apart from that, you need to see also the context of a large layer in the continent and partly serve our operators in different parts of the
continent and putting that whole network together is extremely, extremely important. Well, besides that, truly important, correspondent banking is
important and of course, (INAUDIBLE) in the global support in the countries within the South African context which is of course the largest (INAUDIBLE)
in the continent will be very important for us.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. Just to give my viewers some perspective here. I read that 30 percent of your profits will actually going to be outside of Nigeria
this year. Just to give you a sense of where that profitability is generating. But I did mention in the intro, and I've seen you say it, that
one of your ambitions is to provide one out of every two Nigerians with financial access and with banking services. Where are you today? And to
what extent of those that you don't currently service, are they being serviced by some of the digital players too? Do you need everybody? Do you
need that many or do you cherry-pick who your clients are? Is there room for all?
WIGWE: OK. We have about 200 employees in Nigeria. There is still a large advance population.
WIGWE: We have (INAUDIBLE) of major commercial cities who don't have a bank to basically service them. What are we doing? I mean our platform is
showing that today, we bank for our 50 million Nigerians, which means that we bank, what, 25 percent of the population, but in terms of the banking
population actually. All right, we bank about a third of the bankable population.
Now, backing one of every two Nigerians takes so close to about 100 million people. In terms of bankable Nigerians, it will be anywhere between 80
million and 100 million for us to actualy get that figure right.
So, we're going to pursue this whole activity through agency banking network and find out. We've created a different type of branch network is
specifically in major cities. And today, we're probably, what, bringing in about 700,000 customers every month. And I think that figure is going to
grow a lot more in 2022 with some of the things we could have done, some of the increase of agency banking that we've done.
Now, the question as to whether we need all of those people, is if -- if you had gone back 20 years ago, you'd have said some of these customers who
doesn't have enough disposable incomes we've banked.
Well, let me tell you one, Julia. Technology has changed that whole narrative, all right? There is a cheaper cost to service all of those
people. But besides that, we see ourselves as one of those officially leading change in Nigeria by providing a greater financial institution. And
that in itself would help to jumpstart and support - support the economy.
So, there are several reasons for one doing it. And at the end of the day, it is profitable to bank them. High level of individuals, private banking,
applied professionals, is a market that we are very familiar with but is also very competitive market and the margins are out there.
So, what we'll need to do is actually taking down market, and the sort of this greater financial -- just imagine, some of the things we just said,
the Central Bank have been pursued by the way to ensure that all of these compelled the diplomats of our market and it issue a financial.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. I mean, I know you have actually doubled IT spending between 2019 and 2020. So, it is something that your incredibly focused on.
How do you choose sort of which customers you want to go to? I know you're incredibly focused on accessing women, helping them build their businesses
But this is also, and it goes back to, I think, the point that you made. The Gen Z were never going to go into branch and then you've got the other
end to the scale. Those that are like - look at - I do want to access via my mobile phone or on a desktop. I want that touchpoint with the branch.
It's - even within the disruption that we're seeing it, it's a complex market and it's a huge continent.
WIGWE: First, let me tell you what we've done. I mean that two perspectives to the bank. We also had the other - these are bank that is serving
customers who may want to go some branches. But let me also let you know that if you look back over and ask yourself, bank shutting down branches -
the reality is a reasonable, respectable branches if you like.
Now, we also have, all right, that digital solution that serves to customers who don't even want to get into a bank branch. All right. That
just see a customer based - still being banked by Access. Now, we understand that the picture clears maybe getting an interesting proportion
of that customer base. But guess what, at the end of the day, if we have a physical branch, even if the customer doesn't want to get into a bank
branch, it's (INAUDIBLE) and for the customer to just also have a place to go to just in case he had a problem.
But remember, that is not just about transactional banking, it is about supporting other aspects of their lifestyle needs. It's about giving them a
decent mortgage. It's about providing several things that some of the things they are even not aware of. But we are making sure that we are
serving these customers properly even as we speak.
But let me tell you about women and some of the great things which I think we've done. In 2006, we were part of what we referred to the gender
department program. At that time, what we wanted to do was basically help provide financial services to women and help support their businesses grow
and we basically set a target working with the IFC of how many women we wanted grow and what threshold we wanted to take them as far as the
autonomous and proximity is concern. We did extremely, extremely well, Julia. And let me put it this way. I think we have less than 1 percent in
terms of default (INAUDIBLE) was concerned.
CHATTERLEY: Women are great credit.
WIGWE: Yes. I mean, and I don't know why.
WIGWE: Let social pressure are there. I don't know what it is. The nature of products we provided but that was reality. But each year after, in 2014,
we created the W-program which is a more -- much more robust program, it's about -- and it's about inspiring, it's about connecting and it's also
about empowering women. Right from the professional lady who perhaps whether they're seeking re-entry, or their business who wants to be
supported or the more - more you know sophisticated businessperson who is thinking about succession and wants a bank that can help them. All of those
things were provided. We took it deeper and deeper into health care schemes. Schemes that no other institute in the world have basically looked
It's the reason we won several, several awards. But coming back to Nigeria, and what we have done for women, half of our customer base today are women,
all right. And because they know that they will be served by Access. And if they need a financing, they will be supported by Access. Most times, they
have gotten the money, it's about supported with respect to various programs that would help educate them on what to do, how to grow their
businesses, all of those type of things. So, that is what has made us so different and the fact that most women will not bank anywhere else.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. And I'm secretly -- are not so secretly very passionate about this. I have about 20 more questions for Herbert, so you have to
promise to come back and we'll speak to you soon or I'll see you in Nigeria hopefully at some point, too.
WIGWE: I'm ready for you Julia.
CHATTERLEY: There we go. You've invited me now.
Herbert Wigwe, CEO of Access Banks. Great to speak to you. Thank you so much for joining us today. And I'll see you soon.
WIGWE: I would love to see you here, Julia. Thank you.
CHATTERLEY: We're back after this. Stay with us.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back. And it's Thanksgiving Day here in the United States. A perfect time to give thanks for the tasty stocks we've been
feasting on in 2021. And also, to single out some real corporate turkeys.
First up, we give thanks in more ways than one. For Moderna, the COVID vaccine maker that helped us emerged from lockdowns has been an investment
game changer too, up 160 percent so far this year. It is of its August ties but still a bountiful return. Out of stocks that have been gobbled up this
year, gaming chip maker in video driven in part by hopes for the future. Metaverse retailer Bath and Body Works soaring too after its spinoff from
L-brands. And once Sturgis Ford up almost 130 percent as investors bacon accelerated EV plans.
To the best meme stocks too, still living the dream. AMC up more than 1700 percent. That's the cinema chain, GameStop up 1,000 percent rouses.
Although both cooling down substantially from recent highs. That's not cool.
And then there are the stocks that have been, shall we say, for the birds. Walt Disney losing some of its sparkle, falling 16 percent on fears over
streaming growth. Investors wiping their hands clean of Clorox, too, shares soared during lockdown as we disinfected it, pulling back some 17 percent
post-lockdowns. And Las Vegas Sands slipping through our hands down 32 percent on uncertainty about gaming in Macau and online game from
Activision Blizzard lost in a PR storm, dropping 34 percent as corporate misconduct charges swirl.
All right. Let's move on.
Europe's largest utility, Italy's Enel has announced it is ramping up spending to become carbon free by 2040. That's 10 years earlier than
planned. That year, it says it will abandon natural gas. Notably, it's promising clients it will not only be better for the planet, but it would
also help bring their costs down, too. The CEO of Enel says companies that don't invest in renewables will be left behind.
FRANCESCO STARACE, CEO AND GENERAL MANAGER, ENEL: It's a new decade and I - - you know we thought and let's call it decade of electrification because now it's possible. And clearly, it requires a big effort from policymakers,
from providers of energy like we are, but mostly it requires conscious decisions from the point of view of customers because it's for them that
this all happens.
CHATTERLEY: I mean there's so much to discuss here. If you're going to push electrification, the bottom line is you have to make it affordable for
people and you have to make it reliable. If you have those two pieces that I think you have everybody onboard and we can push forward with this. Would
STARACE: I totally agree. I think - and I also agree that they come in this order, the one that you mentioned. I mean they must be - it must be
affordable, it must be something that we can provide convenient and stable pricing going forward, and it must be stably available.
So, no waste goes big eruption, much more quality in the service itself. I would say that with these two things, customers will also gain not only
economically but will also be able to reduce their capital footprint and be part of the great ASG revolution that everybody want to being. But it's not
so easy for many customers. They need to capitalize using electricity, which decarbonize and switching out gas, they can get into them. So, it's a
third benefit they all have.
CHATTERLEY: I want to talk about customers separately, because your message today is actually very powerful in terms of the benefits that can be bought
if clients were onboard with what you're saying. But I want to get back to what you're saying there, because are we at the stage where we can make
electrification more affordable where it is going to be realigned and stable. And at the same time, do we have the services there in order to
meet that? Electric costs for example. It's OK buying an electric car. Are the charging stations available in order for you to be able to utilize that
when you want it? There's sort of three pieces here and we need them all. I'm not sure where we are today and that requires significant investment,
STARACE: This is a great point that you're bringing in, because, in fact, we are possibly ready, but we need to work on that. So, for example, is it
enough to build a lot of renewable and provide cheaper electricity without carbon? And it is a good step. But how about networks? If the networks are
not ready, this will go nowhere.
STARACE: So, there is another big part of the investment that has to do with how you move this electricity around, how you make it accessible, and
how can that be done stably. I mean without interruption risks and in digitally because most of this electricity, we're going to digital devices,
we're going to factories, we're going to offices and we're going to machines. And it needs to be fully digital. So, it's a huge investment in
renewables, but an equal large investment in a very sleepy part of our piece of infrastructure that they need to be completely overhauled and a
lot of investment needs to go there.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. And part of this is putting your money where your mouth is. And you and I have talked about this for a long time. Today you're
saying, look, it's going to be $170 billion of our money, and those money over the next decade. You're going to supplement that up to $210 billion, I
believe, with other forms of investment. And to bring it to the client aspect, what you're saying is look guys, if you're onboard with this and
you're enacting the measures that we're talking about, you'll have a 40 reduction -- 40 percent reduction in cost by 2030 and an 80 percent
reduction in your carbon footprint. If that's true, that blows me away.
STARACE: I think it's totally possible. And probably midway to this decade, we'll look back at this small interview and laugh at it because we would
say, how did we not understand it was going to be faster than that. And you remember what happened with renewables a long time ago, people just laughed
at them and look at it now.
STARACE: So, I think these changes are creeping in. They are already taking place, but they need to be consciously understood and acted upon in order
for them to be really giving benefits to everybody. Otherwise, they would be, you know, creating inequalities also from my competitors. So, it's
really important thing that everybody understand the benefit of going through this and act on that.
CHATTERLEY: I hope we look at this and laugh, and I hope we look back on this year and laugh when people say we want to be net zero by 2040. Because
a lot of people are saying 2050. I know you have said look, we can do this now by 2040. I hope we find that funny in a few years' time too. That we
actually weren't more ambitious today.
But I want to talk about your -- the gas business as well, because you're saying look, we can have an 80 percent reduction by 2030 as well based on,
I believe, 2017 levels, but you're going to exit the retail gas business as well by 2040. I mean this is huge for a number of reasons. It's also huge
geopolitically as well given Europe's reliance on certain nations and you and I have discussed it before, Russia as an example. This is about more
than just economics, surely.
STARACE: But let's think about it. Do we really believe that this gas shock that we're going through right now is the last one? Or do we really kid
ourselves if we say this? I think it's clear that volatility of fossil fuels and gas in particular is not going to go away. For one reason or
another, these are volatile sources of energy. And how many shocks do we want to have until we switch off them?
I mean, it's - and we're talking about 2040, so it's like 20 years, 18 years from now. How many times do we want to go through this?
I think a lot of people would just say this is enough already. And maybe next time another bunch of people say, OK, that's the second time, it's not
for me and so on. So, I think, because there was no alternative before, we were bound to have these shocks all the time.
And now, there are alternatives and that's why I'm talking about electrification now because now it's ready. And so, I think people would
just gradually or fast enough, I don't know. That's to be seen. Switch off as we are able to match their demands. So, let's not forget. It needs to be
cheap. It needs to be stable. It needs to be decarbonized. With these and things, why not switch?
CHATTERLEY: How do we prevent those shocks being blamed on the green wave, that it's the green focus that's causing this and we're under
underinvesting in fossil fuels and gasoline, at least in the short term?
STARACE: Yes. I think there is a lot of noise around this. I believe that you cannot prevent people from talking, distorting facts. I think it's
impossible nowadays. But all in all, this is such an important matter, energy, because it has to do with the life of society, basically, that the
only reason -- the only proof is when you say, look, maybe you're right, maybe you're wrong. In any case, I'm disconnecting because I have an
alternative and then we can debate.
But here, it's not simple as that. And so, I think that there would be gradually the creeping in of longer-term contracting habits, so that people
who are still buying and selling energy longer term, and in turn, buying and selling gas longer term. Which in turn, will limit the volatility and
we give gas people some visibility of what demand is in the future. Which in turn, we give them less chances to blame somebody else if they do the
rest and support.
So, it's a circle, but it starts from the fact that you have an alternative which can be contracted long term because renewables are stable long term.
CHATTERLEY: Quick outfit change, I recorded that yesterday.
Still to come. Galloping growth. The CEO of Danish unicorn Pleo on its record-breaking rise.
Welcome back to FIRST MOVE.
And time to catch up, if we can, with Europe's speediest unicorn, Danish Fintech Pleo ran form startup to hitting a $1.7 billion valuation all
within just 7 years. That in fact is European record.
Pleo automized its company's expenses by tying them to a Pleo credit card. Growth surged during the pandemic, user numbers more than doubled in 2020
and it now operates in six markets including the UK, Germany, Spain and Denmark.
And joining us now, I am pleased to say, Jeppe Rindom, he is the CEO of Pleo.
Jeppe, fantastic to have you on the show. Congratulations on that growth.
Just explain again exactly what you provide to these businesses and companies and why the pandemic was so transformative.
JEPPE RINDOM, CEO, PLEO: Yes. Thank you so much for having me.
I think in Pleo we are trying to set up businesses for success when it comes to enabling the workforce in buying everything they need to be
efficient in their work. So, this is about inviting all of your employees, setting them up with a company card or the ability to pay a bill and
removing all the friction and the expense reporting, the collecting receipts, all of those used cases we all know as businesspeople.
You could say this has been relevant for 50-plus years, but it's become even more relevant after the pandemic as the workforce has started to be
more and more distributed. You could say being efficient from home, being able to buy stuff and be productive in your work is harder than when you
were in the office being able to sort of go to a manager and so forth. So, Pleo is exactly happening into this trend are setting up every single
employee for success.
CHATTERLEY: Is it simple to use? Because that's my biggest problem when you're trying to record all these receipts. One, it just takes so much
time. And two, the system actually can be quite complicated, way more complicated, I think, than it needs to be.
RINDOM: Yes. We were really tired of this process.
RINDOM: As businesspeople, we spend way too much time in the past, and I think we all know it. So, what we've done in Pleo, and I think it's a bit
untraditional. We've really optimized for the user and not necessarily so much for the CFO or the administrator. So, we've tried to make it really,
really easy for you as a spender.
So, all you need to do is just buy stuff and we try to automate the rest. If you buy something online, we automatically find that receipt in your
inbox, attach it to the transaction, automatically categorize it. So, really you know taking away all of these sort of mind things that you need
to do when you bought stuff in the business world. So, the user is our hero here in Pleo, and we're happy that you know the review platforms out there
rating us number one.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. I've spotted that. You're growing incredibly fast. And you also make this free I believe if it's a very small business, five employees
or less, and then you have a tiered system. So, if a big company comes to you and says, hey, sort this out, we want everybody to use this. They pay
but the very small businesses don't.
RINDOM: Yes. And this is something that's important for us. I think you know as a business owner in a small business, growing business, you have
enough stuff is to think about. And we wanted it to be you could say an easy decision to get started with Pleo and the price shouldn't be an issue.
So, we want every business as they're starting up and growing, being in love with Pleo. And then you know, as they grow, they would eventually have
to pay something.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. Are you profitable?
RINDOM: We're not profitable. We have really chased the growth very ambitiously. We are in six European countries. We're opening up a lot of
markets in the next year, and that has a price. So, the growth is what we're chasing.
CHATTERLEY: Yes. And investors aren't worried because they're seriously giving you money. You've just had your first funding round, I believe, and
that was the point that I was making in the beginning about your valuation. I couldn't help but notice that some of you came from a unicorn called
Tradeshift, and I'm quite familiar with them. And they raised money in Europe and then they left and went to Silicon Valley and moved to San
Francisco. And that really frustrates me that Europe can't harbor its own unicorns and allow them to raise money and grow. Any risks that Europe
loses you to the U.S.?
RINDOM: You know, it also frustrates me. And you know we think about Europe, but we also think about Denmark. It's a very small country in
Europe. And I think you know we'll try really hard to build the business out of Denmark. We have offices as well in the UK, Sweden and Germany but
try to keep the headquarters in Denmark.
And I think if there is a time where this could actually happen, it's right now.
RINDOM: I think you know we can -- we're used to working now in a distributive fashion. And I think when it comes to the talent actually, I
also think that the mindset of a talent is moving towards wanting to work where it's extremely livable. And of course, you know the U.S. and San
Francisco is livable, but so is Copenhagen and Berlin and London. So, I actually do think we have an attractive proposition.
CHATTERLEY: Copenhagen is beautiful. I mean even at this time of year when it's pretty cold.
RINDOM: It is. It is.
CHATTERLEY: And wants to have this conversation because I've had that conversations so many times with great startups that have then left to the
United States and Europe needs to do more to hold you.
Jeppe, come back and talk to us soon, please. I want to hear more about your growth and your expansion plans.
Jeppe Rindom, the CEO of Pleo.
RINDOM: I would love to do that.
CHATTERLEY: Great. We'll see you soon. Congratulations.
RINDOM: Thank you. See you.
CHATTERLEY: Coming up here on FIRST MOVE.
The unofficial start to the holiday season has begun, at least here in New York. The Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade is back and so are the crowds.
We'll take you there live, next. Baby Yoda, yay!
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE.
And Miguel Marquez is at the Thanksgiving Day parade for us. Miguel, come in because I know you're hearing my conversation. I was asking to crush the
break in order to bring Baby Yoda on the screen. This was a very exciting moment and it's a very exciting day.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Your timing could not be better. Grogu is right there aka Baby Yoda, making its first appearance in
the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. It's one of the widest balloons out here. It is -- everybody is so excited for it. How excited are you guys to
see Baby Yoda?
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
Happy Thanksgiving to you all.
CROWD: Happy Thanksgiving!
MARQUEZ: The crowd out here has been phenomenal. They've been cheering for everybody, not only the floats and the bands and the parade, and the
balloons that come around, but the police officers that come down. Amazingly enough, the individuals who have had the biggest applause on this
parade route today are the Department of Sanitation that will be cleaning everything up at the end. They come along during parts of the parade.
You can see, here's Baby Yoda now, right overhead. This is about as good as it gets. The crowd out here is enormous. They're planning for about 2.5
million people. They are in such a good mood after the two years, two difficult years that New York, the United States and the world has had. It
is -- it feels like we are getting back to something like normal with this parade going again.
Last year it was truncated. It was just a block. It was TV only. There were no big crowds. It's great to see it now. As you can see, the next big
balloon coming down the parade route is Space Snoopy. So, people are crazy for that one when it comes around. Julia?
CHATTERLEY: I can't explain. I mentioned Baby Yoda at the of the show, an hour ago, and somehow you managed to coordinate. These three minutes being
live on air when Baby Yoda went past. And some kindred spirits there as well.
It is so important. It feels like New York is coming back. It's a beautiful day, too. Just among the people that you're speaking to, how many of them
are those that live here, or they've come from somewhere within the United States versus people that have come from abroad?
Because this is an important month too for not only New York, but the U.S. to welcome foreign people back into the country as well.
MARQUEZ: We've met people from overseas, from the Dominican Republic visiting family here in like typically what's amazing about this parade.
And I just thought you watch this as it goes by. What is amazing about this parade, that it is not just New Yorkers, it is not just people from around
MARQUEZ: It is people from all over the world, typically. We're not seeing as many, but certainly we're seeing a few this year. But it is clearly a
sign that things are getting back to normal. When I've done this parade in the past, the crowds have been maybe, I don't know, 10, 20, 30 feet deep.
They're like 50 feet deep now down the different streets here onto Central Park West. So, it is an enormous, enormous crowd. Julia, back to you.
CHATTERLEY: You're the best. Stay warm, my friend. Thank you so much for being there and we will see you very soon. Enjoy it. I'm going to come out
there and have a look.
MARQUEZ: Happy Thanksgiving.
CHATTERLEY: Miguel Marquez, thank you so much.
Great that we saw Baby Yoda. It's a miracle. That's it for the show. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.
"CONNECT THE WORLD WITH BECKY ANDERSON" is next. And I'll see you tomorrow.