tv Bloomberg Business Week Bloomberg February 19, 2017 4:00pm-5:01pm EST
carol: welcome to "bloomberg businessweek." i am carol massar. oliver: i am oliver renick. we're coming to you from the inside the magazine's headquarters. carol: all that ahead on "bloomberg businessweek." ♪ carol: we are with the editor-in-chief, megan murphy of "bloomberg businessweek." you guys take a look at the potential for a china-u.s. trade war and how we should look at it. not as someone stealing our manufacturing jobs, but as china as an economic might. megan: it cuts to the heart of
this war of wards over trade with china. it frames it in the proper context. saying, look, donald trump may be right, saying we need to get tough on china. it is just the mechanisms he is talking about and the china he is talking about is the china of old. the china we should be worried about this piece argues coherently and cogently as the china that has identified national industries it wants to own as china first. we talk about "make america great again," china is about making china great again, tech, manufacturing, industrial. they have identified entire industries that they see developing china number one in product, output, and making these truly chinese. to make them be organically the greatest provider. oliver: let's talk about someone at the center of everything so far in the administration. he is the chief white house counsel.
in particular, he started coming under the spotlight as michael flynn was removed from the administration. megan: it has been a rocky few days, and is set to be rockier. people have described this as a sort of, you know, hurricane hitting washington, and that is true. this white house chief counsel is at the center because he looks at that executive order on refugees before it goes out to make sure it is legal. obviously that one has been denied by an appeals court, so now it is making its way through the court system. so he is a very busy guy. oliver: is he supposed to be the fixer or what? megan: not a fixer, but someone who looks over everything to avoid legal snafus. he is front and center saying this is going to have legal problems are not have legal problems. this has not been an administration that seems to be avoiding stepping into this huge legal morass that is overshadowing everything they're doing and indeed, the biggest
damage might be yet to come. carol: let's get to the cover story, elon musk, and tackles what happens to elon musk when he gets stuck in a traffic jam. megan: this is a great tale, a triumph of journalism. we went in to see elon musk to, to talk about he got so frustrated in l.a. traffic that he said, i'm going to start building this tunnel underneath the traffic. he talked about the hyperloop. he believes infrastructure is the future. it will be interesting to see how he aligns with the trump administration and getting the funding on that. but man, when that guy wants to do something, he does it. carol: it is called the boring company, and there is nothing boring about elon musk. megan: it is a must-read. oliver: we did talk to a reporter who interviewed him. max: if you don't follow elon musk on twitter, he is a bit of a loose cannon. he tweets all the time.
in december he was sitting in traffic, getting frustrated, and he tweeted something along the lines of, l.a. traffic is driving me nuts. most people thought he was kidding. i thought he was kidding, but i sent him an email and said, hey, i would love to interview you. just because i was curious, and he said, ok. so i met him in washington, d.c. and talked to him about digging, and apparently this has been kind of a passion for him for years. he has been talking about this. he has talked about it publicly and to his friends, urging them to start a tunneling company, which is not what you would expect from a guy whose main thing is going to mars. oliver: right, very outward. >> fast cars, it's a very different sort of dirtier business. oliver: it seemed like a lot of
his followers, and beyond having followers on twitter, they in a literal sense look up to him as an edison type figure. >> yeah. oliver: a lot thought he was joking about this. max: he is somebody who talks and talks freely, and that is what makes him interesting. and i think it is honestly part of the appeal to people. besides, you know, the crazy products. as a result, they thought he was kidding. it turns out that there is a hole in the parking lot of spacex, and his plan is to expand it and turn it into a tunnel that will be under l.a. and in the long term, he wants to build a massive tunneling system with many different layers, and his ideas will be to have these underground transportation networks. oliver: he always has a grand vision, right, whether moving humans up, getting rid of cars in the traditional sense, so is
this for transportation? is it for -- what exactly is -- max: it is for transportation for sure. cars initially, and in t long run, he has ideas abt fast trai. we will have this thing called the hyperloop that will allow you to go from like l.a. to san francisco in 30 minutes, so one of the tunnels could be for the hyperloop, but this is for cars. he compared it to flying cars. a lot of people are interested in flying cars. they think in the future you will have your personal airplanes. larry page has two flying car startups. uber has its flying car skunk works. most think flying cars are not going to happen because they make a lot of wind and noise, and if you imagine a flying car fender bender, it could get pretty ugly, so he things we will get really good at digging holes in the ground.
and you know, you would never sit in traffic because there will be freeways that are many lanes wide, so in theory you could have way less traffic in places like new york and l.a., and that would allow the city to accommodate sort of like more people and you would not have the situation where l.a. is unaffordable for a lot of people because to live close enough to have a job there, you pay a huge amount of rent. maybe if you had a wider transportation with less traffic it would be possible to live outside the city center, which is hard now. oliver: the hole that he dug, it is in the parking lot of spacex. you went to washington dc with him because you looking at a drill. max: the timing of this story was pretty funny. and i think maybe it speaks a little bit to his motivations.
so, he was in washington, d.c., to meet with donald trump will stop which is kind of a weird thing because elon musk basically endorsed hillary clinton. he said just before the election that donald trump did not have, you know, great character. i am paraphrasing. that after the election he has made repeated trips to trump tower. he has i think become, you know an adviser. he is on one of donald trump's advisory councils and he was therefore the strategy and advisory forum which has become controversial because of the immigration order days earlier. it kind of shook up america more broadly. his view on that was it is better to engage with the administration even if we disagree with the order, which he does. he is not, you know he is not a full throated donald trump.
what he is trying to do it seems to me anyway is try to about eight middle ground between opposition and becoming part of the trout machine. oliver: turning elon musk's ambitious dream into a cover story was the creative job of robert vargas. robert cole d tunnel in itself was kind of comical. >> he did not agree to to a photo issued so we just photoshopped him. oliver: kind of like a caddy shack thing. robert: yes. oliver: any idea what that photo was from? was i just a general photo? robert: it was just a general photo. it has created a lot of headlines.
some i cannot mention in air. oliver: he has made that pun himself because he was looking for urls and he kind of knows it is a funny thing to joke about. i also like the fact the you say "really boring," because -- >> this was all part of the tweet when he was stuck in traffic and people did not know whether to take it seriously or not. >> up next, who the people really want as france's next president. all that ahead next on "bloomberg businessweek." ♪
♪ carol: welcome back to "bloomberg businessweek." i am carol massar. politics and policy section, how the kremlin could be influencing key elections in europe. >> russian state media has been building up these voices in western countries, a network called russia today, then converted to the name "rt" because viewership was not very high, and a news agency called sputnik, the successor of the original soviet press agency. these had networks around the west, the u.s., western europe.
rt has an arabic service, glossy tv, internet news services. and for a long time i think that there was a sense that the omelette was spending money on them but they were not having a lot of impact. the kremlin wanted it as a way to get their message out. in these election cycles, the u.s., and now europe with elections this year, the netherlands, france, and germany, there has been an awful lot of attention and their ability to impact. far beyond what their relatively low tv ratings would be. oliver: you open the story with a description of how they are sort of meddling in french politics. tell us about their role there. i mean, it is fascinating, and they are obviously fueling the flames for public reaction and sort of kind of trying to paint their own picture of how they feel about the candidates. >> right, most recently it has been the french presidential campaign, which has been an
intensely interesting race. going into the elections this spring at hand russia had originally supported the far right candidate marine le pen, but then also francois fillon, the conservative candidate who had expressed his repulse for political ties with russia and when his poll numbers started to fall, the centrist who was rising suddenly found himself facing renewed accusations about being a u.s. agent, old rumors of his sexual preference being revived, and those were revived on sputnik, the the kremlin-funded news network. parliamentarian. and that issue all came back, and his campaign complained about what it saw as russian meddling in the election. oliver: it is very much sort of a throwback to soviet-era type propaganda.
what is it right now that makes them feel like the world is particularly susceptible to having these sorts of insertions of russian media that they feel like they can have an outside influence? >> it seems like they have been able to do this in large part because of broad skepticism and both the u.s. and europe about what is thought of as the mainstream media, the ability of the internet to expand the reach of these things. you know rt, the television network, has limited broadcast reach, but the ratings are low in the u.k. for example. the welsh language television actually gets higher ratings than rt does. thanks to youtube and social media and those sorts of things, they can have an outsized impact and put issues on the agenda. to some extent, sputnik is the same way. it is a website. it gets picked up and pushed in social media, and it can get a lot of attention.
in the u.s., the coverage was a big focus in the intelligence agencies report on alleged meddling in the elections there. there is lots of different sources, and the internet seems to equalize everything, the russian state backed media had an opportunity to get in there with their message. oliver: up next, how president trump's protectionist promises could upend the agricultural sector, and not in a good way. carol: and unions under the trump administration. that is ahead on "bloomberg businessweek." ♪
the bay area. oliver: and in london, and in asia on the bloomberg radio app. in the global economic section, president trump may wreak havoc on some farmers. carol: we talked to the reporter. >> the agricultural community is in an unusual situation, one of the few industries that carries a trade surplus. they have a lot to lose when there is a trade war, and they tend to be at the back of the mind when these wars threaten. so you have a fear of them being collateral damage. if the u.s. slaps tariffs on chinese manufactured goods, it is not u.s. buying chinese manufactured goods, it is soybeans and cotton, and that is where retaliation would take place. and that would be devastating for u.s. farmers. oliver: you talked to folks involved in the industry.
tell us where this will regionally have the most impact. >> places along the mississippi or parts of the missouri river, that heartland agricultural country that feeds into the mississippi river and gulf of mexico, basically 100% of the corn and soybeans is going to china. canada and mexico, so in the more northern parts of the u.s., or even a dairy producer nationwide, you see trade rising with asia and all parts of the country, so this is a nationwide issue. it very much is strongest in the heart of the farm belt, but even places on the coast. california fruits and vegetable. essentially all of american agricultural and some weight tends to be export dependent, and all can be affected by whatever calculation takes place in trade. carol: as we talk about these issues, rolling back trade agreements, is we need to understand the numbers and facts
involved in the situations. you mention in your story about one quarter of the u.s. soybean crop go straight to china. you remind us that china, canada, and mexico, are the top farm goods buyers. these are important relationships. >> these are incredibly important relationships and these are relationships that can become undone quickly. the u.s. has always been the buyer of last resort. if other countries have droughts or trade disruptions, you can count on americans to have a stable crop of high quality you could buy. the u.s. is less and less the only game in town. south america, argentina and brazil ramping up their crops. the former soviet union countries, once a big buyer of u.s. grain now overtaking the u.s. as the leading exporter of grain, so it is not like other countries don't have another place to turn. should the u.s. decide they don't want to sell their products overseas. the problem is they start buying from those countries, that crop has to go somewhere, and instead it sits in a grain bin depressing futures prices.
and creates and overhang. oliver: there have been instances where they have broken down this trade gaps before. who filled in the gap, particular those commodities in your story? >> welding great example everyone talks about in u.s. is the grain embargo against the soviet union after they invaded afghanistan in 1979. the united states was using food as a weapon thinking the soviets dependent on grain exports would have to knuckle under. because of the u.s. action. the problem was canada, argentina, brazil did not go along. even european countries started selling to the soviets, and it helped develop all of their markets while u.s. farmers saw devastating commodity price job dropped. we also saw the early 1970's when the nixon administration tried to take up a protectionist strategy. the emergence of south america as a legitimate competitor.
they start selling more corn, for example, to the european union because of new trade agreements they are getting while the u.s. again retreat into a more isolationist stance. carol: in politics and policy, the u.s. is losing a major battle where once considered sacred ground for organized labor. >> it has not been a good two decades, and they are facing the battle for their existence actually. if you look back to the early 1980's, 20% of the workforce was a member of a union. that is now 10%, record low. given some of the laws passed in the state level just in the first month of the year, that is poised to go even lower. we have right-to-were clasping passed in kentucky, missouri. new hampshire is voting tomorrow in fact about whether they want to make it right-to-work. remember, right-to-work against unions from forcing her members
to pay dues. so you can be covered by a union and not have to pay dues and that really gets to the heart of how they fund themselves. oliver: just real quick, why were unions able to thrive under democratic leadership for a years. was that a policy point of his? did they face state as fact? >> i think so. if you look at the ground gain by republicans that the state level, this is where the action has been. under the obama administration, they lost a lot of ground in cork kind of blue-color union strongholds like michigan, wisconsin, like andy and i canned illinois where we have seen the russian of their ability to raise money from their members, but also to collectively bargain. and i think that is a larger
story about the gains that the republican party has made in governorships and in state legislatures through the obama years. carol: what is interesting is that right to work laws, it is happening in traditionally southern states, but not only. and that also kind of stands out. >> when you look back 60-70 years ago, the lines around it right-to your civil war era. it was conservative and in the south, and in the past, then there is a 50-year low where those lines froze from 1964, but since 2011, there has been a big push among anti-union groups to gain hold or roll back union power in core blue color states like the midwest in the northeast, and that is what we are seeing now. there is potential the supreme court might rule later this year on something that would apply to
all public seven there's. so they really do have their backs against the wall. oliver: now tell us about sort of the state of the -- because there are people in the story. republicans are saying that unions are terrorizing their members. in selling this fear. then you have a people of the other side saying the progress of right to work is like general robert leave moving up the ranks of the eastern seaboard. so what is the middle ground here? why has right-to-work been able to progress this way out of this very entrenched areas? >> i think there is a realization inside the unions and self, that their existence is really at stake. carol: up next, how warren buffett inspired melinda gates. oliver: and why so many in india are obsessed with watching software engineers suffer. carol: this is "bloomberg businessweek." ♪
oliver: welcome back to "bloomberg businessweek" i am oliver renick. carol: i am carol massar. the maniacal killers in india's tech industry. oliver: melinda gates opens up as to what she sees as the biggest threat to global health care. carol: the first star trek inspired cruise. oliver: all that ahead on "bloomberg businessweek." ♪ oliver: you had the opportunity to talk to melinda gates. how did you choose where to start the conversation? megan: they released their annual letter every year, and this year on the 10th anniversary of this amazing gift that legendary investor warren
buffett gave to the foundation, $30 million, so they wrote their annual letter directly to warren buffett, here is what we have done with that money. here are the lives that have changed. humanity, lives saved, we are working to eradicate poverty. but that was really what is so interesting about this letter and why we start out that interview talking about how warren buffett has impacted their lives and what they chose to make that decision and how fundamental that investment has an in shaping what the foundation has been able to do. carol: this return on investment, but they have had some great returns with the gates foundation. megan: absolutely. 120 million children lifted out of poverty. our affordable contraception, 300 million women in developed countries with access to contraception. they brought polio down, hoping to get that to zero. also less tangible, formation of women's groups that allow
stigmatized women, sex workers, and impoverished women, to get together and talk about how to make their lives better. it is impressive work they have done. oliver: what is their main sort of project right now? obviously, far-reaching egg foundation as you clearly point out there is a ton of money he handed. for what right now is there kind of focal point? megan: it has always been one of the defining goals of the foundation, to improve access, access to vaccines for diseases. whether that is polio, etc., so that is a focus. one thing interesting about melinda gates is she is focusing on economic empowerment of women through mobile technology and other ways women can drive themselves and lift themselves and their families out of poverty through exes to banking,
access to abilities to sell their goods. access to community networks. that is a big focus of her is personally of the foundation is also looking at women and girls and how to get better data on that to really dig this fight forward and how much big data can play a role in that. carol: joys wonder when you have a foundation this grand. bill and melinda gates. are they constantly thinking about the foundation? megan: i asked melinda that. in the letter, it is quite no holds barred in terms of the experiences they have had. they have seen children die. bill attracted controversy by pushing for the ability to autopsy children to find out why sort of so many of them still die after childbirth in developing countries. i asked her about, there is a line in the letter where, what they saw as the find their marriage, partnership, and the goals for the foundation.
she said there is not a day they don't go by and not think about the work of the foundation, when they think about what kind of people they want to be in the world, what kind of values and how do i want to shape the lives of my children. what message do we as a family one to send being as lucky as we are with no founding microsoft and being in the united states. carol: they have seen both ends of the spectrum if you think about the family and foundation. megan: she has talked about how she had to learn on taking on this public safety. she was a rising star at microsoft but this public scrutiny that comes with being bill gates's wife. this public scrutiny, and being public on issues as controversial as women's contraception, a political football now, donald trump rolling back access in some countries, they are worried about that and she will continue to attract scrutiny and attention, and her journey is interesting to hear her talk
about. carol: it is interesting what they do outside the united states, but they work in the united states as well. they take a look at the people that have been left behind here as well. megan: we talk about this feeling, one of the things so interesting is they say the pessimists in this country will be wrong, and here is the reason for optimism. and i said, you know, you paint this very optimistic and your because you are looking at this globally and using these improvements. how do you identify with people may not be so optimistic? that is why their work here is focused on education and places in poverty like appalachia. oliver: why india's media is obsessed with coders. carol: it is to do with the emergence of their own silicon valley.
>> 20-30 years ago, when the india information technology industry started to boom, really in the city of bangalore in the south, when fiber-optic cables really connected india to the west, so multinational corporations began hiring cheap labor and india. cheap engineers from bangalore and particular. tech has brought a time of money to the city. the city has grown faster than any other indian city in the past 30-40 years. any other city except maybe delhi. the city's infrastructure has not been able to keep pace with the growth, so if you go to bangalore, you will spend most of your time in traffic, water shortages, power shortages, one of the most polluted cities in india. bangalore was once thought of as the garden city, a beautiful green place.
you see tech workers as people who have changed the face of their city and the way they don't like, and that fuels the i guess resentment you sort of detecting these stories about tech workers is growing up there lives. oliver: i'm just going to read a couple of headlines. tech wife murdered, very sensational, often violent, is is there a sort of -- beyond the talk about sort of the effects of urban sprawl and the general mineralization that comes with the tech industry, i think there is also sort of a lot of heritage and cultural conflicts in terms of how people in the tech space live their lives. >> yeah, i think tech workers work for companies where they are dealing with foreign clients, get to travel abroad for their work, so you find the tech industry much more global or western lifestyles than
traditional parts of india, where many of these tech workers who immigrated to bangalore originally came from. you know, they leave their families when they are quite young to go to school and find a job. you see much more love marriages then arranged marriages. there is much more drinking than in other parts of indian society. so, yeah, i do think there is a lifestyle gap, too. and some people from work traditional sectors of indian society sort of look at techies suspiciously. like they have sort of loose morals. and these stories about techies, there are crimes of passion. they sort of fuel this idea that something is amiss with this modern lifestyle. something is not quite right. oliver: up next, the bots taking over england's nuclear waste sites. carol: and toys gives hope for recovery and the stock market. ♪
♪ oliver: welcome to "bloomberg businessweek" i'm oliver renick. carol: and i'm carol massar. in the technology section, one job most humans would not mind robots take over. oliver: cleaning up nuclear waste sites. we talked to a reporter. >> this site is in the english countryside along the irish sea near the scottish border, 300 miles from london, and it is an old site, the dawn of the cold war, the u.k. used this site to enrich uranium for their first nuclear bombs, but in the race to get the bomb, they were not thinking too much about the waste, so decades later,
scientists and engineers are kind of having to piece together technology to clean up the leftover waste. oliver: so what exactly is nuclear waste? i have not seen it. it sounds like carol maybe has. i do not plan on seeing nuclear waste. what exactly does is stop look like? >> i did not get close enough to touch it thankfully, but basically when you process fuel for electricity or a weapon, the stuff that -- there is a part of it that is not used, and that becomes the waste matter, and it has to be stored and reprocessed very carefully. some of it can be recycled and some of it cannot. this site here, because it is sold there is a lot of inventory of stop that they just don't know where it is. they don't know how bad it is. there was a fire there in the 1950's where a lot of areas were just kind of sealed over and
left alone for a later date, so they are turning to robots because robots can get to areas that humans can't. girl: it is interesting, right? because we talk about so many industries, adam, we talk about manufacturing and other areas where robots come in and take over jobs and it gets workers upset. this may be one industry, a nuclear waste site if you will, or nuclear storage where robots may be very welcome by workers. >> not only is this a job humans don't want, it is one that we can't do any way, and so there are different autonomous vehicles being used. some of them are underwater drums to go into some of these ponds were waste has been stored. there is one there are developing that is this kind of spider-looking device. it looks like it can win an episode of robot wars. i mean, it has six legs and is about the size of a coffee-table. and it can kind of crawl and there, pick up the waste, and
take it to a sealed over casing that can then be put into a silo where it would be a bit safer. but you know, this is nasty stuff even for the robots. it's not a sure thing that they can handle all of the radiation. there was a report out of fukushima this week that one robot did not last more than a few hours in there. he was in there looking at some of the waste in there. oliver: so you have all these robots. it is preferable to having humans in there. that means somebody has to supply the robots, figure out the technology. what are the company is behind this? what kind of application of technology? >> the government is spending about 2 million pounds per year and a lot of that is going into technology said that is bringing a lot of company's over. there is one company called cryotech. there is that robot that looks like a spider that i was mentioning. the government is putting more
money into this because they need to clean up sooner rather than later. so a lot of these companies are coming in. carol: a moscow toy store aims to prove the russian stock market is not so bad after all. >> detsky mir is a venerable russian institution that dates back 70 years, and it is basically a children's store. detsky mir means children's world, and they sell all kinds of supplies for children, everything from toys and clothing to baby food. oliver: where do they operate? throughout russia? is it beyond the country? is it sort of like a toys "r" us or macy's? >> it is nationwide now. they started out at the end of the soviet union basically with just one or two stores, but have now turned it into a nationwide
chain under new ownership with several hundred outlets all over the country. they are typically located in shopping malls. carol: how successful are they? because i think about the global toy industry, in the united states it has come undone with the advent of online. what is the toy industry like, the toy business, and russia? >> interestingly in russia, it is doing very well. there are a couple factors i think. one thing where we should be clear is that it is not just a toy store. they also sell other things like disposable diapers and baby food, things that people really need. and also, another difference is that in russia, online sales are somewhat difficult because russia still does not have the infrastructure to make deliveries into a lot of the more remote regions. oliver: interesting. so that is a structural aid to a company like this.
what other sort of trends or general truths of the russian culture are sort of behind the strength of a company like this? you talk about some demographics, about sort of how families feel about their kids there. >> the backdrop of course to their success, and i think what makes it striking is that russia has been in recession for the last two years, so you might think this would be the kind of business that might be hurt, but in fact, it has thrived and expanded, and as you say, there are a couple of reasons culturally for this. one is that russians really see it as important to spend and get good quality products for their kids, even during hard times. there is an old russian expression that roughly translates as "nothing but the best for the children." so i think that is one thing. the other thing i think has
helped is that russian birth rates are going up. russians are having more kids, and again, that might seem counterintuitive during a recession, but the government has done some things. they put in place what is known as the baby bonus. and a woman who has a second or third child can get a cash payment of almost $8,000. oliver: up next, dressing room mirrors get smart, really smart. carol: we will take about the first star trek cruise. oliver: live long and crews. carol: this is "bloomberg businessweek." ♪
♪ carol: welcome back to "bloomberg businessweek." i'm carol massar. oliver: and i'm oliver renick. you can also catch us on the radio. at sirius xm and in new york, washington, d c, and in the a area. carol: and in london and in asia on the bloomberg radio plus app. oliver: a focus on oak labs. carol: a dressing room mirror --it lets customers summon sales reps with the touch of a screen. >> they came around in 2015 by a former ebay executives, and their idea is that retailers have a lot of issues, and one of them is they have fallen behind the web as far as things that the web can do. the consumers, these of shopping and choices. so basically the whole idea is let's bring some of the best
parts of the web into the store, which retailers have been trying to do for a long time but have not been successful. oliver: they're saying, we were sort of on the forefront of putting online and ebay has option. how do we bring some of that value added from the online presence into stores. i feel like there is no more important question for retail than that right now. how did they bring some of that into the stores and state relevant? >> more and more people shop online. that is no secret. the big issue is how do you improve the shopping expense? you know, because the reason a lot of people don't like going to the stores you have to wait in line. they might not have your product. all these things. you have to interact with people. that is another thing. so there is a lot of advantage to the store. people like going to the store, touching and feeling products. that kind of thing. if you can somehow bring the best parts of the web into the store, that can really help stores. the first product they have come
out with is a solution how to fix the dressing room. oliver: i like this, because it makes sense. clothing, i don't want to order it blind. i want to know exactly how it fits. tell us about the mirrors they have. they're trying to take those best parts of online and bring them into the store. >> the experience can be like this. you walk into a dressing room. your technology, it knows what you brought in. so let's say you brought into pairs of pants and a shirt. that would pop up on the screen. if you want more recommendations, you can hit a button, just like on the internet. people who bought this bought this. oliver: it is all showing up on the mirror? >> basically behind the mayor is a sort of touchscreen. it is pretty, well-designed, it sort of fits within the framework of the dressing room. you not feel like you are surrounded by tech.
it is sort of an embedded in there. the next up is trying on the buttocks. if something does not that, hit a button and you can alert an associate to get you something. almost like an uber app, where you send out a request. i need a 32-34, right, and they bring that to you. what eventually is going to happen, they will work on the and another couple weeks, you will be able to pay inside the dressing room with apple pay or android pay. oliver: essentially eliminating the whole shopping process. >> you eliminate having to call out to a sales associate, or god for bid you have to leave the dressing room to get something for yourself. you can then use your iphone, by the stuff. the associate brings you a bag and you walk out. carol: star trek fans are taking to the high seas. oliver: we talked about the norwegian pearl. >> these are themed cruises. we talked specifically about a star trek-themed cruises that
happened in january and there are actually two more coming up. these things are wildly popular. not just our truck. there are shows like "the walking dead." even property brothers has its own cruise. and oprah winfrey has her own cruise coming up later this year. carol: this is a new revenue source for some of the cruise lines. and you notice a big thing if oprah winfrey is involved. >> it is big business. these cruises tend to happen, but cruise lines are able to charge double what they might not normally get, because fans care about being with other fans. they don't care about where they are going. oliver: we laugh because we are not star trek fans. i don't know, i will speak for myself. but it is very creative because
it removes that cyclicality of their business and you can put people on the ship. and they are going to pay for stuff. they will pay for autographs and all that stuff. >> they had william shatner on board and his contract stipulated that he had to take one photo with every cabin. we don't know what he got paid, but it was not cheap. he was 85-years-old tnt came with his entire family. it was awesome. so you have these add-ons. if you want to take an excursion that might only cost $50, it would cost $75. if you want an autograph, $25 to $30. if you want a klingon forehead from a makeup artist, it is $45. it is basically like a convention at sea. carol: it speaks to the cruise industry finding a whole new audience. >> a lot of them are first time, and a lot get hooked. we interviewed one couple aboard the star trek cruise who have
booked a penthouse for the next star trek cruise. carol: "bloomberg businessweek" is available on newsstands now. oliver: and on bloomberg.com. i know what your favorite story is. carol: elon musk. the cover story that max did. just when you thought you know, elon musk was busy enough with what he is doing, he got stuck in traffic and came up with an idea to actually create a hole that people could go through to avoid traffic jams and created a company called the boring company. boring like a hole. and max sat down with elon musk. elon musk was like, let's go to kick the tires. what about you? oliver: the story about mirrors in retail. carol: those are scary. oliver: this is a huge industry. the retail industry has been challenged so much by online, i think it is an incredibly interesting story with big implications for a massive industry.
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