Hello, Insiders. This week, I’m going to focus my notes on Russia’s war in Ukraine. One year of this war has left a trail of devastation. So today, I want to look at the cost of this conflict so far — both in terms of money and of lives lost.
More than 8,000 civilians. Over 100,000 troops. Ukraine’s death toll has been tremendous, and continues to rise. The invasion forced about eight million Ukrainians to leave their homes, and nearly 150,000 buildings have been either damaged or destroyed.
Russia has also suffered greatly. Upwards of 200,000 Russian troops have been injured or killed. And its economy has taken a big hit: At least 30 countries have ordered 11,000 sanctions against Russia, and over 1,000 companies have suspended business there.
We’ll have more this week on Ukraine — but for now, let’s dive in.
One of Elon Musk’s most loyal employees was reportedly fired at Twitter. She went from surviving layoffs to the chopping block in just a few months. Get the full story.
Russia’s air force is struggling to hit targets in Ukraine, but its missiles can still keep Ukraine’s jets at bay. More here.
Jack Daniel’s barrel houses are causing an out-of-control black “whiskey fungus” in a Tennessee community, enraged residents say. Find out more.
THE BIG STORY
Tesla’s “Cinderella ride is over”
Getty; Marianne Ayala/Insider
Tesla spent the past two decades defying expectations and disrupting the automotive industry, but in 2023 the once revolutionary car company did the seemingly unthinkable: It turned fanboys against it.
The uproar among loyalists is more than complaints from overly attached enthusiasts. It’s a sign that a company that has for so long relied on a near-mythic reputation as a futuristic automaker may be losing its edge.
Tesla is turning from a young and scrappy industry disrupter into a company that looks much more like the automakers it used to rattle. And the company’s once grandiose leader, who showed up in “Iron Man” movies and promised to take us to Mars, is looking more human by the day.
Tesla has only ever existed without real competition and in a favorable economic environment. Now the market of electric vehicles is anyone’s game, and Musk is about to find out how hard it can be to go to war with some of the world’s most recognizable brands.
Why your rent is about to fall. After a couple of years in which landlords reigned supreme, the tide is turning. If apartment demand doesn’t pick up, or if the US economy goes into a recession, rent could fall nationwide. Welcome to the year of the renter. Read more.
Is it time to overhaul the address? Confused delivery drivers add time, cost, and frustration to deliveries — a result of addresses and entrances not being exact. Tech companies are on the case. Here’s what they’re considering.
We talked to four people who moved to Tennessee. The Southern state has been popular for its cheaper homes and laid-back lifestyle. Those we spoke with are happy with the outcome — for the most part. Here’s why.
“I do ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’ at work.” The TikTok creator and startup founder Marisa Jo Mayes says it helps her beat the “Sunday scaries” and avoid burnout — and it has completely changed her life. Find out more.
Salesforce drafts plans to boost its profit margins, a leaked document shows. Starboard Value wants the company to grow its adjusted operating margins to above 30%. Analysts say it will require cost-cutting — and head count is Salesforce’s biggest expense. More here.
Photos show LA to Napa Valley under a blanket of snow. California is experiencing a rare winter storm, with Southern California getting its first blizzard warning in 34 years. Some areas have seen several feet of snow and wind gusts up to 80 mph. Check out the photos.
Apple was “not helpful” after a woman had $10,000 stolen. Reyhan Ayas was locked out of her Apple account minutes after her iPhone was stolen. She said Apple offered little help as thousands of dollars left her bank account. Read the full story.
TAKE A LOOK
A penthouse for Bill Gates’ daughter
Courtesy of CetraRuddy/Rendering by Hayes Davidson
Enjoy this tour of the New York City penthouse owned by Bill Gates’ daughter, Jennifer. She reportedly spent $51 million on her “paparazzi-proof” home — and it comes with six bedrooms, six bathrooms, a separate private elevator, and an immaculate high-end kitchen. See inside.
How the oldest chocolate house in New York City survived a century. Li-Lac Chocolates is Manhattan’s oldest chocolate shop. Since it opened in 1923, owners have stuck to the founder’s original chocolate recipes while adding new confections along the way. Get a look behind the scenes at the legendary sweets-maker.
CAN’T GET ENOUGH?
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