|Day's Range||N/A - N/A|
The lawsuit, filed by the San Francisco-based ride-hail company on Friday, argues that the cruising rule is arbitrary and threatens to shift business away from ride-hailing companies like Lyft in favour of taxis. "This rule is not a serious attempt to address congestion, and would hurt riders and drivers in New York," Lyft spokesman Campbell Matthews said in a statement to Reuters. The "cruising cap" rule, implemented by the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC), sets a 31% limit on how much time drivers of app-based vehicles may drive without passengers in Manhattan south of 96th Street, meaning they would have to have fares at least 69% of driving time.
In Berlin, companies like Uber don't have a dominant hold on transportation. Instead, many companies compete for a slice of the market.
Zoom Video is trading significantly higher than 2019's other IPO debutants. Zoom stock had an offer price of $36 and is trading at $73.52—104% higher.
Pinterest went public on April 18, smack in the midst of the unicorn IPO parade of the past six months that included Lyft, Slack, Uber, CrowdStrike, Smile Direct Club, and Peloton). Every one of those stocks is trading down from its IPO price. Except for Pinterest.
(Bloomberg) -- “Where’s the best place to hide a body? The second page of a Google search.”The gallows humor shows that people rarely look beyond the first few results of a search, but Lee Griffin isn’t laughing.In the 13 years since he co-founded British price comparison website GoCompare, the 41-year-old has tried to keep his company at the top of search results, doing everything from using a “For Dummies” guide in the early days to later hiring a team of engineers, marketers and mathematicians. That’s put him on the front lines of a battle challenging the dominance of Alphabet Inc.’s Google in the search market -- with regulators in the U.S. and across Europe taking a closer look.Most of the sales at GoCompare, which helps customers find deals on everything from car and travel insurance to energy plans, come from Google searches, making its appearance at the top critical. With Google -- whose search market share is more than 80% -- frequently changing its algorithms, buying ads has become the only way to ensure a top spot on a page. Companies like GoCompare have to outbid competitors for paid spots even when customers search for their brand name.“Google’s brought on as this thing that wanted to serve information to the world,” Griffin said in an interview from the company’s offices in Newport, Wales. “But actually what it’s doing is to show you information that people have paid it to show you.”Market DominanceGoCompare is far from the only one to suffer from Google’s search dominance. John Lewis, a high-end British retailer, last month alluded to the rising cost of climbing up in Google search results. In the U.S., IAC/InterActive Corp., which owns internet services like Tinder, and ride-hailing company Lyft Inc. have signaled Google’s stranglehold on the market.The clamor from companies has prompted the U.K. competition watchdog to study online platforms and digital advertising in July, aiming to examine the market power of companies like Google over online marketing. The European Union has been trying to rein in Google, fining the company 1.5 billion euros ($1.6 billion) this year for thwarting advertising rivals. In the U.S. there’s a rising chorus of voices on the political left and right demanding Google be cut down to size, somehow.Searching GameThe case of GoCompare shows just how difficult it is to win the search game.GoCompare is known locally for its off-beat ads where an opera singer belts out its name in restaurants, taxis and, more controversially, crawls out of a flipped car in a recreation of an accident. When customers look for the company’s name after seeing an ad or type in a query for auto insurance, what appears is a combination of paid advertisements, Google’s own blurbs and then so-called natural search results, a list of what the tech giant deems are the most reliable sources of the information. But even ranking highly on natural search results can be costly.“The way the algorithm works is constantly changing and you don’t get insight into it,” said Lexi Mills, chief executive officer of Shift6, a marketing consulting firm that helps clients improve their search results. “The people who get to optimize tend to be the people with the most money.”Nowhere is Google’s power more evident -- and potentially damaging to businesses -- than in the market for “branded keywords.” This is where businesses buy ads based on their brand names. So GoCompare bids on the word “GoCompare” and when people search for that, Google runs an ad at the top of results usually linking to the company’s website.‘Odd Place’Some businesses say they have to buy these ads -- whatever the cost -- because rivals can bid on the keywords too.If GoCompare decides not to bid for its own brand, Google can legally sell the ad placements with its name to a competitor, with the top bidders getting the best spots on the page and taking away customers.“That seems like an odd place to be that I have to bid on my own brand,” said Griffin. When the company confronted Google about it, the tech giant said “tell your competitors to stop bidding on you,” according to Griffin.The price GoCompare has to pay for search terms that use its brand has more than doubled since 2016, with a real surge in the last 12 to 18 months, parent company GoCo Group Plc Chief Executive Officer Matthew Crummack said.Jason Fried, the CEO of web development company Basecamp, described Google’s practice as “ransom” in a tweet, and said he was quickly deluged with messages from other small businesses who also felt victimized. Tariq Farid -- the CEO of Edible Arrangements who has sued Google over its sale of ads targeting his company’s brand -- believes the change in atmosphere in Washington could eventually shift the debate. “It gives some confidence to people to step up and do something about it,” he says.Long FightGoogle has real-time pricing for terms like “auto insurance” that GoCompare relies on for sales. Every time someone searches for that term, the prices refresh, driving a tough -- and pricey -- battle for the top spot between GoCompare and rivals like Comparethemarket.com and Moneysupermarket.com.“Google must be rubbing their hands together thinking, ‘This is great,”’ when competitors battle it out for top spots, Crummack said. “Every time that happens, the price goes up and they don’t have to do anything.”Google defends its system, saying “in order to offer more choice when searching for products or services, we allow competitors to bid on trademark terms. However, we want to balance the interest of both consumers and advertisers, so we allow businesses to file a trademark claim and then we’ll block competitors from using their business name in the actual ad text.” The company also said it’s not just the top bidder, but the top bidder with the most relevant information that gets the coveted spots.Still, GoCo is looking for ways reduce its reliance on Google, studying a subscription model under which customers sign up for a service that automatically searches for the best rate when policies are due for renewal. That would potentially give the company a captive market. It is also banking on regulators to eventually fix the skewed market, although Crummack doesn’t see that happening anytime soon.“It’s not something that helps trading next reporting period,” he said.(Updates with executive comments from Basecamp, Edible Arrangements on branded search in 17th paragraph.)\--With assistance from Joshua Brustein.To contact the reporter on this story: Amy Thomson in London at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Giles Turner at email@example.com, Vidya RootFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Stephen Curry, who formally announced his investment arm SC30 at TechCrunch Disrupt last week, is not aligning himself with CBD whatsoever.
Airbnb ought to take a look at Peloton, Uber, and Lyft— all of which went public with lingering legal issues— and avoid the same fate.
Uber's health chief explained how the company is moving to leverage Uber Eats to address the health needs of patients, many of whom lack access to reliable transportation.
(Bloomberg) -- Ride-hailing companies Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. have collectively shed $28 billion in market value since their trading debuts earlier this year.Wall Street analysts, however, aren’t ready to quit.An overwhelming majority -- many of whom work for banks that underwrote the initial public offerings -- have buy ratings on both Uber and Lyft and their price targets have changed little over the past few months.Shares of the companies, meanwhile, have continued to plumb new lows. Lyft has fallen 46% since its March IPO, while Uber, which debuted in May, has dropped 34%. Both stocks touched a record low on Wednesday in another sign that investors aren’t buying the hype that has surrounded the private values placed on unprofitable so-called unicorns. The parent of office-sharing company WeWork pulled its planned IPO on Monday after potential investors balked at the high valuation.Analysts say they have nothing to apologize for, suggesting Uber and Lyft investors ought to exercise patience and think about the companies in terms of years, not months.“If you look at the likes of Amazon or Netflix, if you had waited for profitability, you would have left a lot of money on the table.” said Benjamin Black, an analyst for Evercore ISI, which was an underwriter on both IPOs. He estimates Uber and Lyft will start turning profits in 2022.That’s slightly rosier than overall Street forecasts. Analysts on average expect Lyft’s annual losses to narrow to $236 million on an adjusted basis in 2022 from $927 million this year, and then swing to a profit in 2023, according to Bloomberg data. Uber isn’t expected to be profitable until 2025.Goldman Sachs analyst Heath Terry, who has a buy rating on Uber, said in a note in August that despite “considerable risks” in the ride-sharing sector, the “risk-reward balance” in owning the industry was favorable. He has a $56 price target on the stock.Public investors, however, are having trouble seeing a path to profitability for the two companies, analysts acknowledge, especially as a regulatory cloud over the ride-sharing industry has darkened recently.California last month approved a bill that could upset their business models by effectively designating drivers as employees, rather than as contractors without guaranteed employment protections. Uber has said it is a technology platform, not a transportation company, in response.The companies have also faced regulatory challenges in New York, where rules regarding minimum wage, traffic congestion and new driver licenses have led to higher prices.Analyst Doug Anmuth at JPMorgan Chase & Co., a lead underwriter for Lyft, discounts the hurdles, writing in August that the “regulatory environment is manageable.” Any incremental costs arising from the California law would mostly be passed on to consumers as a surcharge, he wrote. Anmuth has a $90 price target on Lyft.D.A. Davidson & Co. analyst Thomas White said he doesn’t see any big fundamental development that is changing how investors feel.It’s just that investors “don’t want to own risky names,” White said.(Updates shares in fourth paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Esha Dey in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Brad Olesen at email@example.com, Will DaleyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Startup workers often worry that going public means the fun is about to end—quarterly financial reports, disciplined spending, cheaper coffee. At WeWork, not going public may have brought a worse fate.Just three days after withdrawing its registration for an initial public offering, WeWork informed staff of far-reaching job cuts to come by the end of the month, said people who attended the meeting. Three top executives delivered the news from a room at WeWork’s New York headquarters Thursday afternoon. Although the executives didn’t specify how many jobs were on the line, people familiar with the discussions have pegged the amount at about 2,000, representing some 16% of the global workforce. Deliberations are ongoing, and the number could change.Signs that the party is ending came in both subtle and more direct ways. Many staff meetings at WeWork, even somber ones, have an alcoholic beverage on hand. This one did not. An employee asked in the meeting whether the WeWork Global Summit, a celebrity-adorned event in Los Angeles that employees look forward to every year, would still take place in January. Executives said it would not.Other big-budget parties are probably also on the chopping block as expenses get reined in and corporate culture downshifts. WeWork has taken pride in the past in providing employees with outlandish corporate events, from lavish Halloween parties headlined by Wyclef Jean or summer camps in the English countryside featuring the singer Lorde.The cost-cutting at WeWork’s parent company, We Co., resembles what’s happening now at Uber Technologies Inc. The ride-hailing company said it was cutting more than 800 employees this summer. It also eliminated celebratory balloons for staff anniversaries. Each company counts SoftBank Group Corp. as its largest shareholder, and each is deeply unprofitable. The difference is that Uber actually made it to the stock market.WeWork employees are accustomed to routine firings, unlike at the typical startup in growth mode. The nine-year-old company periodically trimmed the ranks, WeWork has said, to get rid of under-performers. It dismissed hundreds of employees in 2016 and held a staff meeting to discuss the move that concluded with a performance from a member of the hip-hop group Run-DMC. WeWork fired about 300 more this spring. Each time, WeWork said it would accelerate hiring after the cull. No such pronouncements were made this week. The job cuts will mean that some employees won’t be able to live out the company’s mantra of “do what you love.”This round looks to be something different, the start of a new era for the company. WeWork is still private, but it’s not a startup anymore. Its spiritual leaders, Adam and Rebekah Neumann, left last week under pressure from investors. The third founder, Miguel McKelvey, stood Thursday alongside the new co-chief executive officers, Artie Minson and Sebastian Gunningham, where the topic of discussion was not the scourge of eating meat or elevating the world’s consciousness. It was about divestitures, efforts to “right-size” the business and more measured growth.The executives said they expect WeWork will continue to grow but at a slower pace, according to people who attended the meeting. The co-CEOs, after sending a message to customers Wednesday seeking to ease concerns about the business, told employees that clients and tenants were still interested in WeWork services. The executives urged staff to focus on the co-working business and its customers.In the presentation, made available to all 12,500 or so WeWork employees, Minson apologized for the recent weeks of uncertainty. Executives didn’t offer a solution for workers whose shares may be underwater based on recent valuation estimates from WeWork’s financial advisers. They spoke broadly about selling off parts of the business but didn’t give specifics. Privately, executives have explored a sale of several recent acquisitions, including Conductor, Managed by Q and Meetup, as well as a private jet and a large stake in the Wing, the female-focused co-working startup.WeWork and its ilk are finding that investors in public stocks aren’t buying what works best in the private markets: high-growth, high-expense, high-minded brands. Lyft Inc., Peloton Interactive Inc. and Uber are all trading below their IPO prices. And making a show of cost-cutting may not be the formula to sell a new stock to public investors, who are looking for a growth story. Since news of the first round of summer job cuts, Uber’s stock has fallen 32%.For now, WeWork just needs to convince private investors, SoftBank in particular. The Japanese conglomerate has dumped more than $10 billion into WeWork and isn’t eager to see its investment evaporate. It’s turning to an emissary, Marcelo Claure, to help fix the company. That will likely buy WeWork some time to form a strategy to sell the public on the new WeWork and hope it forgets about the old one, before making another run at an IPO next year.In the meantime, WeWork isn’t totally done having fun. There is an opening party for WeWork Japan in Kobe scheduled for next week and it’s planning a launch event for a new European headquarters, billed as the largest co-working space in the world, people with knowledge of the plans said this week. About 500 employees are invited, and there will be food and drinks in the building, which has a skate ramp, retro arcade games and bed-shaped couches with blankets. However, people with knowledge of the event said that compared with previous WeWork launch parties, it’ll be a toned-down affair.For more on WeWork, check out the Decrypted podcast: \--With assistance from Jack Sidders.To contact the reporters on this story: Ellen Huet in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.org;Gillian Tan in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Mark Milian at firstname.lastname@example.org, Molly SchuetzFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Uber and Lyft have been hitting lower lows almost every day. On October 2, the stocks were trading at their all-time lows of $29.0 and $38.4, respectively.
It's been a rough year for the IPO market. While most promising unicorns have sputtered out of the gate, one analyst has a reason to be optimistic going forward.
WeWork parent We Co.'s decision to pull its IPO Monday is a sign its prospectus needs a complete overhaul, including a squeaky clean framework around corporate governance. In turn, future unicorns are likely to focus more closely on issues such as dual share class structures and board independence that drew criticism for WeWork. That's according […]
(Bloomberg) -- Airbnb Inc.’s long-awaited Wall Street debut is officially earmarked for 2020, but the home-share startup is charting an unconventional path to the public markets.San Francisco-based Airbnb is laying the groundwork for a direct listing rather than an initial public offering, according to people familiar with the matter who asked not to be named discussing private information. Airbnb declined to comment.Technology startups usually choose a traditional IPO to tap into the public markets. Some of the new generation of tech firms have spent years raising private funds and don’t necessarily need money from an IPO to expand their business, but are looking for a way to let employees and investors cash out. A direct listing allows companies to lower the millions of dollars they typically pay to investment banks in underwriting fees, because they don’t issue any new shares and don’t raise any new capital. Instead, they let the market choose the price. Slack Technologies, Inc. and Spotify Technology have taken the direct listing route.An IPO would also force Airbnb to open its books to investors. The We Co., which was supposed to have an IPO this fall, had to withdraw its plans after some investors took a look and were highly critical. Amid the ensuing scrutiny, the CEO was forced to resign and financial advisers said WeWork’s potential valuation would likely fetch only about a quarter of its earlier $47 billion.On Tuesday, hundreds of venture capitalists and executives from private companies will meet in Silicon Valley to discuss the benefits of direct listings. The event is sponsored by 12 venture capital firms and will include Mike Moritz of Sequoia Capital, the biggest venture capital backer of Airbnb, Benchmark’s Bill Gurley and Spotify’s Chief Financial Officer Barry McCarthy.With a private valuation of $31 billion, Airbnb is likely to be a topic of discussion. It’s slated to be one of the most high-profile companies to go public next year.Airbnb executives have been talking about an IPO since at least 2018 and the extended timeline has caused tension inside the company. Last summer, a handful of former employees sent a letter to Airbnb’s founders pleading for a public offering so they could sell their stock options -- some of which start expiring in November 2020, according to the New York Times. Earlier last year, Chief Financial Officer Laurence Tosi left the company after butting heads with Chief Executive Officer Brian Chesky, in part over the timing of the IPO.Last month, Airbnb officially announced it would go public in 2020 in a one-sentence press release. The company didn’t give any additional details on the timeline or whether it intends to file for an IPO or take the direct listing route. So far this year, Airbnb’s fellow tech unicorns that have gone public have received a chilly reception. Uber Technologies Inc. is trading at 30% below its IPO price, Lyft Inc. is down more than 40% and Slack is down almost 8%.Unlike these unprofitable companies, Airbnb has a stronger financial position. In the last quarter, it pulled in more than $1 billion in revenue and the company has said its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization were positive in both 2017 and 2018.Venture capitalist and Uber’s former political adviser Bradley Tusk says a direct listing would be more beneficial for Airbnb, which is now an 11-year-old company. (Tusk also ran the 2009 mayoral campaign of Michael Bloomberg, the owner of Bloomberg’s parent company, Bloomberg LP.)“What we’ve seen with Uber, Lyft and the other big ones is that when you’re private for so, so long, you don’t get any honeymoon by the time you go public,” Tusk said. “Given the struggles so many tech companies have had in the past year and a half, it’s not shocking they might want to try something different.”As Airbnb prepares for its entrance into the public markets, one of its major hurdles is solving outstanding regulatory issues in some of its biggest markets, like Paris and New York City, where its business model of short-term home rentals has been at odds with the city for a decade. Investors want Airbnb to solve its regulatory battles before going public since failure to do so could cast doubt on the company’s valuation.David Hsu, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School, says that bypassing the roadshow that goes hand-in-hand with a traditional IPO means Airbnb “wouldn’t have to retell the story and expose wounds that are already there.”However, the company could experience more price volatility in its stock because it hasn’t been as well vetted and wouldn’t have the support of an underwriter. “The direct listing is super new but it may well be appropriate for Airbnb,” Hsu said. “They are already a well-known business model because lots of people have stayed in an Airbnb so this theoretical danger of volatility in the price may not be that significant.”Dennis Schaal, founder of online travel analysis site Skift, says he would bet on Airbnb doing a direct listing. “What’s clear from its history is that Airbnb executives like to do things their own way,” Schaal wrote in a recent column. “If the company can avoid the well-worn and costly initial public offering route that many of its peers have slogged through, and go for a direct listing instead, then that would be another jab at mainstream practices, make employees happy, and would fit in nicely with the Airbnb startup narrative and culture.”(Updates to add Airbnb timeline in eighth graph.)\--With assistance from Liana Baker, Lananh Nguyen, Sarah McBride and Crystal Tse.To contact the reporters on this story: Olivia Carville in New York at email@example.com;Sonali Basak in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Molly Schuetz, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
What investors need to know about newly public Peloton (PTON). And a broader look at what's going on with some other 2019 IPOs such as Uber (UBER) and Beyond Meat (BYND) to help make sense of the WeWork debacle and more.
One of newly public firms’ favorite tools to boost executives’ control may also be a long-term liability, according to Goldman Sachs.
Peloton (PTON) made its market debut this week, opening on the NASDAQ at $27, which was below its IPO pricing of $29 per share.