#121
https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/10/waymos-staggering-settlement-demand-for-uber-1-billion/
#122

Chthonic_Goat_666 posted:

yes in 2014-2016 billions were being poured into Uber... but in the last year or so its all dried up


yeah its obvious that the funding has been drying up, I reckon theres a few reasons, the modst obvious is that Uber has reached that over-ripe stage where its struggling to grow and is butting up against a pushback of labour, regulations, and competition so no one is allthat excited any more, bit like what happened with soundcloud and many other "former unicorns". The Other is that we're in the boom phase of the industrial cycle, production profitability is increesing, investment in production is increesing and capital is becoming scarcer overall, esp with the feds monetary tightening policies, so interest rates will rise and capital is going to start to become more expensive And be more drawn to actual profitable industries. This lines up really nicely with the shift from ubers pre 2016 to post 2016 phase. They did take out a c$1.5 billion loan in 2016 so I can't imagine rising interest rates are going to be plesant for them.

I think you're right to point out that the board conflict is over the IPO, rthose who want to maintain control and try and bring uber to profitability privatly, and those who want to float and become rich af asap before the whole thing crashes. What im not sure about is, presuming uber floats in 2019 w/ its current valuation, they would be swimming in tens of billions of $,and if they could utilise that to estabilsh the monopoly they dream of.

#123
i think in the final analysis its impossible to have a capitalist taxi monopoly. uber is the probably the closest theres ever been to an international taxi monopoly (right?) and what's their market share? like 15% ? as you say, they appear to have reached a ceiling. they're not even close to monopoly even with significant subsidies for riders. there are no powerful economies of scale that would benefit a capitalist taxi monopoly - if they achieved monopoly their first task would be to raise fairs so as to achieve profitability. but then some small traditional taxi company could easily undercut their prices. its a nonsensical business plan from start to finish.

yes, the big question is if they can actually get to an IPO before crash, and if so how much money do they get. let's say they get ~6 billion dollars... well so what, that's enough to lengthen their death rattles for another two years... how long is the charade gonna go. to me this company is the walking dead, i think the only question is - can the large finance capital investor types get away with it and pass it off to smaller investors before the collapse? the early investors are probably fine. the saudis who invested 3.5 billion at the 70 billion valuation are probably fucked either way right? and will this accompany some larger Silicon Valley crisis?


correct me if my thinking is wrong here, ive never really followed this kinda stuff in detail before.

Edited by Chthonic_Goat_666 ()

#124
i cant comment on capital flows, profitability and interest rates and that kinda stuff. but it does seem smart not to invest in one of the least profitable companies around, lol
#125
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/13/uber-appeal-london-licence-tfl

uber london appeal on december 11. gonna be a busy month for uber.
#126

Chthonic_Goat_666 posted:

can the large finance capital investor types get away with it and pass it off to smaller investors before the collapse? the early investors are probably fine. the saudis who invested 3.5 billion at the 70 billion valuation are probably fucked either way right? and will this accompany some larger Silicon Valley crisis?


which makes the softbank investment seem... irational... but imo they must be thinking they too will be able to cash out big come IPO, or they are actual idiots

#127

tears posted:

Chthonic_Goat_666 posted:

can the large finance capital investor types get away with it and pass it off to smaller investors before the collapse? the early investors are probably fine. the saudis who invested 3.5 billion at the 70 billion valuation are probably fucked either way right? and will this accompany some larger Silicon Valley crisis?

which makes the softbank investment seem... irational... but imo they must be thinking they too will be able to cash out big come IPO, or they are actual idiots


nakedcapitalism were very sceptical that there was gonna be a softbank investment at all... i guess it's "wait and see" for now. this has been in talks for a long time now... (or at least it seems like a long time, idk how quickly these deals are usually done.)

#128
I made a 1000$ bet with my friend that Elon Musk would not put a human on Mars before 2049
#129

Belphegor posted:

I made a 1000$ bet with my friend that Elon Musk would not put a human on Mars before 2049



DPRK will get there first, elon will be busy overseeing private control of the last water reservoirs in the USA.

#130

Belphegor posted:

I made a 1000$ bet with my friend that Elon Musk would not put a human on Mars before 2049


you should have expressed this bet in a set weight of gold, 0.776oz for instance, to hedge against currency devaluation

#131
lol
#132
what i wouldn't count out here is that everyone who wants Elon Musk to fly them to Mars is suicidal, and Elon Musk would gladly murder someone for press coverage
#133
google invests 1 billion into lyft:

https://techcrunch.com/2017/10/19/lyft-raises-1-billion-at-11-billion-valuation-led-by-alphabets-capitalg/
#134

Belphegor posted:

I made a 1000$ bet with my friend that Elon Musk would not put a human on Mars before 2049


If you need someone to put that in escrow with, I'm willing to help out.

#135
shoot my dead body to Mars as blood for the blood god
#136

cars posted:

what i wouldn't count out here is that everyone who wants Elon Musk to fly them to Mars is suicidal, and Elon Musk would gladly murder someone for press coverage

really what is the functional difference btwn musk and that danish inventor who just now hacked a woman to bits in his wacky sub

#137

cars posted:

what i wouldn't count out here is that everyone who wants Elon Musk to fly them to Mars is suicidal, and Elon Musk would gladly murder someone for press coverage


https://youtu.be/VaXlQOzPHK8?t=56m17s

#138

Chthonic_Goat_666 posted:

google invests 1 billion into lyft:

https://techcrunch.com/2017/10/19/lyft-raises-1-billion-at-11-billion-valuation-led-by-alphabets-capitalg/



if people are sane this is the last significant amount of money thats ever gonna be invested into rideshare.., and its being done to spite uber haha

#139
https://www.businessinsider.com.au/tesla-q3-earnings-2017-investor-highlights-2017-10?r=US&IR=T#/#insight-on-model-3-production-hell-1

tesla q3 earnings (aka loses) out tomorrow. also uber might be getting more regulated/kicked outta brazil
#140
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-uber-brazil/brazil-oks-amended-bill-on-car-hailing-apps-after-uber-lobbying-idUSKBN1D025M

Uber’s executive spokesman for Brazil, Fabio Sabba, told Reuters he was punched in the face by a taxi driver as he gave a media interview inside the Senate building.



haha

#141
https://www.businessinsider.com.au/tesla-earnings-q3-2017-11?r=US&IR=T

tesla lost 1.4 billion in q3 2017 - more than expected.
#142
http://files.shareholder.com/downloads/ABEA-4CW8X0/5492577519x0x962149/00F6EB90-2695-44E6-8C03-7EC4E06DF840/TSLA_Update_Letter_2017-3Q.pdf

looking through the letter to sharehlders a bit... some of this accounting type stuff makes my head hurt. like whats "Goodwill and intangible assets, net" and why is it worth 417 million dollars.

anyway, tesla now has 3.5 billion dollars to burn through.
#143
https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/01/elon-musk-tesla-fired-700-people.html

tesla shares are down 3% (doesn't seem like much?)
#144
thanks for the updates on this theyre appreciated.
#145
no problem, i enjoy keeping up with this stuff, its like checking in on basketball scores or w/e. the tesla stuff is interesting to me, i'd put their chances of success above uber, all the joint private-public sector stuff they're doing is probably a good strategy. i don't think their business model is inherently bound to fail like uber. yet they're still losing massive amounts of money. so idk.
#146
https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2017/11/wolf-richter-pickup-sales-boom-cars-get-crushed-tesla-deliveries-plunge.html

here's a nakedcapitalism article. i guess the 1.4 billion number i said before isn't loses? then what's "free cash flow"? the jargon is confusing...

edit: http://www.investopedia.com/terms/f/freecashflow.asp

ah. makes sense...

Edited by Chthonic_Goat_666 ()

#147
https://techcrunch.com/2017/11/07/these-are-ubers-new-cultural-norms/

We build globally, we live locally. We harness the power and scale of our global operations to deeply connect with the cities, communities, drivers and riders that we serve, every day.

We are customer obsessed. We work tirelessly to earn our customers’ trust and business by solving their problems, maximizing their earnings or lowering their costs. We surprise and delight them. We make short-term sacrifices for a lifetime of loyalty.

We celebrate differences. We stand apart from the average. We ensure people of diverse backgrounds feel welcome. We encourage different opinions and approaches to be heard, and then we come together and build.

We do the right thing. Period.

We act like owners. We seek out problems and we solve them. We help each other and those who matter to us. We have a bias for action and accountability. We finish what we start and we build Uber to last. And when we make mistakes, we’ll own up to them.

We persevere. We believe in the power of grit. We don’t seek the easy path. We look for the toughest challenges and we push. Our collective resilience is our secret weapon.

We value ideas over hierarchy. We believe that the best ideas can come from anywhere, both inside and outside our company. Our job is to seek out those ideas, to shape and improve them through candid debate, and to take them from concept to action.

We make big bold bets. Sometimes we fail, but failure makes us smarter. We get back up, we make the next bet, and we go!



thats gonna make for one massive motivational poster

#148


graph of tesla's shares over a 5 year period so you can see how small the recent drop is. long way to go yet.
#149
saw this article on twitter. uber still pushing the flying cars fantasy

https://sputniknews.com/science/201711091058938136-uber-nasa-flying-cars-uber-air-2020/

"UberAir will be performing far more flights over cities on a daily basis than has ever been done before. Doing this safely and efficiently is going to require a foundational change in airspace management technologies," Holden said.

In a special effects video shown to conference attendees called "Closer Than You Think," a woman is shown going to an Uber Skyport on the roof of a tall building. The woman requests an UberAir flight through her app and gets on a piloted electric plane with three other passengers. The plane takes off vertically like a helicopter.



if i was an investor would i be pissed off that they were wasting money producing PR about this fantasy? or would i be happy that they were talking themslves up for a future (hopefully...) IPO?

#150
theres an australian uber-clone which appears to be trying to incorporate some kind of mmorpg style virtual economy into its business:

http://www.gocatch.com/driver/resources/driver-app/

You get GoPoints for every job you do, but when there is a short fare or if it is very busy, then you can get extra GoPoints. You can see the GoPoints for every job before you accept.

The number of GoPoints you have determines your status level and that gives you priority access to on-demand jobs and Advance Bookings. Drivers get rewarded for doing short fares and picking up passengers when it is busy.
GoCoins are created every time a passenger pays through GoCatch. The GoCoin is then shared between the passenger and the driver. The split is determined by an algorithm that factors in the size of the fare and current level of demand.

In early 2018, you will be able to make purchases and collect rewards with GoCoins.



*nodding intently with a thousand yard stare* uh huh. i seee. fascinating.

#151
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-uber-usa/uber-boss-says-u-s-market-unprofitable-amid-tough-competition-from-lyft-idUSKBN1D9348?utm_source=applenews

Uber Technologies Inc will continue to lose money in its home market for at least the next six months as rival Lyft Inc poses a fierce competitive challenge, Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi said on Thursday in his first public comments since taking the top job at Uber two months ago.

“The U.S. is very, very competitive right now between us and Lyft, so I don’t see the U.S. as being a particularly profitable market for the next six months,” said Khosrowshahi, who made the comments at the New York Times DealBook conference in New York, which was also streamed online.

A spokesman confirmed that Uber will be unprofitable overall, although some cities may break even.

Khosrowshahi was tapped to run Uber in August after leading travel-booking site Expedia Inc (EXPE.O) for 12 years and is expected to bring a less abrasive approach than his predecessor, Travis Kalanick. On Thursday, he described progress in talks with regulators in London, who in September refused to renew Uber’s operating license.

Uber has often said its heavy losses were necessary to establish itself in new markets. But the lack of profits in its home market, where it has been operating for eight years, and others such as Southeast Asia, raise questions about the company’s business model, which relies on heavily subsidizing both riders and drivers to keep prices low using the billions of dollars in venture capital the company has raised.

Khosrowshahi’s comments are also a testament to Lyft’s growth. The smaller ride service, which started in 2012 and only operates in the United States, has expanded to more than 350 cities across 41 states this year and last month raised $1 billion in a financing round led by Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O).

For a brief period last year, Uber was profitable in the United States and Canada, the company said.



Uber seems to often make comments about being profitable in particular cities, or being profitable for a brief period (how brief? 10 minutes?) ... which makes me wonder - are you allowed to straight up lie about that kinda stuff if you're a private company?

#152
so i've been thinking about this... uber tried to steal self-driving traade secrets from google. then google invested 1 billion dollars into lyft so that uber would lose even more money. is the story going to be that google invested a billion into the loss-making lyft to sabotage ubers (already slim) chances of making progress with autonomous driving tech? is that going to make press at all or is this stuff kinda just assumed in the cut-throat business world?
#153
It’s possible Google intends to let Uber and Lyft fight to the point of monetary exhaustion so they can just outright buy Lyft and reincorporate the existing brand as a platform for a driverless cab service based on the tech Uber tried to steal.

I cannot imagine how fucked the US labor market will be once driving becomes reliably automatable. Fucking hell.
#154

AZ_IZ_OT posted:

I cannot imagine how fucked the US labor market will be once driving becomes reliably automatable. Fucking hell.


Do you think it will? Most of the guys pushing self driving cars the hardest seem like scam artists, and I think it will be very difficult to get it to work reliably in all situations.

#155
The self-driving car stuff is, as far as I can tell, many decades away at the least - rather than something to aim for in 2030 or w/e like all the boosters try to sell ppl on.
#156
Let's see when they can do something relatively simple like have automated road trains on long stretches of road in outback australia or w/e. Surely that would be easier to program and implement than taxis in highly urban areas.
#157
i guess this kinda stuff is out there

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safe_Road_Trains_for_the_Environment

but when it will become popular is another question.
#158

lo posted:


I mean I know nothing about the feat of code it would require or how insane the startup cost would be for a plan like that, granted. It just seems way more doable than going to Mars or downloading your brain. My instinct is it could happen with research progressing geometrically rather than exponentially (as would clearly be a requirement for most tech fantasies). Maybe ten years from now minimum, who knows, but you’re right to slam the brakes on my imagination. From what I recall the self-driving car goes at like 10mph and fucks up constantly. Still, comes off as at least workable with current technology.

To go back to Uber’s insane idea, self-driving cars seem more viable than using helicopters or harrier jets like taxis, which would require not only an insane amount of investment and upkeep into the vehicles themselves but also uhhh leasing or outright purchasing a massive amount of urban real estate and also dealing with... Zoning laws and whatever the FCC would have to say about that shit? I actually cannot imagine such a concept ever coming to fruition without completely centralized planning/massive government intervention to begin with.

#159
yes the flying car is insane stuff that i think they're trying to sell people on because it makes them look like tech visionaries rather than a taxi company haemorrhaging money. i think it's being done quite cynically - just my guess. maybe ppl like the uber higher ups really do believe in their own quixotic quests. for me its hard to get a read on these people.

i guess you'd have to see how much money was being poured into the R&D for each project. im sure uber is taking autonomous cars quite seriously - but i'd be surprised if they were putting any significant money into flying car shit besides the money used to produce the videos and PR spin.
#160
I have been trying for years to write a thread about how I see cars as weapons and fundamentally destructive to life, I can never get it going because the topic is just too enormous. The implication of everyone in amerika having access to a fully functional self driving vehicle..... it's the equivalent of VBIED added to the repertory of daily micro violence. FFS!!!