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Old 03-01-2017, 11:17 PM   #26
Shoe
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by dwiele View Post
I was under the impression that Uber was going the route of driverless cars in the future
That's not happening anytime soon. They need to raise rates and pay their drivers more (and will still be cheaper and more convenient than cabs).
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Old 03-01-2017, 11:43 PM   #27
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by Namath12 View Post
Many Uber drivers in my area also drive for Lyft. I've spoken to 5 of them and all say Lyft is better and they make more from Lyft than Uber but I have not bothered to verify that beyond their words.
This is an important point because there is no real switching cost or multi homing cost on either side of the market. If the economics keep getting worse or bad press keeps coming and becomes more mainstream there's nothing stopping anyone from going to Lyft.
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Old 03-01-2017, 11:52 PM   #28
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by chip&aprayer View Post
Minirra, what do you do for a living? Just curious. Posts seem well thought out.
Thanks. Mostly due diligence consulting (as far as how I actually make money), typically for private equity investors, although I'm not as hands-on lately and have something else going on. I have an area I specialize in but pretty much the idea is to find out everything companies leave out of their slide presentations.
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Old 03-02-2017, 12:06 AM   #29
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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why? because you think its a bad investment? something else?
Well. I short stocks , and these valuations being assigned , leave a cushion for certain companies to remain over valued.
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Old 03-02-2017, 03:02 AM   #30
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Uber ain't gonna be making their own driverless cars when Google's done with them. I expect an injunction will be granted.
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:00 AM   #31
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Well. I short stocks , and these valuations being assigned , leave a cushion for certain companies to remain over valued.
Myrna:

Earlier somebody pointed out that Uber can't be shorted because it's not a publicly traded company. Not being hip and aware, (and reading constant references to Uber having a $69 BILLION valuation), I assumed [incorrectly] that Uber was a public company. I'm just curious: How was such a valuation derived? If there has not been an IPO for Uber shares, how is a $69 billion valuation justified?

Somebody else suggested that Travis is pulling a very slick pump-and-dump operation so he can cash in on the IPO and walk away from Uber a billionaire. I have no idea if this is the plan, but it wouldn't be the first time a bunch of smart (supposedly sophisticated) "investors" have been played for suckers.
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:20 AM   #32
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Nobody Likes Uber Anymore

https://qz.com/917179/uber-is-rackin...ios-app-store/
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Old 03-02-2017, 07:03 AM   #33
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

After reading the posts here I can state uncategorically that Uber is not dead, far from it.
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Old 03-02-2017, 07:11 AM   #34
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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^ They're already rolling out tests in a couple markets it will eventually get there, but I'm not sure anyone can firmly back a realistic timetable for when this shift actually happens at scale, much less when it's going to translate into a meaningful cost savings. They don't fully control that the progress with self-driving anything and new tech is expensive. If anything I'd think this tech will increase their costs initially. They'll be providing and maintaining the vehicles, don't see insurance dropping for a bit, and they need a fleet sized to peak hours (that's a lot of high-tech cars).
Uber IP, how much is it worth in a stock market where valuations are very high and companies buyout other companies with their own stock? I'm not sure but it has to be worth something.
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:02 AM   #35
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by Alan C. Lawhon View Post
Myrna:

Earlier somebody pointed out that Uber can't be shorted because it's not a publicly traded company. Not being hip and aware, (and reading constant references to Uber having a $69 BILLION valuation), I assumed [incorrectly] that Uber was a public company. I'm just curious: How was such a valuation derived? If there has not been an IPO for Uber shares, how is a $69 billion valuation justified?

Somebody else suggested that Travis is pulling a very slick pump-and-dump operation so he can cash in on the IPO and walk away from Uber a billionaire. I have no idea if this is the plan, but it wouldn't be the first time a bunch of smart (supposedly sophisticated) "investors" have been played for suckers.
The 69 number is based off the last significant investment made by a major vc and the % equity they received for it. The thing is , usually this method enriches the vc crowd and founders while at the same time transfers substantial risk to pension plans /401k / every man mutual funds etc
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Old 03-02-2017, 10:42 AM   #36
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

I'd be curious to hear people's impressions of Uber vs. taxis in markets they know well. The only market I truly know well is NYC. For those who are unfamiliar with NYC taxis, I would guess that they are among the cheapest in the US relative to cost of living, probably because taxis historically have competed with NYC's very comprehensive bus and subways systems.

UberX is competitive with taxi pricing depending on traffic conditions. UberX is slightly cheaper if traffic is moving well, and slightly more expensive in slow traffic. Rider experience in UberX is about the same as riding in a taxi, although taxi riders may know the city a bit better on average.

If you want something more upscale than UberX, it is always more expensive than a taxi. I'm less sure about how pricing for UberBlack compares to traditional upscale Manhattan car services. UberBlack may well be cheaper. Surge pricing is always wayyy more expensive than taxis. (FWIW, people tend to overestimate how difficult it is to catch a taxi in a snowstorm.)

In terms of convenience, it really depends. Taxis are generally easy to hail anywhere in Manhattan, any time of day. Getting an UberX in Manhattan is easy, but slightly more irritating (to me, at least) than hailing a taxi. Taxis are harder (sometimes, much harder) to hail from the street in the outer boroughs than they are in Manhattan.

Taxis have an advantage at the airport unless the taxi line is quite long, which is rare. And if the taxi line is super long for some reason, you probably will have to wait for an Uber because lots of people will have the same idea as you. Finding your Uber driver at JFK or LGA is often a 15 minute process and can be quite irritating.

I am most likely to take Uber if I am traveling from an outer borough late at night back into Manhattan because traffic conditions are fast and finding a taxi may be a pain.
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Old 03-02-2017, 11:15 AM   #37
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

As someone from manhattan , and that has a car, the clueless zig zag driving , of UBER is quite tilting, i understand that they are slave to their GPS , and have to do sudden U's because someone summoned them but they are god awful as a whole navigating around.
That's after a year and change of learning these streets , a year ago, half of them had no clue , it was like they just got issued a car and dl on the same day.
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Old 03-02-2017, 12:39 PM   #38
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by adios View Post
Uber IP, how much is it worth in a stock market where valuations are very high and companies buyout other companies with their own stock? I'm not sure but it has to be worth something.
Honestly if we're ever talking about Uber in terms of their IP and that sort of this, then things are bad. Lots of tiny companies have things like functioning routing tech and it's not as if rideshare customers are accounts that you can absorb as easily as buying up, say, a convenience store chain.

That's not to say there's not IP value in there, I'm just struggling to see a lot of it, basically the same throughout that industry - do they own any significant patents or what? There doesn't appear to be anything that restricts other companies from doing the same thing the same basic way. Maybe some R&D work toward the self-driving thing but then again they're not building the cars.

I guess for me the question is, if Uber announced they were shutting down today, what would be the must-get pieces that Lyft or someone else would pay a sizable amount of money for, besides maybe the Uber name?
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Old 03-02-2017, 01:01 PM   #39
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by Rococo View Post
I'd be curious to hear people's impressions of Uber vs. taxis in markets they know well. The only market I truly know well is NYC. For those who are unfamiliar with NYC taxis, I would guess that they are among the cheapest in the US relative to cost of living, probably because taxis historically have competed with NYC's very comprehensive bus and subways systems.

UberX is competitive with taxi pricing depending on traffic conditions. UberX is slightly cheaper if traffic is moving well, and slightly more expensive in slow traffic. Rider experience in UberX is about the same as riding in a taxi, although taxi riders may know the city a bit better on average.

If you want something more upscale than UberX, it is always more expensive than a taxi. I'm less sure about how pricing for UberBlack compares to traditional upscale Manhattan car services. UberBlack may well be cheaper. Surge pricing is always wayyy more expensive than taxis. (FWIW, people tend to overestimate how difficult it is to catch a taxi in a snowstorm.)

In terms of convenience, it really depends. Taxis are generally easy to hail anywhere in Manhattan, any time of day. Getting an UberX in Manhattan is easy, but slightly more irritating (to me, at least) than hailing a taxi. Taxis are harder (sometimes, much harder) to hail from the street in the outer boroughs than they are in Manhattan.

Taxis have an advantage at the airport unless the taxi line is quite long, which is rare. And if the taxi line is super long for some reason, you probably will have to wait for an Uber because lots of people will have the same idea as you. Finding your Uber driver at JFK or LGA is often a 15 minute process and can be quite irritating.

I am most likely to take Uber if I am traveling from an outer borough late at night back into Manhattan because traffic conditions are fast and finding a taxi may be a pain.


i agree with most of this post with the exception of uber was significantly cheaper when i took it to/from laguardia from the Bronx.It has also generally been cheaper while in the outer boroughs.

Rates while in Manhattan seemed to be about the same as a taxi.

Outside of NYC,Uber has been a lot cheaper than cabs anywhere I've used it. In Vegas the price difference is massive.
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Old 03-02-2017, 04:45 PM   #40
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by Minirra View Post
Honestly if we're ever talking about Uber in terms of their IP and that sort of this, then things are bad. Lots of tiny companies have things like functioning routing tech and it's not as if rideshare customers are accounts that you can absorb as easily as buying up, say, a convenience store chain.
But that's the thing. Routing tech isn't a commodity. You might think it is, and to an outside observer, it seems like it, but engineering this stuff is not trivial. There's a reason Uber spends as much as they do on engineering, and it's not because they're a charity.
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Old 03-03-2017, 06:44 AM   #41
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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But that's the thing. Routing tech isn't a commodity. You might think it is, and to an outside observer, it seems like it, but engineering this stuff is not trivial. There's a reason Uber spends as much as they do on engineering, and it's not because they're a charity.
Exactly. Even pessimistic valuations from last year has them valued at $25 billion+. Given the current level of valuations in the market Uber is worth certainly more than $25 billion. That is a lot more than nothing.

Expert States Uber Worth $28 billion not $62.5 billion

FWIW, from my experience, this kind of story is a bullish indicator. That story is from August of 2016.

Snap Chat IPO put a valuation on it of over $25 billion. That is incredible in my view. Revenue of less than $0.5 billion. Their brand is obviously valued very high.

Last edited by adios; 03-03-2017 at 06:50 AM.
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Old 03-03-2017, 03:40 PM   #42
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Uber's app would identify government officials and show them fake cars to avoid getting caught in sting operations

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Uber’s use of Greyball was recorded on video in late 2014, when Erich England, a code enforcement inspector for Portland, Ore., tried to catch an Uber car downtown as part of a sting operation against the company.

At the time, Uber had just started its ride-hailing service in Portland without seeking permission from the city, which later declared the service illegal. To build a case against the company, officers like Mr. England posed as riders, opening the Uber app to hail a car and watching as the miniature vehicles on the screen wound their way toward him.

But unknown to Mr. England and other authorities, some of the digital cars they saw in their Uber apps were never there at all. The Uber drivers they were able to hail also quickly canceled. That was because Uber had tagged Mr. England and his colleagues — essentially Greyballing them as city officials — based on data collected from its app and through other techniques. Uber then served up a fake version of its app that was populated with ghost cars, to evade capture.
Unclear who's had a worse PR run recently between Uber and the Trump administration, it's a close horserace
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Old 03-03-2017, 08:02 PM   #43
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Uber hiding itself from governments and authorities in places it's outlawed or banned via regulation.

Sure nothing bad could come from this.

https://arstechnica.com/business/201...ortland-paris/
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Old 03-03-2017, 08:50 PM   #44
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

UberX cars are significantly superior to taxis in every city that I've used Uber, which is many, across the country. Uber drivers are also much more friendly than taxi drivers in every city I've ever traveled to.

The app is obviously much more convenient than calling taxi companies.

And in nearly every city I've used Uber, I am so surprised at how low the rates are.

It's hard to tell if they are "doomed" however because we can't truly see their books. Maybe they really are just pissing away VC money on subsidizing taxi rides.
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Old 03-03-2017, 08:55 PM   #45
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

I drove my own car doing deliveries back in the 90s. I did it for 2 weeks, made a whopping $225/week or something. I did the math and realized I was losing money - based on depreciation and wear and tear on my car.

Any service where the employee is using their car is based on the employee either being ignorant of depreciation, or the employee knowingly borrowing against the future value of their car. IE - recipe for a lot of churn.
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Old 03-03-2017, 09:14 PM   #46
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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I drove my own car doing deliveries back in the 90s. I did it for 2 weeks, made a whopping $225/week or something. I did the math and realized I was losing money - based on depreciation and wear and tear on my car.

Any service where the employee is using their car is based on the employee either being ignorant of depreciation, or the employee knowingly borrowing against the future value of their car. IE - recipe for a lot of churn.
Yep. I worked at a Pizza Hut back in the early 1990s (with Octavia Spencer, of all people, LOL), and I'm pretty sure I would have been losing money had I not been driving a $400 beater of a car.
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Old 03-03-2017, 09:14 PM   #47
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Originally Posted by suzzer99 View Post
I drove my own car doing deliveries back in the 90s. I did it for 2 weeks, made a whopping $225/week or something. I did the math and realized I was losing money - based on depreciation and wear and tear on my car.

Any service where the employee is using their car is based on the employee either being ignorant of depreciation, or the employee knowingly borrowing against the future value of their car. IE - recipe for a lot of churn.
Yep, right now Uber has a free fleet of cars that drivers are subsidizing for them. I'm actually not sure if driverless cars would end up being cheaper compared to how little they are paying their drivers compared to what it would cost to own, operate, and maintain their own fleet of cars.
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Old 03-03-2017, 10:05 PM   #48
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Uber hiding itself from governments and authorities in places it's outlawed or banned via regulation.

Sure nothing bad could come from this.

https://arstechnica.com/business/201...ortland-paris/
And politicians are never corrupt because they would never favor a company and/or the employees of a company that gave them financial support.
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Old 03-03-2017, 10:12 PM   #49
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

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Yep, right now Uber has a free fleet of cars that drivers are subsidizing for them. I'm actually not sure if driverless cars would end up being cheaper compared to how little they are paying their drivers compared to what it would cost to own, operate, and maintain their own fleet of cars.
Obviously they would be cheaper than having drivers. The idea that drivers are so dumb that they're losing money and don't realize it is pretty loltastic in my view. Are we stating that there are no long term Uber drivers?
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Old 03-03-2017, 10:16 PM   #50
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

If there are any the percentage is very tiny.
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