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To: TimF who wrote (565)8/24/2017 8:05:12 AM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 664
Humans versus algorithms. A short term edge for the humans. It won't last.

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From: Glenn Petersen8/24/2017 8:14:51 AM
   of 664
Uber is still a mess financially. Meg Whitman is still in the running for the CEO position. I personally think that she would be a good choice. Adult supervision. If Lfyt were smart, they would accelerate their IPO timetable and get the jump on Uber.

Exclusive: Inside Uber's financials

Lazaro Gamio / Axios
August 23, 2017

Uber's gross bookings were up 17% in the second quarter, the number of trips taken rose 150% in the past year and its adjusted loss fell, according to numbers provided to Axios by the company. Uber drivers have earned $50 million in tips since the program started in late June.

Why it matters: Uber spent most of the quarter under the cloud of a well-publicized internal investigation into sexual harassment and other unsavory aspects of company culture, and ended it with the forced resignation of CEO Travis Kalanick. The ride-hail giant's core business, however, appears to have kept humming along.

The numbers:
  • Gross bookings rose 17% in the second quarter to $8.7 billion (and doubled from a year earlier).
  • Adjusted net revenue was $1.75 billion in Q2 vs $1.5 billion in Q1 and around $800 million in Q2 2016.
  • Adjusted net loss fell almost 9% quarter-over-quarter to $645 million and over 14% year-over-year.
    • The $645 million is adjusted EBIT, while Uber's Q2 EBITDA loss was $534 million (down from $598 million in Q1). Uber's global ride-share business was margin positive last quarter, which is a flip from Q1.
  • Global trips increased 150% year-over-year, including 90% growth in developed markets and over 250% growth in developing markets. This excludes China, which Uber exited last summer in exchange for an equity stake in Didi Chuxing. It includes Russia, where Uber's recently-announced partnership with Yandex has yet to be approved by local regulators.
  • Revenue note: Uber is no longer reporting unadjusted net revenue to its investors, due to new guidance from the SEC.
  • Uber had $6.6 billion in cash at quarter's end, down from around $7.2 billion at the end of Q1.
  • Uber drivers have earned around $50 million in tips between when the program was rolled out in select markets on June 20 and the beginning of this week. For context, Lyft reported a similar $50 million figure for a 2.5 month period ending in the middle of this past June, but that was for a longer time period and for all of its markets (Lyft originally launched tipping nearly five years ago, generating over $250 million to date).

Recruiting tool: A booming top-line and shrinking (albeit still sizable) losses are why Uber, despite its myriad of problems, remains attractive to blue-chip CEO candidates like former General Electric boss Jeff Immelt. But...
What to watch: Uber still had a CEO for most of Q2, and its board had not yet erupted into the open warfare seen in Q3. Expect Immelt and others to dive deep into still-unreleased results for July and August.

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (567)8/27/2017 6:56:57 PM
From: Sr K
   of 664
on WSJ

Meg Whitman a Leading Candidate to Run Uber as Immelt Drops Out

Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO made presentation to Uber board Saturday, despite public denials of interest in the job.

The search for Uber’s next chief executive was upended over the weekend as GE Chairman Jeff Immelt dropped out of the race and Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman appeared to be back in the running.

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To: Sr K who wrote (568)8/27/2017 10:25:37 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 664
Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi will be offered the job as Uber’s new CEO

The “truce” choice is likely to take it — though no one from the board of the car-hailing company has told him as yet!

by Kara Swisher @karaswisher
Aug 27, 2017, 8:14pm EDT

Dara Khosrowshahi is the pick Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The board of Uber has voted and wants Expedia Dara Khosrowshahi to be its next CEO. But here is a shocking twist for those who have had to endure this awful, messy and convoluted process: He has not been officially offered the job as of 15 minutes ago, said sources.

Still, most expect him to take it and he appears to be the one person dueling factions of the board can agree on. Unknown until now, Khosrowshahi was the third candidate — after Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman and former General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt.

Khosrowshahi is considered the “truce” choice for the board, which has been riven by ugly infighting between ousted CEO Travis Kalanick and one of its major investors, Benchmark. Benchmark had backed Whitman, while Kalanick had backed Immelt.

Sources said that going into this morning, after Immelt withdrew his name from contention after it was clear he would not win the job, Whitman had the upper hand in the race for the job. But she also wanted a number of things — including less involvement by ousted Uber CEO Travis Kalanick and more board control — that became too problematic for the directors, said sources.

As he left, sources close to Immelt’s thinking called the search process totally “dysfunctional” (and worse). Cue sources close to Whitman to say that very soon (and more). Both are quite accurate.

And, in keeping with the cup full of crazy modus operandi, about 30 minutes ago, in a statement, an Uber board spokesperson said: “The Board has voted and will announce the decision to the employees first.”

Well, it’s Khosrowshahi, if he says yes, that is — so now we can all get back to the season finale of Game of Thrones.

Sources close to Meg Whitman said she has not been informed of any choice nor had the board agreed to some the the things she was asking for to take the job.

More to come, obvi!

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (569)8/28/2017 10:44:57 PM
From: Sr K
   of 664
with $200 million in stock options to replace EXPE options.

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To: Sr K who wrote (570)8/29/2017 3:37:14 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
1 Recommendation   of 664
Mr. Khosrowshahi, who now becomes one of the highest profile executives in the U.S., comes from a family of very high achievers:

Uber picked a CEO who has an influential network of relatives across Silicon Valley

By Elizabeth Dwoski
The Washington Post
August 28 at 11:20 AM

The chief executive of the travel company Expedia Inc., Dara Khosrowshahi, has been chosen as Uber's new CEO and is now challenged with leading the company out of a nearly year-long crisis. (Reuters)


SAN FRANCISCO -- At first blush, the choice of Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi to lead Uber may seem a little odd.

The 48-year-old chief executive, who was born in Iran and moved to the U.S. in 1978 to flee the Iranian Revolution, does not live in Silicon Valley; he lives in Bellevue, Wa., where Expedia is headquartered.

The two businesses also appear to have little in common. Like Uber, online travel giant Expedia is a data-driven marketplace that links sellers to consumers who are on the move -- but the connections pretty much stop there.

Yet Khosrowshahi, 48, has deep ties to Silicon Valley, many of them through his own family. Indeed, Khosrowshahi may have one of the most extensive family networks of anyone working in the technology industry today -- six of his relatives are highly successful Silicon Valley entrepreneurs or executives with strong ties to tech.

His brother Kaveh Khosrowshahi is managing director of Allen & Co., the influential boutique investment bank the runs the Sun Valley conference, a networking event frequented by tech elites like Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, entrepreneur Elon Musk, and Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey.

His cousin Amir Khosrowshahi co-founded an artificial intelligence company, Nervana, that was acquired by Intel last year for $400 million (He is now an executive in Intel’s artificial intelligence unit).

His twin cousins, Ali and Hadi Partovi were early investors in many of the most successful tech companies produced by Silicon Valley over the last decade, including Airbnb, Dropbox, Uber, and Facebook. They also cofounded, an influential non-profit focused on improving computer science education across the United States.

Two other family members are Google executives. One cousin, Farzad Khosrowshahi, invented the software tool now known as Google spreadsheets, and is the executive that runs Google Docs. Another family member, Avid Larizadeh Duggan, is a general partner at Google Ventures, the search giant’s venture capital arm that invests in startups (Uber was an investment in the Google ventures portfolio) .

In an interview, Ali Partovi said that his cousin Dara was always someone he and his brother had looked up to. “My whole life, anytime I've faced a high-pressure decision, my model for mature behavior has been, 'What would Dara do'? He's one of the humblest and most even-keeled people I know.”

That trait in itself may serve the embattled Uber well, and will be a stark contrast to the leadership style of former chief executive Travis Kalanick. Kalanick is known to fly into fits of anger. (In one infamous episode that was caught on video earlier this year, Kalanick unloaded on an Uber driver who criticized the company’s wages.)

Many of the cousins went to the same high school, the Hackley School, a private prep school in Tarrytown, NY, Partovi said.

Over the years, they have helped one another, investing in each other’s companies and supporting one another’s ideas. The extended family moved to the United States between the late seventies and eighties, fleeing the Iranian revolution.

Their remarkable immigrant success story isn’t lost on them, which is why Khosrowshahi and his cousins became some of the most vocal opponents of President Trump’s immigration ban on Muslim Americans, including those from Iran. Shortly after the ban was issued, Khosrowshahi sent a memo to the entire Expedia workforce, according to Business Insider.

"I believe that with this executive order, our president has reverted to the short game,” he wrote. "The US may be ever so slightly less dangerous as a place to live, but it will certainly be seen as a smaller nation, one that is inward-looking versus forward thinking, reactionary versus visionary.” Khosrowshahi reiterated his concerns during a routine earnings call with investors.

While it’s not known who first tapped Khosrowshahi to come in to interview for the top job at Uber, conversations began in Seattle a few weeks ago, said people familiar with the discussions. At the time, the board was considering two other candidates with higher-profiles, GE chief executive Jeff Immelt and HPE chief Meg Whitman.

Negotiations lasted throughout the weekend, and the decision was a close call between Whitman and Khosrowshahi, people familiar with the discussions told the Post. Uber’s eight-member board debated until the very last minute on Sunday.

The talks were kept so secret that many of Khosrowshahi’s own family members were surprised when they heard the news, Ali Partovi said. “My phone has been blowing up with messages for my family for the last hour,” he said on Sunday evening.

As of Monday, Khosrowshahi was still pondering the job, according to an internal letter circulated among Expedia's staff by the company's chairman, Barry Diller. "Nothing has been yet finalized," Diller wrote, "but having extensively discussed this with Dara I believe it is his intention to accept."

Khosrowshahi won't be a cheap hire. He was named the highest paid chief executive in the U.S. by Equilar for his 2015 compensation, thanks largely to a long-term stock option package valued at $90.8 million he would gain access to over a period of several years.

As of Friday's close, that meant Khosrowshahi had unvested options worth about $97.5 million if he'd stayed on at Expedia, according to an analysis by independent compensation consultant Brian Foley. Yet he also has additional options that would be worth another $82.5 million if aggressive stock price performance targets were met, bringing the total to at least $180 million.

Foley said it is unlikely Khosrowshahi would give up pay to take the job at Uber -- and he could very well be paid more. "I suspect the real question is not how much he gives up but how much more did he get," said Foley. "He's in the catbird seat. They've now come to him -- it's got to be something that has some real sizzle to it."

Because Uber is a private company, the company will not be required to immediately release specifics on Khosrowshahi's pay, though it would become public if the company launches an IPO. But Foley expects the circumstances -- a high-profile, highly public search that included heavyweights like General Electric chairman Jeff Immelt and Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman -- would mean little will be left on the table.

"I have to figure they gave him new grants that would make him whole on whatever he would lose at Expedia and then threw a sweetener on top," Foley said, noting it would be unusual for a company losing its CEO to accelerate the vesting of his options. "They want to save that for the next guy."

Staff writer Jena McGregor contributed to this report.

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From: TimF8/29/2017 5:45:02 PM
   of 664
Pakistan Isn't Quite Getting The Idea Of Uber And Ride Sharing
Tim Worstall ,

That there should be some regulation of Uber and other ride sharing companies seems entirely logical. Making sure that the vehicles have insurance for example would appear sensible. Price regulation though is just not one of those sensible things, something which has escaped the regulators in Islamabad in Pakistan:
Moreover, Muzaffar suggested that facilities for issuing route permits for vehicles working for ride-sharing services would be ensured.

The app-based services would also be forced to display customised stickers on the front and back windscreens of vehicles.

“We would issue a fare list to the app-based services which they would have to follow strictly,” Muzaffar said, adding that insurance for passengers insurance would also be mandatory for their safety.
There are several innovations in the ride sharing business but from the economic point of view the most important is the ability to have variable pricing. This is very much the same thing which has driven the rise of the budget airlines, the ability to alter prices dependent upon demand. However, with taxis we've one more point to add, we can and do vary supply significantly dependent upon those changes in demand.

One of the great successes of technical economics in recent decades has been the advance in the understanding of auctions and matching. Al Roth's Nobel came in part from this. Hal Varian's work at Google on matching advertising demand and supply, varying price to do so, has made fortunes for many people. Governments everywhere are delighted with the manner in which they're making money off spectrum auctions for the mobile phone business. This is all rather the same underlying mechanism at work here. And Uber, Lyft and the rest are applying much that same mechanism to the taxi business.

We're talking very basic Econ 101 at heart, that supply and demand curve thing. In some of these cases we're saying that supply is fixed--say, spectrum. Then we should be allowing the price to keep going up until no one is willing to pay any more. Airlines have fixed short term supply capacity, much more variable in the longer term. Taxis might have fixed supply right now but can ramp it up in an hour or two. Which is where that variable pricing comes in.

If there are 10 cabs on the roads and 9 people want a ride then one of the drivers is out of luck and might as well go home. If there're 10 and 15 people want rides then 5 people are using Shank's Pony. Except, with cabs, we can raise the price being charged and some of those 15 might well decide to walk anyway. But also we'll get one or more extra drivers coming out onto the road and thus increase supply. This is the very point of the system in fact, new technology enables us to both collate and transmit supply and demand in real time, thus enabling price changes to balance them again in real time.

Which is the bit the regulators in Pakistan's Islamabad are missing--the whole economic point of Uber and the ride sharing services is that they don't have a fixed fare structure.

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (571)8/29/2017 7:29:08 PM
From: Sr K
1 Recommendation   of 664
Rich Barton was a Microsoft engineer in the early 1990s with an idea and plan, while working for Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer. He talked with Ballmer about the big idea and Steve said how much money do you need?


The talks stalled.

But the history is recounted in a Masters In Business (on Bloomberg and iTunes) podcast last month.

Microsoft spun out Expedia.

I looked and Barton didn't keep much Expedia.

But he's an active venture capitalist, an early investor in Netflix, and he's still on the board of Netflix and other companies.

So there is a direct connection from Khosrowshahi to Bill Gates, and not surprising that he lives in Bellevue, WA.

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To: Sr K who wrote (573)8/29/2017 10:16:44 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
1 Recommendation   of 664
One of my tweets from a month ago:

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From: Glenn Petersen9/1/2017 3:14:53 PM
   of 664
Uber could go public in 18 months

Elizabeth Dwoskin
The Washington Post
August 31, 2017

Travelers wait at the new designated pick-up zone for Uber at Tullamarine Airport in Melbourne, Australia.
(Joe Castro / EPA)

Uber could go public as soon as 18 months from now.

That was the news delivered to Uber's 16,000-person workforce today by the embattled transportation company's new chief executive, outgoing Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, according to an employee who attended the meeting.

Khosrowshahi wasn't definitive, the person said. In a meeting that was broadcast from San Francisco across the world, Khosrowshahi said the 8-year-old company could go public in a timeline of 18 to 36 months, but he would have to see.

In addressing the issue at his first all-hands meeting, Khosrowshahi appeared to be trying to allay one of the biggest concerns not only for investors but also for employees. With a $68 billion valuation by private investors, Uber is the most valuable startup Silicon Valley has produced over the last decade, but funders have grown frustrated by the lack of a timeline for getting their payouts. Employees have also felt pent up, as many are compensated with options in the company.

The loose timeline also gives Uber's incoming leader an opportunity to resolve many of the controversies facing the company. That includes litigation with Google in a major case in which Uber is accused of stealing trade secrets from Google's self-driving car program, as well as two pending federal investigations.

On Tuesday, the company confirmed that the Department of Justice is probing whether executives broke U.S. laws prohibiting bribery of officials in foreign countries. Uber is cooperating with the investigation, a spokesman Matt Kallman said.

Under Uber's previous hard-charging chief executive, Travis Kalanick, Uber expanded to 77 countries in just eight years and built up a reputation for rule-breaking and for a "bro" culture that has been hostile to women and underrepresented minorities. Federal officials are also probing whether the company used special software to evade authorities in places where ride-sharing services were banned or restricted.

It is not known how much it cost Khosrowshahi to take the job, but he likely did not come cheap. As the chief executive of Expedia, he was named the highest paid chief executive in the U.S. by Equilar for his 2015 compensation, thanks largely to a long-term stock option package valued at $90.8 million he would gain access to over a period of several years. He also had additional options that would be worth another $82.5 million if aggressive stock price performance targets were met, bringing his total take-home pay to at least $180 million.

Because Uber is a private company, the company will not be required to immediately release specifics on Khosrowshahi's pay, though it would become public if the company launches an IPO.

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