The Ayn Rand-themed car service that lives on your phone has made a real habit of flouting local taxi regulations in new markets until the targeted city or country just submits to the power of people ordering up rides on their iPhones. Granted, it's cost them a little money here and there, but they're doing GREAT!
Uber Technologies Inc. is telling prospective investors that it generates $470 million in operating losses on $415 million in revenue, according to a document provided to prospective investors.
Holy Objectivism that's a lot of money!
$470 million? Uber doesn't even own or maintain the cars! How in the name of John Galt are they spending all this money?
The figures show the heavy losses that Uber is accruing as it expands its global car-booking operation amid fierce local competition. Uber is already operating in more than 300 cities worldwide and is raising money at a $50 billion valuation, a person familiar with the situation said last month.
"Heavy losses?" But things in Europe are going great, right WSJ?
French prosecutors on Tuesday ordered two top executives for Uber Technologies Inc. to stand trial on a raft of charges that could bring fines and jail time, a rapid acceleration of France’s legal salvos against the ride-sharing firm.
Uber executives Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty and Thibaud Simphal were released after spending a night in police custody, prosecutors said, and were ordered to appear before magistrates on Sept. 30 to face charges, including deceptive commercial practices, enabling illegal taxi services and illicit storage of personal data. Uber as a company is also being charged.
Wow. So after facing ongoing resistance in New York City - where local officials are merely bought and paid for by Taxi lobbyists and the unions that support them - Uber made an attempt to grab a foothold in France (where political officials actually believe in using regulation to protect entrenched special interests and have built an actual system of government around it) and ended up causing an actual f*cking riot?
But these executives seem oddly ballsy. Whatever possessed them to think that they'd get away with this? It's not like Uber is going around paying every employee back every time they get caught violating French law, right The New York Times?
Despite the police surveillance, Uber advertises UberPOP on popular radio stations and on its website, beckoning listeners to sign up as drivers with the promise of making up to 200 euros a day. The lawsuits and Boer patrols are mentioned nowhere.
This omission is understandable, in part because Uber assumes much of the legal risk. (Uber also claims that it makes its legal status clear to UberPOP drivers when they join.) When a driver is stopped, Uber’s defense machine takes over. “We tell them, if you get fined, come to us and we’ll support you,” Simphal said. “We want them to feel as confident as we feel about what we’re doing and our interpretation of the law.”
Really, Uber? Really?
So if you're burning through half a billion every year and having trouble establishing a Fountainhead in Western Europe, maybe you let the two French homeboys you hired cool their heels eating publicly-funded foie gras in Parisian jail while you circle the wagons back home. And maybe you play nicer with American regulators to hone your game for a second European invasion.
Uber is pulling out the stops to fight a New York City bill that would cap the number of drivers it can employ. Mobilizing its users to “Save Uber as you know it in NYC,” the company said in an email to customers that it would offer a free ride to anyone using its UberPool carpooling service to go to a protest tomorrow morning (June 30) at City Hall in lower Manhattan
What the f*ck Uber? We can't help you if you can't help yourself.
Uber Bonds Term Sheet Reveals $470 Million in Operating Losses [Bloomberg]
Uber Executives Ordered to Stand Trial by French Prosecutors [WSJ]
Uber’s French Resistance [NY Times]
Uber is offering free rides to a protest against a proposed crackdown on New York City car services [Quartz]