Uber

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  • jpkeates
    replied
    Originally posted by AndrewDod View Post
    That is the goal of every good company. If that was not their goal their shareholders would be rightly miffied.
    That's not the case.
    The goal of most companies is to maximise returns over a period.
    Most companies operate in economies where monopoly trading isn't allowed.

    The exception to this is Russia, China (and some other states) and the US technology sector.
    If Microsoft, Apple or Google were a US automobile manufacturer, they would have been broken up by now.

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    I have no idea what Jeremy Corbyn has to do with this discussion, he's not in a position to ban anything (outside his own party and barely then).

    I don't think the companies listed should be banned, just that they should obey the same regulations as everyone else.
    The basic business model bothers me, but that's not a reason to ban them.

    And if the licence renewal isn't a real "thing" - it's something political, it means that been outmanoeuvred by UK trade unions and a group of taxi drivers, which, given their wealth and history, means they should take a good look at themselves.

    Leave a comment:


  • AndrewDod
    replied
    Yup. I think Comrade Corbyn should ban
    Deliveroo
    Amazon (who actually don't make much profit yet either)
    Ebay
    Google

    Sieg Heil

    Leave a comment:


  • KTC
    replied
    There are two general models for a company. One, make profit early and steadily, and use that profit to expand in a sustainable fashion. The other, as practised by technology startups like Uber and thousands of others are to expand as much as possible as quickly as possible. Build that userbase such that it's part of everyday life for people and then worry about how to turn a profit from that userbase. They want to be the only game in town in that sector. There's nothing unique about this to Uber.

    Leave a comment:


  • AndrewDod
    replied
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    The previous CEO (now replaced) was pretty up front about the mission to wipe out Uber's competition.
    He does seem to have been something of a maniac, though.
    That is the goal of every good company. If that was not their goal their shareholders would be rightly miffied.

    Leave a comment:


  • jjlandlord
    replied
    Oh gosh, an entrepreneur with spirit... They must be banned!

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    The previous CEO (now replaced) was pretty up front about the mission to wipe out Uber's competition.
    He does seem to have been something of a maniac, though.


    Leave a comment:


  • jjlandlord
    replied
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    Uber loses money because it pays its drivers more than it takes in revenue.
    If that's so that's not necessarily to drive competitors to the ground.

    I think the key insight in the latest article you posted is:
    Eventually, Uber will get rid of the drivers and turn a huge profit
    As said before, they need a lot of cars. At the moment that means attracting a lot of drivers, and the incentives are costing them. And of course they also need a lot of people installing their app.

    Once you have installed their app, when you're looking for a cab and have trouble finding one, you just launch their app and, magic, one shows up fairly quickly. That's why people like them.

    In London I believe that the number of licensed private hires has skyrocketed since Uber moved in. Clearly a lot of people who were not taxi drivers have been attracted by Uber.

    With driverless cars they won't need drivers anymore... That's probably 10 years away but that's clearly where they are going (same as the whole transport industry).

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    https://gizmodo.com/why-uber-is-losi...y-e-1785736918
    This is a year old, but it's the simplest analysis that I can find for you.
    Uber loses money because it pays its drivers more than it takes in revenue.

    Leave a comment:


  • jjlandlord
    replied
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    It's mentioned in the article you found unreadable.
    It's a massively long article that jumps from one topic to the next... Could you please point to the evidence it presents?

    Uber cannot eliminate competition. It really is too simple to set up as a competitor. If that really is their strategy then they are doomed to fail.

    But to work well Uber needs a lot of drivers. As a user you want to see cars around every time you look for one on their app. I think a lot is spent on drivers.

    Note, also that surge pricing means that Uber is not necessarily cheaper than the competition. Again, what it aims at, I think, is availability: They want you to think that Uber means getting a car quickly whenever you need one.

    Ah but then they are also criticised when price surges...

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    Originally posted by jjlandlord View Post
    And of course you read that somewhere but there is no evidence.
    It's mentioned in the article you found unreadable.

    There's a link to a very detailed discussion of why Uber's economic model isn't viable without putting up prices significantly, because it can't make cost savings, and to do that it needs to eliminate competition which prevents the prices going up.

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    I am talking about the company making a loss, not the drivers.
    I imagine it's possible for a driver to make a loss on some journeys; the economics of being a driver seem broadly as rubbish as lots of other jobs.
    But they are a flexible way to earn money and it seems to be popular.

    Regarding ebay, the comparison isn't like for like. You can choose to make a loss or not on any individual sale and can protect your sale with a minimum if you don't want to make a loss.

    Uber's pricing is set by Uber (the company).
    Systemically destroying competition by running at a loss isn't an issue about nannying.

    And I'm not saying that the system was perfect before either.
    I've never ridden in an Uber and have been in a taxi in London once this year.

    Leave a comment:


  • jjlandlord
    replied
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    Uber is making a loss because it charges customers less to make a journey than it costs.
    And of course you read that somewhere but there is no evidence.

    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    They're not "investing in growth"
    They quite obviously are, though...

    Leave a comment:


  • AndrewDod
    replied
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    Uber is making a loss because it charges customers less to make a journey than it costs.
    They're not "investing in growth", they're driving their competitors out of the market by trading at a loss.
    Some estimates from New York indicate they're losing 60% on each journey (obviously the economics vary and are confidential).

    That would be relevant to any "fit and proper person" test as it would possibly be illegal under UK competition law (if Uber has more than 40% market share in London it's a dominant market position and that kind of pricing is abuse).
    I think you need to distinguish between Uber and Drivers in your narrative.

    Certainly it is the case that Uber drivers do make a loss on some journeys (and perhaps even make a loss in total if they are not careful).

    I sell stuff on E-bay. Many transactions are loss-making. Would you ban E-bay as well.

    Hell, it's a free world. I think we can trust most people to act in their own interest.

    If the best case for shutting down Uber is that their drivers make a loss (regardless of whether that is true) then that is a pretty pathetic case.

    This type of nanny'ing is insulting to those who are nannied, but more importantly serves as distraction from corruption (and the corrupt people who make money out of the steering of those nannied).

    By the way this thread absolutely belongs on a Landlord's forum -- the issues are the same.

    Leave a comment:


  • jpkeates
    replied
    Originally posted by jjlandlord View Post

    This article is unreadable...

    The loss they make is because they invest in growth. Drivers presumably make a living out of it.
    In any case this is quite irrelevant to licensing, or at least it should be irrelevant
    Sorry, seemed fine to me.

    Uber is making a loss because it charges customers less to make a journey than it costs.
    They're not "investing in growth", they're driving their competitors out of the market by trading at a loss.
    Some estimates from New York indicate they're losing 60% on each journey (obviously the economics vary and are confidential).

    That would be relevant to any "fit and proper person" test as it would possibly be illegal under UK competition law (if Uber has more than 40% market share in London it's a dominant market position and that kind of pricing is abuse).

    Leave a comment:

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