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Food delivery, freight and logistics: How Uber aims to move things around the world

May 10, 2019

By Faiz Siddiqui and Greg Bensinger : washingtonpost – excerpt

SAN FRANCISCO — Uber, the ride-hailing pioneer, is set to go public on Friday with a valuation of around $82 billion, in the most highly valued stock introduction in years. But Uber says its real strength isn’t in being a taxi alternative. Instead, it is its ability to apply its vast data trove and routing software to rewrite how goods and people move from one place to another, using computer algorithms to remove what tech sees as inefficiencies in the world.

Uber’s biggest competitor isn’t rival ride-hailing service Lyft, analysts say, but Amazon, which moves goods all over the world. It has budding businesses such as freight forwarding, food and even package delivery. And that’s why it could be worth more than twice as much as Ford Motor Co., or nearly four times as much as Fiat Chrysler, on Uber’s first day of trading. Uber said late Thursday that it plans to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange at $45 per share, giving the company a valuation at the low end of its anticipated $80 to $90 billion range.

But there are questions about whether Uber can execute its vision. For one thing, it hasn’t yet been able to solve the problem of food arriving cold upon delivery…(more)

They left out self-driving cars, tunnel shuttles and trips to the moon. It appears that Uber fancies itself as a rival to Tesla. It wants to become the next on-demand everything. Biting off too much to chew when you fail at the first goal is not a new method of operating in Silicon Valley for transit corporations. On-demand services are failing to making a profit and much of the demand will vanish during the next economic downturn.

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