How Pittsburgh became Uber's Kitty Hawk: Gov't emails reveal the promise, pitfalls of alliance — PennLive reports on the often chummy, sometimes adversarial relationship between Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto and Uber senior executives, including co-founder and CEO Travis Kalanick. [more inside]
These days, everybody's betting on Uber. In the firm's seven years of existence, it has attracted nearly $15 billion dollars in funding via a nearly-unprecedented 14 rounds of investment. While Uber's management have made it intentionally difficult for small investors to own shares of the company, big investors are betting on Uber in droves. All this led Quartz's Steve LeVine to wonder — What if they're wrong? Can somebody make the opposite bet? Is it even possible to short Uber? [Spoiler: Basically, no.]. Earlier this year, Uber announced its expansion into subprime lending, and on Thursday, announced that it had lost $1.2 billion in the first half of 2016.
Regulators 1, Lyft 0 (or perhaps 0.5). After trying to launch its unlicensed "ride sharing" model in New York City, Lyft has capitulated to the regulators' demands and will instead launch as an ordinary livery car service -- using only TLC-licensed cars with TLC-certified drivers. [more inside]
Until recently, taxi medallions have been a lucrative and secure investment in the U.S., increasing 500-700% since 2000, and 1000% since 1980. The taxi medallions are big business, with many single-medallion owner operators, but most medallions are concentrated in a small number of hands. In Chicago, the majority of its 6800 taxi medallions are owned by less than 200 entities. In Boston, 49% of all medallions are owned by just 51 entities. [more inside]
Heyride, an Austin startup that is revolutionizing the way you get around town, received a cease-and-desist from the City of Austin. This follows Uber's forced NYC shutdown last month, along with California sending cease-and-desists to Lyft, Sidecar, and Tickengo. Paul Carr links these disruptive technologies to Metafilter fave author Ayn Rand (previous thread); it's not the first time he's taken on the nerds. Wharton and Wired weigh in.
RidePost is a trusted ridesharing community where travelers meet and share rides across the U.S. It’s a friendlier way to travel—one that’s good for the environment, good for your wallet, and great for getting to know new people. It's a peer-to-peer ridesharing platform connecting those who need a ride with drivers who have extra space in their car. They are partnered with TrustCloud, another startup that assigns a “Trust Score” to individuals, to help increase security for both drivers and passengers.