Today’s Rideshare News for Monday May 4th:
- [CNN] Uber will soon require drivers and riders to wear face coverings in the US: “As it anticipates a restart to its core rideshare business amid the pandemic, Uber (UBER) plans to require drivers and riders to wear face masks or face coverings when using the platform in certain countries, including the United States, CNN Business has learned. Executives approved the new policy in a meeting this past week, according to a person familiar with the matter, and the requirement is expected to be rolled out in the coming weeks. As part of the policy, Uber is in the process of developing technology to detect if drivers are wearing masks or face coverings before they go online and start accepting trips, said the person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the policy decision was just made recently and has not yet been introduced. The company already has face verification capabilities as part of its “Real Time ID-check” feature used to verify the identity of drivers. Uber is also looking into ways to hold riders accountable, the person said…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [TechCrunch] Uber subsidiary Careem to slash workforce by 31%: “The Dubai-based ride-hailing and delivery company that was acquired by Uber last year, is cutting its workforce by 31% and suspending its mass transportation business due to affects from the COVID-19 pandemic. The layoffs will affect more than 530 employees. Employees who are laid off will receive at least three months’ severance pay, one month of equity vesting and, where relevant, extended visa and medical insurance through the end of the year, according to the company’s blog post announcing the reductions. “We delayed this decision as long as possible so that we could exhaust all other means to secure Careem,” Mudassir Sheikha, the company’s co-founder and CEO, wrote in a blog post Monday…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [CNBC] As Lyft and Uber prepare for earnings, traders pick between the ride-share stocks: “As the ride-sharing rivals get ready to report first-quarter earnings, traders are finding it difficult to pick favorites between the two stocks with their underlying businesses at risk amid the widespread economic slowdown. Lyft is scheduled to report on Wednesday afternoon, a day before Uber. “I think it’s going to be a very, very long time before either…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [PYMNTS] Uber Eats Shuts Down In Several Markets: “In eight countries, it appears that the parent company has decided Uber Eats fails to deliver the desired market clout. As a result, Uber is dropping its online food delivery business in the Czech Republic, Egypt, Honduras, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine and Uruguay. The company said its goal was to become one of the top two operators in those countries, according to Reuters, but it does not see that happening. Uber will also “transition operations” to Careem in the United Arab Emirates. Careem is an Uber subsidiary focused primarily on the Middle East. “This continues our strategy of focusing our energy and resources on our top Eats markets around the world,” the company said, adding that the moves will not affect its ridesharing business. Uber said the shutdowns will take place by June 4, affecting “50 full-time roles.” The discontinued and transitioned operations only represent 1 percent of Uber Eats’ “gross bookings” in the first quarter of 2020, along with 4 percent of its “adjusted core earnings losses.”…”
- [ARS TECHNICA] Lyft lays off almost 1,000 staffers as Uber weighs big layoffs: “Lyft is laying off 982 people, the company said in a regulatory filing on Wednesday. That represents 17 percent of the company’s official workforce (the company considers its thousands of drivers to be independent contractors). An additional 288 employees will be furloughed, Lyft said. Most of the remaining salaried employees will take 10 percent pay cuts, while executives will face pay cuts of 20 to 30 percent…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [THE VERGE] Intel acquires transit data startup Moovit for $900 million: “Intel moved deeper into the world of smart mobility and autonomous driving by announcing Monday its plan to acquire Israel-based urban transit data startup Moovit for $900 million. Moovit’s principle product is an urban mobility app with a particular focus on public transportation, which is used by hundreds of millions of customers. It uses public transit data to provide route planning in the vein of Google’s and Apple’s mapping apps, as well as scooter- and bike-sharing services and ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft. But because it relies partly on crowdsourced data, Moovit can also provide routing for areas where no publicly released data is available. The app is used by 800 million customers and services 3,100 cities across 102 countries, Intel said…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [MOTLEY FOOL] Why Lyft’s Stock Is Down Today: “In a note on Monday, Credit Suisse analyst Stephen Ju cut his price target for Lyft’s stock to $75, from $96, while maintaining the equivalent of a buy rating. Ju said that he has cut his estimates for Lyft’s rideshare bookings for the remainder of the year. He now expects bookings to fall 91% from 2019, on lower numbers of active riders, less frequent rides, and lower average selling prices…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [INVESTOPEDIA] Uber and Lyft Stocks on the Defensive Ahead of Earnings: “Ride-share companies Uber Technologies, Inc. (UBER) and Lyft, Inc. (LYFT) report earnings this week, with a horrific first quarter already baked into expectations as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Uber is better positioned heading into the release because the UberEats service has generated a healthy revenue stream due to stay-at-home orders. Lyft is just now firing up a delivery program, but this venue is already over-saturated with competitors. Both companies are burning cash at a rapid pace, with neither posting a profit since coming public. Uber has told analysts to expect profitability by the end of 2020, but it’s likely to delay the date because ride sharing is as toxic as airplanes and cruise ships right now due to close contact with potentially infected drivers and sanitation that may be haphazard and ineffective. It’s a dangerous scenario because free cash flow will dry up if customer buying habits fail to return to pre-crisis levels in the coming months…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [PYMNTS] Uber Can Be Sued For Allegedly Forcing Out Rival: “A lawsuit against Uber alleges that the company engaged in deceitful practices to drive its competitor Sidecar Technologies out of business in 2015, according to Reuters. The lawsuit by SC Innovations, Sidecar’s successor, has been allowed to go forward by Judge Joseph Spero in San Francisco. The lawsuit claims Sidecar, which was formed in 2012 and was the first company to offer ride-sharing practices, was crowded out of the business by Uber’s reportedly aggressive tactics. The lawsuit alleges that Uber began offering low fares for passengers and better incentives for drivers to bust into the market. But then the company used “surge” and “dynamic” pricing, as well as other methods to cut driver pay and raise prices for riders, as a way to get back the money it had lost from its earlier deals once it was the most established company in its field…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [PATCH] Arlington Receives Federal Grant, Aims To Launch New Av Rideshare Service Next Year: “As soon as next spring, Via Rideshare customers could be picked up in self-driving vehicles for trips around Downtown and The University of Texas at Arlington. The City of Arlington was recently awarded a $1.7 million grant through the Federal Transit Administration’s Integrated Mobility Innovation Program to integrate autonomous vehicles into its on-demand rideshare service. This one-year pilot program, called Arlington RAPID (Rideshare, Automation, and Payment Integration Demonstration), is set to begin in March 2021. Through its partnership with Via, May Mobility and UTA, the City also plans to add a wheelchair-accessible autonomous vehicle as well as provide a limited number of free rides to university students during the pilot program. As part of its ongoing efforts to Enhance Regional Mobility and Put Technology to Work, Arlington has already managed two successful autonomous vehicle deployments…” [FULL ARTICLE]
- [CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL] CDC offers perspective on handling autos, vehicle HVAC amid COVID-19 threat: “The CDC also mentioned the HVAC system in its guidance for ride-share operators and other commercial passenger drivers. “Avoid using the recirculated air option for the car’s ventilation during passenger transport; use the car’s vents to bring in fresh outside air and/or lower the vehicle windows,” the CDC told rideshare drivers as of April 17, 2020…” [FULL ARTICLE]
Have a great evening y’all-!!!
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