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The Barclays Ring is one of the best low-interest cards for people who don't like credit cards — here's why

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 2:54pm

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  • Most cards are far from a democracy, but the unique Barclaycard Ring Mastercard put the card's benefits in the hands of its users. But do those benefits make sense for you?
  • The Barclaycard Ring offers low fees that make it an enticing option for balance transfers, occasional international travel, and no annual fee.
  • This card charges a very low APR that is the same for purchase, balance transfer, and cash advance transactions.
  • Pay 0% APR on balance transfers for 15 months on transfers completed with 45 days of opening a new account (after that, a 14.24% variable APR applies).
  • Update, 4/12/19: This article has been updated to reflect current APRs and fees.

Barclays, or Barclaycard, offers several useful credit cards depending on your needs and goals. If your focus is a low interest rate and low fees, the Barclays Ring credit card may be a great option for your wallet.

While this card does offer low costs, it does not offer any credit card rewards. If you want to earn miles or points for free travel or cash back on every purchase, Ring is not the right fit. This is why it is important to understand your credit and your needs from a card before signing up.

Due to the low fees and interest rates, this card is most appealing for someone looking to consolidate and pay off credit card debt with lower interest or someone who wants a credit card for occasional purchases to build credit or protect their debit card and bank account data when shopping online or while traveling.

Barclays Ring as a debt consolidation and pay-off engine

If you have a long history with credit cards, you may have built up a few balances over time that keep you paying every month. Wouldn't it be great to consolidate those payments into one? Even better, what if you could pause interest for one year so all of your payments go right into the principal balance? With this card, you can do both!

The Barclaycard Ring offers new cardholders 0% APR for 15 months on balance transfers completed within 45 days of opening a new account. Do note there is a 2% balance transfer fee ($5 minimum) for transfers completed within the first 45 days. After that, there is no balance transfer fee for future transfers but you would have to pay interest.

If you don't pay off the balances by the time 15 months is up, interest will kick in. But this card charges a competitive 14.24% variable rate APR. Interest rates can change at any time with market rates, but you'll pay less than most competing credit cards charge with the Ring credit card.

Read more: Barclays has brought back one of its most popular credit cards — and the sign-up bonus is at an all-time high

Build credit with an almost no-fee card

This credit card charges very few fees. Compared to the typical credit card, it feels like you pay nothing outside of interest, when it applies. There are only a couple of circumstances where you would pay any fees with this credit card.

There is no annual fee, no balance transfer fee after 45 days, and no foreign transaction fee. Cash advances cost just $3 each, which is a bargain compared to the typical 5% and $10 minimum. Free balance transfers after 45 days may be another opportunity for huge savings.

Late and returned payments cost up to $28 per occurrence, but you can avoid those by paying on time and only paying when you have enough cash in the bank to cover your payment. But those are things you should be doing anyway.

As long as you pay on time and avoid cash advances and balance transfers, you will never have to pay any fees for this credit card.

Get credit card protections with no extra hassles

Some people who are good with their money don't like credit cards because they focus on the costs rather than the benefits. As long as you pay off your card balance in full every month by the due date, you'll never have to pay any credit card interest.

But there are still good reasons to use a credit card outside of the borrowing features. When used responsibly, credit cards can build your credit. Further, they are the best tool to protect yourself from payment fraud anywhere you shop, online or at brick-and-mortar stores.

Because this card has no annual fee, you could keep it as an emergency card with no balance at no cost to you. Every month it sits there with no balance, it helps your credit score a little bit as it shows a positive payment history and low balance in proportion to your limits. That is a good thing for anyone who ever plans to buy a home or car with a loan in the future.

Credit cards also offer important protections. If you use a debit card for a purchase and a data thief gets ahold of your information, they can drain your bank account when making a purchase. With a credit card, you can just make a phone call to report the fraud and don't have to pay a cent.

Read more: 11 lucrative credit card deals you can get when opening a new card in August — including a rare 100,000-point offer

Barclays Ring: The best credit card for people who don't like credit cards

The simplicity, low cost, and benefits of this card make it a great option for anyone who wants to keep their costs as low as possible when dealing with credit. And if you don't like a feature or want to see something new, you get access to send card suggestions to community managers responsible for the Ring credit card. That is exactly how this card became so great to begin with!

Young professional cardholders enjoy this card for its ease-of-use and low costs. Retirees and those with homes paid off may enjoy using this account for purchase protections and keeping a healthy credit profile after paying off their home.

Personally, this card is not a great choice for my needs as I'm more focused on travel rewards. Others may be interested in cash back.

If rewards are not the main thing you look for in a card, you should look toward the Barclaycard Ring for its low fees and rates. That combination makes the card a winner.

Click here to learn more about the Barclaycard Ring Mastercard.

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17 ways life is different for millennials than for baby boomers, from crushing student loans to a disappearing middle class

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 2:42pm

Millennials face different financial problems than their parents did — like a higher cost of living and heavier student loan debt. But they also have different preferences when it comes spending — like paying for experiences or "treating themselves."

INSIDER and Morning Consult recently teamed up to survey 4,400 Americans, and found evidence of all of the above. Of the respondents, 1,207 of them identified as millennials — defined by the survey as people ages 22 to 37 — and 1,472 identified as baby boomers — defined by the survey as people ages 54 to 77 (237 respondents did not select a generation).

As the results show, while the Great Recession affected all generations, it delayed millennials' ability to start building wealth. But they're trying hard to catch up, and they're overall more positive than baby boomers about where they are financially compared to where they expected to be 10 years ago.

Below, we've highlighted some of the most enlightening results from the survey that shed a bit of light on the financial behaviors of both generations. All findings from the survey are based on survey respondents who answered the question.

SEE ALSO: Nearly half of indebted millennials say college wasn't worth it, and the reason why is obvious

DON'T MISS: More than one-third of millennials earning at least $100,000 a year consider themselves middle class

Homeownership looks different for millennials — nearly one-third own a home, compared to nearly three-fourths of baby boomers. Nearly half of millennials are renting, compared to less than a quarter of boomers.

While baby boomers have had more time to build wealth and buy a home, this result is indicative of the fact that millennials are spending more time renting and waiting longer than ever to buy homes — a move that's killing the starter home.

Homes are 39% more expensive than they were nearly 40 years ago, according to Student Loan Hero. A report by SmartAsset found that in some cities, the median-priced home outweighed the median income by so much that it could take nearly a decade for someone with median income to save for a 20% down payment on a median-priced home.

How much would a home cost you? Find out with these offers from our partners:

Millennials pay more a month for housing — more millennials than boomers spend over $1,000 monthly. More than half of boomers spend less than $1,000, compared to a little less than half of millennials.

Since more millennials are renting and doing so for a longer time, they're faced with climbing rents. Rents increased by 46% from the 1960s to 2000 when adjusted for inflation, according to Student Loan Hero. The current median US rent, according to Zillow, is $1,650.

Slightly more than three-fourths of millennials own a car, whereas 88% of boomers do.

Cars aren't always necessary where millennials prefer to live.

"Unlike baby boomers and their parents, who migrated to the suburbs en masse, millennials find happiness in cities," wrote Stephanie Taylor for Business Insider, citing a Regional Studies report.

Millennials who do need a car may be deterred from buying thanks to higher prices. From November 2006 to November 2016, prices for new cars increased by 5%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Robots could wipe out 1.3 million Wall Street jobs in the next 10 years

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 2:10pm

  • Jobs in banking and the financial services industries continue to be the most popular in 2019.
  • Despite their popularity, a new report predicts that 1.3 million bank workers will lose their jobs or be reassigned due to automation.
  • Banks have already begun investing in artificial intelligence, and recognize the technology will displace workers.
  • Visit for more stories.

Jobs in banking are some of the most sought after for job seekers — but plenty of roles may not be around much longer. 

Despite a year of scandals that entangled many of the country's largest banks, the desire to work at these companies remains high, according to a new report by LinkedIn. Some of the more high-profile scandals include Deutsche Bank's alleged involvement in a global money-laundering scheme and accusations against Well Fargo's auto-loan and mortgage practices.

Nonetheless, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, and JPMorgan Chase remain five of the most popular places to work in 2019. LinkedIn attributes the popularity to banks offering increasingly tech-focused jobs that attract talented software engineers and developers out of college.

Read more: The 30 hottest companies of the year, according to LinkedIn

"The reality is that if somebody wants to learn finance and strategy, these banks are still the places to be trained and developed," Heather Hammond, co-head of the global banking and markets practice at Russell Reynolds Associates, told LinkedIn.

While job seekers may be flocking to banks at the current time, a new report revealed a million jobs in the industry could disappear in just over 10 years. Job losses or reassignments will impact 1.3 million bank workers in the US alone by 2030, according to a new report from British insights firm IHS Markit. Especially at-risk roles include customer-service reps, financial managers, and compliance and loan officers.

Though the most at-risk jobs seem to be lower-paying, jobs in banking as a whole are some of the most expensive in the country. Starting analysts make $91,000 in base pay, while managing directors can earn almost $1 million after bonuses. In fact, the industry could add a whopping $512 billion in global revenue by 2020 with the use of intelligent automation, according to a 2018 report from Capgemini.

While the use of AI remains sparse, and the technology is still basic, a boost in revenue will increase the adoption of automation, Business Insider analyst Lea Nonninger reports.

Unfortunately for job seekers, banks' investment into automation is well under way. In fact, a detailed 2018 report from Business Insider Intelligence noted that banks are already using AI to mimic bank employees, automate processes, and preempt problems. JPMorgan is cleaning thousands of databases to make room for machine learning tech. Citi president Jamie Forese said in 2018 that robots could replace as many as 10,000 human jobs within five years.

Laura Barrowman, chief technology officer at the Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse, revealed the company is already retraining employees whose jobs have been displaced by AI: "Globally, if you look at cyber skills, I think there is a deficit," Barrowman told Business Insider's panel at the World Economic Forum earlier this year. "There is such a shortage of skills, and you need people who have that capability."

SEE ALSO: AI will have a 'transformative' effect on Wall Street, according to a new report, putting 1.3 million finance jobs in the US at risk

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Disney Plus isn't a 'Netflix killer,' but other streamers like Apple should be worried

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 1:58pm

  • Disney unveiled its Netflix rival, Disney Plus, on Thursday, and some industry observers dubbed it a "Netflix killer."
  • But the streaming market won't have one winner, and as Netflix is the clear No. 1, Disney Plus is much more of a threat to services from Apple and WarnerMedia.
  • Disney's aggressive pricing of Disney Plus (and Hulu) also validates Netflix's emphasis on achieving global scale as quickly as possible.
  • Netflix's brand has become an important part of the pop-culture fabric, and while losing third-party content like Disney's will be painful, it's not an existential threat anymore.
  • Visit for more stories.

On Thursday, Disney unveiled the key details of its coming streaming service, Disney Plus, and in the aftermath the phrase "Netflix killer" got thrown around in articles and on social media.

It's easy to see why.

Disney Plus has an attractive price point ($6.99 a month, or $69.99 a year) and the kind of blue-chip intellectual property that other entertainment companies dream about. Shouldn't Netflix CEO Reed Hastings be shaking in his boots right about now?

The answer is "no," and there's a simple reason. The word "killer" carries with it the implication that in this mortal combat, only one streamer can survive. But that's not how the streaming market has worked so far.

The truth is that there has historically been a high rate of overlap between subscribers of streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and HBO Now. Research by Parks Associates late last year found that 36% of US broadband households subscribed to two or more streaming video services.

Most people don't look at a new video service, like Disney Plus, and ask themselves, "Should I cancel Netflix and make this the one streaming service I subscribe to?"

The streaming market is still a free-for-all, but when the dust settles most industry executives and analysts I talk to expect the average consumer to subscribe to two to four services.

Netflix, as it stands today, is the clear No. 1 at over 139 million worldwide paying subscribers. No one else is even close. So the real battle is for who will take up slot Nos. 2 through 4. And that means that while Netflix shouldn't view Disney Plus as an existential threat, some services should, particularly those that haven't launched yet.

$6.99 is a cash-burning, scale-seeking price point

One big reason for the Netflix-killer label is that Disney has aggressively priced its service at $6.99 a month ($5.83 if you pay for a year up front). That undercuts Netflix, which recently raised its price so the entry-level plan is $8.99 and the standard plan is $12.99.

Disney's price does put pressure on Netflix, but it's also a validation of Netflix's general strategy. Netflix has bet that achieving massive global scale as quickly as possible is what will allow the streaming business model to work. That's why it has consistently provided a superior value to consumers relative to alternatives like cable TV and stomached billions in negative free cash flow.

By pricing Disney Plus at $6.99, and being willing to sustain billions in losses until at least 2024, Disney is following a similar playbook.

You can also see that thinking reflected in the strategy of Hulu, of which Disney now owns 60%. Hulu has been discounting its ad-supported tier to boost subscriber growth, and it has worked. Hulu was the fastest-growing streaming service in the US last year.

At Business Insider’s Ignition conference in December, Hulu CEO Randy Freer stressed that achieving scale was of paramount importance to Hulu and to streaming services in general. Disney clearly agrees.

Who should be worried?

If scale is of such importance, the services that should really be worried about Disney Plus are the ones that don't have it yet.

This is particularly the case for those that haven't launched, like Apple TV Plus and WarnerMedia's coming service, or those with only a few million subscribers, like CBS All Access.

If Disney Plus becomes a must-have for streamers in the same way Netflix is, that is one more spot taken up for many consumers, making it that much harder for others to scale quickly.

The other players that should be worried are traditional pay-TV bundlers and the new digital ones (YouTube TV, DirecTV Now, Sling TV, and so on).

The addition of Disney Plus and the increased investment in original programming at places like Netflix, Hulu, and HBO makes forgoing the traditional bundle an even more attractive option for customers. This could accelerate a slimming of the live pay-TV offering down to mostly news and sports, with "entertainment" programming existing mainly in the on-demand world of streaming.

Netflix has mastered the zeitgeist

Disney pulling its content off of Netflix is a blow, and the Mouse House's iconic TV shows and movies certainly helped Netflix scale.

But Netflix bought enough time with licensed content to build both scale and a beloved brand. The transition to mostly originals will cause Netflix pain, but its ubiquity in pop culture will sustain it.

As I wrote in January, Netflix has reached such scale that its original content — from Marie Kondo's show, to "You," to a documentary about the Fyre music festival — can enter the zeitgeist in a way that causes a tangible sense of FOMO in those who aren't subscribers. Disney is not going to destroy that by pulling its movies and TV shows off the service.

There will be good debates to be had in the coming months about the level at which the increased competition of new services like Disney Plus hamper Netflix's growth or margins. But it's not a Netflix killer. It's simply too late for that.

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Barclays just lost 2 more executives as Ravi Singh departs after only 4 months

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 12:42pm

  • Ravi Singh, a senior Barclays executive who joined the British bank less than four months ago, is leaving.
  • Singh reported to now-departed Chief Investment Officer Art Mbanefo, who left the bank earlier this month after the sudden exit of his boss Tim Throsby
  • See more stories on Business Insider. 

Ravi Singh, a Goldman Sachs alum who joined Barclays' Chief Investment Office in New York earlier this year, is leaving the firm after less than four months. according to two sources familiar with the matter.

Singh reported to now-departed Chief Investment Officer of the international unit Art Mbanefo, who left the bank earlier this month after the sudden exit of his boss Tim Throsby. 

Singh had previously worked as Global Head of Alternatives at Credit Suisse, as well as at Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers, Mbanefo wrote in a memo announcing his hire in December and seen by Business Insider. 

See also: Barclays just hired two Wall Street veterans in its chief investment office

Separately David Simpson, a Barclays managing director in London who also worked under Mbanefo, is also leaving the bank, insiders said. 

Barclays staffers were jolted in late March by the surprise exit of Throsby, who was hired by CEO Jes Staley in 2017 from JPMorgan to help turn around the investment bank. Barclays announced Throsby's departure along with a wide swathe of management changes.

The bank is also already battling a revolt from activist shareholder Edward Bramson, who is leveraging his 5.5% stake in the company to angle for a seat on the board and deep cuts to the investment-bank unit.   

Simpson did not respond to a request for comment. Singh could not be reached for comment. 

Barclays declined to comment.

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GrubHub tumbles after Uber says it has a massive opportunity in food delivery (GRUB)

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 12:41pm

  • GrubHub plunged more than 6% on Friday after Uber's S1 filing said it has an outsized opportunity in the food-delivery space. 
  • Uber believes its Uber Eats app has so far only captured 1% of a nearly $800 billion market.
  • Watch GrubHub trade live.

GrubHub dropped more than 6% Friday after Uber's S1 filing indicated the ride-sharing company was continuing its aggressive expansion into the food-delivery business through its subsidiary UberEats. GrubHub's stock has plunged more than 50% from its highs reached in October 2018 as disclosure around UberEats' business has increased.

According to the Uber's S1 documents filed in preparation for an IPO, UberEats' 2018 revenues reached $1.5 billion, growing 149% year-over-year. Uber regards the total market potential, or the amount that consumers spend on all home delivery, takeaway, and drive-through service globally, to be a staggering $795 billion.

In a research report out Friday, Jeffries analyst Brent Thill maintained his "hold" rating on GrubHub. Thill has a price target of $80 — 23% above where shares were trading on Friday.

"We believe much of this information was already well understood by investors as Uber has been more transparent about the Eats business the last couple quarters," wrote Thill. The stock is down ~54% from its highs & we believe much of that performance has been a direct cause of increased competition and disclosure from Uber & other larger players."

Uber's initial public offering, which could value the firm at up to $100 billion, is expected to come as early as next week.

GrubHub was down more than 15% this year, including Friday's loss.



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Dispensed: Pharma middlemen get their day in the hot seat, life at Flatiron Health a year after acquisition, and almost $1 billion invested in clinical trial startups

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 12:18pm


Well, it's official: Bristol-Myers Squibb and Celgene are likely going to form the megamerger of their dreams, after shareholders approved the $74 billion union. 

Before heading into the weekend on that note, I wanted to leave you with a recap of all the news that kept Business Insider's healthcare team busy this week (tune in next week for some big pieces we've been working on for a while!). 

We kept a close eye on Capitol Hill this week, where pharmacy benefit managers and drugmakers alike faced lines of questioning from Congress.

Here's a recap of what all went down in the Senate hearing with PBMs, which involved a lot of downplaying of rebates and shifting blame back on drug companies. 

Congress grilled little-known middlemen over the high cost of prescription drugs. Here's how they defended themselves.
  • In February, Congress brought in a group of pharmaceutical CEOs and executives from seven companies to testify about the high price of prescription drugs.
  • On Tuesday, Congress kept the conversation going, this time grilling pharmacy benefit managers, the little-known middlemen responsible for negotiating drug prices.
  • During the hearing executives from the PBMs owned by companies including Humana, Cigna, and UnitedHealth Group made their cases as to why they shouldn't be to blame for the high price of prescription drugs.

Relatedly, Democratic Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon followed up with drugmakers after the February hearing, asking them whether they'd commit to lowering their prices if the proposed rule to get rid of rebates in Medicare goes through. Not surprisingly, there were caveats that the drugmakers leaned on, Emma Court reports. 

Senators asked 7 big drugmakers to lower their prices. None of them gave a straight answer.
  • US drug prices are higher than anywhere else in the world. Congress has been trying to figure out who's to blame, but there has been a lot of finger pointing.
  • The Trump administration has proposed a change that would target shadowy middlemen called pharmacy-benefit managers (PBMs).
  • But drug companies have been left largely unscathed. When senators pressed drug companies if they would commit to lowering prices, they were evasive.
  • Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon is calling for Congress to take action. "In case there was any doubt, Big Pharma is not about to start self-policing their pricing practices," he said on Monday.

Between that and the insulin hearing the next day, I'll be curious to see what actions Congress decides to adopt going forward to keep a lid on drug prices. 

This week, I popped over to Flatiron Health's offices to talk to the company's CEO Nat Turner about life at the company a year after Roche acquired it for $1.9 billion.

He tells me not much has changed day-to-day at Flatiron Health, something he's surprised to say.

A CEO who sold his company for $1.9 billion in 2018 shares his advice for other founders who want to stay on after an acquisition

We caught up on what it's like to have a boss now, the company's growing pains that come with a transition, and expanding a team to 1,000 people by the end of 2019. I also had him share some advice he'd give to other founders looking to stay on post-acquisition.

Speaking of the intersection of health and tech, Emma reported on why Morgan Stanley thinks the healthcare industry should be taking Apple very seriously. 

Forget Amazon and Google. Apple could bring in $300 billion a year in healthcare, Morgan Stanley says
  • Apple has been getting into healthcare for years, from the iPhone to the Apple Watch and more.
  • Investors are too focused on healthcare efforts from other tech companies like Amazon and aren't taking Apple's opportunity seriously enough, a new Morgan Stanley report says.
  • The tech giant could build an App Store-like model for healthcare, potentially bringing in $15 billion to $313 billion in revenue by 2027, Morgan Stanley estimates. Read on to find out how.

Emma also has a deep dive into what you need to know about all the funding flowing into clinical trial startups. 

Creating a new drug takes a decade and costs a fortune. Investors have poured almost $1 billion into startups trying to change that.
  • Developing an innovative new medicine is a long and expensive slog.
  • Upending that process is the goal of a wave of new startups. Investors have put just under $1 billion into the area over the last five years, according to an analysis done by PitchBook for Business Insider.
  • These new companies are putting data and technology at the center of their approaches, but the sorry state of the two in healthcare could undermine the whole enterprise.

With that, I'll let you head into your weekend with the knowledge that Kate McKinnon and Jennifer Lawrence will both be playing Elizabeth Holmes in TV and film adaptations. I know we're all probably burnt out on Theranos content, but I have to say, I'm pretty curious to see how those two acting forces take on the role in their respective projects. 

Tips? Dream casting choices for other roles in the Theranos saga? You can find me at and the entire team at 

- Lydia 

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Uber can't decide whether cofounder Travis Kalanick is an asset or a liability, and it makes for an awkward but revealing IPO filing (UBER)

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 11:58am

  • Uber went to great lengths in its initial-public-offering filing to show it had cleaned up its act and fixed the problems that once plagued the company.
  • That means indirectly indicting the era of Travis Kalanick, its cofounder and former CEO.
  • It's an awkward dance, since Kalanick is still a director on Uber's board.

Travis Kalanick's name appears 13 times in Uber's IPO prospectus.

But the cofounder and former CEO of Uber appears many more times, if you read between the lines of the company's S-1 filed Thursday. And for the most part, it seems, he's there to serve as a punching bag.

The 300-page prospectus for Uber's initial public offering seeks to convince investors that the ride-hailing company is a well-managed operation, free of the chaos and problems that plagued it a couple of years ago — back when Kalanick was in charge.

"We are on a new path forward with the hiring of our Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi in September 2017 following many challenges regarding our culture, workplace practices, and reputation," Uber says toward the beginning of the document.

"It's a new day at Uber," the document declares.

An entire section labeled "Conduct and Culture" includes categories like "Tone at the Top" and refers to efforts to "fundamentally reform our workplace culture."

"We have made tremendous progress in creating a program that is designed to prevent and detect violations of corporate policy, law, and regulations," it says.

It's a pretty damning indictment of Uber's past, even though the company acknowledges that the "fierce entrepreneurialism" and "famous Uber hustle" it began with were key ingredients to its success. 

Dancing the Travis 2-step

Kalanick served as Uber's CEO from 2010 to 2017, turning the ride-hailing company into an unstoppable juggernaut worth nearly $70 billion during that time. But the company was rocked by a series of scandals on his watch, including accusations of sexual harassment and a toxic work culture, a high-profile trade-theft lawsuit, and reports of operations designed to deceive regulators.

Khosrowshahi, the CEO who replaced Kalanick, indirectly refers to his predecessor's legacy in a personal letter to investors that acknowledges "missteps along the way."

It must make for awkward reading for Kalanick, given that he's still a member of the company's board of directors.

And it's a delicate needle for Uber to thread, since the company must also praise Kalanick and sell him to investors as a desirable member of the board.

"Mr. Kalanick was selected to serve on our board of directors because of his experience as one of the co-founders and early leaders of our company, and as such, his extensive knowledge of our business, and his innovation, technology, and high-growth experience, as well as his consumer and digital experience," the Uber S-1 says in Kalanick's director bio.

Depending on which part of the S-1 you read, Kalanick's experience as an "early leader" of the company is either an asset or a liability; a feature or a bug.

We all share this love-hate relationship

It's a tricky balancing act that mirrors some of the broader questions we have about Uber. As consumers, we love the convenience, but we hate its impact on traffic and on workers. Is Uber the future of transportation, or another mechanism to further the divide between the haves and the have-nots? 

The IPO is likely to make a lot of people very rich, especially the early investors, not to mention Kalanick. But, as with the authors of the S-1 filing, we'll still be struggling to answer fundamental questions about the company and its legacy.

More on Uber's massive IPO:

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Uber's former CEO Travis Kalanick was ousted after the company became entrenched in scandals — here are 7 other tech execs who were cast out from companies they helped build (AAPL, TSLA, GRPN)

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 11:47am

  • Just because you founded a high-flying tech company doesn't mean you can't be asked to leave.
  • Steve Jobs himself was once ousted by Apple (or left voluntarily, depending on who you believe), and spent years running his own company before coming back into the fold as CEO. 
  • More recently, Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick was ousted as CEO, following a year of scandals for the company.  
  • Here are 8 tech executives who were once ousted from the companies they helped to build. 

Just because you founded one of the most successful tech companies in the world, it doesn't mean that job security is automatically guaranteed.

Steve Jobs was once ousted from Apple (or voluntarily left, depending who you ask), spending years running his own startup before returning to the fold as CEO. More recent examples include Uber cofounder Travis Kalanick, who left the company after a year of scandals, and Martin Eberhard, the ousted cofounder of Tesla. 

They weren't the only ones, either.

Take a look at 8 tech executives who were ousted from companies they helped to build: 

This article was originally written by Meira Gebel.

SEE ALSO: This is why Steve Jobs got ousted from Apple — and how he came back to save the company

Apple cofounder Steve Jobs famously left (or was ousted, depending on who you believe) in 1985, after clashing with CEO John Sculley. 12 years later, Apple bought Jobs' startup NeXT Computer, bringing him back into the fold.

Perhaps ironically, Jobs orchestrated an ouster of his own: Just months after returning to Apple, Jobs convinced the board to oust then-CEO Gil Amelio. Jobs became CEO in 1997, and the rest is history. 

Source: Business Insider

Uber founder Travis Kalanick resigned as CEO in July 2017, following many months of scandals for the company.

Kalanick left Uber in July 2017, following a long string of scandals — from a #DeleteUber campaign that saw hundreds of thousands of people delete the ride-hailing app, to allegations of a toxic company culture from former engineer Susan Fowler, and more.

Kalanick resigned under pressure from Uber's board and has been dabbling in a variety investments in the time since. In March 2018, Kalanick created an investment fund named 10100 — pronounced "ten one hundred" — and announced that it had purchased a controlling stake in City Storage Systems, a real-estate startup. A year later, reports surfaced that Kalanick and City Storage Systems had launched a food-delivery startup, CloudKitchens.

Source: Business Insider, The New York Times

Jack Dorsey founded Twitter with Ev Williams in 2006. Two years later, Williams fired him from the CEO role — even though it was Dorsey who came up with the idea for the micro-blogging site in the first place.

But this didn't stop Dorsey from founding $31 billion Square, the mobile payments platform, in 2009. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg even tried to hire Dorsey after he left Twitter. 

However, in 2015, Dorsey was brought back to Twitter as interim CEO, taking over for former leader Dick Costolo. Not long after, Twitter dropped the "interim" from Dorsey's job title.

Dorsey is now the CEO of both Twitter and Square, and splits his time between the two companies during the week.

Source: Business Insider 

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Americans are becoming much less optimistic about the economy as growth slows

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 11:33am

  • Americans were much less optimistic about the outlook for the economy in early April, the latest sign of expectations for a sustained slowdown in growth.  
  • Consumer confidence fell to 96.9 at the beginning of the month, according to the University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index, compared with expectations for a reading of 98.2.
  • Americans don’t expect much more to come from the $1.5 trillion tax-cut package passed in late 2017, the data suggested.

Americans were much less optimistic about the outlook for the economy in early April, the latest sign of expectations for a sustained slowdown in growth.  

Consumer confidence fell to 96.9 at the beginning of the month from 98.4 in March, the University of Michigan's index indicated in its preliminary report on Friday. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg had expected a reading of 98.2.

While consumers saw conditions in April as better than the previous month, their medium-term outlook for the economy fell sharply. Expectations for five years in the future fell to the lowest level since January 2018.

Respondents were less focused on tax cuts than in previous months, indicating Americans don't expect much more to come from the $1.5 trillion package passed in late 2017.

"The data do suggest that consumers thought that its stimulative impact on the overall economy has now run its course," said the survey’s chief economist, Richard Curtin.

Forecasters expect the economy to slow in the coming months as those stimulus measures fade, growth in other countries cools, and trade tensions persist. But the declining outlook in April came despite a recent rebound in employment results and financial markets. 

Consumers were optimistic about a rise in real adjusted earnings, but increasingly voiced complaints about rising vehicle and home prices. Slight declines in unit sales of both markets are anticipated in 2019, the survey said.

"Taking a step back from the monthly volatility, the expectations index has trended gradually lower over the past six months," said Michael Pearce, chief US economist at Capital Economics.

SEE ALSO: Citigroup's CEO says the biggest threat to the US economy is 'our ability to talk ourselves into the next recession' (C)

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I saved over $285,000 in my 20s without ever making a budget thanks to a laughably easy strategy I use instead

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 11:21am

I just wrapped up my 28th year on planet earth, and my net worth has grown to over $285,000. (I publish an update each and every month, here.)

With all that said, I know what you're thinking. "This guy must be nuts! He must have used the world's strictest budget if he grew his net worth by roughly $60,000 a year for the past three years ..."

Ready for the confession of the century?

In all that time, I've never once made a budget.

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I know, I know. That's somewhat embarrassing coming from a guy who, with an appointed name like The Money Wizard, is supposed to have all his finances in order.

But there's a method to that madness. And it's because I think budgeting is 100%, totally, completely ... overrated.

Because there's another strategy that's not only way easier, but also works far better.

Why I think budgets are a completely overrated waste of time

In my experience, here's how the typical budgeting process goes down. (Stop me if this sounds familiar ...)

January 1 rolls around, and you decide it's finally time to get that spending under control. So, you vow to make a budget.

With the weight of your own personal financial world on your shoulders, you immediately begin dreading the chore. For a few hours, days, or weeks you attempt to muster up to the courage to bucket out your desired spending.

Once you finally sit down to do the deed, you come across your first roadblock. "Hmm ... How much should I be spending on groceries again?"

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The answer to that question requires the answer to an earlier one. How much do you usually spend on groceries?

So you start doing your best detective work. You begin combing through credit card statements, doing your best CSI impression, and eventually tally up what you think is last month's grocery bill.

But wait, last month you bought all those supplies for the big football watching party! So that's certainly not a normal month.

And ... you're back at square one.

If you don't get frustrated enough to quit at this point, you'll eventually power through the chore. You'll likely put together some sort of overly optimistic framework for how you should be spending your money. Then, you'll fret and stress for the next several months about whether or not you're sticking to your budget.

After a few slip ups, you very well might abandon the whole resolution entirely.

And before you know it, it's December 31, and you're staring back on your bank account wondering how a whole year went by and the needle of your savings didn't so much as flinch upwards.

There's a better way.

Ditch monthly budgeting for monthly tracking

For the past decade, I've adopted a money strategy that's so much easier than budgeting it's almost laughable.

Instead of struggling through the tedious chore of The Dreaded Budget, I simply write down what I spend.

Literally. That's it.

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I don't spend time racking my brain deciding how much should be going towards what. Nor do I stress if I go over some arbitrary number that a younger version of me decided was the law of the land, for whatever reason.

Instead, I just record every purchase I make. Which, surprisingly, has tons of subtle advantages over the traditional budget.

1. It's easier to start

Sometimes I think if money gurus had their way, they'd lock you into an office and not let you leave until you decided how much money you were going to spend on everything for the rest of your life.

With that kind of pressure, is it any surprise most people struggle to get started?

2. It's less stressful to maintain

With a budget, you tend to beat yourself up if you go even a few cents over.

When you instead just commit to tracking your spending, you cut out the stress while getting the same effect.

Over time, you'll find something amazing starts to happen. You'll immediately highlight the problem areas, and eventually, just knowing there's a log of your spending will encourage you to spend less and save more. And you'll be well on your way to becoming a high net worth individual.

3. You don't subconsciously commit to a certain level of spending

This is huge.

What most commonly happens to the budget, without us even realizing it, is that we find ourselves saying, "Hmm... The Budget says there's one day left in the month, and I still have $100 left in my entertainment category. Maybe I should grab some expensive drinks with friends?"

!function(){function e(){var e=document.createElement("script"),n=document.getElementById("myFinance-widget-script"),a=t+"static/widget/myFinance.js";e.type="text/javascript",e.async=!0,e.src=a,n.parentNode.insertBefore(e,n);var c="myFinance-widget-css";if(!document.getElementById(c)){var d=document.getElementsByTagName("head")[0],i=document.createElement("link");,i.rel="stylesheet",i.type="text/css",i.href=t+"static/widget/myFinance.css","all",d.appendChild(i)}}var t="";document.attachEvent?document.attachEvent("onreadystatechange",function(){"complete"===document.readyState&&e()}):document.addEventListener("DOMContentLoaded",e,!1)}();

And before you know it, you've spent hundreds of dollars you otherwise wouldn't, and you've leveled what could have been an extraordinary month of savings into an ordinary one.

With simple monthly tracking, you realize The Budget isn't the one controlling your finances.

Instead, you realize that YOU are the one in control of your spending. And as a result, you often end up saving more than you ever thought possible.

Yeah, but how to do all that tracking?

At this point, I know what you're thinking.

"Money Wiz, how on earth do you expect me to keep track of everything I spend in a month??"

And for that, I've got a one-two punch that's helped thousands of my readers get their spending on track.

1. I carry a secret weapon in my pocket, at all times

No, I'm not talking about some kind of switchblade.

I'm talking about my iPhone.

You see, included in the iPhone's generic apps is one of the most surprisingly effective money trackers I've ever come across.

The "Numbers" app is a mobile spreadsheet that can easily serve as your virtual notepad for all your spending. In fact, with a few clever formatting moves, iPhone's Numbers will automatically sort all your spending for you. All you have to do is enter a line item for each item bought.

!function(){function e(){var e=document.createElement("script"),n=document.getElementById("myFinance-widget-script"),a=t+"static/widget/myFinance.js";e.type="text/javascript",e.async=!0,e.src=a,n.parentNode.insertBefore(e,n);var c="myFinance-widget-css";if(!document.getElementById(c)){var d=document.getElementsByTagName("head")[0],i=document.createElement("link");,i.rel="stylesheet",i.type="text/css",i.href=t+"static/widget/myFinance.css","all",d.appendChild(i)}}var t="";document.attachEvent?document.attachEvent("onreadystatechange",function(){"complete"===document.readyState&&e()}):document.addEventListener("DOMContentLoaded",e,!1)}();

The result is that I'm able to whip out my phone and record a transaction in the time it takes to send a 4 word text message. That's faster than the cashier can even say, "You can swipe your card now ..." which is great at helping me avoid looking like a weirdo..

(If you want the exact spreadsheet I use with Numbers, you can grab it here.)

2. I enlist the help of high-tech robots

These days, there's all sorts of free money apps that will automatically tally up your spending for you each month.

I break down two of my favorite in my Personal Capital vs. Mint comparison, and I still use the winner as a backup plan to my iPhone spreadsheet each month.

Get rid of the chore of monthly budgeting, and all the baggage that comes with it.

I encourage you to simply track what you're spending for a month or two. No rules. No pressure.

Grab my free spreadsheet, pick up a financial app, or both. Either way, you'll be shocked at how quickly your savings grow when you break the chains of the budget.

How much could your savings grow? Find out with this free calculator from our partner:

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Tesla made Autopilot a standard feature on all its vehicles and announced sweeping changes to the Model 3 lineup (TSLA)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 11:49pm

  • Tesla announced sweeping changes to its Model 3 lineup on Thursday night. Among those changes, the electric-car maker removed the $35,000 version of the car from its website.
  • The most affordable "Standard" Model 3 can now only be ordered by phone, or in person at a Tesla store. The company cites customer demand for that change, saying the "Standard Plus" version of the Model 3 has sold at "more than six times the rate of Standard."
  • The Long Range, rear-wheel-drive Model 3 will also only be available by phone or in stores.
  • Additionally, Tesla announced Autopilot will now be a standard feature on every vehicle it makes.
  • Visit for more stories.

Tesla announced a number of changes to its Model 3 lineup on Thursday night. Among them, the electric-car maker is removing the $35,000 version of the car from its website.

The most affordable "Standard" Model 3 can now only be ordered by phone, or in person at a Tesla store. The company cites customer demand for that change, saying the "Standard Plus" version of the Model 3 has sold at "more than six times the rate of Standard."

The Model 3 Standard will be a "software-limited" version of the Standard Plus, with 10% less battery range than the Standard Plus.

The Long Range rear-wheel drive Model 3 will also require a phone call or a visit to a Tesla store for customers who want it.

That news follows Tesla's move in February to close some of its retail locations in order to shift sales online. The company had walked that announcement back a bit after it took some of its employees by surprise. In March, CEO Elon Musk sent an email to employees to clarify that strategy, saying its most popular stores would "absolutely not be closed down," while lower-volume locations would "gradually be closed down."

Read more: Tesla told some $35,000 Model 3 customers they were days away from getting their cars. Now, those customers don't know when their orders will arrive.

Autopilot is standard on all Teslas now

In addition to the lineup changes, Tesla made Autopilot, its semi-autonomous-driving technology, a standard feature as part of an effort to make it less cost-prohibitive.

"For example, Model 3 Standard Plus used to cost $37,500, plus $3,000 for the Autopilot option. It now costs $39,500, with Autopilot included," Tesla said in a press release Thursday night.

The company added: "We think including Autopilot is very important because our data strongly indicates that the chance of an accident is much lower when Autopilot is enabled."

Tesla also highlighted what it says is positive customer feedback about the technology.

Autopilot as a standard feature is not as robust as the optional full self-driving capability, which Tesla offers as a $5,000 option.

With standard Autopilot, a Tesla vehicle can steer within its own lane in traffic, and accelerate and brake on its own. The full self-driving capability adds "Navigate on Autopilot," which gives Teslas the ability to enter and exit freeways and merge onto freeway interchanges, and also drive around slower vehicles.

The self-driving option includes automatic lane changes, auto-park, and the summon feature.

Read more: Tesla disputes report that Panasonic and Tesla are freezing Gigafactory spending plans

Leasing options and Tesla ride-hailing

As of Thursday, the Model 3 is also available for lease but, unlike a typical vehicle lease, customers will not have the option to purchase their cars at the end of the contract. That's because Tesla plans to have those off-lease Model 3s join its self-driving ride-hailing fleet.

In 2016, Tesla made known its intention to operate such a fleet, but did not mention at the time that previously leased Model 3s would be used for the program.

Notably, those new details about the ride-hailing service come just hours after Uber filed for its initial public offering. Uber is developing its own fleet of self-driving vehicles. Lyft, Uber's closest competitor that went public in late March, is doing the same.

SEE ALSO: Here are all the differences between Tesla's sedans — the Model S and Model 3

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Chevy drove the next-generation Corvette through New York City — and GM CEO Mary Barra was along for the ride (GM)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 10:15pm

  • Chevy has finally confirmed a reveal date for the long-rumored eighth-generation Corvette.
  • The C8 Vette will have a mid-engine design, ending six decades of front-engines only.
  • Chevy took the new Corvette for a drive through Manhattan, with GM CEO Mary Barra in the passenger seat.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The long-rumored eighth-generation Corvette has finally been confirmed. And it won't have its likely twin-turbocharged V8 engine up front — the new Vette will be a mid-engine machine.

The car has been spotted testing around the world, but Chevy hasn't said anything about when it would be revealed. We found on Tuesday, when General Motors CEO Mary Barra was driven to a Stephen Siller Foundation event in the camouflaged Vette (the foundation, named for a New York firefighter who died in the September 11, 2001 terror attacks, administers various charitable causes).

Chevy said that the C8 Corvette would be revealed on July 18. The carmaker provided no additional details, but word is that the six-decade-old nameplate will get a new engine that cranks out upwards of 800 horsepower, beating out the current king of the hill, the 755-pony Corvette ZR1. A possible gas-electric drivetrain could take that to 1,000 hp.

Read more: We drove the Lamborghini Urus to see if it holds up as a family SUV

The seventh-generation Vette has been around since 2014; the Stingray was Business Insiders first-ever Car of the Year. The platform has given us the Grand Sport and the Z06, and the C7.R competition version has carried Corvette Racing to victory at numerous sports-car events worldwide, including the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans.

It's expected that Chevy will sell the front-engine Vettes alongside the new mid-engine car, at least for a while.

It remains to be seen whether the C8.R will take on the mid-engined Ferrari 488 and Ford GT in sports-car races in 2020, but that's certainly something that fans should be looking forward to (the Ford GT program is ending this year, and the participation of Ferrari is contingent on independent teams).

Obviously, one of these days we're going to see some photos of the new Vette in which the car isn't sporting black-and-white camo. But now we know that the long Corvette hood could soon be a thing of the past.

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Salesforce bought new co-CEO Keith Block a $211,703 car and an $86,423 watch in recognition of his 'leadership achievements' (CRM)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 7:39pm

  • According to Salesforce's new proxy statement, the company awarded co-CEO Keith Block a $211,703 car and an $86,423 watch "in recognition of Mr. Block’s leadership achievements."
  • Block, who joined Salesforce in 2013, oversaw a rapid period of growth for the company as COO. He was promoted to co-CEO last summer.
  • The filing did not specify what kind of watch and car Block received.
  • Salesforce also spent $1,230,424 on security arrangements for Salesforce co-founder and co-CEO Marc Benioff — notable, because last year, the company didn't pay for his personal security. 
  • Visit for more stories.

Salesforce co-CEO Keith Block was awarded a $211,703 car and an $86,423 watch, the company said in a proxy statement released on Thursday

According to the filing, these were awarded to Block at some point in its 2019 fiscal year, "in recognition of Mr. Block’s leadership achievements." Salesforce also spent $179,977 on taxes related to the car and $38,005 on taxes related to the watch, in what it says is a one-time bonus. 

The filing said that Salesforce's Compensation Committee only reserves these types of awards for unique situations.

"In this case, the Committee approved this award because it believed that recognizing Mr. Block’s leadership and success in achieving Company goals was warranted, and that doing so in a memorable and visible way would be motivational not only for the executive, but for other employees who observe exceptional performance being rewarded in exceptional ways consistent with the Company’s philosophy of paying for performance," the filing said.

To that point, Block is widely credited with accelerating Salesforce's rapid growth rate: In Salesforce's 2014 fiscal year, when Block left Oracle and first joined up, the company booked $4.1 billion in annual revenue. In its most recent full fiscal year, ended January 2019, that had more than quadrupled all the way to $13.28 billion. 

Block served as Salesforce's chief operating officer until last summer, when cofounder Marc Benioff officially promoted him to be his co-CEO. While the filing doesn't say for sure, it seems likely that these gifts were made in honor of Block's ascension to the very highest ranks of management. 

It is also unknown what kind of car and watch Block received. Possibilities include a Porsche Panamera Turbo S E- Hybrid Sport Turismo or a Land Rover Defender 90, which both are priced around $211,000. Business Insider has reached out to Salesforce for comment.

In addition, Salesforce spent $1,230,424 on security arrangements for Salesforce co-CEO Marc Benioff while at work or on business travel. That's notable, because it represents a departure from its 2018 fiscal year, when the company spent nothing on his personal security.

"The Compensation Committee limited the Company-paid portion of Mr. Benioff’s security program to cover only security services provided at business facilities and during business-related travel," during that fiscal year, the filing says.  However, Salesforce says that it solicited "specific feedback from our major institutional investors," and decided to reinstate his company-paid personal security program after reviewing Benioff's "security profile." 

"We view these security services as a necessary and appropriate business expense, but have reported incremental costs to us of the arrangements because they may be viewed as conveying a personal benefit to him," the filing says. 

Read more: Here's how much the top Salesforce executives make in salaries, bonuses and stock

All this on top of the two executives' base salary, bonuses, and equity awards. 

Block made $16,961,156 in total compensation in the 2019 fiscal year, according to the filing. That includes his $1,342,500 base salary, the $298,126 total value of the car and watch, various equity awards, and all of his other compensation, including the taxes related to those two gifts. 

His co-CEO Benioff made $28,391,846 over the same period, including his $1,550,000 base salary, the cost of his security, and all other equity awards and compensation. 

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Uber relies on Google Maps for its business and spent $58 million on it over three years (GOOGL, GOOG)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 7:11pm

  • Uber filed to go public on Thursday, and its paperwork shows that Uber spent $58 million on Google Maps between 2016 and 2018.
  • Uber sees Google Maps as "critical" to its business, it says in the filing. 
  • If Google and Uber were to end their agreement, this could harm Uber's business because other mapping services may be expensive, inferior, or just not exist. 

Uber filed to go public on Thursday, and its S-1 paperwork revealed that from the beginning of 2016 to the end 2018, Uber spent some $58 million on Google Maps — a function that is "critical to the functionality of our platform," built in as it is to the company's apps for riders and drivers alike.

The filing shows that Uber has been working with Google to use Google Maps for Work, its business-grade version of the mapping tool, since October 2015. In the filing, Uber says that it's turned to Google becuase it's the only one that meets its needs all over the world. 

"We do not believe that an alternative mapping solution exists that can provide the global functionality that we require to offer our platform in all of the markets in which we operate," the Uber S-1 said.

Still, Uber writes: If Google Maps suddenly gets less reliable, doesn't provide adequate support, or hikes prices, it might have to lean on an alternative solution. Uber warned that such alternatives could be expensive, inferior, or not available at all, which could harm its business.

Read more: Uber gave CEO Dara Khosrowshahi $45 million in total pay last year, but it paid its COO even more

According to the filing, Alphabet, Google's parent company, owns some 5% in Uber. David Drummond, senior vice president of corporate development and chief legal officer at Alphabet, also served on Uber's board from July 2013 to August 2016.

However, the relationship between the two has been tumultous: A landmark lawsuit between Uber and Alphabet's Waymo over self-driving car technology ended in a settlement in which Alphabet received $245 million worth of Uber equity.

This season's spate of big tech IPOs also highlights the reliance of modern tech companies on products and services from the major platform providers: Pinterest's IPO filing revealed that it's paid over $309 million to Amazon Web Services since 2017, while Lyft has its own commitment to AWS that averages out to some $8 million a month.

More on Uber's massive IPO:

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Uber says the #DeleteUber movement led to 'hundreds of thousands' of people quitting the app

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 6:26pm

  • Uber filed public IPO proposal documents on Thursday as it readies itself for what could be one of the biggest IPOs in years.
  • In the risk factors mentioned in its S-1 filing, Uber said that its business was "negatively impacted" when "hundreds of thousands" of customers deleted their accounts as part of the #DeleteUber campaign.
  • The #DeleteUber movement went viral in January 2017 after Uber was accused of profiting off of a protest against President Trump's travel ban.

Uber filed its IPO proposal documents on Thursday, and they reveal exactly how the #DeleteUber campaign in January 2017 negatively affected its business and reputation.

In its paperwork, Uber said that "hundreds of thousands" of customers deleted the ride-hailing app and deactivated their accounts "within days" of the campaign's launch across social media. The viral movement caused Uber's reputation to be "adversely affected" and "fueled distrust" in the company, the company said in the risk factors portion of its S-1 filing.

The #DeleteUber movement took social media by storm in January 2017, after President Donald Trump announced his travel ban. The ban was met with protests, including a strike from taxi drivers at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. Uber continued to operate its service at the airport, and even switched off its surge pricing halfway through the strike to get more riders.

The move was met with backlash from furious customers, who accused Uber of profiting off the taxi strike and putting its support behind Trump's immigration ban. The #DeleteUber hashtag emerged on Twitter, and it wasn't long before it went viral.

"As a result of the #DeleteUber campaign, hundreds of thousands of consumers stopped using the Uber platform within days of the campaign," Uber wrote in its public filings.

To make matters worse, former Uber employee Susan Fowler alleged in a blog post that same month that she was sexually harassed and experienced gender bias during her time at the company.

Beyond the #DeleteUber campaign and blog post, 2017 was a disastrous year for the company. The series of scandals ultimately led to Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick resigning from his position as CEO, and current CEO Dara Khosrowshahi eventually taking over.

Read more: Uber warns that its reputation may always be a risk for its continued success

Uber said in its documents filed Thursday that one of its risk factors is its ability to maintain its "brand and reputation." 

"We have previously received significant media coverage and negative publicity, particularly in 2017, regarding our brand and reputation, and failure to rehabilitate our brand and reputation will cause our business to suffer," Uber said in the filing.

Although the #DeleteUber campaign adversely impacted Uber, the ride-hailing service's main rival benefited from the controversy. Lyft filed its public S-1 paperwork in March, where it said that the company saw a boost in business in January 2017, during the peak of the #DeleteUber campaign.

SEE ALSO: Jeff Bezos made a jab at eBay in his annual shareholder letter, boasting that 'independent sellers do so much better selling on Amazon'

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Uber sees its burgeoning food delivery service as a massive opportunity (UBER)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 6:21pm

  • Uber believes its Uber Eats app addresses a $795 billion market.
  • So far, it believes it has only penetrated 1% of that market considering Gross Bookings for Uber Eats have reached $7.9 billion in 2018.
  • The company says it views Uber Eats as being the largest meal delivery platform in the world outside of China. 

Uber believes the food delivery program it launched more than three years ago addresses a $795 billion market, the company revealed in the S-1 documents it filed on Thursday as part of its initial public offering. 

Revenue from Uber Eats has also grown significantly, according to the filing. Uber Eats revenue was $1.5 billion in 2018, representing an increase of 149% from the $0.6 billion in revenue the food delivery service generated in 2017. 

The company also said it views the serviceable addressable market for Uber Eats as being $795 billion, which refers to the amount that consumers spent on home delivery, takeaway, and drive-through worldwide from restaurants, cafés, bars in 2017. The company believes it's only penetrated 1% of this $795 billion market so far given that Uber Eats Gross Bookings reached $7.9 billion in 2018.

Based on Gross Bookings, the company says it believes Uber Eats is the largest meal delivery platform in the world outside of China. Of the 91 million monthly active platform consumers on Uber's platform, more than 15 million received a meal using Uber Eats in the December quarter. The company defines Gross Bookings, not to be confused with revenue, as the total dollar value ridesharing and new mobility rides, Uber Eats meal deliveries, and amounts paid by shippers for Uber Freight payments. 

Uber believes it has an advantage in its scale, which it says enables it to offer faster delivery times than its competitors. The average delivery time for an Uber Eats order was approximately 30 minutes for the December quarter, the company said. Uber Eats operates on a network comprised of more than 220,000 restaurants in over 500 cities.

It's not just the home delivery market that Uber is after. It says it believes that it can address a portion of the $2 trillion eat-in market as more consumers opt to have meals from dine-in eateries delivered, and also says there's room for Uber Eats to address a portion of spending on groceries too.

Ana Mahony, head of U.S. cities for Uber Eats, discussed the potential the service has to expand when describing how it's recently grown in popularity within suburban areas. 

"The demand that we've received from the suburbs over the last year and a half has been truly phenomenal," she said in an interview with Business Insider. "It shows the power and potential to expand our business everywhere." 


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Uber says its future is riding on the success of self-driving cars, but warns investors that there's a lot that can go wrong (UBER)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 6:12pm

  • The future of Uber's business is riding on self-driving cars.
  • The transportation startup has warned that if its rivals develop the tech at scale before it does, everything from its ride-hailing to its food delivery efforts are at risk.
  • On Thursday, the company finally filed to go public in what is expected to be one of the biggest IPOs of all time.
  • Uber's financial disclosures provide an unprecedented look at the inner workings of the firm, and how it's thinking about its future.
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Uber is convinced that self-driving cars are the future of its business. But even so, it warns investors, they could be a total bust for the company.

On Thursday, Uber finally filed its S-1 paperwork to go public in the coming weeks, offering an unprecedented look at the inner workings of the ride-hailing company. It also provides fresh insight into how the Silicon Valley mega-startup views the promise — and perils — of autonomous vehicles.

"We believe that autonomous vehicle technologies will enable a product that competes with the cost of personal vehicle ownership and usage, and represents the future of transportation," Uber's paperwork says, adding that it believes believes the tech "will be an important part of our platform over the long term."

In 2018, the company spent $457 million on its autonomous vehicle-focused Advanced Technologies Group (ATG) and other tech initiatives — including Uber Elevate, its futuristic urban aircraft program. Long term, Uber hopes the self-driving car tech will allow it to end its dependence on human drivers in favor of a fleet of cheaper autonomous vehicles that don't need to be paid wages. 

But despite investing hundreds of millions of dollars in self-driving car technology, Uber still warns that it might screw up — and says it expects its competitors to be able to commercial ise the tech "at scale" before it can.

"We have invested, and we expect to continue to invest, substantial amounts in autonomous vehicle technologies. As discussed elsewhere in this prospectus, we believe that autonomous vehicle technologies may have the ability to meaningfully impact the industries in which we compete," the company wrote.

"While we believe that autonomous vehicles present substantial opportunities, the development of such technology is expensive and time-consuming and may not be successful. Several other companies ... are also developing autonomous vehicle technologies, either alone or through collaborations with car manufacturers, and we expect that they will use such technology to further compete with us in the personal mobility, meal delivery, or logistics industries. We expect certain competitors to commercialize autonomous vehicle technologies at scale before we do."

Uber calls out Google cousin company Waymo, Cruise Automation, Tesla, Apple, Zoox, Aptiv, May Mobility,, Aurora, and Nuro as the companies all racing to conquer the self-driving mobility market — citing Waymo as a particular threat due to the development of its commercialized fleet.

If these rivals do manage to scale up self-driving tech before Uber does, then numerous areas of its business could be at risk. 

"In the event that our competitors bring autonomous vehicles to market before we do, or their technology is or is perceived to be superior to ours, they may be able to leverage such technology to compete more effectively with us, which would adversely impact our financial performance and our prospects," it wrote.

"For example, use of autonomous vehicles could substantially reduce the cost of providing ridesharing, meal delivery, or logistics services, which could allow competitors to offer such services at a substantially lower price as compared to the price available to consumers on our platform. If a significant number of consumers choose to use our competitors’ offerings over ours, our financial performance and prospects would be adversely impacted."

Similarly, even sourcing parts and securing suppliers could prove problematic in the experimental field, it warns — especially in the event of external events like currency market fluctuations, new tariffs or trade wars, or theft.

And all this high-tech development is capital intensive: There's no guarantee that Uber will be "to obtain adequate financing or financing on terms satisfactory to us when required, [in which case] our ability to continue to support our business growth and to respond to business challenges and competition may be significantly limited."

Uber doesn't anticipate eliminating all traditional human drivers overnight once the tech reaches maturity. Instead, the company predicts a "hybrid" period, "in which autonomous vehicles will be deployed gradually against specific use cases while Drivers continue to serve most consumer demand ... Such situations may include trips along a standard, well-mapped route in a predictable environment in good weather."

This prompts another, related risk: The pursuit of autonomous technology might spark discontent among Uber's existing base of human drivers, with unpredictable consequences. The efforts may "add to Driver dissatisfaction over time, as it may reduce the need for Drivers," the S-1 warns.

"Driver dissatisfaction has in the past resulted in protests by Drivers, most recently in India, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Such protests have resulted, and any future protests may result, in interruptions to our business. Continued Driver dissatisfaction may also result in a decline in our number of platform users, which would reduce our network liquidity, and which in turn may cause a further decline in platform usage."

The disclosures echo earlier remarks by former CEO Travis Kalanick, who described the technology as an "existential" risk to the company.

"It starts with understanding that the world is going to go self-driving and autonomous," he told Business Insider in 2016. "So if that's happening, what would happen if we weren't a part of that future? If we weren't part of the autonomy thing? Then the future passes us by basically, in a very expeditious and efficient way."

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Uber expects to pay around $300 million in total payouts to more than 1 million qualifying drivers as a one-time reward

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 6:06pm

  • In a regulatory filing to go public released Thursday, Uber announced its plans to pay out a one-time cash reward to more than 1 million drivers for a total around $300 million.
  • Qualifying Uber drivers will receive the award at the end of April 2019, according to the filing.
  • According to the filing, each qualifying driver in the US will receive either $100, $500, $1,000, or $10,000, based on the number of lifetime trips completed on the platform.
  • To qualify, drivers will have had to complete one trip in 2019 as of April 7, 2019, and be in good standing. Drivers will have had to complete a minimum of 2,500 trips on the platform to qualify.
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In a highly-anticipated regulatory filing to go public, Uber on Thursday announced its plans to pay out a one-time cash reward to over 1 million drivers for a total around $300 million.

According to the filing, around 1.1 million drivers will qualify for the cash payout. To qualify, drivers will have had to complete one trip in 2019 as of April 7, 2019, and be in good standing. Drivers will have had to complete a minimum of 2,500 trips on the platform to qualify.

Read More: Uber has filed to go public in what could be the biggest IPO in years

The filing outlines four tiers of driver payouts based on total trips completed. Drivers who have completed between 2,500 and 4,999 trips will receive $100; those with a total trip count between 5,000 and 9,999 will receive $500; drivers who completed between 10,000 and 19,999 trips will receive $1,000. Drivers who have completed over 20,000 trips can expect to receive $10,000.

Uber has been criticized for its move to classify drivers on its platform as independent contractors. Under that classification, the company is not responsible for offering drivers minimum wage protection or benefits. In December, Uber changed its pay structure in some cities to prioritize trip time over distance driven, a move that was unpopular with drivers.

Read More: Uber warns that its reputation may always be a risk for its continued success

The payout amounts and trip tiers may be adjusted for international drivers on a region-by-region basis to account for differences in average hourly earnings by region, the company said in the filing.

Drivers will receive the one-time payment near the end of April 2019, and will receive the highest amount for which they are eligible, according to the company’s filing.

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Uber warns cyber attacks could cripple its business (UBER)

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 5:54pm

  • Uber has filed to public. 
  • In its prospectus made public for the first time Thursday, the company warned cyber attacks could affect its future business. 
  • In 2017, the company disclosed a major cyberattack that compromised 57 million users. 

Uber has officially filed to go public.

The ride-hailing giant made its paperwork public for the first time on Thursday, providing us the first comprehensive look under the hood at the company's financials, risk factors and more.

Among those risk factors was a stern warning about how important technology — and the security of that technology — is for Uber.

"We rely heavily on information technology systems across our operations," the company said in the filing. "Computer malware, viruses, spamming, and phishing attacks have become more prevalent in our industry, have occurred on our systems in the past, and may occur on our systems in the future," the company continued.

In 2017, for example, Uber paid hackers $100,00 to cover up a 2016 cyber attack that exposed the personal data of 57 million people, including both riders and drivers. Among the info stolen was a trove of data including the names, emails, and phone numbers for 50 million riders globally, as well as the personal information of 7 million drivers. This included US driver's license numbers, but no Social Security numbers, according to Uber.

"None of this should have happened, and I will not make excuses for it," CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a blog post at the time. "We are changing the way we do business, putting integrity at the core of every decision we make and working hard to earn the trust of our customers."

Read Business Insider's full coverage of Uber's IPO here.

Here's the full disclosure from Uber's S-1:

We rely heavily on information technology systems across our operations. Our information technology systems, including mobile and online platforms and mobile payment systems, administrative functions such as human resources, payroll, accounting, and internal and external communications, and the information technology systems of our third-party business partners and service providers contain proprietary or confidential information related to business and sensitive personal data, including personally identifiable information, entrusted to us by platform users, employees, and job candidates. Computer malware, viruses, spamming, and phishing attacks have become more prevalent in our industry, have occurred on our systems in the past, and may occur on our systems in the future. Various other factors may also cause system failures, including power outages, catastrophic events, inadequate or ineffective redundancy, issues with upgrading or creating new systems or platforms, flaws in third-party software or services, errors by our employees or third-party service providers, or breaches in the security of these systems or platforms. For example, third parties may attempt to fraudulently induce employees or platform users to disclose information to gain access to our data or the data of platform users. If our incident response, disaster recovery, and business continuity plans do not resolve these issues in an effective manner, they could result in adverse impacts to our business operations and our financial results. Because of our prominence, the number of platform users, and the types and volume of personal data on our systems, we may be a particularly attractive target for such attacks. Although we have developed systems and processes that are designed to protect our data and that of platform users, and to prevent data loss, undesirable activities on our platform, and security breaches, we cannot assure you that such measures will provide absolute security. Our efforts on this front may be unsuccessful as a result of, for example, software bugs or other technical malfunctions; employee, contractor, or vendor error or malfeasance; government surveillance; or other threats that evolve, and we may incur significant costs in protecting against or remediating cyber-attacks. Any actual or perceived failure to maintain the performance, reliability, security, and availability of our products, offerings, and technical infrastructure to the satisfaction of platform users and certain regulators would likely harm our reputation and result in loss of revenue from the adverse impact to our reputation and brand, disruption to our business, and our decreased ability to attract and retain Drivers, consumers, restaurants, shippers, and carriers.

SEE ALSO: Uber warns its big push into scooters and e-bikes is creating unusual new headaches and risks for the company

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