This Week: Uber, where to?

Monday, May 13, 2019 by Robinhood Snacks | Disclosures

"These Uber shares are all we have, Mr. Frodo"

Last Week’s Market Moves
Dow Jones
25,942 (-2.13%)
S&P 500
2,881 (-2.21%)
7,917 (-3.03%)
$6,973 (+22.89%)
10-Yr US Treasury

Mom always told us that life's about timing.

We hit the New York Stock Exchange floor for the Uber IPO (experience it @RobinhoodSnacks) — Just hours after fresh US tariffs hit China. Tough timing.

Stocks suffered their worst week of 2019 because the US-China trade deal didn't happen. But markets rebounded Friday on the latest 'constructive' talks (never say never).

1. Who's up...

Happy conference season... Google's Apple-ish I/O event (stands for "input/output") revealed a voice assistant to screen robo-calls, "Incognito" Google Maps, and (the main event) a $399 Pixel smartphone. Unlike Apple, Google doesn't need an extra-profitable $1,000 smartphone — Its focus is making money off hoards of data from your internet use.

Some hookups abroad... Match enjoyed a 14% revenue jump last quarter, courtesy of 23% user-growth internationally. Tinder is still its alpha app, totaling 4.7M active dating users. But shares jumped over 10% on one key stat: In places where Facebook's dating feature is already rolled out, Match hasn't seen any negative impact.

Cars want all the attention... GM's Cruise Automation (a self-driving car startup it bought in '16) raised $1.15B to push forward with robotaxis (planned for later this year). Then Tesla jumped into the car insurance biz, while Ferrari closed in on an all-time high stock price, powered by sales in China.


Angels out... Victoria's Secret won't broadcast its aggressively costumed annual fashion show on TV anymore — falling viewers and a realization that the whole thing was outdated led to the decision. But parent company L Brands dipped because the move highlights how out of touch the push-up brand became with our generation. Less catwalk, more bralette.

Expensive shave... Direct-to-consumer razor startup Harry's was acquired by the owner of Schick for a smooth $1.37B. But buyer Edgewell Personal Care fell 20% last week on word its own sales dropped 10% last quarter. Plus, the $2B cabinet-packing company (it also owns Playtex and Wet Ones) is barely worth more than the deal itself.

Break up... After two years of Facebook info scandals, we expected new tech regulation in the US. It hasn't come. But Zuck's co-founder Chris Hughes called out Facebook to be split into separate companies. Shares fell 2% last week as Hughes' words joined a Nobel Prizer (Joseph Stiglitz) and presidential candidate (Elizabeth Warren). Zuck's response: Breakup won't fix Facebook's problems.


Anti-surge-pricing... Uber stock fell 8% on Day #1 of trading. We were there for it, watching founder/ex-CEO Travis Kalanick roll up in an UberX. Uber Eats teammates handed out bagels/granola on the floor, while Employee #4 Austin Geidt rang the NYSE opening bell. Uber-style, the IPO already broke records:

  • $6 billion of Uber stock value was erased during the worst opening day loss of any US IPO.
  • It was the least profitable company ever to go public — Its loss the past 12 months was twice as big as the 2nd biggest IPO loser (ironically, that's Lyft).

"Bad IPO day" support groups... Wall Street needs one. Tech stocks tend to jump on IPO day — Over the last 24 years, they've popped 41% on average. But Uber's not the only exception:

  • Facebook: Spent its first 15 months below its IPO price. Now it's Earth's #4 most valuable company.
  • Snap and Lyft: Both lost a third of their stock value within a month.
  • Alibaba: Fell nearly 50% over its 1st year. Now it's nearly double its IPO price.
  • FYI, keep in mind: None of these past stock moves are signs of future ones — IPO stocks can be especially volatile. Always dive into a company's S-1 before jumping into its freshly-issued stock.

Venture capitalists were cool with Uber's losses... Maybe public investors aren't. Uber's epic '08 pitch deck convinced private investors to invest over $20B in Uber. After Friday's IPO, it's worth $76.5B — The same valuation as three years ago. New tariffs last week and a driver strike didn't help, but unprofitability is the fundamental worry for Uber (and Lyft). Robo-drivers could solve that (ETA is TBD). Will investors wait?

What else we’re Snackin’
  • Work: 8 keys to ace the dreaded "phone interview"
  • Life: 5 ways to get someone to do what you want
  • Money: Here's how startup stock options (like Uber's) actually work
  • Venture: "Blitzscaling responsibly" — The chapter directly from LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman's book
  • Crypto: How the Winklevoss twins got into cryptocurrencies after the Facebook drama (video)
  • Defined: How an Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) works — from your Snacks team
Snacks Daily Podcast

Today's 15-minute Snacks Daily pod:

  • We were there, live for Uber's IPO. Get the behind the scenes on what we saw and heard.
  • Electronics. Toys. Chairs. Soon you'll start feeling the trade war tariffs. Last year's tariffs resulted in more Chinese imports — The opposite of their goal. Why US tariffs aren't working yet, and why you'll start noticing them now.
This Week
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