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Uber Puts Hopes on Food Delivery Momentum After $2.9 Billion Loss

Uber Puts Hopes on Food Delivery Momentum After $2.9 Billion Loss



Uber Technologies Inc. (UBER) posted a $2.9 billion loss in the first quarter as the coronavirus pandemic curtailed demand for ridership.

The ride-hailing company said the $2.9 billion loss included a $2.1 billion pretax writedown of the value of some of Uber’s minority investments. Excluding the writedown, Uber posted a loss of 64 cents per share, compared with analysts’ expectations of an 88-cent loss. Total revenue in the first three months increased 14% to $3.54 billion year-on-year.

“While our Rides business has been hit hard by the ongoing pandemic, we have taken quick action to preserve the strength of our balance sheet, focus additional resources on Uber Eats, and prepare us for any recovery scenario,” said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. “Along with the surge in food delivery, we are encouraged by the early signs we are seeing in markets that are beginning to open back up.”

Khosrowshahi said that although rides bookings were down 80% in April, total bookings were only off about 40%, helped significantly by the company’s Eats business. First-quarter revenue generated from restaurant food deliveries increased 53% to $819 million as the coronavirus-related stay-at-home orders boosted demand for the service.

“Eats has also allowed us to bring in new customers onto our platform,” said Khosrowshahi. “This positions us to have a faster recovery than Rides only players.”

The ride-hailing company announced this month that it will cut about 3,700 full-time positions, while Khosrowshahi will forego his base salary this year.

“The actions we've taken and the actions we intend to take in the near future will result in a reduction of more than $1 billion in annualized fixed cost versus our Q4 plan,” said Khosrowshahi. “Reaching profitability as soon as possible remains a strategic priority for us. We believe the disruption caused by COVID-19 will impact our timeline, but by a matter of quarters and not years.”

Shares in Uber jumped 6% to $32.79 on Friday as investors and analysts welcomed the ride-hailing company’s cost-cutting plan and momentum in delivery orders amid signs of a slow recovery as markets start to reopen.

Wedbush analyst Ygal Arounian maintained the stock’s Buy rating and raised the price target to $38 from $30.

“Uber is seeing much pain as demand has come to a screeching halt, however the last few weeks ride volume has increased and is a bright spot in a dark backdrop,” Arounian wrote in a note to investors. “To this point, right now the star of the show is Eats. But Uber is making tough decisions and while Eats is offsetting weak rides demand, profitability remains a factor.”

Wedbush increased the company’s 2Q20E revenue expectations by 20%, reflecting the stronger than expected performance at Uber Eats, where revenue is now estimated at $853 million versus $368 million previously.

Overall, Wall Street analysts have a bullish outlook on the company’s stock as 25 out of 26 award a Buy rating, and 1 has a Sell rating adding up to a Strong Buy consensus rating. The $39.75 average price target projects shares will appreciate 21% in the coming 12 months. (See Uber’s stock analysis on TipRanks).

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The post Uber Puts Hopes on Food Delivery Momentum After $2.9 Billion Loss appeared first on TipRanks Financial Blog.

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One of Cathie Wood’s favorite industry leaders just hit a roadblock

Authorities have put a pause on one company wreaking havoc on the roads.



Cathie Wood’s robotaxi future may have somewhat come into fruition as multiple companies have deployed driverless cars to roam the roads and take passengers. 

However, state regulators have pumped the brakes on a key player who treated the roads like a beta test battleground.

Related: Cathie Wood dumps $4.5 million worth of surging Big Tech titan

In a brief statement, the California Department of Motor Vehicles has suspended the permits of General Motors  (GM) - Get Free Report -backed Cruise within the state, citing that its vehicles are “not safe for the public’s operation” and that the cars pose “an unreasonable risk to the public.”

Members of SafeStreetRebel, a group of activists, place a cone on a self-driving robotaxi to disable it in San Francisco on July 11. (Photo by Josh Edelson / AFP) (Photo by JOSH EDELSON/AFP via Getty Images)


Both Cruise and Alphabet  (GOOG) - Get Free Report subsidiary Waymo have been under fire by local authorities, motorists and the general public ever since they were allowed to provide 24-hour rideshare services around the San Francisco area and in other U.S. cities.

Cruise’s suspension, in particular, comes one week after the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration said it was investigating the company following two incident reports of injuring pedestrians.

Cruise spokesperson Navideh Forghani said in a statement to Forbes that the company is reviewing an Oct. 2 incident in San Francisco where a woman who was initially hit by a human-operated vehicle was thrown into the path of an oncoming Cruise autonomous vehicle.

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San Francisco Supervisor Aaron Peskin told Forbes that Cruise’s suspension was “better late than never,” adding “San Francisco has long held that Cruise vehicles were not ready for prime time and the state should have never allowed their unlimited deployment in the first place.”

The California DMV stated that they have provided Cruise with the steps it needs to take to apply to reinstate its suspended permits in its brief statement. However, any specific details of such has not been disseminated.

San Francisco is not the only city where Cruise offers its robotaxi service. It also operates in Austin, Texas and Phoenix, Ariz. Currently it is testing vehicles in 10 other cities around the United States, including Nashville, Tenn. 

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Pro-crypto lawmaker Tom Emmer ends hours-long speaker campaign: Report

The Minnesota congressman was one of only a few crypto proponents in Congress being considered as a possible speaker of the House by Republican lawmakers.



The Minnesota congressman was one of only a few crypto proponents in Congress being considered as a possible speaker of the House by Republican lawmakers.

Tom Emmer, the current majority whip and a crypto proponent, has reportedly dropped his bid to become the next speaker of the United States House of Representatives — a position second in line to the U.S. presidency.

According to multiple reports from major news outlets on Oct. 24, Representative Emmer ended his campaign for speaker after he was unable to secure the 217 Republican votes necessary to win on the House floor, a vote that had been expected sometime in the next day or two. The Minnesota congressman had only won the Republican nomination for speaker early on Oct. 24, making the race for the position open to a number of candidates once again.

Representative Emmer was the third candidate for speaker to drop his bid following a lack of Republican support. Following U.S. lawmakers in the House voting to remove former speaker Kevin McCarthy on Oct. 3, Representatives Jim Jordan and Steve Scalise have both attempted to drum up enough votes to win the speakership, but ultimately failed. Representative Patrick McHenry has been acting as interim speaker.

Emmer, a crypto proponent well known by many in the space, has spoken about financial privacy concerns regarding central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and the non-partisan nature of regulating digital assets. Cointelegraph reached out to Emmer’s office following his nomination but did not receive a response at the time of publication.

Following Emmer’s nomination by Republicans, former U.S. President Donald Trump told his Truth Social followers that supporting the Minnesota congressman would be a “tragic mistake”. The former president’s message followed Emmer expressing his desire to continue a “strong working relationship” with Trump should he win the speakership.

Related: Crypto adoption crosses party lines amid Washington’s political deadlock

At the time of publication, it was unclear who the Republicans planned to nominate next for speaker. Since Oct. 3, the House of Representatives has been legislatively paralyzed on crypto bills passed by the Financial Services Committee, including the Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act, the Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act, the Clarity for Payment Stablecoins Act and the Keep Your Coins Act.

Magazine: 6 Questions for Adelle Nazarian on crypto, journalism and the future of Bitcoin

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Central Illinois named US Tech Hub for biomanufacturing by Biden-Harris administration

URBANA, Ill. — President Joe Biden announced Monday that the Illinois Fermentation and Agriculture Biomanufacturing Hub (iFAB) is among 31 designated…



URBANA, Ill. — President Joe Biden announced Monday that the Illinois Fermentation and Agriculture Biomanufacturing Hub (iFAB) is among 31 designated Regional Innovation and Technology Hubs (Tech Hubs) by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) — recognizing Central Illinois as a globally competitive center for innovation and job creation in biomanufacturing.

Credit: Anna Longworth Photography

URBANA, Ill. — President Joe Biden announced Monday that the Illinois Fermentation and Agriculture Biomanufacturing Hub (iFAB) is among 31 designated Regional Innovation and Technology Hubs (Tech Hubs) by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) — recognizing Central Illinois as a globally competitive center for innovation and job creation in biomanufacturing.

Led by the Integrated Bioprocessing Research Laboratory (IBRL) at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, the iFAB consortium includes 30 partner organizations representing academic, industry, government, and nonprofit partners committed to catalyzing industry growth in Champaign, Piatt, and Macon counties. 

“The iFAB designation leverages IBRL’s five years of operational success. Companies come here to prove their technologies, and our aim is for them to remain in the region and establish early manufacturing facilities to progress from ideation to commercialization,” said iFAB principal investigator Beth Conerty, the Associate Director of Business Development at IBRL, part of the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences and The Grainger College of Engineering

The EDA Tech Hubs program was authorized by the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act of 2022 with the goal to boost economic growth, spur job creation, and ensure U.S. national security. 

The precision fermentation industry is projected to reach $11.8 billion by 2028, with the potential to generate one million jobs by 2030. The EDA’s Tech Hub designation elevates the reputation and confidence needed to attract more funding, resources, companies, and talent in this space to Central Illinois. 

Precision fermentation is a growing area of biomanufacturing that can turn local feedstocks, mainly corn and soybeans, into a variety of goods — including textiles, biofuels, food ingredients, polymers, pigments, and more domestically. This sustainable, scalable, and biological manufacturing process relies on microbes to convert sugars into high-value products.

“Our position as a regional leader in precision fermentation is solidified by this designation,” said iFAB partner Nicole Bateman, president of the Economic Development Corporation of Decatur & Macon County. “Receiving federal recognition unlocks opportunities for infrastructure development and business investment and attraction, which results in job creation. We have been partnering across the corridor informally for several years, and the momentum in the region will be enhanced by this formal designation.”  

As a designated Tech Hub, iFAB has cleared the first phase of the Tech Hubs program and qualifies to apply for phase two funding of $45 million to $70 million. EDA anticipates that between five and 10 of the 31 Tech Hubs will receive phase two funding. 

If successful, phase two funding would support several iFAB initiatives to expand the Central Illinois precision fermentation industry:  

  • Support capital projects to create more multi-use facilities and infrastructure to support growth-stage bioprocessing and fermentation companies; lab space is needed to scale high-growth ventures in the region.
  • Expand workforce development training programs at Parkland College and Richland Community College in partnership with industry partners to provide relevant job skills.
  • Broaden the biomanufacturing entrepreneurial ecosystem through efforts at University of Illinois Research Park and the Illinois AgTech Accelerator to fuel startups.
  • Attract companies through the Economic Development Corporations (EDC) in Champaign County and Decatur & Macon County in partnership with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and Intersect Illinois. 

“This historic announcement is a result of our regional and statewide collaboration and will enhance business attraction to our region, expanding our ever-growing AgTech footprint,” said iFAB partner Carly McCrory-McKay, executive director of the Champaign County EDC. “We’re thrilled about this Tech Hub designation for our communities and will work with our partners to ensure that the iFAB AgTech Corridor—made up of Champaign, Macon, and Piatt counties—becomes the global leader and innovation center in biomanufacturing. This is a game changer for innovation and economic growth, and we’re proud to say that iFAB is a Tech Hub.”

iFAB’s Tech Hub designation is a return on investment by the State of Illinois. “IBRL was a strategic experiment that has shown proof of concept,” Conerty said. “We have been overwhelmed by the response for equipment, infrastructure, and expertise. We are now bursting at the seams with a waitlist for equipment and processes. With more support, we could be doing so much more.” 

The consortium’s industry partners include ADM and Boston Bioprocess, who both have operations at Research Park, as well as Primient and Clarkson Grain Company

iFAB is one of two designated Tech Hubs in Illinois; the second is the Chicago-based The Bloch Tech Hub that focuses on quantum technologies. Both coalitions are part of Innovate Illinois, a strategic initiative led by Governor JB Pritzker to establish Tech Hubs in the state. 

“As one of America’s leading research universities, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign solves problems and helps to power our nation’s economy,” said U. of I. Chancellor Robert E. Jones. “These TechHub designations in Illinois unite our strengths with our academic, industrial, community, and government partners to imagine a bright future for communities across the region.” 

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