Cadillac‘s “BookbyCadillac” premium automobile subscription service (we refer to as AaaS), sits comfortably between the traditional car ownership model and the pure rideshare model (Uber, Lyft, Waymo). Priced at $1,500/month (plus $500 initiation fee), we don’t believe that Cadillac’s bundled subscription service is a good value – flexibility and convenience come at a price. Listen to CEORater Podcast Ep. 102 to learn more.
In other news, Uber completed its tender offer to an investor group led by SoftBank. Listen to CEORater Podcast Ep. 103 to learn more.
The Wall Street Journal published Uber’s financials.
A Disney Fox deal could be announced as early as this week. “Content is King” to quote Sumner Redstone, and Disney in recent years has loaded-up on content (Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm) to push through its OTT network – BAMTech. Fox’s movie library would further bolster Disney’s original content library – feeding BAMTech’s demand for content. We fully expect that post-deal close Disney will begin to pull Fox content from Netflix’s platform similar to how it plans to pull its content from Netflix beginning in 2019. Listen to the CEORater Podcast to learn more: Ep. 93: Netflix Loses In A Disney Fox Deal.
I have previously been critical of Apple’s AI effort. Siri lags both Google and Amazon (Alexa) in terms of speed and accuracy. Apple’s Shazam acquisition is good for consumers in that it bundles a service people enjoy with Apple Music. More importantly, the acquisition will drive more Siri queries – something Siri needs to get itself into fighting shape to better compete with Google and Amazon. Learn more by listening to our recent CEORater Podcast: Apple’s Acquisition of Shazam Will Benefit Siri
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Uber’s corporate governance – or lackthereof – is a hurdle in consumating a deal with Softbank. We are not fans of entrenched founders and out-sized voting stakes.
I don’t anticipate writing a review of the iPhone X – it’s not what we do here or at CEORater. However, the folks at the WSJ have taken the time to report their findings on Apple’s facial recognition technology (“FaceID”) which we covered in an earlier podcast.
You may access the Wall Street Journal article HERE
It would seem to us that Alphabet (tkr: GOOG) has a greater probability of bringing a functioning autonomous ride-hailing service to market at scale via its Waymo unit more quickly than Uber or Lyft given the strength of Alphabet’s balance sheet. We cover Uber – although primarily from a corporate governance standpoint – in multiple episodes of the CEORater Podcast, which you may access via Apple Podcasts and SoundCloud amongst other platforms. Here’s Ep. 62:
We rolled out the CEORater (“CR”) platform earlier this year. CR is a public forum where employees, customers and investors may anonymously review various companies and CEOs. The platform is free to use. No registration required to post a review. Register for free to read reviews. In addition, we’ve launched a podcast as our first foray into original content. You may subcribe (free) to the CEORater Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, Google Play and other platforms including Stitcher. Last, you may find us on Facebook and Twitter @CEORater. Stay tuned.