|Bid||0.00 x N/A|
|Ask||0.00 x N/A|
|Day's range||102.10 - 102.76|
|52-week range||84.64 - 126.52|
|Beta (5Y monthly)||1.00|
|PE ratio (TTM)||30.57|
|Forward dividend & yield||1.22 (1.23%)|
|Ex-dividend date||18 Nov 2019|
|1y target est||N/A|
(Bloomberg) -- Uber Technologies Inc.’s former Chief Executive Officer Travis Kalanick is stepping down from the board, severing his last ties to the company he co-founded a decade ago and helped become one of the world’s most valuable, and controversial, startups.Kalanick, 43, has sold all of his remaining shares in the ride-hailing giant and plans to focus on his new business and philanthropic endeavors.Along with co-founder Garrett Camp, Kalanick started Uber in 2009, building the company up from an experimental black car service in San Francisco to a global transportation and logistics company, offering food delivery, freight shipping, helicopter rides and ushering in a new era of work. But he was ousted as CEO in June 2017 following months of chaos and controversy. Detractors pointed to his aggressive and sometimes reckless management style as breeding a toxic workplace hostile to women and overseeing morally questionable company programs including some that intentionally deceived regulators and law enforcement agencies and spied on riders.“Uber has been a part of my life for the past 10 years,” Kalanick said in a statement Tuesday. “At the close of the decade, and with the company now public, it seems like the right moment for me to focus on my current business and philanthropic pursuits.”For the past year, Kalanick has been building a new startup: CloudKitchens. The real estate company offers fully outfitted kitchens to restaurants that need more space to fulfill orders from take-out food services like DoorDash and UberEats. Along with using his own funds, Kalanick also raised $400 million from Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund.Following Kalanick’s departure as CEO, the board replaced him with Dara Khosrowshahi, a former executive of Expedia Inc., who has worked to rebuild the company’s reputation and promise to investors. Since its initial public offering in May – one of the worst IPOs this year -- Uber shares have cratered by more than 30%. They were up 1% at 12:04 p.m. in New York.With Kalanick fully separated from Uber now, Wedbush Securities analysts said it could help the stock, since his continued presence on the board was a “distraction.”“With ripping the band-aid off and Travis leaving stage left on the board, we believe now it’s about Dara & Co. taking Uber in the right direction for 2020 and beyond after a rough road so far,” wrote Wedbush analysts Ygal Arounian and Dan Ives, adding that the massive sell-off of shares following the Nov. 6 lockup expiry has also hurt the stock price.Kalanick has been steadily unloading his Uber shares in the past few weeks. He sold the remaining 5.8 million shares before resigning from the board Monday night, a spokeswoman said, for a grand haul of almost $3 billion, according to calculations by Bloomberg. Before the lockup expired, Kalanick held a 6% stake in Uber, which made him the firm’s largest individual shareholder. Softbank Group Corp. and Benchmark Capital are the company’s two largest institutional shareholders.Such a selldown is unusual among prominent tech tycoons. Facebook Inc.’s Mark Zuckerberg and Amazon.com Inc.’s Jeff Bezos still own sizeable stakes in their companies. Still, neither of them were ousted by a boardroom coup. And Kalanick’s sales mean he has plenty of financial firepower for his other projects. He created a fund called 10100 in March 2018, saying in a tweet it would focus on his “passions, investments, ideas and big bets.” The fund will handle Kalanick’s for-profit investments and philanthropy and plans to invest in real estate, e-commerce and emerging innovation in China and India, according to its website.“Very few entrepreneurs have built something as profound as Travis Kalanick did with Uber,” Khosrowshahi said. “I’m enormously grateful for Travis’s vision and tenacity while building Uber, and for his expertise as a board member. Everyone at Uber wishes him all the best.”Kalanick’s departure from Uber’s board will be effective Dec. 31, according to a statement Tuesday. Uber’s 12-person board has steadily shrunk since the company went public in May and now will have four openings.(Updates with analyst comment in eighth paragraph.)\--With assistance from Tom Metcalf and Sophie Alexander.To contact the reporter on this story: Lizette Chapman in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Robin Ajello, Molly SchuetzFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Lolli, a plug-in that gives shoppers cash-back rewards in bitcoin, has added big names like Walmart, Macy's, Ulta, and Hilton. But that doesn't mean those companies are publicly supporting bitcoin.
(Bloomberg) -- Expedia Group Inc. said Chief Executive Officer Mark Okerstrom and Chief Financial Officer Alan Pickerill resigned effective immediately after clashing with the board on the online travel agency’s direction. Barry Diller, board chairman, and vice chairman Peter Kern will take charge while the board looks for long-term leadership.“Ultimately, senior management and the board disagreed on strategy,” Diller, 77, said in a statement Wednesday.Earlier this year, Expedia undertook an “ambitious reorganization plan,” aiming to bring its various brands and technology together in a more efficient way. Diller said the move, “while sound in concept, resulted in a material loss of focus on our current operations,” leading to disappointing third-quarter results and a lackluster near-term outlook. The board disagreed with that outlook, Diller said, “strongly believing the company can accelerate growth in 2020.”Diller said he will buy additional shares in the company as a “tangible sign of my faith in and commitment to Expedia’s long-term future.” The stock jumped as much as 10% in New York, the most intraday in about a year and a half, to $109.32.Expedia has been plowing resources into its home-sharing division, Vrbo, to challenge rivals Airbnb Inc. and Booking Holdings Inc. in the booming market for alternative accommodation. Expedia has struggled recently, especially in the third quarter when earnings missed Wall Street’s expectations. The company largely blamed Google, which has been cramming the top of its search results with more advertising, pushing down free listings from travel companies and forcing them to spend more on marketing.Okerstrom said last month that Expedia now sees 2019 adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization growth of 5% to 9%, down from a previous forecast for as much as 15% growth.Jake Fuller, an analyst at Guggenheim Securities LLC, said “it sounds to us like Okerstrom-Pickerill may have been getting ready to drop a disappointing 2020 Ebitda guide.” Fuller cut his Ebitda growth estimate to unchanged from a gain of 5% earlier this week. “We are left to wonder whether the two were pitching something worse than that to the board.”Okerstrom had been at Expedia for 13 years, serving previously as CFO before taking the top job in August 2017. The stock has declined about 38% since then. Okerstrom’s focus at the company had been expanding its hotel footprint internationally, according to Fuller, but the company fell flat in alternative accommodations, its biggest growth category. In the third quarter, Expedia’s short-term rental unit reported revenue growth of 14%, down from a 17% pace in the previous period.“The most logical strategic shift we can identify at this point would be getting back on track with VRBO,” Fuller wrote in a note to clients. “Alternative accommodations is a growth category and Expedia cannot afford to cede that space” to Airbnb and Booking.While Vrbo dominates the market in the U.S. for purely vacation-rentals, Airbnb and Booking capture a much larger share of the broader global $34 billion alternative accommodation market, which also includes non-traditional hotels and home sharing.Expedia also announced a new share repurchase authorization for 20 million shares of common stock, which is in addition to the 9 million shares available under the existing authorization.“The fact that Diller plans to buy stock and that Expedia increased the authorization are encouraging, but it will be hard to articulate a clear bull case in the near term withquestions over the 2020 outlook and no visibility on how Expedia may pivot under new leadership,” Fuller said.Eric Hart, Expedia’s chief strategy officer will serve as acting CFO.To contact the reporter on this story: Molly Schuetz in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.comFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Billionaire Diller, who also chairs Expedia's former parent IAC/InterActiveCorp , said he will oversee the executive leadership team along with Vice Chairman Peter Kern until the board finds a replacement. "Ultimately, senior management and the board disagreed on strategy," Chairman Barry Diller said in a statement, adding that the company's reorganization plan launched earlier this year had led to disappointing third-quarter results and a "lackluster" near-term outlook. "The board disagreed with that outlook, as well as the departing leadership's vision for growth, strongly believing the Company can accelerate growth in 2020," Diller said.
(Bloomberg) -- Google’s moves to cram the top of its search results with more and more advertising is hammering the online travel industry, one of the company’s biggest customers.Expedia Group Inc. fell the most in 14 years on Thursday and TripAdvisor Inc. dropped the most in two years after the companies reported dismal third-quarter results and laid the blame on Google. Booking Holdings Inc.’s shares dropped 8%, too, wiping out a combined market value of more than $13 billion from the three online travel agents.Google dominates the online search market, with at least three quarters of the market. People use the search engine to research trips, so for at least a decade online travel agents have refined their websites with trustworthy content and easy booking tools to show up high in Google results.This search engine optimization, or SEO, worked well until about five years ago. Around that time, Google began placing more ads on the top of search results, pushing down the free listings. The internet giant also built new travel search tools, which were mostly paid listings, too. This means online travel agents now must pay billions of dollars each year to Google to ensure they show up high in search results and get clicks from travel planners.The online travel industry has been concerned about Google’s changes since at least 2016. But the full impact was felt this week.“Google has got more aggressive,” TripAdvisor Chief Executive Officer Stephen Kaufer said during a conference call with analysts late Wednesday. “We’re not predicting that it’s going to turn around.”Free traffic is “shrinking all the time,” Expedia Chief Executive Officer Mark Okerstrom said the same day. “Google does continue to push for more revenue per visitor. And I think it’s just the reality of where the world is.”The industry has been trying other marketing channels, such as social media and more TV advertising. But Google’s search engine is so pervasive that online travel agents have to keep buying ads from the company to keep traffic coming to their sites.D.A. Davidson analysts wrote that Expedia is exploring alternatives to mitigate its “reliance on search/Google,” but they see “no alternatives that will be able to efficiently ‘move the needle’ from a volume perspective anytime soon.”Carnage in the online travel industry comes as antitrust scrutiny of Google is ramping up in the U.S. State, federal and congressional probes are all underway to determine whether the company violates competition law. One area of concern is vertical search, where Google uses its main search engine to promote its own industry-specific products over those of other companies. Travel is one example where this is happening, along with local search, contractor marketplaces like Angie’s List and shopping-comparison services.Google has been a rising risk for the travel industry for a while, but executives have been generally hesitant to blame it for poor results. The search giant is one of the most important sources of traffic and business for online travel agencies, so they have tried to maintain a good relationship. But this quarter, Google’s impact was so painful that industry executives and Wall Street analysts couldn’t avoid it.“We see these Google changes as a potential headwind to OTA profitability,” Morgan Stanley analyst Brian Nowak said in a note to clients. This trend isn’t going away, and people who want to invest in the online travel sector should do it through Google stock, he added.Booking Holdings, the largest online travel agent, was peppered with questions about Google during a conference call with analysts on Thursday.Glenn Fogel, Booking’s chief executive officer, said the company’s future success will rely on reaching people without Google getting in the way.“What we know is most important is for us to get customers to come to us directly,” he said. Building brand strength and retaining customers better means the company “will not be as dependent on other sources of traffic,” he added.\--With assistance from Ryan Vlastelica, Olivia Carville and Ian King.To contact the reporters on this story: Gerrit De Vynck in New York at firstname.lastname@example.org;Kiley Roache in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Alistair Barr, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Expedia Group Inc. showed a decline in revenue growth at its vacation rental business in the third quarter, signaling slowed momentum in the travel giant’s fastest-growing category and leading to a lowered profit forecast for the year.Bellevue, Washington-based Expedia’s short-term rental unit reported revenue growth of 14% in the three months ended Sept. 30, to $467 million. That’s less than the 17% pace in the previous period and missed analysts’ estimates for $462.4 million. Total revenue grew 8.6% to $3.56 billion, in line with analysts’ estimates. As a result of “disappointing results” in the quarter, Chief Executive Officer Mark Okerstrom lowered the company’s full-year outlook for adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. The shares fell about 13% in extended trading.Expedia has been plowing resources into its home-sharing division, Vrbo, in a bid to challenge rivals Airbnb Inc. and Booking Holdings Inc. in the booming market for alternative accommodation. While Vrbo dominates the market in the U.S. for purely vacation-rentals, Airbnb and Booking capture a much larger share of the broader global $34 billion alternative accommodation market, which also includes non-traditional hotels and home sharing.“We continue to be happy with the trends we are seeing at Vrbo and we continue to see growth rates in double digits,” Okerstrom said on a conference call. Expedia expects “continued muted growth rates” at Vrbo while it builds out the brand, which now suffers low visibility compared with its competitors. “Once we get past some changes, we will be able to return to growth rates we’re more satisfied with,” he said.Earlier this year, Expedia changed the vacation-rental division name to Vrbo, a moniker more familiar to Americans than the previous HomeAway label, which is more well-known in Europe.Okerstrom said Expedia now sees 2019 adjusted Ebitda growth of 5% to 9%, down from a previous forecast for as much as 15% growth.Vrbo only pulls in just over 10% of Expedia’s overall revenue, but analysts and investors focus on the division because it represents the company’s best bet for growth.Gross bookings for the travel giant climbed 9% to $26.9 billion. Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization came in at $912 million, missing average analyst estimates of $973.3 million. Earnings per share were $3.38, excluding some items. Analysts, on average, estimated $3.77.(Updates with forecast in the sixth paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Olivia Carville in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Molly Schuetz, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- A day after Amazon.com Inc. disclosed one of the largest campaign contributions in a Seattle election, protesters gathered outside the company’s headquarters.Under a pair of tents set up to deflect a persistent drizzle, City Councilmember Mike O’Brien said Amazon’s $1.05 million contribution to a business-backed political-action committee was “potentially devastating to our democracy.” Matt Smith, an Amazon package handler, asked employees to join him in a rally rejecting the move.And Kshama Sawant, a councilmember who has made criticism of Amazon a staple of her re-election campaign, led the couple dozen politicians, staffers and supporters in a call-and-response.“When billionaires are on the attack, what do we do,” she shouted.“Stand up, fight back!”At the fringes of the audience, Amazon lobbyist Guy Palumbo said, “Lose.”As Seattle barrels toward its Nov. 5 council election, residents are sharply divided over how to address the challenges facing the city after years of torrid growth. On one side are candidates like Sawant, the socialist incumbent, who say big businesses like Amazon need to be taxed to fund a frayed social-safety net. On the other are people like her opponent, Egan Orion, who have won over companies and voters by pledging to take a more pragmatic approach to the city’s challenges.Amazon has intensified the debate by wading into the election like never before. The company was generally a reluctant player in city politics, even as it grew to occupy dozens of buildings and employ more than 50,000 people in its hometown.@amazon dumps record $$ into @SeattleCouncil races local democrats speak out against what they call big corporations/wealthy efforts to buy election, @CMLGonzalez says these corporate donors are anti tax, anti poor “says Seattle City Council not for sale” 973FM @KIRORadio pic.twitter.com/ZUteRnUh3a— Hanna Scott (@HannaKIROFM) October 17, 2019 But during this election cycle it has plowed a total of $1.5 million into the local chamber of commerce’s political action committee. At least 18 executives personally sent checks to Orion. Wayne Barnett, the executive director of Seattle’s Ethics and Elections Commission, said the company’s donation was the largest contribution in a city election that he could remember, eclipsing the $1.39 million the American Chemistry Council spent in 2009 over a tax on disposable shopping bags.The spending on the local races reflects the potential for a pushback from business as progressive politicians gain prominence nationally. It has also framed the election as a test of whether money from deep-pocketed companies will be effective in the face of a public wary of corporate influence in politics. U.S. Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have already criticized Amazon’s spending on the Seattle races as they vie for the Democratic presidential nomination.“It’s a message nationally that Amazon won’t be pushed around,” said Joni Balter, a longtime Seattle journalist who hosts Civic Cocktail, a city forum for policymakers and community members. But she added that it could backfire on the company. “This is a city of contrarians who don’t like stuff like that.”Seattle’s business revolt ignited last year as the city considered a tax on large employers to fund homeless services. After the measure passed in May 2018, Amazon helped lead a resistance that ultimately ended in the measure’s repeal a month later. Since then, the company has made several announcements about its intentions to expand in Bellevue, just east of Seattle.More than a year after that fight, Seattle is still struggling to rein in its homelessness crisis, and voters are getting impatient. In a recent poll, two-thirds of respondents said they were more likely to vote for candidates who want to change the council’s direction. That, along with a wide-open field in many races, unleashed a torrent of spending. Seven of the nine seats on council are up for grabs, and only three incumbents are running.Rachel Lauter, executive director of Working Washington, a labor group that campaigned for Seattle’s $15-an-hour minimum wage, said Amazon’s donation “feels like a coordinated attack on government, generally.”“They are throwing down,” she said. “The question is what is this for, what do they really want. What the record shows is that they don’t want to pay taxes, they don’t want to see the city address labor standards for gig workers.”David Zapolsky, Amazon’s general counsel, said in an interview that the company is seeking a more pragmatic city government that would be open to input from business leaders, in addition to labor groups and citizens. “It’s important to have a city council where people feel comfortable going to city council without being shouted down or met with open hostility,” he said.While Amazon is by far the largest contributor to the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce’s Civic Alliance for a Sound Economy, several other businesses have given to the political action committee, including Expedia Group Inc., Starbucks Corp. and Vulcan Inc., a major local real estate developer and investment vehicle for the late Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul Allen.Orion, an organizer of Seattle’s PrideFest, has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the chamber’s spending, receiving about $285,000. But, so too, have candidates like police leader Jim Pugel and Heidi Wills, a former council member who was unseated in 2003.The money has shaped the race at a time when Seattle is pioneering a new model of public campaign finance meant to level the playing field between deep-pocketed donors and average citizens. Registered voters in the city each received $100 worth of “democracy vouchers” that they could give to candidates of their choosing. More than $2.4 million in contributions have been made through the program this year, according to the ethics and election commission.In a twist, Sawant turned down the vouchers -- and fundraising caps they imposed -- to more effectively fight against business spending. Her campaign had raised almost $453,000, largely from small-dollar donors, as of Oct. 27. Orion’s campaign, meanwhile, has brought in about $394,000, with about a third coming from vouchers.Amazon’s Zapolsky didn’t comment on the critiques of his company’s spending leveled by national politicians. Of the local races,“it’s not surprising that some candidates are looking to make this an election about Amazon as opposed to an election about the issues that matter to Seattle residents,” he said, calling out topics like homelessness, public safety, climate change and transportation.“We should all be on the same side of those and looking for solutions,” he said.Carol Isaac highlighted some of the same issues as she waited for a debate to begin last month between Orion and Sawant at Seattle’s Town Hall. But the retired University of Washington researcher put the blame elsewhere for the city’s challenges.Her fix?“You want me to give you the one-liner,” she asked. “Get rid of capitalism.”\--With assistance from Dina Bass.To contact the reporters on this story: Noah Buhayar in Seattle at email@example.com;Matt Day in Seattle at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, ;Craig Giammona at firstname.lastname@example.org, Robin Ajello, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Uber Technologies Inc. Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi vowed to get his company to profitability while pursuing growth from emergent arenas such as India, addressing investors’ concerns about the ride-sharing company’s mounting losses and global regulatory challenges.Uber, which lost about $5.2 billion in the second quarter alone, is having a tough time convincing the market of its growth potential, or that it can turn a profit anytime soon. Its stock has plummeted 27% since a disappointing initial public offering in May. Khosrowshahi, who this month unveiled a final round of job cuts, said the core rides business would achieve profitability even as newer lines such as Eats gained traction.Khosrowshahi was brought in to clean up the ride-sharing company in the summer of 2017, after a series of scandals brought down flamboyant co-founder Travis Kalanick. It had already become one of the world’s most valuable startups by aggressively pushing into new markets, bringing its model to places where few rules existed to deal with the emergent phenomenon of ride-hailing. Now, Uber is advancing at a more even clip after exiting markets such as China, expanding existing business lines while exploring new markets. The company will soon roll out Uber Works, a listing service for temp workers of all stripes.“If I rated myself based on accounting of the last quarter, I wouldn’t be doing so well. But I live in the real world,” Khosrowshahi said, seated in a conference room sporting a bright-red Uber-monogrammed Indian silk waistcoat.“I ran Expedia for 12 years. It was a profitable company with significant cash flows,” Khosrowshahi said at Uber’s engineering center in Bangalore, which was decked out with oil lamps and sheer orange drapes for Diwali, the upcoming Indian festival of lights. Uber’s take rate, or commission earned, in rides was over 20% and “a great business can be built with a 20% take rate.”Read more: Uber Dismisses 350 Employees, a ‘Last Wave’ of Job CutsUber is one of the most prominent companies in the portfolio of SoftBank Group Corp., the Japanese investment powerhouse that also backed WeWork and former rivals such as Didi Chuxing. The U.S. company, once a star in the SoftBank constellation, is now labeled among its biggest under-performers.India is a potential bright spot: a massive, untapped market where Uber can demonstrate rapid growth to calm investors back home. It’s also a laboratory for innovation in terms of new modes of transportation, the chief executive said. “Our fastest growing segments are some of the new segments -- two and three wheelers,” he said. The company has a presence in about 40 Indian cities.Khosrowshahi says Uber will continue to invest there, and is confident his team can build products that fit not just the Indian market but could also be exported to growth regions of the next decade from the Middle East to Africa. This week, he unveiled a feature to link Uber’s services to Delhi’s public transport system.The most significant of the problems facing the chief executive could well be a shifting gig-worker landscape. Regulators are making it harder for companies such as Uber and Lyft to classify workers as independent contractors, which raises a question about the basis of their business models. California’s classification of drivers as employees would be a “mistake” and would increase prices for riders while making the service available to fewer people, Khosrowshahi said.“We and other gig economy companies are going to sponsor an initiative that actually brings this issue to the voters. Let the voters decide.”(Updates with additional information on Uber’s India business from the seventh paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Saritha Rai in Bangalore at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Edwin Chan at firstname.lastname@example.org, Colum MurphyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
It's easy to see what kind of aircraft any given flight will have. Consumers may start looking for this information when the Boeing 737 Max comes back into service.
(Bloomberg) -- In the past year, hotel chains and home-sharing sites have started encroaching on each other’s turf. Airbnb Inc. advertises hotel rooms on its platform and Marriott International Inc. recently launched a home-stay offering.The latest player to blur the lines is short-term rental start up Sonder. The San Francisco-based hospitality company is expanding beyond its network of custom-designed vacation apartments, signing leases with 17 off-the-beaten-path, mom-and-pop style hotels in New York, London, Dublin and other cities in recent months – and is negotiating an additional 40 properties.Sonder targets the sweet spot between a home and a hotel, merging the vibe of an Airbnb in a hip neighborhood with the convenience of a hotel’s 24/7 concierge and professionally cleaned sheets. Sonder advertises its units on Airbnb and Expedia Group Inc.’s Vrbo, complying with local rules and regulations in the 21 cities where it operates.After raising $225 million in a funding round in July, valuing the company at more than $1 billion, Sonder decided to veer away from its traditional short-term rental model and elbow its way into the hotel industry.Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Francis Davidson says Sonder will be raking in more revenue than Marriott by 2025. That won’t be easy: The world’s largest hotel company had revenue of $21 billion last year and manages more than 1 million rooms.By contrast, Sonder has 10,000 listings, albeit five times as many as it did a year ago. Moreover, its business model has some unwelcome parallels. Leasing space under long-term deals for short-term stays is what led WeWork Cos. to accumulate a pile of debt, which generated investor blow back and ultimately forced the postponement of its public market debut.“We have seen how bad the reception was for WeWork doing leases and how it eats into profitability, especially in the initial phase when the company signs all these leases,” said Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Mandeep Singh. “The question is, what is it technologically that differentiates them from hotel chains – why would anybody pick a Sonder over a hotel?”Davidson says Sonder can charge 20% less than a four-star hotel, using technology to reduce costs and provide guests with a seamless on-app check-in, keyless entry and a mobile concierge. “Our big edge over hotels is that their model hasn’t evolved in the last 40 years,” Davidson says, adding that Sonder’s units are typically found in neighborhoods that major hotels don’t usually occupy.The company has taken over old hat factories, police stables and small historic hotels like Philadelphia Queen Hotel, The Abbey Hotel in Miami or the Flatiron Hotel in New York.Chirag Patel, who runs a family business of 10 small hotel properties in California, working with Sonder has removed his daily administrative tasks without denting his profits. “You get a fresh new look instead of the regular old 40 - 50 rooms that all look pretty much the same,” he says.Lodging researcher and former New York University hospitality dean Bjorn Hanson says Sonder will likely come as a relief to mom-and-pop hotel owners like Patel, who may be tired of operating in a highly volatile market. At least with Sonder, “they pay the lease, they bear the risk,” he says.To contact the reporter on this story: Olivia Carville in New York at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org, Molly Schuetz, Robin AjelloFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Traveloka, Southeast Asia’s largest online travel startup, is getting into financial services.The startup backed by Expedia Group Inc. and JD.com Inc. will issue a credit card with Indonesia’s PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia Persero Tbk linked to its booking services. The travel app is targeting many users across the Indonesian archipelago who have little or no access to traditional banking or reliable internet.Founded by three engineers in 2012, Traveloka -- said to be valued at around $2 billion in 2017 -- has expanded across Southeast Asia by making it easier for consumers to book flights and hotels within the region. It’s raised at least $500 million from investors including Hillhouse Capital and Sequoia. Henry Hendrawan, president of Traveloka operations, said the card was one facet of building a fintech business to complement its travel, accommodation and lifestyle services.“In anything we do in financial services, we will always look to go with strong partners,” Hendrawan said in an interview, adding that he expects to unveil more products and partners in the near future. “This is a perfect example.”With a population of more than 620 million and growing middle class, Southeast Asia is expected to see its online travel market almost triple from about $30 billion in 2018 to $78 billion in 2025, according to Google and Temasek Holdings Pte. By 2025, 57% of bookings will be made online, up from 34% in 2015.Traveloka operates in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam. Customers will be able to use its card in Indonesia and around the world for both online and offline transactions via Visa Inc.’s network.To contact the reporter on this story: Yoolim Lee in Singapore at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Edwin Chan at firstname.lastname@example.org, Peter ElstromFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Marriott International's aggressive portfolio growth strategy is fueled by company ambitions to make its Bonvoy loyalty program as complete as it can be. Speaking at the 2019 Skift Global Forum in New York City Thursday, Marriott Chief Financial Officer Leeny Oberg referred to Bonvoy as the perfect antidote to lure customers into existing and pending […]
Nov.07 -- Mark Okerstrom, Expedia Group Inc. chief executive officer, discusses the company's third-quarter earnings and the outlook for its home-sharing division, Vrbo. He speaks with Bloomberg's Vonnie Quinn and Guy Johnson on "Bloomberg Markets."