OCTOBER 2019 / NO. 2
TAGS: WEWORK, UBER, MIKE ISAAC, TRAVIS KALANICK, SILICON VALLEY, BOARD OF DIRECTORS, STRATEGIC SERVICES GROUP, SSG, SECRET SERVICE, GRAYBALL, CLOUDKITCHENS, DOORDASH, JUST EAT UK, TAKEAWAY AND DELIVEROO, CIA, FBI
Uber and its Strategic Service Group
“Uber created its own secret service called the ‘Strategic Services Group’ existing of former guys from the CIA and FBI”. ….. How far do you have to go to violate disruption?
In our INTELLIGENCE BRIEFING OF OCTOBER 1ST 2019 we described how data & analytics will change the nature of many sectors of industry. We also gave our comments on start-up “WeWork and the Great Delusion”. In this Intelligence Briefing II we will give you some insights in another start-up Uber.
However, it also might be nice to inform you that we have had another successful two days European Master Class Strategic Intelligence last week in the Netherlands. Attendees came from Belgium, Germany, France, Sweden, Austria and the USA. A very dynamic group of professionals working in a mix of senior positions in their companies. Since we started with these Master Classes in 2002 it has been our 34th in Europe.
It was fascinating to read the book of Mike Isaac on Uber and its former CEO Travis Kalanick. Many people see Uber as the most successful start-up in Silicon Valley. But Uber never made any profit and the loss in III/2019 has been US$ 4,6 billion. Every time the Board tells the financial world “profits will come in the near future”. However, insiders judge Uber as the example of everything what goes wrong in Silicon Valley. Young, white men who behave inviolable! Growth, growth and growth again was the only target at the expense of everything, driven by extreme and aggressive competition violating all ethics and the rules of the game. Uber was seen as a ’war machine’.
Uber even had its own secret service called the “Strategic Services Group”(SSG), existing of former professionals from the CIA and FBI. Core activities of ‘SSG’ were fighting and spying on competitors. In addition Uber had special software called ‘Greyball’ with the aim to mislead government officials.
CEO Travis Kalanick was forced to leave Uber in 2017. His new start-up is ‘Cloudkitchens’. This start-up rebuilds warehouses into ‘dark kitchens’, where they prepare meals for the home delivery markets. Fierce and aggressive competition has started again towards key competitors such as DoorDash USA, Just Eat UK, Takeaway and Deliveroo. We have to wait and see if the world gets a another new “Uber”, this time in ‘prepared meals’.
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