Pete Flint: Okay, so we are here today at NFX HQ in San Francisco. I'm Pete Flint. I'm here with my partner and friend James Currier and we're talking about the Lyft IPO which is going out on NASDAQ in just a few days.
James Currier: Right.
Pete Flint: And so James, 2019 is a pretty exciting year for network effects. 70% of value in technology is created by companies have a network effect at their core.
James Currier: So this year in 2019, it's a big year for network effect IPOs. A bunch of companies starting with Lyft and Uber and then Pinterest and Slack on the B2B side, Airbnb, Postmates, maybe Robinhood this year. All of these companies have at their cores network effects that determine how the companies move, how they grow, how they compete, and understanding those network effects is critical to understanding what they're going to be in the future. And their examples are good for startup Founders to understand, you know, how to emulate the successes they've had but also to understand the environment that you're going to be operating in over the next 10 years as these companies go public, and the network effects that they have, and the reinforcement they're going to be trying to do, where you can play around that. For people who are investing in these IPOs they're trying to get a sense of what the future holds for these companies and understanding
Pete Flint: So this is a fascinating company in a fascinating year, you know, I think both of us have kind of known the company since its origins and after many many years they are finally going public and I think there's a whole bunch of interesting things going on here. One is kind of obviously, you know, we at NFX are a venture fund that focuses on network effect businesses and this is at its core a network effects business. It's a transportation marketplace and so it's fascinating to dive into not just the evolution but also some of the data and kind of the published data around the company.
James Currier: But we're they've gotten, where they've come from...
Pete Flint: ... and where they going.
James Currier: Yeah.
Pete Flint: You know, the 20 billion dollar question for Lyft is around competition. It's fascinating the competition with Uber. This is a you know, it's turned into a duopoly pretty much in the US.
James Currier: Right. Given that it's not a duopoly in China, for instance.
Pete Flint: Yeah, or other parts of the world. The network effects within the business, how defensible is this? Because if it's not defensible, then it becomes a pretty low margin business.
James Currier: What's interesting about this particular network effect that we noticed years ago is that we call it asymptoting, right ,where you can get a driver to come pick you up in four minutes and that's great. But if they pick you up in three minutes, that's not necessarily even that helpful because you still get your bag or jacket or your umbrella or you gotta hug the friend goodbye or go to the bathroom. Whatever it is. You might need that three minutes to do something before you get in. So it really asymptotes. You can get 10,000 Lyft drivers and it's not going to be that much better than where they are now with a thousand.
Pete Flint: So this is like when... when you open the app it says your car is three minutes away. And then you say book it and it actually arrives in 10 minutes. They're just playing with the sort of that three-minute rule in your mind that that's the sort of threshold of availability.
James Currier: That's right. So the app has to tell you ... I mean that's that's a very interesting detail of the product which you know sort of shows that that's the threshold at which the service doesn't get any better and if they don't do that you might switch over to the other app which gets into another interesting challenge with this business, which is what we call multi-tenanting, right? We've talked about this before, where if I'm a rider and I can choose between the two apps and I can toggle between them in a second, which I can, then I can do what's called multi-tenanting. I can live in two different apps. And of course the drivers can do the same on the other side so, you know by the math of it this is a pretty vulnerable type of a network effect compared to many others that we work with.
Pete Flint: So the sort of the traditional analogy that's often used is telecommunication network effects. So you think of Verizon or AT&T it's sort of like they're substitutes for each other. But there's just not that much competition. So other entrants that have tried to compete against Uber and Lyft have kind of been knocked out because they haven't achieved the sufficient scale and density in their particular markets.
James Currier: Right, so Juno is I think the best example in New York. They come in they raise 50 million bucks. They get all the drivers. They have no problem getting the supply side of the marketplace. But they had a tough time getting the riders and they didn't have enough money with $50 million to actually buy enough traffic so that the drivers would then be happy enough and ended up selling for $200 million, which was really an acquihire in that case, which is too bad because you could see having three logos on each driver. You can see a Lyft and an Uber and a Juno let's say but it never happened because of what you say is this threshold network effect, where you just got to get both sides of the marketplace in order to get it down to three or four minutes.
Pete Flint: So it's interesting looking at the S-1 that and of course, we don't know kind of Uber's number, while it's a sort of asymptoting network effect, they've continued to be able to kind of increase their take within the marketplace. So they've increased their ability to grow revenue per active rider and at the same time there's this sort of you know, this aggressive focus on market share gains. So Uber has been you know, the number one for several years, but Lyft is fighting back and growing their market share. It remains to be seen how long-term profitable this is going to be, because there's discounts, there's price competition Clearly demand side is stimulated by pricing I think the fear is from an investor perspective. Are these guys are going to just battle kind of forever like the airlines?
James Currier: What would be the airline analogy?
Pete Flint: Prices are basically commoditized and so if you look at the travel industry is like the OTAs make a buck or two per airline ticket but in reality they're very successful businesses because they make a ton of money on hotels.
James Currier: So hotels haven't been commoditized? So there's still margin there to be gotten but the airlines because they're essentially selling the exact same thing have been able to be commoditized and so they're really making their money off their frequent flyer points right they've gone to loyalty programs in order to try to find some margin away from the other airlines.
Pete Flint: Yeah well certainly Uber has launched a reward program, a loyalty program, to kind of avoid this sort of multi-tenanting. And certainly the kind of packaging and pricing they're putting in is to kind of get people to be loyal to one company versus the other.
James Currier: Yeah, and two years ago Lyft in the United States only had 25 percent market share, but now they're up to 39 percent .Why do you think that is?
Pete Flint: There was clearly a sort of case of Uber being the early aggressive scale player that's coming in and kind of out executing frankly Lyft, outspending and basically taking market share, Lyft has been sort of raising capital and fighting back. There's sort of a public narrative that it's the #DeleteUber movement, which helped Lyft which I think was a sort of a modest tailwind for them. I think it's just the company just figured out what they were doing, and executed and raised money to kind of get to sufficient scale made them a viable substitute to Uber.
James Currier: Yeah, and it does feel as if you know, this is consumer product. So with Juno, they were unable to get the demand side. They're already got... They were unable to get the consumer enough on on their platform to actually make it viable. So this is really a consumer product and the consumers have emotions about their products, whether it's Hertz or Avis or Coke or Pepsi and people have these emotions around Lyft and the Lyft brand, and what it means, or what it doesn't mean and it makes a difference. I've talked to Lyft drivers and they tell you "I don't do Uber anymore." I'm like why? And they say "well because the Uber passengers are jerks and I don't enjoy driving Uber passengers around" and I thought to myself that's incredible that two companies with the exact same product, the exact same cars because of their branding or the pink color the black color of the names or... I don't know how it happened over the last eight years, but because of subtle differences in their branding and their approach have ended up picking different personality drivers and different personality passengers. So that now Lyft is at 39 percent market share. It's fascinating to see that slight differences can make that sort of impact in the long term.
Pete Flint: I think one of the core questions going forward is how much the companies look more like each other versus different from each other and I think, you know, there was a time early on that Lyft was kind of the differentiated company with pink mustaches and fist bumps and all the rest of it and Uber was the sleeker mysterious Yuppie kind of Black Car service.
James Currier: Uber's trying to lighten it up, Lyft is getting a little more solid. Less fist-bumping.
Pete Flint: I think you'll probably see the companies try to look more different in the future in terms of their branding. I think the brand differentiation will expand beyond the product differentiation. And they'll try and focus on differences between the companies and positioning to target different segments of the population.
James Currier: Yeah. Yeah, and you know, you've seen Lyft now decide to go into the the scooter business with their own brand. So now the Lyft brand means scooters in some places and rides which will be an interesting difference because Uber invested in one of the scooter companies and is keeping that brand separate right now at least. So that's going to start to shift the two brand meanings to people as well. Maybe you know, I think both of them have realized that you've got to own the app that consumers go to when they want transportation. Not just when they want a ride sharing type of transportation and I think there's a race to own that consumer habit to open up their app instead of somebody else's.
Pete Flint: Yeah, and I think taking a long-term view that's one of the key strategic focuses for the company is to own the demand side, to be that kind of single app to own transportation. And that obviously create sort of a bunch of optionality into autonomous. You know, whether it's scooters or multimodal and then autonomous If you start to control the entry point for transportation decision-making then it opens up a whole wealth of opportunity into autonomous. It's not going to be owned by BMW or Mercedes or Tesla it's going to be owned by a small square on your phone.
James Currier: Right just owning those pixels on the phone might do it and it could be car rentals could be car leasing could be public transportation, you know, there's so many different modalities that people do use it could all be in one app and it's not clear why it shouldn't be. But it hasn't happened yet and then we'll see if it does or not.
Pete Flint: Yeah, looking at tech companies that are going public one of the key things that you'd expect to see is how much the company grows in an existing market versus grows in adjacent markets. So classic examples: Amazon moving into kind of multiple categories multiple geographies and then multiple Industries with AWS and others and that's you know, we know that story. Facebook obviously with Instagram and WhatsApp, Google, YouTube, and others. On the one hand Lyft has been taking a kind of stab at Uber for Uber Eats and being international but clearly there's going to be this series of S-curves for this company growing their existing markets and then what's next? And the obvious one is autonomous. You know, that's an enormous market but it maybe 10 years out.
James Currier: Yeah, and it was interesting I was taking a tour of the Lyft autonomous area down in Palo Alto the other day. They've got 450 people down there working on autonomous people in 13 different disciplines and you've got the same thing over at Uber but they instead of being in the Bay Area are in Pittsburgh, Toronto, and Ottawa mostly and I think they have over a thousand people. Both of the the companies are spending a lot and losing a hundred percent of what they spend on their autonomous efforts and you know, there's probably another ten giant autonomous efforts over Google and elsewhere with the same sorts of very diversified teams and everyone just burning through cash to try to be one of the ones that gets there first and it'll be interesting to see how much both these companies start, you know... continue to invest in that, you know once they're public in these numbers start to come out and be scrutinized by the investors?
Pete Flint: Yeah, and I think how much they use external investments to subsidize that, because at this point. It's almost an open checkbook, but it's going to be unsustainable. I don't know if it really matters... You know in some ways, It doesn't matter. You know for the next several years if Lyft becomes that kind of like that button on your screen, then whether that's their own autonomous technology or a third-party to autonomous technology that they integrate as part of the open platform, maybe that's okay.
James Currier: Maybe that's okay, but they're all doing it. They're all spending like crazy and putting huge amounts of effort and in that direction and given that there's you know, 10 or 11 such efforts. I'd be interested to know what the strategy is on that. I'm looking forward to hearing a lot of the discussion once the company goes public.
You know, we you mentioned Uber Eats and one of the things we've seen with this asymptoting network effect, which isn't particularly strong and isn't particularly defensible, is it does feel like Lyft and Uber do need to explore other features and functionality that have better network effects. So for instance, commute. If you're higher density in terms of where you get picked up in the morning it can make a difference. So if someone has to come six blocks over that's an extra eight minutes if there's stop lights or stop signs.
So having someone really close to you for a commute could be very valuable, and that is not an asymptoting two-sided network effect. It's actually a direct network effect with people who are commuting and then they're gonna have to drop you off somewhere and so I think Uber is very smart to go after that and I'm wondering if Lyft is going to get into that area as well simply because it is a much more defensible network effect. And this thing we're talking about right now with being the little button on the phone that would be for all of your transportation modalities? That's kind of a two-sided platform network effect right where you create the platform of the button and then the public transit and the rental car companies and the leasing ... Everybody else sort of stacks on top of your platform.That too is a much more defensible network effect, more so than this asymptoting one that they have today.
Pete Flint: And of course the data that's being collected out of that creates tons of improved product experiences, monetization opportunities, and partnership opportunities to strengthen that platform it's unclear how it would change the competitive dynamics but will certainly increase the overall defensibility of those two companies because there seems to be this sort of copy cat mentality between the two they're innovating and then replicating between the two so it will be interesting to see how the psychology of the competition plays out.
James Currier: Right because they do have to watch each other.
Pete Flint: I think the dynamics around the ride-sharing business is... The demand side is clear. You know, there is ridiculous demand for low-cost, high-quality, high-availability transportation. The real question is the supply side. T hat's where the innovation opportunity and long-term margin potential is. And probably from a long-term profitability perspective it's innovation on the supply side that is going to drive the success of these companies and whether that is branding, whether that's product features, whether that's financing, whether that's autonomous probably all of those areas will be enormously beneficial to be successful and there's a lot of talk about the demand side experience, but the supply side will probably be the defining characteristic of who wins ultimately in the US In these marketplaces.
James Currier: Yeah, or whoever can aggregate a diverse set of supply options, either by providing it themselves by owning the cars or having drivers who own their own cars or having scooters or... You know, there's gonna be so many different transportation options that they could aggregate, whether it's commuting network or... So innovation, I think is certainly required on the supply side, but it's also a case of enabling an ecosystem perhaps to develop different options that can then plug into a demand-side aggregator.
Pete Flint: Yeah, Lyft is approaching the autonomous strategy in really two pillars. One is an open platform and one is an owned and operated and proprietary technology and it's not clear yet how Uber strategy is, but it's probably going to be somewhat similar. You have to own the underlying technology for fear of disintermediation by someone else, but you have to maintain a wide number of options to work with as many low-cost suppliers as possible and it you know, I think there will be an interesting question around who owns the data around these services because that's going to be a key asset in early autonomous companies taking an advantageous lead by aggregating data and building a data Network effect essentially around this new form of autonomous driving.
James Currier: You know, another thing that people don't don't talk nearly enough about typically with these sorts of discussions about you know, two competing public companies is just the character in the culture of the different companies. I mean, this is something that we've experienced, you know, living here knowing a lot of the executives of each of the companies and their experiences of working in different companies. And remember, I don't know, fifteen years ago, one of the mutual funds pulled me aside and said, you know, "hey, what's the competition between Yahoo! And Google going to be like?" And I said, please just look at their cultures. Google is going to crush Yahoo! And that did end up happening, but it was kind of clear just by knowing the personalities and the culture of these companies. You see the same thing with Lyft and Uber very distinct cultures. There's different types of people working at the place feels very different when you go to their offices. You know Lyft is much more collaborative, much more lighthearted. There's there's a tremendous amount of energy and buzz there, and you have the same energy and buzz over at Uber but it feels very different. It feels much more, you know, driven, much more serious much more heads down.
Pete Flint: Yeah. It is interesting looking at the. The parallels between other industries and other companies which have gone sort of public in the same sort of vintage.
James Currier: Well Pete, you had one with Trulia and Zillow.
Pete Flint: Exactly. So there's a ton of parallels.
James Currier: You were CEO and took truly a public and then Zillow was your main competitor in the products ended up being very similar overtime. How did that play out?
Pete Flint: It's kind of analogous in the sense that Trulia started on one segment of market which was more homebuyers, and Zillow started for home sellers and then over the subsequent eight years the sort of product experience morphed, consumers really couldn't see that much differentiation in products, you know, more the brand experiences. So we move to a marketing battle not a product battle. And Zillow went public a year before and Zillow went out in 2011, Trulia went out in 2012, you know, both companies are great and they obviously, you know ended up merging but how the individual leaders think about competition and clearly you've seen Uber being you know beaten to the IPO start line by Lyft, which is clearly a sort of aggressive move to fight back and own some of their space because they were an early innovator in the category.
So they're getting in front telling their story rather than being compared to Uber. They're telling their own story and getting ahead of it. Which I think is a smart strategy. Box did it over DropBox, that's the other parallel. That's slightly different similar products different segments of the market. But Box was definitely the kind of less well-known company and smaller company and got out ahead. And I think that was exactly the right thing to do. I think is absolutely the smart thing to do for Lyft to get out ahead of it and tell their story and build their brand, and you know for us going public that was a key component of it. To go public was to build our brand and increase awareness and obviously have a balance sheet and liquidity to be more active.
The challenges of going public, particularly when you've got this very visible comp out there, is how much the company thinks about sort of competition and and executes in a way which is tracking to the metrics of the other public company, versus building the right strategy, and it appears in very subtle non-obvious ways by the metrics you choose to share with Wall Street you use let the bunch of metrics and then you publish them, and once you start publishing them it's very hard to stop publishing those metrics, and you know that we often see in kind of in private companies where the execution is a slave of the metrics which is, you know, generally a huge mistake to make and it's unclear longer term what Lyft's core metrics are going to be or Ubers core metrics are going to be in terms of what drives their ultimate business, so they're going to have to resist the temptation not to just try and optimize near-term metrics driven by Wall Street, which may least I have the longer-term goal of the business and what drives profitability.
James Currier: Of course Wall Street's going to want them to both report the same types of numbers so that they can compare apples to apples and make it easier, and that may not be in the best interest of either of the companies.
Pete Flint: And that's particularly hard for the number two because they're going to have inferior metrics in some ways and then Uber being second will be able to tell a story based on what Lyft has told. How they think about differentiation from a brand perspective, from a product perspective, and a psychology perspective of you know, I think it's fabulous that these both these teams... I don't know about Uber but certainly Lyft the founders have a super vote. It's a controversial opinion, but I think it's a great thing as the number two player that executes strategy that's somewhat insulated from Wall Street, it stops them being at the mercy of particular analysts and Wall Street dictating that strategy. They need to dictate their own strategy, so as Founders maintaining control, we think that's a great thing.
James Currier: Yeah. I totally agree. You can't do anything special if you're if you're doing it by committee, and the analysts and everybody else is the committee. So when we look at the the voting supermajority that the founders have, we see that as a very positive thing because these are industries that are changing so fast, we don't know what it's going to look like in four years. And without the ability to move these big ships fast, then you're going to risk losing everything to large competitors or different technological shifts, and so these types of businesses you want people to have that control, to navigate in a very rapidly changing situation. This is not General Electric. This is not IBM.
Pete Flint: Yeah, I saw it first hand. You know as CEO of Trulia we didn't have founder control post IPO, whereas Zillow did, those founders chose to have founder control over that company and I you know, I obviously on the Trulia board and then when we merged I was on the Zillow board along with Rich Barton, Lloyd Frink, and the founders who are in control of Zillow group and that was a fascinating case study of seeing two companies execute on the same business problem, but different strategies and the subtle thing of having that... forcing that long-term view, which is baked into the governance of the company, does affect the psychology and execution path.
James Currier: So because everyone at the boardroom knew that ultimately it was going to come down to what Rich and Lloyd wanted to do there was helpful discussion, but they knew they weren't making the decision by committee. And therefore you're saying Zillow could really tend to look very long-term and execute toward that on a monthly and quarterly basis because they had that control.
Pete Flint: Absolutely. I think it was, a superb set of individuals around the table and a very well-run board, but the decision making framework was not at the mercy of short term shareholder decisions and analyst decisions they would like what is the right thing to do for the company longer-term and absolutely that was driven, you know driven by the founders and they're able to kind of reinvent and take bold bets through a period of time, which is what is going to be needed for Lyft, if it wants to become the leader in the US then it has to make some very very bold bets.
James Currier: Right, to try to move from 39% share to 59% share.
Pete Flint: Yeah, it takes some very bold bets which probably will come at the detriment to short-term profitability, but that's what they can have to do. And so having that founder structure is going to be necessary.
James Currier: Yeah. So what would you tell Lyft to do at this point now that they're going public?
Pete Flint: A number of things. I think they want...
James Currier: One of the things that I'm thinking is I would definitely have Lyft move into a becoming commuter network. They have Lyft line but it's still a two-sided marketplace between a driver and riders. I feel is if what both Lyft and Uber should do and Uber's already done it is to try to develop a commuter network, instead of being a two-sided marketplace, and network among commuter drivers, commute peer-to-peer where, through higher density you're going to be able to match up with someone who's closer to you when you leave and closer to you when you drop off, and that's going to give you incremental savings and time and money that will be hard to defeat. It's a real direct network effect, which would be hard to undo if you can get, and so I I feel as if that type of an approach is something that Lyft should be taking and I'm not quite sure why they haven't.
Another thing I would suggest is to be the first to drop the autonomous unit. I just feel as if someone's going to come up with it. And I'm like... I'm not running the company, but for me to be spending all that money and distraction to to build a technology that is going to be widely available from potentially 10 other sources and then they can compete to try to get Lyft's business, I would as Lyft focus on their advantage which is the relationship with the consumer, and providing them with with transportation options, because the autonomous people will come to them and need that distribution at some point and Lyft will be a key player in that. And so I would be the first to drop that so I could focus on the more network-effect-y type of things that Lyft's already doing.
Their early days were peer-to-peer when they were Zimride and they had a better idea, which was to create this two-sided marketplace where it was money-driven where you could actually get people to do it because they were getting paid on these short-haul rides. And I think it's also worth mentioning that Lyft came out with Lyft instead of Zimride and then 30 days later, Uber came out with a clone of Lyft with the Uber X, and it was just a brilliant move on the part of Uber to clone and copy Lyft, but I think most people think of Uber as first, even though history shows that Lyft was the first one to get there with the idea, and Uber is just smart enough to realize it was a better idea, and although the industry is now sort of ten years old, I still think it's going to be incredibly dynamic in the next 10 years and real bold moves are going to be required like Uber's bold move to get into Uber X in 30 days and move everybody off of what they were doing on to that, those types of bold moves can only be made when the founders are really in control of the company, even when the company is going to be worth $20 billion or more.
Pete Flint: So some of the other bold moves Lyft should be focusing on is trying to think about are there particular markers or segments that they can dominate in a way that they become the sort of frankly the monopoly a benevolent monopoly in a particular market. So I think there's a perception that the battleground for these businesses is in urban America, but it's quite possible that the actual battleground is going to be in suburban America with less density, which doesn't have the economic size to sustain multiple competitors. And so if these companies can focus on particular markets, particular segments, particular sort of product experiences, which they can substitute being the dominant player, then that becomes a very interesting proposition and they become unable to be dislodged and Lyft becomes the dominant platform.
James Currier: The dominant platform of thousands of smaller markets.
Pete Flint: Thousands of smaller markets, like, you know, everyone loves to write about what's the pickup time in Uber or for Lyft or market share in San Francisco and New York and Miami and LA but actually but of lift is able to dominate these second or 30 markets, then they're able to become the dominant player in those markets would potentially transition car owners away from car ownership because you go on these trips and you're like I'm going to somewhere I'm not confident there's going to be a Lyft or Uber, then you start to basically eliminate the need for car ownership and become the dominant platform.
James Currier: So we've got is 39% of Americans have tried this ride sharing service across the us but only 19 percent of the rural areas. So it's really much more greenfield in those spaces.
Pete Flint: Huge opportunity in the rural areas and this market will likely be a winner take all they're not big enough to sustain multiple competitors.
James Currier: Yeah. So right now we're excited about Lyft going public for 20 - 25 billion dollars. But in a month or two, we're going to Uber come out at maybe five or six times that. I mean their revenues Ubers revenues are apparently, you know over a 11, while Lyft's are only 2, 2.2 and you know Uber is going to be getting a five times valuation, maybe six times valuation. They're going to be much more dominant and then everyone's gonna be talking about Uber in a month or two, you know, do you think that that Lyft can survive? I mean, is this the kind of thing where Uber's just going to keep grinding away at them? Do we do we have hope for Lyft?
Pete Flint: It's a scary proposition for Lyft, I think Lyft will be absolutely fine. I think brand preference is surprisingly strong. People want to fly, you know Virgin or used to want to fly Virgin over other airlines and the same way I think people have a strong brand preference and affinity and I think Lyft will do just fine but it's a, it's a frightening proposition for the management having a scale player with you know, not just billions in the bank but tens of billions in the bank able to kind of compete and potentially crush them.
James Currier: Yeah, I think I think two years ago. I think it would have been more scared for Lyft. But having seen them move from 25 to 39 percent market share in the US, which is the only thing they're really focused on that indicates that maybe they can keep moving it up.
Pete Flint: But that that was from a cultural perspective. It seems you know at the margin it feels like Lyft is trying to be a little bit more missionary focus culture . Whereas Uber is traditionally more of a mercenary culture. This is about money. This is about being aggressive and you know Dara's a terrific CEO, but it's a for-hire CEO as opposed to being founder-driven so they would for sure will play up this in their external communication. It's unclear how much this is in their internal culture. And we know that the strength of the culture is going to be ultimately, probably the single defining characteristic of long-term success.
James Currier: Particularly when we have this consumer brands.
Pete Flint: Particularly when we have these consumer brands and these are the marketplaces that communities like this is a where you have to appeal to ultimately millions of consumers both on the supply and demand side. So if they're able to build that empathy with that community through their culture and build products and services and position against that then you know they're marginal difference's that can transform to kind of dramatic network effects of scale.
James Currier: Right. Marginal differences in the culture particularly as you mentioned because you know the this particular marketplace touches real community. It touches the streets that touches the neighborhoods that touches people, tens of millions of people at touches cities, how the cities operate. I mean, it really touches the heart of what makes our community a community and and you can't ignore that and so it does feel as if if Lyft can harness their more community founder-led culture, they could be an advantage over a more mercenary culture of more numbers-oriented culture of Uber.