Google Inc Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

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Plan for Future:

Google Inc. is considering the acquisition of Uber Technology Inc. in which it has already invested $258 million as a venture capitalist. The basic reason behind the acquisition plan is that the culture of Uber has similarities with Google and both companies have a strong emphasis on technology to change the traditional way of doing things and making them easier and less costly for users. Moreover, Google and Uber can collaborate on the different projects to develop the new products together.

Uber:

Uber started off as a cab service in San Francisco, which was founded by Travis Gala nick and Garret Scott. Travis and Garret revolutionized the taxi transport model through making an application which can be used to hail a taxi via internet.

In 2010, Travis and Garret started Uber as an Uber Cab, in which a black cab could be hailed through the mobile application.The service was then expanded to other cities in United States and Uber expanded globally in 2011 when it started offering service in Paris, France. The name was also changed to Uber in 2011. Till now the service has been expanded to over 300 cities in over 58 countries.The significant expansion and growth in revenue and income in just 6 year time has seriously shocked the business world with the potential of the service. (Uber Technologies, 2015)

The expansion of Uber:

Moreover, Uber raised funds through different venture capitalists and other funding agencies. It started from Series A to Series E and till date the valuation of Uber is about$50 billion. (Somerville, 2014)

Uber different from Traditional Cab Service:

The pricing of Uber is similar to the metered taxis however;the passengers do not need to deal with the driver, but directly with the Uber through the mobile app. The price is calculated on the time or distance basis. Another feature includes the surge pricing. Uber uses an algorithm, which responds to the supply and demand and increase the prices accordingly however, it has received criticism from the customers on surge pricing.

The users have the option to rate the driver on his driving and overall service, while drivers also have the option to rate the users.Low ratings can even result in non-availability of service to the customer in future.

New Services by Uber:

In early 2014, Uber introduced the UberPool version of the application. Uberpool is a new carpooling service.This service matches riders with other riders who are travelling to the same area and both riders can share the ride, hence reducing the cost of their journey up to 20 to 50%.

Another service that has been recently started by Uber is Uberboat in Istanbul, Turkey that is water-taxi service which allows users to travel by boats across the city.

Other products of Uber include uberFRESH, which is an online food order service, delivered by the Uber cabs. Uber also announced the package delivery service which is called Uber Rush in Manhattan. ( “Uber Trials Fast Food Delivery Service ‘UberFRESH, 2013) (Gross)

Competition:

The launch of Uber prompted other companies to follow the same business model and grab market share. Uber faces competition in different countries from companies.In 2012 a company called Lyft, which was founded in San Francisco,has been providing the similar services to the users.

In India, Ola Cabs gives tough competition to Uber and has the plan to expand its services to over 200 cities. While the toughest competition for Uber is in China where Didi Dache and Kuaidi Dache, which are the two biggest low-cost-app-based taxi hailing services in China, merged together and made a company that is significantly bigger than Uber.Also, it recently invested in Lyft the U.S based competitor of Uber to form an strategic alliance. (Stone) (Chen, 2015) (DESJARDINS, 2015)

Uber vs Didi Kuaidi in China

Uber vs. Ola cabs

Research and Development:

Uber has invested heavily and opened a research facility in Pittsburgh to build its own self driving cars for the future and hired more than 50 employees from the National Robotics Engineering Center.

Problems faced by Uber in different Countries:

Uber has faced protests and legal actions from the taxi drivers, taxi companies, and also from the Government of different countries that are trying to stop Uber’s operations in their areas. The main point of these groups is that the competition and threat Uber poses are unfair because they do not have to pay any taxes or licensing fees, and that the drivers are not trained and not even insured…………………..

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