Google: Heads I Win, Tails You Lose

Now that Lyft is a publicly traded company, and Uber has filed its S-1, it is becoming pretty obvious that Google is the big winner in the on-demand mobility sweepstakes. In 2017, it invested $500 million in Lyft at about $39.75 a share, and at present, that is close to $750 million. Google had also invested about $258 million in Uber in 2013 before things got awkward between the two companies.

So, if Uber goes public at $100 billion market capitalization, Google’s 5.2 percent stake will be worth $5.2 billion. Later, Google’s Waymo sued Uber, and the two companies settled, with Waymo getting 0.34 percent ownership in Uber—or about $245 million. That is about $340 million or so if the company goes public at a $100 billion valuation.

Now, that’s a nice way for Google to pay for all the money it needs to spend on its autonomous vehicle adventures.

This first appeared on my April 14, 2019, weekly newsletter. If you like to get this delivered to your inbox, just sign-up here, and I will take care of the rest.

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