Bloomberg has dug out official financial statements for Uber’s London and European operations for last year, and found that the London operation recorded revenue of around $50 million, while the broader European operation had $1.6 billion in revenues. That London figure is a little funny because it appears to be a sort of net revenue after commissions paid to drivers – something made clear in a fuller version of the financials I saw posted to Twitter, which showed gross profits as identical to revenues. That revenue figure, though, would be a tiny fraction of Uber’s global revenue, but the strategic value of a presence in a major city like London goes well beyond the direct financial benefits. Interestingly, the London revenue figure was up just 59% year on year, while the European figure more than tripled, reflecting the relative maturity of the London operation relative to operations in much of the rest of the continent.
Europe proposes expanding telco data privacy rules to WhatsApp, Facebook et al | TechCrunch (Jan 10, 2017)
Europe continues to take a harder line on privacy for online services, and is also finally caving to long-term pressure from telecoms operators to force online communications providers to comply with a more consistent regulatory framework. Both individual European countries and the EU have come down on Facebook recently for its attempted integration with WhatsApp following the merger, and the region is likely to continue to be more challenging for online providers operating there. This, in turn, may provide a small advantage for those providers that collect less user data and offer more protections by default.
Is Amazon Europe’s Next Top Model? – Bloomberg (Dec 21, 2016)
A big part of Amazon’s recent success is its continuing ability to work its magic in retail segments that had once been considered off limits to an pure-play e-tailer, with clothing and fashion in particular one of the most far-fetched. This article cites its competitiveness in this segment in Europe.