The other week I sat down with Emil Michael, Uber's former Chief Business Officer. During the interview, I asked him, "How did Uber beat Lyft?"
This is what he told me.
"We had international ambitions from day one. Uber was in a hundred countries and several hundred cities. Compared to Lyft, which started at the same time. They actually had an Uber X like product before Uber did. But, they limited themselves to one country, one service.
Our ambition, starting at the same time, makes Uber worth $100 billion and Lyft worth $4 billion. That’s a 25x difference because of ambition. So, what do you need to fuel that ambition? Money. And I was going to make sure that Travis had as much fuel in the tank as possible to ensure that we were firing on every ambition that we had. Some were going to work, some weren't, but we were okay with that.
Number two, ridesharing has a network effect. In any one city that you go to, the more cars, the shorter the wait time, the cheaper the cost. And so being there first and growing fast mattered."
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