By Michael Drew
Tesla is now bigger than Exxon. BlackRock has taken over Wall Street. Even unprofitable, Uber and Lyft are threatening to overtake the $1-trillion auto industry and they’ve only scratched the surface. Now, the worldwide $2-trillion auto industry is next in line for disruption.
This is the Fourth Industrial Revolution–kicked into high-speed gear by a global pandemic. And it’s all about tech-driven freedom.
For the auto industry, in particular, it’s a double threat:
Tesla is now the most valuable car maker “of all time”. And with combined market caps of some $70 billion, Uber and Lyft are also severely disrupting the giant auto industry.
Tesla is worth almost $225 billion (or quarter of a trillion dollars), while the top three American automakers–GM, Ford and Chrysler–are worth around $70 billion–the same as Uber and Lyft.
But while Tesla’s EV threat to the industry is clear, the ride-sharing giants’ business models are broken. Now, they may be about to find themselves on the wrong end of the disruption.
The newest threat to Uber, Lyft and the trillion-dollar personal ownership auto industry comes out of Canada’s “Silicon Valley”.
It’s on the right side of history: In lock-step with Tesla’s EVs and BlackRock’s “impact investing” takeover of Wall Street …
Launched in 2019, Facedrive (TSXV:FD,OTC:FDVRF) is leading the evolution of shared mobility–from EV and carbon-offset ride-sharing to acquisition-hungry food delivery, healthcare services and even COVID tracing tech.
It’s got the new business model to lure in big capital that’s tired of the giants’ cash burn, bad press and endless unprofitability.
It’s sharp, sleek, ultra-high-tech, eco-friendly and it does three things that no ride-sharing company has ever done:
It is the first to offer riders a choice of EVs and hybrids, and to plant trees to offset its carbon footprint.
It brings cities and communities on as stakeholders, rather than defying them, and treats its drivers as people who deserve living wages.
It views shared mobility as much more than a ride: This is about technology, and Facedrive has launched multiple revenue streams that take advantage of the rider relationship.
Now, it’s starting to go international.
A series of smart acquisitions and new service launches have positioned it to be a key challenger to the shared mobility throne.
But it’s about to get even more exciting, with a government endorsement for high-tech COVID tracing and new partnerships on the boardroom deal table …
Here are 5 Reasons to keep a close eye on Facedrive right now:
#1 Facedrive Has What Big Capital Wants
Facedrive is all about sustainability–and that’s not just a new, $30-billion megatrend on Wall Street–it IS Wall Street now.
There’s a reason BlackRock is blowing Wall Street out of the water right now–sustainable investing.
It’s the ethical squeeze of the century because it’s not just about the moral high ground anymore–it’s about making money.
BlackRock has now replaced Goldman Sachs to become the most important banking company in the world. BlackRock is all about technology, and all about mitigating risk through sustainable companies.
Facedrive knew this was entering megatrend territory way back in 2016.
It aims to fix things that are wrong with giants Uber and Lyft in the high-tech, shared-mobility world that has lifted BlackRock to “4th branch of government” status.
Ride-sharing has completely ignored sustainability–not to mention profit–and it’s cash burn has been outlandish. As it stands, the average ride-hail results in nearly 70% more pollution than whatever transportation it displaced.
That’s not going to fly in terms of the new ESG investing megatrend. And millennials don’t like it.
That’s where Facedrive launched its coup.
Facedrive’s next-gen ride-sharing is the first to offer customers a choice for every ride; whether they want an EV, a hybrid, or a conventional car. Then it offsets CO2 by planting trees along the way.
The Canadian startup has positioned itself to help solve ride-sharing’s environmental problem by changing its footprint, —and aims to do so without sacrificing profit, which Uber has never even made anyway.
Although Facedrive offers competitive journey fares, riders do not pay a premium for CO2 emissions offsetting while drivers do not lose any of their fares to pay for the green initiative.
Facedrive’s green strategy is simple yet highly effective and cheaper than fancier solutions being adopted by some so-called big companies.
Globally each year, plants remove about 25% of the carbon emissions produced by human activities such as burning fossil fuels while a similar amount ends up in the oceans. So, Facedrive is getting back to Mother Nature–and millennials and investors are loving it.
That puts Facedrive squarely in the middle of two megatrends: The disruption of the predicted to be global $7.5 trillion transportation service industry and the shift of big money into sustainable investing, which already topped $30 billion in 2018.
Carbon-offset ride-sharing ticks every box with the new kings of Wall Street.
#2 Tech Leader on COVID-19 Frontline
Facedrive engineered a major coup last month when it launched TraceSCAN, a homegrown Canadian COVID-19 tracing solution and the only viable application that features Bluetooth wearable tech integration.
Right off the bat, it partnered with LiUNA–one of the largest labor unions in the world–to help protect the health and safety of its 130,000 members and their families in Canada.
Now, solidified its power as the leader in this space in Canada, with a government support to deploy TraceSCAN.
Not only did Facedrive’s TraceSCAN just get the official endorsement from the Government of Ontario as technology that can effectively help trace coronavirus infections, but the government is encouraging itsdeployment across all major sites–from Parliament Hill’s major renovation project in Ottawa, to corporate offices, sporting events, healthcare facilities, long-term care facilities and outdoor venues.
#3 Innovative Revenue VS Irresponsible Cash Burn
And it isn’t just the mobile leader of COVID-19 tracing tech in Canada–it’s now challenging the food delivery giants, too.
Facedrive is pursuing aggressive expansion in this space–but not paying premium prices like Uber has done.
In May, Facedrive entered into a binding term sheet to acquire the assets of Foodora Canada, a subsidiary of giant Delivery Hero–the $20-billion multinational food delivery service. This could turn out to be another major coup for Facedrive because Delivery Hero is one of the best–operating food delivery services in 40 countries and services more than 500,000 restaurants with a brand that doesn’t have the negative baggage of Uber Eats or DoorDash.
Facedrive’s acquisition of the Foodora Canada food delivery business will give it hundreds of thousands of user contacts and over 5,500 new restaurant partners, making the launch of Facedrive Foods a major power play in Canada.
The deal comes at a time when the food delivery segment is undergoing a global war that’s even more intense than the streaming wars. Expected to top $98 billion in total revenue by 2027, the stakes are enormous because Uber has finally figured out that its ride-hailing may never be profitable but one way to succeed is if it scoops up massive market share–fast.
That might mean paying a premium to try to take over competitors and consolidate for domination.
Uber was prepared to pay a premium for the Grubhub–the delivery service with the biggest US market share. But that deal fell through and now Uber has to settle for potentially taking over the much smaller Postmates.
Facedrive doesn’t need to pay a premium. This new face of “sharing” is cutting a food delivery acquisition deal for what is expected to be a reasonable price. And it’s acquiring from Delivery Hero–the only company with a good reputation in this business, earning it the moniker of “United Nations of food delivery”.
That’s because Delivery Hero spans 28 brands in over 40 countries. And it makes restaurants happy instead of gouging them.
The ‘Big Picture” is to turn “brand interest into brand love” with a marketing approach that goes “beyond audience segmentation to drive deep emotional connection”, as summed up by Delivery Hero’s CMO, Mats Diedrichsen.
Facedrive is positioned better than anyone else to be that “emotional connection” in Canada.
Overnight, Facedrive is set to position itself into the top echelon of Canadian food delivery services. Then targeting international expansion.
The winner of this war will likely be the new sharing business model that defies the out-of-control cash burn, broadens the revenue potential and wins the hearts and minds of every stakeholder in the chain, including drivers and restaurants.
#4 Branding: Mighty Merch With Celebrity Appeal
There’s nothing mobile that shared mobility can’t touch, if it’s got the right branding …
What millenials know, and what millennials want is this: A company that recognizes that ride-sharing isn’t going to work unless it’s a lifestyle, not just a way to get from Point A to Point B.
It has to offer more, be more convenient, responsible and have a positive impact on the world around one.
That’s what the giants just don’t get. They should, because millennial money is big money. Millennials have changed the future of investing.
That old adage that any publicity is good publicity no longer holds water. Bad publicity now resonates with massively powerful shareholder activism.
The most often used phrase about the Uber brand at this point is that it’s a service everyone loves to hate and hates to love.
Now riders have a choice, and that choice is getting ready to go international.
Branding is everything, and that’s where Facedrive is armed to the hilt in this war for positive branding.
Facedrive is associated with the community, with benefits for stakeholders, with sustainability
… with lifestyle.
Its motto is “people and planet first”, and it has attracted some huge names, including Will Smith, who has thrown in with Facedrive because he sees it as the clean, responsible ride of the future. That’s why he’s co-branding an entire line of exclusive clothing with Facedrive with his Bel Air Athletics clothing brand.
It’s also why WestBrook Inc., the company he shares with his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, is partnering with this rideshare startup that is now expanding internationally to challenge Uber for the throne.
Again, sustainability is the name of the game, with Bel Air and Facedrive pursuing 100% sustainably sourced materials by next year.
#5 Where Canada Trumps Silicon Valley
From the United States’ crackdown on immigration that’s pushing some of the best international tech minds to Canada, to the emergence of Canadian tech startups on their own merits, Ontario’s Waterloo “Technology Triangle” is pumping out some of the most innovative new tech these days …
And it’s positioned to challenge Silicon Valley with bold new startups such as Facedrive, whose Chairman and CEO, Sayan Navaratnam, is all about identifying and running with trends before they become mega. He saw where Uber and Lyft would trip up years before it became clear to everyone else.
Facedrive launched in Q3 2019, and the news flow has been explosive in the run-up to the company’s international expansion plans.
- In April, Facedrive acquired ‘Technology Triangle’ innovator HiRide, giving it access to the entire user base of a unique long-distance carpooling solution for students and professionals. For its expansion plans, that gives Facedrive the first mile, last mile and … long mile.
- In April and May, Facedrive launched a string of new revenue-generating services, including Facedrive Foods, Facedrive Health and TraceSCAN–not to mention an exclusive line of Bel-Air clothing co-branded with Will Smith with the launch of the Westbrook Marketplace.
- In May, it also struck a deal with the Canadian side of LiUNA–the half-a-million-strong American and Canadian labor union–to use TraceSCAN, which would immediately lead to bigger deals: And it did …
- This week, Facedrive successfully received official endorsement from Government of Ontario for the deployment of TraceSCAN to the mobile frontlines of the government’s COVID-19 battle.
- And in the middle of all of this, in June, Facedrive announced plans to acquire Foodora Canada from international giant Delivery Hero in a deal that solidifies the launch of Facedrive Foods … with a bang.
That’s a lot of potential revenue streams that Facedrive is latching onto. In the realm of “shared mobility”, the possibilities are almost endless. Uber didn’t recognize the sustainability trend before it embarked on one of the biggest cash burns we’ve ever seen. It also didn’t recognize the importance of food delivery soon enough: Now, it’s lost its bid to takeover Grubhub and has to settle for something smaller–an acquisition that won’t ensure its dominance.
Facedrive is monetizing everything from rides and food to healthcare and even exclusive merch. And it’s doing it all by making friends–rather than enemies–out of local, state and federal authorities.
Now it’s taking its “people and planet first” business model–the one that is in lockstep with the $30-billion ESG investing trend–international.
Other companies capitalizing on new market trends:
BlackRock is the world’s most significant global investment manager. It has well over $7.4 trillion in assets under management, and clients in over 100 different countries. It has played a vital role in shifting investors’ perspectives in the ESG field.
Just three years ago, the investment giant underwent a major shift in its strategy. It began focusing on stocks that were more sustainable, better managed, and more conscious. And it’s paid off. With a heavy focus on technology, the company has fueled a new trend in the marketplace. And it’s quickly becoming too big to ignore.
Tech giants across the board are diving head-first into the sustainability push. Facebook, for its part, has taken an innovative approach in its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint. Its data centers are some of the most resource-efficient on the planet, and it’s become an example for the entire industry. And by the end of the year, it will have 100% of its data centers running on green energy. A massive and ambitious undertaking. But if anyone can do it, it’s Facebook.
Not to be outdone, Google is jumping on the green bandwagon, as well. It’s focus is on raising the bar for smarter and more efficient use of the world’s limited resources. It is building sustainable, energy-efficient data centers and workplaces. It is also harnessing artificial intelligence to utilize energy more efficiently.
While Google completely rethinks the game for its own operations, it is also creating a completely sustainable supply chain, working with companies around the globe to help them integrate their own sustainable systems.
There’s a reason Tesla has performed so well this year. Investors love its message. As one of the world’s most innovative car manufacturers, it has made electric vehicles cool again. Its slick design is beloved across the world. In fact, it’s likely impossible to NOT see a Tesla in cities like Hong Kong or San Francisco.
But that’s only a small piece of Musk’s big picture vision. Now that it’s cornered the EV market, Tesla is doubling down up its solar game, as well. Tesla’s Solar Roof project aims to change the way houses function. It replaces normal roofs with stronger solar panels that can power your entire home.
Microsoft is one of the most innovative and well-known companies within the tech sector, but its Windows platform is the most widely used operating system on the planet. First launched in 1985, Windows has shaped what is expected from a personal home computer.
But Microsoft is appealing to investors for more just its Windows platform. It is diving head first into an entirely new market. With key partnerships utilizing and implementing blockchain technology, the company’s upside could have huge potential as the tech takes off.
Not only has it always been on the cutting edge of innovation, it’s taking a serious stance on the climate crisis. In fact, it’s pushing so hard that it is aiming to be carbon NEGATIVE by 2030. That’s a huge pledge. And if anyone can do it, it’s Microsoft.
Shopify Inc (TSX:SH)
Shopify is a massive e-commerce company, helping users built their own online stores. It has huge clients – everyone from Tesla to Budweiser are on board. And the company is beloved by millennial investors. In addition to its revolutionary approach on e-commerce, Shopify is also delving into blockchain technology, making it a promising pick for investors in sustainability.
Shaw Communications Inc (TSE:SJR.B)
Shaw’s dominance in Canada’s telecom sector means that if any internet-based services want to operate, they’ll likely be utilizing the company’s infrastructure. After all, without telecoms, these TaaS companies would not be able to operate. In addition to its telecom dominance, it has also branched out into sustainable ventures, holding stake in renewable projects across the country.
BCE Inc. (TSX:BCE)
Like Shaw, BCE is a Canadian telecom giant. Founded in 1980, the company, formally The Bell Telephone Company of Canada is composed of three primary subsidiaries. Bell Wireless, Bell Wireline and Bell Media, however throughout its push into the position of one of Canada’s top telco groups, it has bought and sold a number of different firms. For the past 25 years, BCE has been at the forefront of the environmental movement. Their environmental management system (EMS) has been certified to be ISO 14001-compliant since 2009.
Polaris Infrastructure (TSX:PIF)
We can’t mention sustainability without touching on some of Canada’s most exciting renewable companies. Polaris is a Toronto-based renewable giant with a global influence. The company’s biggest projects are in Latin America. It’s Nicaragua geothermal project, for example, is already producing over 77 MW of renewable electricity. And in Peru, its El Carmen and 8 de Augusto hydropower plants, are set to produce a combined 17MW of electricity in the near future.
Westport Fuel Systems (TSX:WPRT)
Westport is a low-emissions energy provider for the exploding transportation industry. it provides systems for less impactful fuels, such as natural gas. In North America, there are over 225,000 natural gas vehicles. But that shies in comparison to the global 22.5 million natural gas vehicles globally, which means the company still has a ton of room to grow!
By. Michael Drew
**IMPORTANT! BY READING OUR CONTENT YOU EXPLICITLY AGREE TO THE FOLLOWING. PLEASE READ CAREFULLY**
This publication contains forward-looking information which is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward looking statements in this publication include that the demand for ride sharing services will grow, and transportation as a service industry will reach $8 trillion; that the demand for environmentally conscientious ride sharing services companies in particular will grow quickly and take a much larger share of the market; that Facedrive’s TraceScan app will be adopted by other parties including government; that Facedrive’s marketplace will offer many more sustainable goods and services, and grow revenues outside of ride-sharing; that new products co-branded by Bel Air and Facedrive will sell well; that Facedrive can achieve its environmental goals without sacrificing profit; that Facedrive Foods will expand to other regions outside southern Ontario soon and will close its purchase of Foodora; that Facedrive will be able to fund its capital requirements in the near term and long term; and that Facedrive will be able to carry out its business plans. These forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information. Risks that could change or prevent these statements from coming to fruition include changing governmental laws and policies; the company’s ability to obtain and retain necessary licensing in each geographical area in which it operates; the success of the company’s expansion activities and whether markets justify additional expansion; the TraceScan app may not be adopted because of better apps offered by competitors or because of expense the ability of the company to attract a sufficient number of drivers to meet the demands of customer riders; the ability of the company to attract drivers who have electric vehicles and hybrid cars; the ability of Facedrive to attract providers of good and services for partnerships on terms acceptable to both parties, and on profitable terms for Facedrive; that the products co-branded by Facedrive may not be as merchantable as expected; that Facedrive does not close the purchase of Foodora and even if it does, the purchase does not bring the customers, partnerships or revenues expected; the ability of the company to keep operating costs and customer charges competitive with other ride-hailing companies; and the company’s ability to continue agreements on affordable terms with existing or new tree planting enterprises in order to retain profits. The forward-looking information contained herein is given as of the date hereof and we assume no responsibility to update or revise such information to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.
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