Briefing

Facebook Abandons Non-Voting Share Plan

(The Wall Street Journal)

It’s not often that shareholder lawsuits succeed but Friday is one of those days. Facebook abandoned plans to issue a new class of non-voting shares, ending a lawsuit that was due to go to trial on Tuesday. It’s a reminder to founders that depriving shareholders of votes isn’t always the smartest thing to do (something Snap CEO Evan Spiegel may have already realized given how poorly the non-voting shares in that company have traded.) Facebook’s explanation, as reported in this story, doesn’t make too much sense. The implication is that Facebook’s huge stock price rise lately means CEO Mark Zuckerberg can raise money without selling as many shares. But the plan was based on his intention to sell 99% of his shares over his lifetime. Unless that’s changed, the prospect of him losing control at some point still stands. –Martin


Uber Loses License to Operate in London

(BBC)

London transportation authorities said they wouldn’t renew Uber’s license in the city, saying Friday that the ride-hailing service was “not fit” to operate due to safety and security concerns. Uber will be allowed to keep circulating while the ruling is under appeal, which the company already has vowed to do. The decision is a big blow to the company in one of its biggest markets. A big question now is whether the move will give other cities leverage in their dealings with the ride-hailing giant. –Wendy


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Amazon Doubles Down on Restaurant Food Delivery

(Bloomberg)

Amazon is getting serious about all things food. The company is partnering with a company called Olo that will help it expand its restaurant food-delivery business. Amazon launched its restaurant food delivery service in 2015 in Seattle and has since expanded to other cities. Olo works with many chain restaurants, and Buca di Beppo said it will use Amazon to deliver its food. Chipotle, Shake Shack and Five Guys are all Olo customers, so this could be a move that helps Amazon make Restaurants much more popular. UberEats has found some success in this space and should be worried. –Priya


Hewlett Packard Enterprise Is Cutting 5,000 More Jobs

(Bloomberg)

Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman’s decision to cut 5,000 jobs is the latest of several corporate restructurings she has undertaken during her six years at the helm. This time, HPE is slimming down its sales force and eliminating positions that aren’t customer-facing, said a person who does business with HPE. This is a necessary move because the company’s sales organization has become bloated in recent years, the person said. At the same time, the person said Ms. Whitman’s frequent executive changes—she recently swapped out HPE’s top global and North America sales executives about a year after appointing them—are disruptive, and not in a good way. Meanwhile, unless Ms. Whitman pulls off a major acquisition, it’s tough to see where the growth she is seeking will come from. HPE’s wireless networking and flash storage businesses have performed well recently, but these business don’t represent the cutting edge of technology. –Kevin