Uber and Lyft were the first to disrupt the $8 trillion global transportation industry by making car ownership less necessary and with the ride-hailing industry now worth $60 billion and on track to top $85 billion by 2023, the transportation revolution is well underway.
But Uber and Lyft can’t finish what they started.
Their business models are broken. They’ve failed to grasp the enormity of the parallel revolution in ESG, or “impact” investing.
And this is where the disruptors become the disrupted.
A startup that launched in late 2019 in Canada is pushing aggressively into the United States, and it’s not just challenging Uber and Lyft—it’s challenging the entire auto industry by taking the ride-sharing revolution to the next level.
It’s also planning to put another nail in the coffin of traditional car ownership with its recent acquisition of a pioneer in the electric vehicle subscription space.
And that’s only the very beginning.
Here are 5 reasons to keep a close eye one of the hottest and fastest-moving companies to come out of Canada’s “Silicon Valley”:
#1 The Transportation Revolution: Phase 2
Facedrive. Washington-based Steer. Energy giant Exelon.
These three names have now come together to form the next big challenge to the auto industry.
Private car ownership is under threat. Conventional car ownership is under attack.
It took almost a decade for cars sales in the European Union to even begin to recover when Uber and Lyft decimated sales in urban areas.
And now, the pandemic could change private car ownership forever because the general idea of pandemic has been irrevocably tied to other “natural disasters” and the fear of climate change.
Economics plays a big roll, too, and will do so even more under the struggles of COVID-19.
Chicago-based Steer says it’s time for a transportation revolution, and it fully intends to get more people into unconventional cars--without breaking the bank.
This offers people the chance to drive a Tesla and other new electric vehicles without the huge expenses that come with owning one.
Even better, Facedrive’s acquisition of Steer came with a $2 million strategic investment from energy giant Exelon’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Exelorate Enterprises.
This could well be a game-changer for the auto industry.
The success of subscription based ‘leasing’ models is already well documented, and this simple concept will be at the core of the next major disruption in the auto industry.
We’ve already seen it with electric bikes and scooters…
But this step will change everything.
This seamless, hassle-free technology is grabbing onto the $250-billion ESG megatrend by giving subscribers access to their own virtual garage of low-emissions vehicles and EVs.
So, for anyone who would love to drive a Tesla but finds it prohibitively expensive to own, this is the answer:
Not only is Steer planning to upend the auto industry by offering an alternative to the tradition of owning, leasing or renting vehicles for everyday use …
but it’s also promising to give the EV industry itself another boost. And the electric vehicle market could top $800 billion by 2023.
#2 A Key To Airline Response to Covid-19
U.S. airlines alone lost $12 billion just in the second quarter.
On October 7th, the airline giant signed a deal with Facedrive to launch a pilot project for its employees using proprietary COVID-19 contact tracing technology, TraceSCAN.
TraceSCAN Wearables combine complex algorithms in an AI-enabled mobile application with wearable devices built on the industry standard nRF52 Bluetooth chipset.
That means it can reach those millions of workers around the world, from construction and medical to education and security, who can’t operate with a phone in hand 24/7, as well as the at-risk elderly.
Air Canada isn’t the only major player taking the TraceSCAN plunge...
The Government of Ontario lent its support to TraceSCAN back in July because it’s the only feasible technology that will help masses of government employees who are back to work to trace contacts who have COVID-19.
And now, talks with other airlines are in motion, and the news flow is expected to be fast and momentous.
#3 Verticals Extending into Major League Sports
The pandemic has also shaken the world of major league sports, but even before COVID, sports was struggling to increase revenues and to piggyback on the lucrative eSports world that has become a major part of everyday life.
The fact is … the $600B sports industry has a serious revenue problem and it needs a new way to encourage fan engagement—and monetize it.
Again, Facedrive is there… with another celebrity-studded acquisition.
In August, Facedrive acquired Tally Technologies, the high-tech major league sports predicting startup founded by NFL superstar Russel Wilson
Tally came out of TraceMe, a celebrity content app founded by Wilson with early-in investors from the biggest tech companies in the world and acquired by Nike last year.
Tally plans to add another dimension to major league sports with “gamification” and online fan engagement by making it free-to-play … and predictive.
It’s a big opportunity for major league sports, which is scrambling for new revenue verticals.
And that’s not where it ends: We anticipate rapid news flow on this as new teams line up to take advantage of revenue potential.
#4 Multiple Verticals in an Entire Tech-Driven ESG Ecosystem
It’s all about carbon-neutral footprints, sustainability, healthy social distancing and even contributing on the front lines of the pandemic.
- FaceDrive and HiRide--Environmentally-friendly ride-sharing and long-distance carpooling
- Facedrive Health: Carbon-neutral pharma deliveries and government-endorsed COVID contact-tracing with TraceScan
- Facedrive Marketplace, with celebrity co-branded (Think: Will Smith’s Bel Air) exclusive clothing focused on sustainably sourced materials
- Facedrive Foods carbon-neutral food delivery platforms
- Social distancing trivia platform, HiQ, with over 2,000,000 app downloads
Worth $24 billion already in 2018 and predicted to top $98 billion by 2027, the global food delivery market is now officially at war. And it’s a war even more ferocious than streaming.
The stakes have never been higher for the delivery industry, whose giants are burning cash like crazy and still unsure they will ever turn a profit.
Facedrive’s acquisition earlier this of Foodora Canada was another challenge to Uber, which belatedly realized that its profits would depend on delivery. Foodora isn’t just any food delivery company—it previously was a subsidiary of the $20-billion multinational food delivery service Delivery Hero, which operates in over 40 countries and services more than 500,000 restaurants.
Facedrive’s acquisition of the Foodora Canada food delivery business gave it hundreds of thousands of customer names and over 5,500 new restaurant partners for just a part of the high-tech mobility company’s revenue-generating ecosystem. The chart below tells us about some of the big food delivery players worldwide.
But Facedrive understands what a tech-driven, ESG ecosystem is.
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 all stakeholders, with sustainability
… with lifestyle.
Its motto is “people and planet first”, and it has attracted some huge names, including Will Smith.
The Facedrive brand is aiming to become a household name. Will Smith’s Bel Air Athletics clothing brand is betting that Facedrive is the ride of the future. That’s why he’s co-branding an entire line of exclusive clothing with Facedrive.
It’s also why WestBrook Inc., the company he shares with his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, is partnering with this ride-share startup that is now expanding to the US with a goal to challenge Uber for the throne.
Even better: Bel-Air Athletics is green and in line with Facedrive principles as the aim is to ensure by next year that all clothing materials are 100% sustainably sourced.
Over 1,000 new products co-branded by Bel Air and Facedrive have launched on the Facedrive marketplace website and the demand is just starting.
#5 ESG At Its Best
Facedrive, is one of the biggest things to emerge from Ontario’s ‘Technology Triangle’, also called “Waterloo”. It’s not only Canada’s answer to Silicon Valley, but it’s also fast growing as a startup tech hub.
Facedrive launched in Q3 2019, and already we’re looking at constant news flow and a string of smart acquisitions--all leading to global expansion plans.
The deal timeline has been so fast-paced that’s it’s hard to keep up …
From Will Smith to Exelon to Air Canada and Superbowl star Russel Wilson, Facedrive is becoming a household name with celebrity-studded acquisitions that all that make for a steady stream of news flow …
And it’s all targeting to fit the needs of $119 trillion in Big Capital that’s scrambling for somewhere to park its sustainability funds.
BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) 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.
In 2017, BlackRock underwent a major shift in its investment strategy, prioritizing stocks with high ESG ratings. BlackRock’s focus on technology and sustainability has fueled the new trend in the marketplace, pushing even more investors to consciously consider where they put their money.
Tech giants across the board are diving head-first into the sustainability push. Facebook Social media giant Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) is doing its part, as well. Not only have they made dramatic progress towards their goal to run on 100% renewable energy by the end of 2020, they’re working to build more water-efficient data centers. In fact, their data centers use 80 percent less water than typical data centers.
Facebook has even gone a step further with its focus on building more sustainable workplaces. It’s building designs incorporate a number of renewable energy sources and water recycling methods, in addition to promoting the recycling and sustainability of all products consumed on site.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) 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.
Not to be outdone, Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) 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.
Despite being one of the largest companies on the planet, in many ways it has lived up to its original “Don’t Be Evil” slogan. Not only is Google powering its data centers with renewable energy, it is also on the cutting edge of innovation in the industry, investing in new technology and green solutions to build a more sustainable tomorrow. It’s bid to reduce its carbon footprint has been well received by both younger and older investors. And as the need to slow down climate change becomes increasingly dire, it’s easy to see why.
Even Big Oil supermajors have been diving head first into the ESG trend, diversifying their portfolios and to hedge their bets in the rapidly changing new reality of energy. And no other oil major takes this more seriously than Total (NYSE:TOT). maintains a ‘big picture’ outlook across all of its endeavors. It is not only aware of the needs that are not being met by a significant portion of the world’s growing population, it is also hyper-aware of the looming climate crisis if changes are not made. In its push to create a better world for all, it has committed to contributing to each of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
Total checks every box in the ESG checklist. It is promoting diversity and safety, making massive changes in its day to day operations to ensure that its business is environmentally sound, and has even committed to going carbon neutral by 2050 or sooner. It’s no surprise that shareholders are loving its forward-thinking approach.
By. Steve Merrill
**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; that Steer can help completely change the way people view car ownership, that Steer can disrupt industry segments; that the Tally app will become popular and start generating substantial revenues; that the Tally sports predictive app will lead to online sports revenue; that Tracescan could help the tourism industry deal with COVID and will sign new agreements for use of its alert wearables; that new tech deals will be signed by Facedrive; that Facedrive will be able to expand to the US and globally; 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 that riders are not as attracted to EV rides as expected; that the Tally app may not become popular, may not lead to revenues from the app; that competitors may offer better or cheaper alternatives to the Facedrive businesses; TraceScan may not work as expected in commercial settings; 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 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 merchandise partnerships on terms acceptable to both parties, and on profitable terms for Facedrive; and that the products co-branded by Facedrive may not be as merchantable as expected. 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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