Grubhub sells, but not to Uber

June 11, 2020, 1:14 PM UTC

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Life goes on, as does business.

The European food-delivery company Just Eat Takeaway is buying Grubhub for more than $7 billion. Casual observers can be forgiven for thinking Uber was buying Grubhub, a deal reported to have been in the works since last month. Sources talking to journalists suggested an Uber-Grubhub tie-up wouldn’t have passed muster with U.S. antitrust regulators. Seeing as Grubhub wanted to sell, it went with someone who could buy. cleverly suggests Just Eat investors will need a fistful of antacid to swallow the deal. Because the buyer doesn’t have its own U.S. operations, it’ll need to keep Grubhub’s. That’s good for Grubhub employees, but Wall Street types note that Uber would have been able to rationalize its prey better—a euphemism for firing more people.

As for Uber, its to-do list remains long. Acquiring Doordash or Postmates would be pricier—and still problematic, regulatory-wise. The food-delivery business needs to get bigger quickly if it’s to make money. The self-driving car world is busy consolidating, but there hasn’t been a peep of late about Uber’s intentions for its robotic vehicle business. And California is winning its case that Uber’s drivers should be treated as employees. Still, Lyft has said business is picking up in the U.S., so the same is likely true for Uber. Demonstrating its stated commitment to hygiene will be a challenge.

Adam Lashinsky


This edition of Data Sheet was curated by Aaron Pressman.


The invisible man. Fueling a trend started by IBM this week, Amazon said it would stop allowing police to use its facial-recognition technology for a year. “We hope this one-year moratorium might give Congress enough time to implement appropriate rules, and we stand ready to help if requested,” the company said. Still, Amazon's Ring unit partners with hundreds of police departments to share doorbell video footage, drawing criticism this week from digital civil libertarians. Meanwhile, European antitrust regulators are close to filing charges against Amazon for improperly using information from third-party sellers to bolster its own efforts.

Building castles in the sky. More than 40 white women turned their popular Instagram accounts over to black women on Wednesday for an effort dubbed the #ShareTheMicNow campaign. Endeavor chief marketing officer Bozoma Saint John posted from Kourtney Kardashian’s account, author and activist Eunique Jones Gibson was at the helm of newscaster Katie Couric's account, and VC and entrepreneur Jessica O. Matthews wrote for singer and actress Ashley Judd.

One and a half trillion is a lot of trillion. The stock market's stunning rally since March has been led by tech companies. On Wednesday, both Apple and Microsoft closed with stock market values over $1.5 trillion, a first on U.S. exchanges. I'm definitely going to win my wager that Saudi Aramco, the world's first $2 trillion company when it went public in December, will be surpassed by year end (it's trading around $1.7 trillion today).

Musk rules. Mindlessly retweeting links in your feed? Twitter isn't happy about it. It's adding a feature to its Android app that will ask users if they'd like to open a link before passing it on. That pleased at least one major Twitter user. “Great point,” wrote Tesla CEO and occasionally troublesome user of the service Elon Musk. “Many articles are retweeted based on headlines that don’t match the content.” Could this explain "funding secured"?

Right foot up, left foot slide. After cancelling its developer event and delaying software releases, Google released its next version of Android on Wednesday. The Android 11 beta includes changes to notifications, such as a new bubble pop up, an easier way to take screen shots, and many other tweaks.

I may not live to see our glory. Just as Apple gets ready to shift away from Intel's chips, Intel is getting ready to overhaul its designs in ways that may leap ahead. The first effort of the Jim Keller era at Intel arrived on Wednesday with the debut of the Lakefield CPU that combines one typical processor core with four low-power cores, memory, and other functions all on the same piece of silicon.


Even though Amazon is following IBM in limiting facial-recognition use by police, plenty of other vendors still sell similar applications. Rebecca Heilweil at Recode reviews the situation and finds more action may be needed at a national level.

But ultimately, regardless of what major technology companies are doing, the lack of strong government regulations will leave facial recognition technology open to abuse or misuse.

“There’s always going to be some small, shady firm that is willing to do the worst things with technology that you can do, and will sell it to whoever will buy it,” Evan Greer, the deputy director of the digital rights group Fight for the Future told Recode. “It’s not going to be enough to just kind of call on companies to cancel their contracts or back away from making this type of technology. We need lawmakers to step in and do their jobs.”


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SoftBank-backed Arm says it ousted its China CEO. Arm China says it hasn’t By Lucinda Shen

Coronavirus cases are rising significantly in nine reopened states By Erika Fry and Nicolas Rapp

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Many people are focusing on new pursuits like knitting, painting, and gardening during the pandemic. But I wasn't quite prepared for the story of "Babe, the zucchini that stole our hearts." Have a fruitful day!

Aaron Pressman


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