A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Uber Prepares Meal-Delivery Service for 10 U.S. Cities (Wall Street Journal)
Uber is preparing to go live with a full-scale meal delivery service across 10 cities in the U.S., an expansion that will test the company’s ability to use its drivers to move goods. In the coming weeks, customers will be able to use the new UberEats app to order from the full menus of dozens of local restaurants and have their food quickly delivered. (Subscription required)
4 Ways That Retailers Can Gain Traction on Mobile (Street Fight)
Dan Slavin: As retailers continue to reimagine marketing to consumers using mobile, the tools to do so will evolve. Similar to marketing automation for B2B, retailer-focused solutions providers are enriching their platforms so that retailers can deliver marketing messages and offers to highly segmented consumers.
Square Falls Below Its IPO Price (Fortune)
Since the beginning of the year, Square’s stock price has dropped 33 percent. Investors could be concerned about the company’s growing losses and slowing revenue growth, as well as Jack Dorsey’s dual CEO roles at both Square and Twitter (which has dropped over 50 percent in the past six months).
5 Timeless Sales Practices for Vendors who Sell to SMBs (Street Fight)
Mo Yehia: The devil is in the details: the tone of a subject line, timing of a phone call, recency of the point of contact, marketing cadence, and value proposition positioning all impact sales. Yet conversations these days tend to forget these basics and focus instead on new-age, shiny fixes like marketing automation, lookalike targeting, and ad-tech.
Boxed, the Ecommerce Startup for Costco-Sized Orders, Nabs $100M (Forbes)
Boxed Wholesale, which sells Costco-sized groceries and household goods online and via mobile, just nabbed $100 million in financing, defying both the odds facing ecommerce startups and a sharp downturn in investors’ moods.
GM Has a New Subsidiary: Introducing Maven, Its Car-Sharing Company (Recode)
Like every other major carmaker, GM is doing everything it can to prevent itself from being usurped by tech companies making major automotive plays. Enter “Maven,” a wholly-owned subsidiary that GM says will do for car-sharing what its investment in Lyft is doing for ride-hailing.
Sidecar: ‘We Failed Because Uber Is Willing to Win at Any Cost’ (VentureBeat)
Three weeks after Sidecar announced plans to shutter its on-demand delivery service, cofounder and CEO Sunil Paul has come forward with an explanation. Sidecar started out as a pioneer and holds a patent around making transportation routes more efficient, but wasn’t able to pick up substantial traction. In a post on the company’s site, Paul blamed the failure on Uber and its “win at any cost” mentality.
Urban Transport App Citymapper Snags $40M (TechCrunch)
Citymapper, which algorithmically knits together different transit options to help city dwellers quickly figure out how to get from A to B, just raised $40 million from high profile investors to ramp up its team. The app’s goals are lofty; Citymapper notes it’s hiring “in every significant metro city in world”.