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Uber, the tech company best known for its ride hailing and delivery apps, has acquired rival delivery service Postmates for $2.65 billion. The all-stock deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021, as it still must be approved by regulators and shareholders.
Uber plans to operate Postmates alongside its own on-demand food delivery business, Uber Eats, but will merge some of its back end tech and delivery operations. This could lead to couriers being dispatched to deliver orders for both apps.
In a press release announcing the acquisition, Postmates co-founder and CEO Bastian Lehmann commented, “Uber and Postmates have been strong allies working together to advocate and create the best practices across our industry, especially for our couriers. Together we can ensure that as our industry continues to grow, it will do so for the benefit of everyone in the communities we serve.”
Postmates was founded in May 2011 and has been a pioneering company in the delivery-as-a-service market. The company’s rise is a testament to the work of its employees and wouldn’t be possible without several key leaders.
Another of the company’s co-founders, Chief Technology Officer Sean Plaice, is a major force within the company, as the company’s app and dispatch algorithms fall under his purview. This technology forms the base of Postmates service, because without it the company would be unable to maximize its couriers’ efficiency or accurately bill customers. Additionally, Plaice oversees the company’s efforts to build a fleet of autonomous delivery robots, which it unveiled in 2018 and was permitted to test in San Francisco in August 2019.
Postmates’ relationship with its fleet of couriers is just as important as the company’s technology, because without them Postmates wouldn’t have a business. To ensure couriers stay happy the company has turned to Director of Fleet Community Communications & Engagement Claire Sands. As a part of her efforts to engage with the company’s fleet, Sands helped roll out a job-search training and coaching package for couriers in major US cities earlier this year.
Postmates is active in the communities it operates in via its Civic Labs initiative, which aims to “positively impact our neighborhoods through community engagement and innovative technology solutions to combat complex, pervasive issues.” This effort is led by Civic Labs Director Diz Petit, who has helped the company and its employees to contribute more than 6,700 hours of service to more than 40 different organizations as of 2019.
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