Facebook sees Uber as a threat, says exec

"Uber is a really good company."

It's not something we're hearing lately with all the talk around #DeleteUber, the sexism in the workplace and the questionable behavior of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick.

But that's exactly what Phillip Rather, Facebook's head of local partnerships, said during a two-minute section of his 30-minute presentation at the Borrell Associates' 2017 Local Online Advertising Conference Monday.

In fact, Rather admitted that Facebook, a company valued at nearly $400 billion, sees Uber, the company that can't turn a profit, as a "threat."


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Rather was presenting to a room of media buyers the tools Facebook has to offer local advertisers. He described the opportunities with Messenger — after he first shared the local maps, coupons and phone calls that can be integrated into ads.

"Uber has not had a good couple of weeks, but they have had a good integration with Facebook," Rather said.

"I think Uber is the most underestimated company to affect local businesses," he continued. "The supply chain and the marketing have converged."

And here's the stinger: "Facebook looks at it as a threat."

Rather is based in Austin, Texas, where he oversees Facebook's strategic relationship with industries, including with Oculus VR and the Connected Car Strategy, according to his LinkedIn.

Uber is banned in Austin.

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