Uber Technologies ’ stock has struggled since the company went public this year. And WeWork’s parent company has postponed a planned initial public offering, amid reports that it was slashing its valuation by at least half.
Uber (ticker: UBER) sports a market valuation of more than $57 billion, while WeWork has raised more than $12 billion in venture capital. But if you ask Oracle (ORCL) founder and executive chairman Larry Ellison, there isn’t a lot of value in either one.
At an event Wednesday at his house in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights neighborhood, Ellison met with a small group of entrepreneurs, and spent more than an hour answering their questions on a variety of topics. Barron’s was invited to watch.
Ellison asserted that while he is close friends with Softbank’s Masayoshi Son, he doesn’t see the investment case for either WeWork or Uber, both large holdings in Softbank’s Vision Fund. He declared both the companies “almost worthless.”
WeWork declined to comment on Ellison’s remarks. Uber didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Ellison argued that while Uber raises capital to spend on gaining market share from rival Lyft (LYFT), the business they secure doesn’t necessarily stay with the company. He pointed out that Uber doesn’t own its cars and doesn’t control their drivers. And he declared that “they have an app my cat could have written.”
Ellison said losing money to gain market share is “idiotic” if customers won’t stay with the firm. “They have nothing,” he said. “No technology. And no loyalty.”
He mocked WeWork’s assertion that it is a technology company. “WeWork rents a building from me, and breaks it up, and then rents it,” Ellison said. “They say, ‘We’re a technology company, and we want a tech multiple.’ It’s bizarre.”
Ellison, who sits on the board of Tesla (TSLA), and considers Elon Musk a close friend, also asserted that Tesla could roll out a ride-sharing service with autonomously driven cars at prices two-thirds below what Uber charges, while also ensuring people get to their destinations safely.
During the event at his house, Ellison had much more to say about Tesla, autonomous driving, regulation, and his friends and enemies.