Uber — the multibillion-dollar San Francisco start-up which pioneered the sharing economy — hopes to profit from the Super Bowl as people decide to hail a ride to the stadium Sunday.
Uber-ing to a big game is not new. What is new is that Uber is officially part of the Super Bowl.
"This is our hometown, and the Super Bowl is here," said Amy Friedlander Hoffman, head of business development at Uber. "Six years ago we didn't exist."
Uber paid the Super Bowl host committee to be the official ride-hailing app for Sunday's game, though the amount was less than the reported $500,000, the company said. (It wouldn't disclose the amount.) In exchange, Uber is being given access to a parking lot that's a 15-minute walk from the Levi's Stadium. This is where drivers will be cycled through for pick up and drop off of passengers.
There will also be a "rider lounge" where customers can grab some water and recharge their phones. Meantime, this week Uber also has a special pickup and drop-off area near Super Bowl City in San Francisco.
Friedlander Hoffman said there are more than 40,000 Uber drivers in the Bay Area who may choose to work Sunday. Longtime driver Ben Ahmedod will be one of them. "There's going to be huge demand, that's for sure."