Reputation scarring? With today's attention span? Fucking please. A reputation destroyed today will be utterly forgotten about tomorrow.
What will be forgotten about tomorrow? Sorry, I was checking my something or other on my phone.
There are as many, if not more, businesses than there have ever been before.
I would like to see your source for that observation. Not as a challenge, but because it would provide a welcomed counterbalance to the consolidation I'm seeing in finance as of the past few decades.
Look at Gibson Guitar Corporation. Per this wikipedia article, the global sales of guitars began to decline, so they marshalled their resources and diversified by acquiring a bunch of other companies.
Gibson purchased Garrison Guitars in 2007. In mid 2009 Gibson reduced its work force to adjust for a decline in guitar industry sales in the United States. In 2011, Gibson acquired the Stanton Group, including Cerwin Vega, KRK Systems and Stanton DJ. Gibson then formed a new division, Gibson Pro Audio, which will deliver professional grade audio items, including headphones, loudspeakers and DJ equipment. Gibson announced a partnership with the Japanese-based Onkyo Corporation in 2012. Onkyo, known for audio equipment and home theater systems, became part of the Gibson Pro Audio division.
Every year, I see fewer and fewer independent companies out there. Especially in auto manufacturers. Other than Tesla, not a lot of new companies bringing cars to market. Instead, all the smaller companies are bought out by bigger companies. Sergio Marchionne, the CEO of Fiat / Chrysler, which owns a bunch of smaller car brands, is always trying to get more consolidation going in the auto industry.
Another example happened back in the late 2000s when Porsche attempted a hostile buyout of VW, and got too strung out in debt in the attempt and then VW turned around and ate Porsche.
....maybe it is time to get the "public" out of transportation.
Cost competitive with public buses? This weekend I dropped my truck off at a stereo shop in the south end of town (Austin, TX). Paid $2.50 for an all-day bus pass and came home. Did chores all day and rode the bus back down to the stereo shop to pick up my truck. That would've cost me over $20 with a ride hailing company.
Looking around at the other passengers on the bus with me, I got a sense many weren't really positioned financially for becoming ride hailing customers. At least one was in a wheelchair that required a lift that wouldn't be equipped on many privately-owned vehicles. Advocating for ride hailing to replace mass transit does not consider the needs of those for whom the bus is the only transportation 'option'.
Additionally, if a ride hailing car travelled to my house (empty) took me to the stereo shop, then returned to the driver's house (empty), that would add two unoccupied trips on the public street that wouldn't have occurred had I ridden the bus or driven myself. If you multiply those empty trips times the number of people on the bus, suddenly there would be a lot more cars on the street not carrying passengers and slowing everyone else down with greater congestion.
The company has approximately 1,100 employees worldwide, and had revenues of $533 million in fiscal 2016.
Have they already closed the books on 2016 earnings? Heck yeah they need to get bought. The hardware running their accounting software is literally more than a month faster than anything I've seen in the industry.
But it'll eventually get there, and we (as a society) really need to be discussing how we're going to handle that new world where most jobs have been automated.
Automation is about pushing more wealth to the ruling class and minimizing unavoidable costs. Every time a job like this gets automated, displaced workers head to another employment pool. As those pools get crowded, the salaries go down.
"Plumbers will always make a good living."
"Until the displaced security guards get minimal training by a contracting firm and there is a flood of certified plumbers."
The more claimed victims, the more improbable it becomes that they did not inform the authorities and seek prosecution for that activity.
Or, perhaps it means the perpetrator developed a well-refined method of getting dirt on victims, perpetrating the assault, then blackmailing them into silence.
"Well hello there Charlie Brown, you blockhead." -- Lucy Van Pelt