Situational awareness: Slack, the ubiquitous workplace messaging tool, filed to go public via a direct stock listing.
Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios
Amazon, which yesterday reported blockbuster earnings (see below), has found a potentially lucrative new customer for its retail platform, Axios' David McCabe reports.
Its next target: Government officials who spend taxpayer dollars.
Why it matters: Collectively, federal and local officials spend billions of dollars a year on goods and services, ranging from copy paper to musical instruments for schools. Amazon’s attempt to capture those dollars alarms its critics, who say that taxpayers could get a raw deal while the tech giant expands its dominance.
Driving the news: Amazon is pitching governments to adopt its Amazon Business product, which is a marketplace built for corporate users who often buy products in bulk or for specific workplace needs. Like on the consumer-focused platform, Amazon takes a cut of third-party sales.
Details: A new program is in the works that will allow federal government workers to make some low-value purchases via consumer websites. Amazon is seen as a likely contender.
Of note: Amazon already has established programs with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Air Force to capture some of the money their employees spend outside of the meticulously negotiated contracts that govern some federal spending.
The big picture: Amazon is becoming more and more enmeshed with the machinations of government and the programs it administers — and it has the lobbying budget to match. Some services it already is providing include...
Critics say Amazon’s move into government contracts raises several red flags, including possible favoritism by officials on the other side of the bargaining table who could create requirements that only Amazon can meet or otherwise skew the process.
Go deeper: David has more here.
Facebook was hit with a trio of new probes yesterday, with regulators in Ireland, Canada and New York all looking into various aspects of the company's data handling.
Meanwhile, the New York Times reports on a division within the Federal Trade Commission over what restraints should be put on Facebook's business practices, on top of an expected multibillion dollar fine.
The bottom line: If you are an antitrust lawyer working at Facebook, your job is pretty secure.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Uber disclosed this morning that it plans to raise upwards of $9 billion in its IPO, at a market cap that could approach $84 billion, Dan reports.
Why it matters: If successful, this would be one of the largest IPOs of all time. It also would help validate some of the record-high prices that venture capitalists have paid to invest in private, growth-stage "unicorns."
The ride-hail giant will offer 180 million shares at between $44 and $50 per share. At the low end of that range, Uber would be valued lower than in its most recent private round.
Go deeper: Inside Uber's IPO filing
An Amazon fulfillment center in Orlando. Photo: Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Amazon offered good news to both investors and customers.
What's new: The company reported much higher-than-anticipated quarterly earnings, even with revenue that was basically in line with expectations, Axios' Erica Pandey writes.
Plus, on a conference call with investors, the company announced it plans to start offering Prime customers complimentary overnight shipping rather than the 2-day service it had been offering (at a cost to the company of around $800 million).
The bottom line: Competing with Amazon continues to get harder.
In case you've ever wondered — here's what clouds are made of.