LOSSES OF $1 BILLION generally would be hailed as signs of a company in trouble, but this is Silicon Valley so don't expect this bad news to dent Uber's reputation in the long run.
That's partly because revenue is still growing, of course. The company saw a 20 per cent increase on its earnings for the first quarter, hitting $3.1 billion.
That's solid growth, but there's some disparity over where it came from. The actual ride-hailing part of its business grew only nine per cent, while Uber Eats went up a massive 89 per cent - an increase in solidarity at the incredible weight gain its most avid users no doubt experienced.
"Earlier this month we took the important step of becoming a public company, and we are now focused on executing our strategy to become a one-stop shop for local transportation and commerce," said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi in a statement. "In the first quarter, engagement across our platform was higher than ever, with an average of 17 million trips per day and an annualized gross bookings run-rate of $59 billion."
Despite these bamboozling figures, the overall losses meant that Uber closed the day down 0.25 per cent, resting at $39.90 per share.
So a sad day for Uber, but let's just remember that its non-employees are the ones set to suffer in the long run, and the company hasn't even been subtle about that plan. "As we aim to reduce driver incentives to improve our financial performance, we expect driver dissatisfaction will generally increase," the company said in a filing last month.
Presumably the executive who wrote the filing was hoping that the drivers that put him there would be too busy struggling to make ends meet to actually read it. µ
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