Uber Reports First Profitable Quarter Since It Launched More Than A Decade Ago

Ride-hailing service Uber has reported its third-quarter earnings. The report came after the bell on Thursday, and although its shares suffered an initial dip, shares were up 1 percent in after-hours trading.

The company recorded loss per share of $1.28 compared to the estimate of 33 cents, according to Refinitiv. The company recorded revenue of $4.8 billion compared to the expectation of $4.4 billion, according to Refinitiv.

The company reported a net loss of $2.4 billion for the third quarter and this is majorly because of a drop in the value of its investment holdings, especially in Chinese mobility company Didi. According to the company, its stakes in Joby, Zomato and Aurora assisted in offsetting some of its losses. Net loss from the same period a year ago was $1.0 billion.

The ride-hailing giant reported its first profitable quarter since it launched over ten years ago. Its first adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) profit met its end-of-year target. The company reported an adjusted EBITDA profit of $8 million. This figure is up from an EBITDA loss of $507 million recorded in the second quarter.

Although the gap is continually narrowing, Uber’s delivery revenue continues to outperform the company’s core business – ride-hailing. Delivery revenue stood at $2.24 billion in the quarter while for ride-hailing services, revenue was $2.2 billion. The company recorded $402 million for freight revenue. The company also told its shareholders that its number of delivery merchants grew to over 780,000.

The company’s food delivery Uber Eats managed to hold up irrespective of the restrictions businesses like it are facing as a result of the pandemic. The pandemic has slowly begun to ease up and this is the major reason the company causing a reduction in orders from home which spiked during pandemic-induced lockdowns.

Uber’s mobility business had gross bookings worth $9.9 billion and is up 67 percent YoY. Its delivery business had gross bookings worth $12.8 billion and is up over 50 percent YoY. The supply and demand imbalances induced by the pandemic is still a challenge for the company as it causes a surge in prices and an increase in wait times.

Uber’s active mobility drivers rose almost 60 percent YoY in the third quarter, showing signs of recovery in the United States. The company said trips to and from airports grew 35 percent quarter over quarter and 203 percent YoY, which is another sign of recovery.

1.64 billion trips were recorded during the third quarter. This figure is up 9 percent from the previous quarter and 39 percent from the same period in the last year. Monthly active users increased to 109 million, up 8 percent from the second quarter, and drivers and couriers earned a total of $8.6 billion in the third quarter.

Uber says it expects gross bookings between $25 and $26 billion in the fourth quarter. It also expects a positive adjusted EBITDA of $25 to $75 million.

The company’s biggest American competitor Lyft also reported quite impressive earnings that show that the company is making a gradual recovery from the effects the pandemic had on its business.

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