Uber’s quarterly loss widens as costs rise; shares fall

Uber Technologies Inc on Monday posted a wider third-quarter loss as the company tries to outspend competitors through discounts and invests heavily in loss-making new business ventures, sending its shares down 5.5% in after-hours trading.

Nevertheless, the company promised it would be profitable by the end of 2021 as quarterly revenues; driven by its global ride-hailing business, beat expectations.

Uber Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi told Reuters on a conference call the company as a whole would achieve adjusted Ebitda profitability for the full year of 2021 but declined to provide details on the performance of individual business units by that time.

The move follows a similar announcement by smaller ride-hailing competitor Lyft INC on Wednesday.

Uber’s costs jumped about 33% to $4.92 billion in the latest quarter. Gross bookings, which include ride-hailing, mobility, food delivery and freight payments, rose 29% from a year earlier to $16.47 billion.

Overall, the company’s net loss widened to $1.16 billion in the quarter ended September 30, from $986 million a year earlier, while the net loss on a per-share basis narrowed to 68 cents from $2.21.

Known for its ride-hailing app available in more than 700 cities worldwide, Uber has vastly diversified its business over the past years.

The company is building out its long-haul trucking and food delivery business Uber eats, developing self-driving cars, offering banking services to its drivers and even planning commercial passenger drone shuttles by 2023.

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