The collapse in global demand for car reservations was offset by an increase in food delivery, said Uber, as the company reported higher-than-expected revenues for its first quarter as losses soared to almost $ 3 billion.
Investors boosted Uber’s shares by more than 5% after managing director Dara Khosrowshahi said recovery “green shoots” had appeared and suggested the company would benefit enormously from the new standard.
“There is a silver lining to this incredibly tragic Covid virus, is that the business we have of states, and the category in general, just seemed to be increasing dramatically – some would say by multiples,” said Mr. Khosrowshahi. .
The company’s loss of $ 2.9 billion for the quarter is almost 200% higher than last year. He attributed the loss to a previously announced $ 2.1 billion impairment charge on the value of his investments, which he blamed on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Uber’s portfolio includes minority interests in Didi Chuxing and Grab, a popular app in Southeast Asia.
Without these fees, Uber said its net losses would have been $ 1.1 billion. In the midst of the pandemic, the company’s goal of achieving profitability – it previously stated that it hoped to have a profitable quarter, on an adjusted basis, by the end of the year – was pushed back by “It’s a matter of quarters, not years,” said Mr. Khosrowshahi.
Dan Ives, analyst at Wedbush, said, “Overall, these results have been better than expected, although headwinds from Covid-19 have crushed carpooling growth.”
Rough reservations for the rides segment decreased 5% from the same time last year, but thanks to the Eats food delivery segment, Uber’s overall revenues increased to $ 3.5 billion , up 14% from 2019, and slightly above Wall Street expectations.
Eats’ gross bookings increased 52% year-over-year, although the division has always operated with a loss of $ 313 million, discounting interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. The company’s overall ebitda losses amounted to $ 612 million, an improvement of 30% year-over-year, and better than analysts had expected.
The company did not offer guidance for the second quarter. He warned, however, that global travel fell 80% in April.
The number of trips has increased week by week in the past three weeks, said Mr. Khosrowshahi. In Georgia and Texas, two states that have controversial plans to reopen, gross bookings in major cities increased 43% and 50% respectively in the past week compared to the lowest week April.
Elsewhere, bookings in Hong Kong have returned to 70% of their pre-crisis levels.
Khosrowshahi predicted that Uber would be at the center of people’s plans to return to work, as they opt for carpooling instead of public transportation.