Uber Technologies Inc. (UBER) slipped to a loss in the first quarter of 2019 from a profit last year, due to higher costs and expenses as well as lower other income. The bottom line was wider than the analysts’ expectations while the top line exceeded the consensus estimates.
Net loss attributable to the company was $1.01 billion or $2.26 per share, compared to a profit of $3.75 billion or $1.84 per share in the previous year quarter. The prior year quarter included gain on divestitures primarily includes a $2.2 billion gain on the sale of Southeast Asia operations to Grab Holding Inc. and a $954 million gain on the disposal of Uber Russia/CIS operations.
Revenues grew by 20% to $3.10 billion. Gross bookings jumped by 34% to $14.65 billion. Monthly active platform consumers increased by 33% to 93 million and trips climbed by 36% to 1.55 billion.
In the first quarter, engagement across Uber’s platform was higher than ever, with an average of 17 million trips per day and an annualized gross bookings run-rate of $59 billion. Earlier this month, Uber took the important step of becoming a public company and it is now focusing on executing its strategy to become a one-stop shop for local transportation and commerce.
For the first quarter, Ridesharing revenue increased by 9% year-over-year to $2.38 billion and revenue from Uber Eats soared by 89% to $536 million. Other revenue grew by 23% to $32 million while Vehicle Solutions revenue declined by 82% to $10 million. Geography-wise, revenue in the US and Canada grew by 26% while that in Latin America fell by 13%. Revenue in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa increased by 26% and that from the Asia Pacific rose by 6%.
In March 2019, the company launched its consumer loyalty program, Uber Rewards, nationally in the US whereby consumers can earn points through spending on Uber’s Core Platform. Also, after the launch of driver rewards program, Uber Pro, in 10 cities during the first quarter, the company has now expanded it across the US.
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The company turned beneficial by the launch of restaurant self-sign up to become an Uber Eats partner, which will attract independent and small chain restaurant selection. In addition, Uber Freight tackles opportunity with disruptive technology. New Mobility (NeMo) launched new JUMP bike hardware and Transit, in-app public transportation options.
Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group (ATG) received an investment in aggregate of $1 billion from Toyota, DENSO, and SoftBank Vision Fund for deepening the ATG-Toyota collaboration on next-generation autonomous vehicles. In addition, Uber agreed to buy Careem, a ridesharing, meal delivery, and payments company operating in the Middle East, North Africa, and Pakistan, for $3.1 billion, consisting of $1.4 billion in cash and $1.7 billion in unsecured convertible notes. The purchase is expected to close in January 2020.
Shares of Uber Technologies ended Thursday’s regular session down 0.35% at $39.80 on the NYSE. Following the earnings release, the stock inched up over 3% in the after-market session.