Uber makes first adjusted profit but Didi’s share hits profits – News Couple
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Uber makes first adjusted profit but Didi’s share hits profits


Uber gave investors its first profitable quarter on an adjusted basis, thanks to a rapid recovery in the ride-sharing business and the popularity of food delivery.

However, volatile activity in Uber’s investment portfolio caused it to swing to a net loss of $2.4 billion, based on official accounting principles, thanks to a negative $3.2 billion revaluation of its stake in China’s Didi Chuxing.

Uber’s preferred “adjusted EBITDA” measure of the company’s underlying health excludes multiple costs including interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, as well as stock-based compensation.

On that basis, it posted a profit of $8 million in the third quarter of this year, an increase of $625 million over the same period last year.

Wall Street was told to expect the EBITDA mark, and on Thursday Uber reiterated its confidence to maintain that level, forecasting adjusted EBITDA of $25 million to $75 million in the fourth quarter.

Those expectations fell below the $110 million target that analysts had been expecting, according to S&P Capital IQ, and Uber shares fell slightly in after-hours trading.

“Although we recognize that it’s just a step, getting to the company’s total adjusted profitability before interest, taxes and depreciation is an important milestone for Uber,” added Nelson Chai, chief financial officer.

Using the same measure, Uber said its restaurant delivery business was turning a profit for the first time, while its cross-border delivery segment, which includes groceries, is close to breakeven by the same measure.

Uber beat analyst expectations in all three of its business units — ride-sharing, delivery and freight — to report total revenue of $4.85 billion for the quarter.

That was up 72 percent from the same period last year, and better than analysts’ expectations of $4.41 billion, according to S&P Capital IQ.

The company said total bookings — the total value of all transactions, including delivery — were at an all-time high, at $23.1 billion. The trend indicates that the openness of societies has not led to a decrease in the demand for connectivity.

Dara Khosrowshahi, chief executive, said the company has seen the supply of drivers return “steadily” thanks to “critical investments” in getting workers back to the platform during a period of nationwide labor shortages.

The company said the recovery in US demand was, for the first time this year, now in line with a recovery in supply – with the number of drivers working for Uber increasing 65 per cent compared to January.

As a result, the price hike is close to “2019 normal”.

Uber also reported a significant rebound in flights to and from airports, growing 20 percent since the beginning of September. Business trips on the platform are up 60 percent.



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