By Spencer Feingold
Uber filed paperwork with federal regulators on Thursday, giving investors an inside financial snapshot of the global ride-hailing giant ahead of its debut on the public market this spring.
The company reported $11.3 billion in revenue last year, a sharp increase from the $7.9 billion in revenue in 2017. Uber, however, posted an adjusted EBITDA loss of $1.85 billion in 2018.
Seen as a behemoth in the space, Uber completed 14 million rides a day in 2018, driving customers 26 billion miles, according to the company’s filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commision.
Uber, which was founded in 2009, has completed a total of over 10 billion rides and has expanded to more than 700 cities in over 60 countries.
The San Francisco-based company is expected to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker UBER as early as May.
Uber’s filing comes just weeks after its much smaller North American competitor Lyft ($LYFT) made its public debut on the Nasdaq. Lyft's IPO had excited investors for months, especially after the company increased its IPO share price range. However, Lyft's shares dropped significantly in its early days of trading, with the stock falling below its IPO offering price of $72.
Uber will be the latest Silicon Valley startup to IPO this year and will follow a trend of unprofitable companies, such as Lyft, to go public. Pinterest, another high profile startup still far off from profitability, dropped its IPO filing last month.
Despite its ubiquitous presence around the world and its name being used as a verb by city dwellers, Uber says it has room to grow.
“Uber accounts for less than one percent of all miles driven globally. Just a small percentage of people in countries where Uber is available have ever used our service,” Dara Khosrowshahi, the company’s CEO, wrote in the SEC filing.
Uber has expanded to include services like Uber Eats, a food delivery platform, and Uber Freight, which creates an on-demand marketplace for shippers and carriers.
The company also established an internal Advanced Technologies Group in 2015 that focuses solely on developing autonomous vehicle technologies. The group has over 1,000 employees working in engineering offices in Pittsburgh, San Francisco, and Toronto.
The highly competitive space of personal mobility, meal delivery, and logistics industries is the company’s largest risk.
“If we are unable to compete effectively in these industries, our business and financial prospects would be adversely impacted,” the company’s filing said.
Uber said its growth strategy is based on increasing ride-sharing penetration in existing markets, pursuing targeted acquisitions and investments, and increasing investments in advanced technologies, among other things.
“Because we are not even one percent done with our work, we will operate with an eye towards the future,” Khosrowshahi added.