Uber's IPO Registration Is Finally Happening--With an Expected $100 Billion Valuation

An Uber driver using the Uber app on her phone
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14 April, 2019

Both Uber and Lyft lose money though Uber has trimmed its losses in recent years. If successful, Uber would attain a valuation of between $90 million and $100 billion and the largest tech IPO since Chinese e-commerce business Alibaba in 2014.

Uber plans to make its IPO registration with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission publicly available later this week, and will kick of its investor roadshow during the week of April 29, putting it on track to price its IPO and begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange in early May, the sources said.

Uber, however, hasn't disclosed the valuation it is seeking from the public investors.

Uber Technologies Inc may face a cooler reception from investors than expected when it prices its initial public offering next month since smaller USA ride-hailing rival Lyft Inc's aggressive stock launch and subsequent fall. Lyft's IPO had excited investors for months, especially after the company increased its IPO share price range. The company said in the filing that it lost US$1.8 billion in 2018, excluding certain transactions, on revenue of US$11.3 billion.

Uber grew its revenue from $3.8 billion in 2016 to $11.2 billion in 2018, but at the end of 2018, it had a loss of $1.8 billion. Those deals contributed to nearly $5 billion in what Uber called "other income".

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Even though Uber and Lyft both submitted their confidential IPO filings to the SEC on December 6, 2018, Uber's decision-makers are reportedly able to learn from Lyft's mistakes, according to Bloomberg. Uber had been faulted for a culture of workplace sexual harassment, programmes to evade regulators and a viral video of Kalanick lambasting a driver as the company faced mounting pressure of treatment of its contract workforce.

The company is expected to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker UBER as early as May. Polish taxi drivers held up traffic in Monday to call attention to their message that Uber drivers represent unfair competition, reported The Associated Press. It said it still suffered from a perception that Uber is a toxic place to work.

The blowback from the problems helped Lyft pick up ground in the US - something Uber acknowledged in its filing - and led to the ouster of Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick as CEO in 2017. However, its shares dropped by more than 7 percent after Uber's valuation news hit the market.

One advantage Uber will likely seek to play up to investors is that it is the largest player in numerous markets in which it operates.

The filing noted that Uber offers ridesharing in some 700 cities but has bolder ambitions to reshape how people and goods are transported with operations such as meal deliveries, freight, and electric bikes and scooters.


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