Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi walks outside of the New York Stock Exchange its highly anticipated initial public offering on May 10, 2019.
Spencer Platt | Getty Images
Ride-hailing giant Uber is set to report second-quarter results after markets close on Thursday, as the novel coronavirus continues to curtail people’s travel and commuting in the U.S.
Here are the key numbers:
- Losses: $1.02 per share vs 86 cents per share expected, according to a consensus of analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.
- Revenue: $2.24 billion vs $2.18 billion expected, as per Refinitiv
- Rides (gross bookings): $3.47 billion expected, according to estimates compiled by StreetAccount
- Eats (gross bookings): $6.57 billion expected, as per StreetAccount.
Uber suffered declines in gross bookings for its core ride-hailing business in the first quarter of 2020, but a spike in demand for its food delivery service, Uber Eats, at the same time. On the company’s last earnings call, in May, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said that Uber Rides’ low point ended in April, and he expected ride-hailing to rebound throughout the second quarter.
After Covid-19 began having a major impact on Uber’s business, the company moved fast to lay off about 14% of its workforce, more than 3,500 employees, and to offload its Jump electric bike business to a bike-sharing competitor called Lime, in which Uber is an investor.
Despite the efforts to conserve cash, Uber has remained acquisitive. In July, it announced plans to buy Postmates, an on-demand delivery venture, for $2.65 billion in stock.
In the first quarter of 2020, Uber’s net loss hit $2.9 billion total, including $2.1 billion in impairment charges from companies in which Uber has a stake. That represented Uber’s biggest loss in three quarters.
Uber’s business also faces mounting legal battles over whether Uber and competitors like Lyft can continue to treat drivers in the United States as independent contractors.
On Wednesday, the California Labor Commissioner’s office announced that it had filed separate lawsuits against Uber and Lyft accusing them of committing wage theft by misclassifying drivers as contractors rather than employees. Hiring employees, rather than treating workers as independent contractors, generally costs companies more and makes them more liable for the conduct of these workers while they’re on the job.
In addition, California recently enacted a law (AB-5) that makes it hard for “gig economy” companies, including Uber, to classify workers as independent contractors, a New York federal judge ruled that Uber and Lyft drivers must be paid unemployment benefits, and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that an Uber driver was not self-employed and should have been eligible for unemployment compensation.
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