Strong demand recovery for Uber results in quarterly profit of $892 mln

Uber announced $892 million in quarterly profits on Wednesday on surging revenues as the ride-hailing firm pointed to a strong demand recovery following the latest COVID-19 wave.

The San Francisco-based company notched increases across its operations, including its signature ride service, food delivery and freight operations, which saw revenues more than triple from year-ago levels following an acquisition of logistics company Transplace.

Uber also had gains in monthly active platform consumers, gross bookings and trips compared with a year ago, reflecting improving demand but also greater availability of drivers following a recruitment push.

Revenues jumped 83 percent to $5.8 billion.

“Our results demonstrate just how far we’ve come since the beginning of the pandemic,” said Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi.

“While the omicron variant began to impact our business in late December, mobility is already starting to bounce back, with gross bookings up 25 percent month-on-month in the most recent week.”

“Of course Covid remains a part of our lives,” Khosrowshahi added. “The silver lining is that the impacts are becoming more muted as we learn to live with a virus. Lockdowns are less strict, and vaccines are available across the world.”

Profits were boosted by $1.4 billion in increased value tied to Uber’s equity investments. The transportation company lost $968 million in the year-ago period.

Uber added 325,000 workers to its platform during the quarter, bringing total worker volumes to 4.4 million people, the largest since the second quarter of 2021.

Khosrowshahi described the shifts in demand in response to changing macro conditions as “a fast twitch muscle” compared with labor, which tends to fluctuate less quickly.

“Now that we’re seeing the omicron bounce back, we’re pretty confident that our supply situation is looking good right now and it’s going to look good,” Khosrowshahi said of the labor situation.

Shares jumped 5.8 percent to $42.50 in after-hours trading.

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