Troubled transportation and food delivery giant sees increased bookings and declining loses.
Despite multiple accusations of inherent sexual discrimination, a revolving door of resigned executives, dubious legal shenanigans in India, drivers threatening to strike, and being unable to find a new CEO after founder Travis Kalanick was effectively ousted earlier this year, the company appear to be flourishing…
The financial numbers, released by news site Axios and that the BBC has since confirmed as correct show that Uber bookings globally are up 150% since last year, and that the company could soon be in profit.
The company accumulated $8.7 billion in gross bookings in the second quarter of 2017, according to financial results first reported by Axios. Uber posted revenue of $1.75bn in the three months to June, with losses dropping by 9% in the same period, to the still staggering figure of $645m.
The San Francisco-based company also reported that Uber drivers have made around $50m in tips since it began rolling out the program in June.
Wanted: Executives who won’t quit
Former General Electric boss Jeff Immelt is the rumoured front-runner for the chief executive post. These strong financial figures may make that recruitment task easier, but the company is also looking for a chief operating officer, chief financial officer and president, among others.
The numbers are perhaps surprising given all the controversy that has plagued the ride sharing start-up since last year. Uber’s board also seems to have devolved into a faction led civil war over who should be the new CEO, with some commentators almost at a loss for words for the internal conflicts. Kara Swisher from Recode wrote: “I have been presented with business conspiracies in droves…. It’s all very Spy vs. Spy, except the high jinks are about whether everyone can get obscenely rich from a business that is about calling for a ride from an app. (And let’s keep in mind: All the people fighting here — however awful — are probably going to get really wealthy regardless of the CEO outcome.) …Still, even worse is that — unlike pretty much every single tech corporate succession story I have covered in two decades — there has also been the ongoing injection of more disturbing personal attacks into the mix, on both sides…”
Wasn’t Travis Kalanick in charge for most of quarter 2 in 2017?
Yes. Yes, he was. It’s also important to note that investors and industry insiders are far more interested in what the end of the
year figures will be, which will determine just how much damage if any has been done by all the rouble in 2017. There’s also the fact while still the world’s dominant ride-sharing platform, competition from rival apps is beginning to take hold, especially in big cities, from companies such as Lyft.
Time will tell if the current figures will hold up come December. But who knows, perhaps by then they will have a new CEO.