Uber Posts $1.2 Billion Loss as Growth Improves

SAN FRANCISCO — Uber has reported record losses and slowing growth over the past few months. Its stock has tanked. Investors have called it a “horror show.”

On Monday, the ride-hailing company responded with financial results that exceeded what Wall Street had anticipated. While Uber is still losing large amounts of money, it did not bleed as much cash as it did in the previous quarter, and its revenue growth rate improved.

Uber said revenue had risen 30 percent to $3.8 billion in the third quarter, above Wall Street estimates of $3.6 billion. It posted a net loss of $1.2 billion, wider than the $986 million loss a year earlier but less than the $5.2 billion loss in the previous quarter.

Yet Uber’s stock fell in after-hours trading because the number of new customers coming to the app and overall bookings — which are rides and food deliveries before the company pays commissions — were weaker than some Wall Street analysts had expected.

“Our results this quarter decisively demonstrate the growing profitability of our Rides segment,” Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber’s chief executive, said in a statement. In a conference call with reporters on Monday, he added that Uber would reach profitability — if it excluded various costs — in 2021.

Uber continues to face significant challenges as investors become more skeptical of money-burning technology companies. WeWork, the office leasing company, recently scuttled its initial public offering after investors questioned the economics of its business.

Since Uber went public in May, Mr. Khosrowshahi has embarked on a belt-tightening campaign, laying off more than 1,000 workers and cutting other costs. Uber has also introduced services for temporary hiring and financial products for drivers and has acquired a majority stake in a grocery delivery start-up, Cornershop.

“We are going to be driving discipline across the company,” Mr. Khosrowshahi said on Monday.

Dan Ives, a managing director of equity research at Wedbush Securities, said investors were insisting that Uber demonstrate “a clearer path to profitability, strategic initiatives to gain share in the U.S. and give investors confidence that Dara is the pilot on the plane to steer through a myriad of challenges ahead.”

Uber said it had 103 million consumers a month in the third quarter, up 26 percent from a year earlier. It provided 1.7 billion rides and food deliveries, up 31 percent from the same period.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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