Uber’s Tiny Revenue

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For a company with large aspirations and a huge market value, Uber has small revenue. According to media reports, the ride-sharing firm’s revenue in the second quarter was only $1.75 billion. Uber lost $645 million in the period.

Several mutual funds, including BlackRock and T. Rowe Price, cut the value of their Uber shares by 15% recently, according to The Wall Street Journal. The company was valued at $69 billion before that decision. In part, the decisions were made because of management turmoil at the company. Additionally, Uber faces challenges in some markets where local ordinances and legal decisions block it from doing business. And rival Lyft has posted strong growth as it fights to take market share from Uber.

Uber’s growth has slowed relative to earlier periods. Revenue for the first quarter was $1.5 billion, according to website Axios, which obtained Uber’s financials. Uber’s cash balance was $6.6 billion at the end of the quarter, which should be enough to get it through the next several quarters, or longer if losses shrink.

Presuming Uber’s revenue reaches $8 billion this year and it loses well over $1 billion, the company faces significant competition from quarters as diverse as Lyft to traditional car manufacturers. While it has what is known as a “first mover” advantage, this may not help it as very well-financed firms try to take its business. Uber’s growth rate could rapidly decelerate in the year ahead.

Uber’s new valuation is about eight times 2017 revenue, which is rich if its revenue run rate does not pick up sharply and its losses move toward zero. In the meantime, $8 billion may seem like a lot of money. For what may be the world’s most valuable startup, the figure is very modest.