Uber raises first-quarter earnings guidance on strong ridership growth and delivery growth

FILE PHOTO: The Uber Hub is seen in Redondo Beach
FILE PHOTO: The Uber Hub is seen on March 25, 2019 in Redondo Beach, California, United States. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/File Photo

March 7, 2022

(Reuters) – Uber Technologies Inc on Monday raised its guidance for first-quarter core profit as its ride-hailing business rebounded faster-than-expected on a surge in airport trips and a pick-up in the number of offices reopening.

The company also said customers continued to order groceries at a high rate in February.

Shares of the ride-hailing company are up about 5% in premarket trading, with its smaller competitor Lyft Inc also posting a gain.

Uber said in a filing it now expects adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization to be between $130 million and $150 million for the first three months of the year, up from $100 million to $130 million it previously forecast would have.

“Our mobility business is recovering from Omicron much faster than we anticipated,” said Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber’s chief executive. He said consumers are eager to book rides for travel, commuting or nightlife.

Khosrowshahi said gross bookings for airports, which are among the most profitable routes for Uber, rose more than 50% mom in February and are expected to be the strongest ever in the upcoming travel season.

Several companies are also bringing employees back into offices over two years after the pandemic forced many to work from home.

During the peak of the pandemic, Uber’s delivery business thrived as consumers became more dependent on ordering groceries and groceries online.

Ride-hail trips in February remain just 10% below pre-pandemic levels in the same month, Uber said. Mobility gross bookings in February had recovered to 95% compared to February 2019.

On the supply side, gross bookings hit an all-time high in February, the company said.

(Reporting by Tina Bellon in Austin, Texas and Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri) Uber raises first-quarter earnings guidance on strong ridership growth and delivery growth

Caroline Bleakley

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