Uber’s IPO Filing By the Numbers: Term Sheet for Friday, April 12
Fri Apr 12 2019
Lucy Harlow (3509 articles)

Uber’s IPO Filing By the Numbers: Term Sheet for Friday, April 12


Nearly every email subject line in my inbox this morning has the word “Uber” in it, so I’m sure you’re tired of reading all the various hot takes on the ride-hailing company’s IPO filing. So I’ll try to make this as comprehensive, least hot take-y & easy to read as possible.


$ 20 billion: The total amount of funding (a combination of debt and equity) that Uber has raised to date.

$ 11.3 billion: Uber’s revenue for 2018, which is up from $ 7.9 billion in 2017 (Lyft’s revenue for 2018 was $ 2.16 billion.)

$ 14.3 billion: Costs and expenses, which are up from $ 12 billion in 2017 (Lyft’s total costs and expenses were $ 3.1 billion in 2018.)

• $ 1.8 billion: Uber’s losses in 2018, which is the first full year under new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. This figure represents an improvement from one year ago when it reported $ 2.2 billion in losses. (Lyft reported losses of $ 911 million last year.)

91 million: Monthly active riders as of Dec. 2018, which is up from 68 million in 2017 (Compare that to Lyft’s 18.6 million monthly actives.)

222 million: The number of of Uber shares that Softbank owns, which comes out to 16.3%. Benchmark Capital comes in second with 150 million shares, or 11%, and Travis Kalanick third with 117.5 million shares, or 8.6%.

100,000+: Hundreds of thousands of consumers who stopped using the Uber app within days of the #DeleteUber campaign.

20: The number of times Uber mentions Alphabet’s self-driving unit Waymo in its prospectus. For context, it only mentions Lyft a total of six times.

1: Unlike many of its peers, Uber is going public with a single class voting structure. That means one vote equals one share.


Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi wrote a letter full of apologetic language and acknowledgment of the company’s shortfalls. Here’s an excerpt:

Some of the attributes that made Uber a wildly successful startup — a fierce sense of entrepreneurialism, our willingness to take risks that others might not, and that famous Uber hustle — led to missteps along the way. In fact, when I joined Uber as CEO, many people asked why I would leave the stability of my previous job for one that was anything but. My answer was simple: Uber is a once-in-a-generation company, and the opportunity ahead of it is enormous.

He ends with:

I want to close with my commitment to you: I won’t be perfect, but I will listen to you; I will ensure that we treat our customers, our colleagues, and our cities with respect; and I will run our business with passion, humility, and integrity.

Read more here.

TURNING DOWN SOFTBANK: OK I never thought this day would come, but there’s a founder out there who (kind of) turned down Masayoshi’s Son money. Cue the gasps.

Bhavish Aggarwal, the co-founder of Indian ride-hailing service Ola, has reportedly grown concerned with Softbank’s influence. Softbank was an early investor in Ola, but it then went on to back Uber, and then it encouraged the two companies to merge. Now, Bloomberg reports that Son struck a preliminary deal to put another $ 1.1 billion into Ola to boost his stake in the company to more than 40%. When Aggarwal tried to include terms to guarantee his own control over Ola, the deal ultimately fell apart.

“Bhavish is spurning SoftBank money as he doesn’t want to get diluted out of Ola,” Mohandas Pai, venture capitalist and former chief financial officer of Infosys, told Bloomberg. “Founders become employees when someone sits on your board and tells you how to run the show.”

This is an important point for founders to remember when considering taking money from Softbank. As you can see above, Softbank has the biggest stake in Uber. But then again, what would you do if you were told, “Fine, if you don’t take my money, I’ll give it to your rival instead.” As Uber’s CEO Dara Khosrowshahi famously said, “Rather than having their capital cannon facing me, I’d rather have their capital cannon behind me, all right.” I can’t imagine it’s easy, but it’s important to remember: Founders can become employees pretty quickly when they take money from someone who wants to direct the show.

Lucy Harlow

Lucy Harlow

Lucy Harlow is a senior Correspondent who has been reporting about Commodities, Currencies, Bonds etc across the globe for last 10 years. She reports from New York and tracks daily movement of various indices across the Globe


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