Uber, which has become the quintessential ride-hailing app, has been in the news throughout the week. So, let’s go over all of the latest Uber news as it prepares to go public.
Uber Still On Track For 2019 IPO
In an interview with Reuters Wednesday, Uber CEO Dara Khorowshahi said the company is “on track” to launch an initial public offering next year, and that “the growth rates for a company” of Uber’s size are “unrivaled.”
He also said the company will most likely not sell its self-driving car unit. The Advanced Technologies Group—the group that handles self-driving technologies—will be part of Uber when it goes public because it is “a big asset” that the firm is going to “monetize.” Regarding the fatal incident in Arizona earlier this year, he said the investigation won’taffect the timing of the IPO and, in fact, hopes to resume testing its self-driving cars by the end of 2018.
Additionally, in response to Bloomberg’s report that Lyft is targeting its IPO for next April or May, Khorowshahi said he is not concerned even if the rival company beats Uber to the public market.
Uber’s New Safety Measures
After a series of reports of assaults and other incidences in Uber rides, the company introduced new measures for safety purposes. The new features include an emergency button for drivers, voice-activated commands, anonymous pickup addresses and a check-up service if the ride is uncharacteristically long.
In June, Denver police said an Uber driver shot a passenger. Additionally, female riders filed suit against the company, accusing it of failure to examine drivers, which led to thousands of female passengers being sexual harassed, and even raped. To curb such catastrophes, Khorowshahi introduced all those aforementioned measures to Uber’s own platform. The company said customers can expect to see the new features in their app over the next few months, with more features to come later.
As convenient as ride-hailing apps are compared to taxis, the main dispute over the platform is the credentials of the drivers. To combat this issue, the CEO said “we want you to know when you get into that car, whether you’re a rider or a driver, that Uber’s got your back.”
Uber launched Uber Cash on Wednesday. It’s a service that allows customers to add certain amounts of money, similar to a gift card. Once the funds are added to a stored-value account, they can use to pay for Uber rides and Uber Eats. It also gives incentives for customers to use this service, by offering discounts if they spend a certain amount.
This new feature also stores Uber gift cards as well as other Uber rewards. The new developments make sense, as stored-value platforms have proven to be effective for other companies.
As the ride-hailing giant prepares to go public, it is fortifying the company even more and trying to fix its shortcomings. Investors should watch out for further news on Uber.
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