Uber files for long-awaited stock offering

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Two weeks after Lyft made its stock market debut, Uber released its initial public offering filing.

"Mr. Kalanick was selected to serve on our board of directors because of his experience as one of the co-founders and early leaders of our company, and as such, his extensive knowledge of our business, and his innovation, technology, and high-growth experience, as well as his consumer and digital experience", Uber said in an S-1 filing declaring its intention to go public.

Uber is expected to fetch up to $10bn (£7.6bn) in the listing, which could reportedly occur in May and value the company at up to $120bn.

Uber has 91 million monthly active users compared to Lyft's 18.6 million.

The filing noted that Uber offers ridesharing in some 700 cities but has bolder ambitions to reshape how people and goods are transported with operations such as meal deliveries, freight, and electric bikes and scooters. The offering could value Uber at a whopping $100 billion. Excluding those gains, plus other items, Uber lost US$1.8 billion for the year.

Its operating loss was $3bn while revenue for the year came in at $11.3bn, according to documents filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

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"It's not a coincidence that the day before Uber was expected to make a filing that investors are immediately contrasting it to Lyft and Lyft looks less attractive", said Matt Moscardi, analyst at MSCI in Boston.

Uber is now in the process of trying to build itself into a one-stop shop for many different modes of transportation, including bikes, scooters, vehicle sharing, and public transportation.

The crash was a huge setback for Uber and the entire industry, and has led to growing skepticism about the predictions about self-driving cars.

Uber's global reach distinguishes it from rival Lyft Inc., which operates in the US and Canada.

More than 60,000 drivers have filed or told Uber that they intend to file arbitration cases against the company, claiming that they were misclassified as independent contractors, the company said.

To Uber's credit, it is firing off a cannon-sized number of metrics at investors. Uber had been faulted for a culture of workplace sexual harassment, programmes to evade regulators and a viral video of Kalanick lambasting a driver as the company faced mounting pressure of treatment of its contract workforce. Also, the company has plans to remain a truly global brand having recently paid $3.1 billion to acquire Careem, a Middle East rival. That profit was driven primarily by the sales of assets in Southeast Asia and Russian Federation, as well as an increase in the estimated value of its stock in China's largest ride-hailing company, Didi Chuxing. Uber says it is on a "new path forward" under the leadership of CEO Dara Khosrowshahi; the phrase is repeated a total of seven times in the document.

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