Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Uber Set To Sell Shares To Public In 2019; CEO Says

Uber’s CEO said the company’s IPO will come in the second half of next year, and that meanwhile, he’s hoping to work with Google’s self-driving car unit.

“We’re in a good position in terms of the company’s profile, in terms of profitability,” CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said late Wednesday. “And margins continue to get better.”

The ride giant has been licking its wounds from a tumultuous 2017, in which it got hit by a slew of scandals stemming from the win-at-all-costs leadership of former CEO Travis Kalanick.

Back in February, Uber settled a $2 billion lawsuit with the Google-owned self-driving car tech business Waymo for $245 million.

Waymo had sued Uber for using self-driving car trade secrets that were stolen by a former Waymo engineer. That engineer, Anthony Levandowski, allegedly downloaded 14,000 Waymo documents in December 2015 as he was about to leave his job.

Khosrowshahi said that Uber’s relationship with Waymo has been “getting better” since the settlement and that Uber is currently in “discussions” to add Waymo’s self-driving cars to its own ride-sharing network.

Khosrowshahi said he believes the technology behind autonomous driving will be shared, and that any company such as Waymo that wants to lead the sector will need to partner with Uber because of its user base.

He also said Waymo’s experience with self-driving technology could help Uber improve its safety. Uber halted its autonomous car testing after a self-driving car struck and killed a pedestrian in Arizona in April.

“When we get back on the road, we have to be absolutely satisfied we’re getting back on the road in the safest manner possible,” Khosrowshahi said. “I’d welcome Waymo to put cars in our network.”

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