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Uber Files To Go Public

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Ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc. has filed paperwork to go public, ending months of speculation about its initial public offering or IPO.

The company now becomes the latest unicorn, or a privately-held startup company valued at $1 billion or more, to tap the public markets.

On Thursday, Uber filed a Form S-1 with U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, about two weeks after rival Lyft Inc. (LYFT) made its debut on the public markets and raised $2.2 billion in its IPO. Lyft has listed its shares on the tech-heavy Nasdaq under the trading symbol 'LYFT.'

Uber has filed to list its common stock on the New York Stock Exchange or NYSE under the trading symbol 'UBER.'

Uber is expected to go public in May. However, the company has not specified a price range for its shares.

Uber noted that the principal purposes of its IPO is to increase its capitalization as well as financial flexibility and create a public market for its common stock.

The company intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for general corporate purposes, including working capital, operating expenses, and capital expenditures.

Uber reported net income of $997 million in 2018, compared to loss of $4.03 billion in the previous year. Revenue for the year grew 42 percent to $11.27 billion from $7.93 billion in the prior year. Uber's gross bookings in 2018 grew 45 percent to $49.8 billion from $34.4 billion in 2017.

However, Uber also said it expects its operating expenses to increase significantly in the foreseeable future, adding that it may not achieve profitability.

For the quarter ended December 31, 2018, Uber reported 91 million monthly active platform consumers or MAPCs and 1.5 billion trips on its platform. The company also said it had 3.9 million drivers on its platform in the quarter.

Uber said it will pay a one-time cash driver appreciation reward to its drivers around the world. In the U.S., drivers will be paid rewards ranging from $100 to $10,000, depending on the number of lifetime trips completed by each driver.

Uber's biggest stockholders are SB Cayman 2 Ltd. with a 16.3 percent stake, while entities affiliated with Benchmark Capital Partners own an 11 percent stake. Uber's Co-founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick holds an 8.6 percent stake in the company.

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