Uber Q4 2021 Earnings Report Recap

UBER crushed analyst earnings estimates

Key Takeaways

  • Gross bookings came in at $25.9 billion, surpassing analysts' expectations.
  • Gross bookings measure the total dollar amount that Uber generates across its business platforms.
  • Uber said that the omicron variant had an impact on its business in late December but that it's already bouncing back to continue its ongoing recovery from the pandemic.
Uber Earnings Results
Metric  Beat/Miss/Match Reported Value Analysts' Prediction
EPS Beat $0.44 -$0.32
Revenue Beat $5.8B $5.4B
Gross Bookings Beat $25.9B $25.7B

Source: Predictions based on analysts' consensus from Visible Alpha

Uber (UBER) Financial Results: Analysis

Uber Technologies, Inc. (UBER) reported Q4 FY 2021 earnings results that exceeded analysts' expectations. The company reported positive earnings per share (EPS) for just the second time out of any quarter in at least the past three and a half years. Analysts were expecting the company to post another loss per share. Uber's earnings for the quarter included a $1.4 billion net benefit relating to its equity investments. Revenue for the quarter also came in above analyst estimates, rising 82.6% year over year (YOY). Companywide gross bookings beat consensus estimates. The company's shares rose more than 6% in extended trading. Over the past year, Uber's shares have provided a total return of -32.6%, below the S&P 500's total return of 17.3%.

UBER Gross Bookings

Uber's gross bookings rose 50.8% compared to the year-ago quarter. Gross bookings are a key metric representing the total dollar value—including applicable taxes, tolls, and fees—generated by Uber's ride-hailing, grocery and food delivery, and freight-shipping businesses. Gross bookings provide a snapshot of the magnitude of all of Uber's services. The figure is positively correlated with the company's revenue, the portion of gross bookings that Uber claims as its own.

Uber reported a string of declines in its overall gross bookings from the second quarter of FY 2020 through the final quarter of FY 2020. Those declines were primarily driven by the decimation of the company's ride-hailing business following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, with people sheltering at home and not requiring taxi services. The decline in Uber's Mobility gross bookings was only partially offset by increases in gross bookings for its delivery business, which benefitted from more people using grocery and food delivery services during the pandemic.

Companywide gross bookings have bounced back in FY 2021 amid vaccine rollouts and the easing of restrictions. Uber's growth in gross bookings for the fourth quarter slowed from the prior two quarters, but it was still a robust pace compared to growth rates reported before the start of the pandemic. The company said that gross bookings for its ride-hailing segment approached pre-pandemic levels. The omicron variant of the coronavirus had an adverse impact on business in late December, but that business was already bouncing back.

Gross bookings in the ride-hailing business, officially known as Mobility, rose 67.0% YOY. The segment comprises about 43.8% of total gross bookings. Delivery gross bookings were up 33.8% YOY, accounting for about 52.0% of companywide gross bookings. And gross bookings for the company's freight-shipping business, which comprises only about 4.2% of total gross bookings, were up 245.7% YOY.

UBER Outlook

Uber estimates that gross bookings in Q1 FY 2022 will be between $25 billion and $26 billion. The company expects to generate between $100 million and $130 million in adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA).

UBER Earnings Call Recap

In an analyst call after results were released, Uber executives went into more detail about gross bookings for the first quarter of 2022, which the company forecasts will be slightly below analysts’ estimates. “Given the Omicron-related demand impacts, we expect mobility gross bookings to decline quarter-over-quarter, while delivery is likely to be flat to up modestly,” said Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Nelson Chai.

Uber's next earnings report (for Q1 FY 2022) is expected to be released on May. 3, 2022.

Article Sources

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  1. Uber Technologies Inc. "Uber Announces Results for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2021." Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

  2. Visible Alpha. "Financial Data." Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

  3. TradingView. "Price Chart: UBER and S&P 500." Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

  4. Uber Technologies Inc. "Form 10-K for the Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2020," Page 69. Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

  5. The Wall Street Journal. "For Uber, Coronavirus Pandemic Is Still Weighing on Rides Business." Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

  6. The Wall Street Journal. "Uber Reaches Income Milestone as Rides Recover, Delivery Grows." Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

  7. Wall Street Journal. "Uber Fourth-Quarter Revenue Jumps as Customers Go Out, Keep Ordering In." Accessed Feb. 10, 2022.

  8. Yahoo! Finance. "Earnings Calendar: UBER." Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.

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