Uber Could Soon Be Worth More Than $100 Billion, Investment Firm Says
Despite its many scandals, Uber is still uber-valuable.
It's been a rough year for Uber. The ride-sharing giant has weathered numerous scandals, including a probe into allegations of sexual harassment that led to the resignation of CEO Travis Kalanick. It's also locked in a legal battle with Waymo over self-driving car trade secrets.
But Uber still has a bright future, claims investment firm Benchmark. It recently declared that Uber will likely be worth "comfortably" more than $100 billion in a few years, according to TechCrunch. Uber, which is currently valued at roughly $60 billion, is the largest ride-sharing company in the United States, but it faces stiffer competition than ever both at home and abroad.
Benchmark is currently represented on Uber's board by Matt Cohler. He replaced Bill Gurley, who resigned in June and reportedly had a role in Travis Kalanick's ouster, according to TechCrunch. Benchmark's declaration of support came shortly after Uber co-founder and chairman Garrett Camp told employees that Kalanick would not be reinstated. (However, some employees have circulated a petition to get Kalanick back in the CEO chair.)
Uber's public image has been damaged not only by the sexual-harassment scandal, but by accusations that the company uses its app to collect massive amounts of data, and that it underpays drivers. Uber has tried to make amends by adding more driver-support services, and attempting to close an existing gender pay gap.
But scandals aren't Uber's only problem. Last year, it was forced to sell its Chinese operations to rival Didi Chuxing, and that company recently invested in Grab and Careem, Uber rivals operating in Southeast Asia and the Middle East, respectively. Uber is also merging its Russian operations with Yandex, a local tech firm with its own ride-sharing service.
In the U.S., Uber's main rival Lyft remains a much smaller company, but has used Uber's many scandals to gain ground over the past few months. Lyft is also launching a self-driving car development program to compete directly with Uber. The combination of increased scandals and new competition means Uber will have to work hard to meet Benchmark's predictions.