Uber is fast establishing itself as a modern, 21st-century way to lose a lot of money, according to the latest financial results. Bloomberg reports that the company's losses have been "eye-popping" this year, with an $800 million loss in the third quarter bringing total losses to at least $2.2 billion, a figure that could top $3 billion when fourth-quarter results come in. A source tells Bloomberg that net revenue has risen along with losses and is expected to reach more than $5.5 billion this year. The loss figures do not include interest or taxes, meaning Uber's losses could be even higher than reported. The company is believed to have lost at least $2 billion in 2015.
Insiders tell the Wall Street Journal that the losses resulted from big spending on promotions to attract new drivers, and on investment in new parts of the business like the UberEATS delivery service and the self-driving car project that has led to clashes with California regulators. According to CNBC, Uber's losses in the third quarter would have been even higher if it hadn't left the China market, selling its local business to Beijing-based rival Didi Chuxing as part of a deal that saw the Chinese firm invest $1 billion in Uber. Bloomberg's sources say Uber managed to make a slight profit in the US in the first quarter of this year, but it lost $100 million in its home market in the second quarter and more than that in the third. (Read more Uber stories.)