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Profit Projections, Helicopter Rides, Autonomy: Highlights From Uber CEO's Economic Club Speech

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Profit Projections, Helicopter Rides, Autonomy: Highlights From Uber CEO's Economic Club Speech

Uber Technologies Inc (NYSE: UBER)'s initial public offering coincided with the start of the Sino-American trade war, and there's "nothing you can do about it," CEO Dara Khosrowshahi reportedly said during a Tuesday speech at the Economic Club of Washington, D.C. 

What Happened

Uber's May 10 IPO occurred the same day President Donald Trump increased tariffs on Chinese imports from 10 percent to 25 percent.

The ride-hailing company "got caught up in a bit of a market swirl," the CEO said, according to Yahoo Finance

The "market will take care of itself" so long as the company builds itself up to become a "great enterprise," he said. 

Part of building a "great enterprise" is showing investors Uber can make a profit, Khosrowshahi said.

Now is the "time to lean forward," the CEO said, adding that Uber "can be quite profitable" over the longer-term — but the priority over the coming two to four years is growth.

Why It's Important

That growth includes an expansion to new opportunities, including hailing helicopter rides from lower Manhattan to John F. Kennedy International Airport, Khosrowshahi said. The service would pool riders at a cost of around $200 each. 

"The magic about being able to do it in a helicopter is we're bringing in demand from thousands of users who are going to JFK." 

What's Next

Uber's fleet of autonomous vehicles will likely hit the market within five years, the CEO said.

At first, the self-driving cars will handle only "simple stuff" and humans will handle the "difficult stuff," he said, adding that humans and machines will "coexist" on the road for at least the first 10-15 years.

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Photo courtesy of Uber. 

Posted-In: Dara Khosrowshahi ride hailing Yahoo FinanceNews Management Media Best of Benzinga

 

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