Uber loses $708M in first quarter, fires engineer at center of self-driving car dispute

Uber logo

Uber logo

Uber on Wednesday announced its first-quarter financial results and though shocking they actually represent an improvement on the preceding quarter.

The ride-sharing giant lost $708 million in the first three months of 2017 on revenues of $3.4 billion. That compares with a loss of $991 million and revenues of $2.9 billion in the previous quarter.

In a statement, Uber said the narrowing of its losses continues it on its path toward profitability. That sounds rosy but there could be trouble brewing at Uber. For example, the company also announced on Wednesday that its CFO Gautam Gupta had left to join a startup company. Gupta replaced previous CFO Brent Callinicos in 2015.

Interestingly, Uber, in its quest to find a replacement for Gupta, said it is seeking someone with experience running financial operations for a public company. This suggests that Uber might be looking to go public in the near future.

The announcement of Gupta’s departure came just a day after it was revealed Uber had fired Anthony Levandowski, the engineer at the center a court battle between Uber and Waymo over allegations of stolen technology and infringement of patents. Levandowski, who was in charge of Uber’s self-driving car technology, previously worked for Waymo back when it was still the Google Self-Driving Car Project.

Earlier this month, a judge ordered Levandowski to stop all work on Uber’s self-driving car technology until the case is concluded. The judge also ordered Uber to return any files it may have obtained from Waymo through Levandowski.

In a letter obtained Tuesday by The Washington Post, Uber cited Levandowski’s failure to comply with the judge’s request to turn over the allegedly stolen documents as the cause of his termination.

The case between Uber and Waymo is set for court trial in October.

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