The Latest: Long-time Uber employee rings NYSE opening bell
NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on ride-hailing giant Uber’s initial public stock offering (all times local):
The opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange was rung by Austin Geidt, one of Uber’s earliest employees.
She joined the company in 2010 and is now head of strategy for Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group, which works on autonomous vehicles. She and CEO Dara Khosrowshahi were joined by Uber drivers from around the world and other Uber executives at the NYSE. Uber becomes a publicly traded company Friday. Shares are expected to begin trading before noon.
With a ring of the opening bell Uber is looking to pick up passengers as a newly public company. Investors waited to bet on a service with huge potential, but a long way from turning a profit.
Shares in the ride-hailing giant were sold in an initial public offering for $45 each, raising $8.1 billion, but it will take several hours for new investors to show whether they’re interested. Officials expect trading to start around 11:30 a.m. Friday.
CEO Dara Khosrowshahi and other company officials stood on a balcony above the New York Stock Exchange as the bell rang to signal the start of the day’s trading. Khosrowshahi posed for selfies and after the bell while controversial co-founder Travis Kalanick and other Uber officials and employees stood on the trading floor.
The IPO came in at the lower end of Uber’s targeted price range of $44 to $50 per share. The caution may have been driven by escalating doubts about the ability of ride-hailing services to make money since Uber’s main rival, Lyft, went public six weeks ago.
Even at the tamped-down price, Uber now has a market value of $82 billion — five times more than Lyft’s.