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So they made money as long as you ignore stuff like operating expenses..

That’s the definition of gross profit. Within operating expenses, advertising is close to a cost of profits in a way that R&D isn’t.

It’s why we use multiple metrics to evaluate a business, but it’s clear that Uber has large positive gross margins.

When it comes down to it. The only thing that makes a company viable is whether they are making more money than they are spending.

Ignoring all other expenses and saying that a company is a good business is ignoring reality.

I’m not just choosing a method that makes Uber look bad. They are not profitable or successful based on a legal GAAP definition of profitable.

If we just cherry pick numbers, we might as well think that WeWork’s made up metric of “community adjusted EBITDA” is valid.


Selling a $20 bill for $18 is unsustainable. Selling a $20 bill for $40 and having $15 of advertising expenses and $15 of R&D expense might be sustainable. I think Uber is comically overvalued here, but still is a viable business which is profitable in its core operation.

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