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Uber files for what could be the biggest IPO in years

Uber Technologies on Thursday filed for an initial public offering that's expected to value the ride-sharing company at upwards of $100 billion. That would make it the largest IPO since Alibaba Group went public in 2014 with a staring valuation of $169 billion.

In a regulatory filing, Uber said it will list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "UBER." The offering, disclosed only weeks after key rival Lyft make its market debut, could open the door to a series of other major technology industry IPOs by players such as Airbnb, Pinterest and messaging software maker Slack.

"With Uber, investors will soon have a second option to make a bet on the future of mobility and transportation with the clear market share leader," Wedbush analysts said in client note.

As is the case for Lyft, Uber has so far been losing money. Since its founding in 2009, it has lost $8 billion. It did report income of $997 million last year on revenue of $11.3 billion. But its 2018 operating loss was just over $3 billion, down from the $4 billion net loss it incurred in 2017. The positive result last year resulted from a windfall Uber received from selling its Russian and Southeast Asian operations, according to The Associated Press.

Founded 10 years ago by Travis Kalanick, Uber has upended the way people get around -- and it has stirred controversy. Under pressure from shareholders, Kalanick stepped down in mid-2017 as CEO after months of drama that included allegations the hard-driving executive oversaw a culture of sexual harassment and discrimination. And in 2017, Uber paid $20 million to settle Federal Trade Commission claims it misled drivers about wages. In August of that year, Dara Khosrowshahi became the company's CEO.

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