Uber Drivers: Who Are They?

Just last month, ridesharing startup Uber announced a new round of financing that valued the firm at $40 billion.
My colleague Ian Wyatt covered the news, pointing out that, at this valuation, Uber would rank 116 out of 500 if it were a member of the S&P 500.
Shortly after that $1.2 billion round closed, Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) led an additional round of financing. The company is reported to have largely financed the $1.6 billion round of new capital for Uber by itself.
For the first time ever, Uber has given us a glimpse at its driver demographics.
Interestingly, the stereotype of the young 20-something driving for Uber seems to be far from the truth.
I actually drive for Uber occasionally and find this information to be fascinating, especially because I fit into the 20-something group. Below is an infographic of with some of the data released by Uber. First, here are some of the most interesting tidbits that can be found in Uber’s driver survey data:

  • 52% of Uber drivers are part-timers and drive their own cars for UberX, Uber’s least expensive ridesharing option. 75% of these drivers have other jobs.
  • 18% of Uber drivers are professional drivers who have been driving for Uber for longer than six months.
  • 73% of Uber drivers said they prefer driving with Uber and being their own boss to a 9-to-5 job with a set salary, some benefits and a stable schedule.
  • 85% of Uber drivers drive for Uber to give them work-life balance, with 51% of Uber drivers only working 15 hours or less per week.
  • Nearly one-third of Uber drivers have full-time work elsewhere and use Uber to make a bit of extra money. I personally fall into this category.
  • 14% of Uber drivers are women, significantly higher than the taxi industry at large. By comparison, 1% of NYC taxi drivers are women.
  • 19% of drivers are under the age of 30.
  • 25% of drivers are over the age of 50.

uber demographics 1.23.15
This data may or may not foretell an impending Uber IPO. I’m thinking that it doesn’t.
With the amount of capital it has raised in the last few months, an IPO is likely to be unnecessary in the coming months. But as Uber pushed into new regions of the world and enters new industries, you can bet that Uber drivers will profit alongside the ridesharing giant itself.

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