Ridesharing market leader Uber may accept cryptocurrency payments, but does not intend to buy bitcoin with corporate money to hold in its treasury like electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla has.
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said during an interview with CNBC on February 11th that the firm "quickly dismissed" the idea of following Tesla’s example and buy bitcoin with funds from its corporate reserves. As the BTC Times reported earlier this week, Tesla bought $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin on Monday and hinted at plans to accept it as a means of payment in the future. When asked about the topic, Khosrowshahi said:
It’s a conversation that’s happened that has been quickly dismissed. [...] We’re going to keep our cash safe. We’re not in the speculation business. The upside in our company is in the business that we’ve built, not the investments that we invest in.
This may be a disappointment to those who hoped that Uber—with its considerable capital—would join the corporations and institutions powering the latest Bitcoin's bull run. According to data released by Uber in early February, the ridesharing giant held $5.65 billion in cash and cash equivalents, alongside $1.18 billion in short-term investments as of December 31st, 2020.
Still, Khosrowshahi said that the company does not rule out accepting bitcoin as a medium of payment for its ridesharing and food delivery services in the future: "Just like we accept all kinds of local currency, we are going to look at cryptocurrency and/or Bitcoin in terms of currency to transact. [...] That’s good for business. That’s good for our riders and our eaters. That we’ll certainly look at and if there’s a benefit there, if there’s a need there, we’ll do it. We’re just not going to do it as part of a promotion."