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Instacart reports $2B loss, but sales still beat expectations

The delivery giant’s third quarter financial results also forecast growth in the total value of transactions on its platform

Instacart has reported a nearly $2 billion loss in its first earnings report since going public, but overall, sales beat Wall Street estimates and the company forecasts growth in the total value of transactions it sees on its platform.

On Wednesday, Instacart reported a third quarter net loss of $1.99 billion, driven by “significantly elevated” stock-based compensation during its IPO, according to the company. 

Instacart’s shares slipped less than 1% after hours on Wednesday.

Overall company revenue rose 14% to $764 million. Instacart said it expected “mid-single-digit” growth in gross transaction value, a measurement of the total value of products sold.

For full year 2023, Instacart said it anticipates gross transaction value to grow in mid-single digits, versus analysts’ estimate of 4.7% growth at $30.18 billion. It expects three times more adjusted EBITDA for the period than the $187 million it had in 2022.

“We are confident in our position, even as several macroeconomic factors work against the online grocery industry: COVID is no longer a tailwind, consumers are receiving less government aid, interest rates remain high and inflation persists,” the company said in a letter to shareholders.

“Given our substantially larger scale, these headwinds impact us more than smaller, new entrants,” Instacart said. “While we expect these and other factors to continue to dampen our current and near-term growth, they do not change our long-term view on online grocery adoption or our competitive advantages.”

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