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Anyone who’s familiar with the Uber Technologies origin story knows that, for the past several years, the company has been growing at a pace that its founder has described as ‘unprecedented.’ At the start of 2015, Uber operated in 25 countries. By mid-2018, its ride business served more than 50 countries, and the company had expanded into related markets including food delivery, freight hauling, and bicycles and scooters. Uber provided its billionth trip at the end of 2015 and then reached its 10 billionth trip by 2018.

The Uber treasury group supported this skyrocketing growth by allowing some functions to become decentralized. The company handles certain types of transactions via a collect-on-behalf-of (COBO) and pay-on-behalf-of (POBO) model, but local support entities in each region manage transactions around payroll, operating expenses, and tax payments. In building out these regional groups, Uber sometimes found standardization falling by the wayside.

Meg Waters

Meg Waters is the editor in chief of Treasury & Risk. She is the former editor in chief of BPM Magazine and the former managing editor of Business Finance.

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