Uber’s chief executive, Dara Khosrowshahi, flew to London 24 hours earlier this week to address the company’s management crisis, as it faces a reduction of 20,000 drivers ahead of Christmas.
On his first international trip since the onset of the coronavirus epidemic, Khosrowshahi introduced the charm to Soho House to Uber pilots and members of the GMB trade union.
We want more information about you, so tell your friends! he said in a statement to drivers.
On Thursday, Uber said it would increase driving costs in London by 10 percent in testing drivers for its program. Last month, it said it would offer $ 500 bonuses to drivers who send friends on its platform.
Khosrowshahi told the Financial Times it was unclear why Uber was suffering from a shortage of drivers, which had affected long-term users or high prices. But he said the decline was not just a “London issue, but a global issue” and that it was crucial to ending it.
Some drivers may have lost their jobs during the epidemic, while others complained that the oil crisis and rising car prices had made Uber work unprofitable.
“Fuel prices have skyrocketed, car prices are too high for drivers,” said James Farrar, a former Uber driver who founded the Driver ‘Worker Info Exchange. He added that the problem was that Uber was still “offering prices at a price that the driver was not prepared to accept” in order to keep its market against fierce competition.
Khosrowshahi stressed that Uber has “the same number of drivers as we had in the epidemic in 2019” but that there has been an urgent need as the UK emerged from the epidemic.
“Demand increases 10-15 percent annually, but is growing rapidly after the epidemic,” he said. Uber said demand has risen 20 percent in London, up to 30 percent in Birmingham and Manchester and 40 percent in Nottingham.
Uber also has about 10,000 drivers in its textbooks that have not been operational in the past few months, many of which may have changed food or packaging during the epidemic and never returned to operating. Uber said it could “fix half of the problem that occurs overnight with information” if they try to get riders back on track.
Khosrowshahi also met with London mayor Sadiq Khan for the first time, at a meeting organized by the GMB.
Uber said struggled to meet the requirements in the US as well, as drivers are slow to return to high-speed platforms. In April, Uber announced it would spend $ 250m on a one-time “incentive” package to add incentives to its drivers in the US.