After a rather scathing regulatory rebuke from the City of London, Uber Technologies is attempting to negotiate. London stripped Uber this past Friday of its license to operate in a huge blow to the taxi app that will affect up to 40,000 drivers in one of the world’s biggest cities. The massive ride-hailing company is pushing hard to meet the London regulator that, on Friday, stated that London would refuse to reissue Uber’s operating license there. Throughout its time, Uber has faced a massive amount of criticism from both lawmakers, unions, a traditional cab owner’s due to driver working conditions. Additionally, London’s transportation regulation claimed that Uber lacked general corporate responsibility in relation to Uber’s slow response to serious crimes and driver’s background checks amongst other issues a person familiar with the case reported. Uber feels incredibly blindsided by the news despite the fact that a few months back, Uber’s then CEO Travis Kalanick had a small skirmish with London’s transport regulators. As a result, Uber has created an online petition that has circulated around requesting that Uber users to call London’s transportation office and demand that they back down; so far the petition has gathered well over half a million signatures.
Uber’s now CEO (since the public resignation of Travis Kalanick), Dara Khosrowshahi, has written an open apology for the mistakes that have been made during Uber’s time operating in London following the decision that was made in London on Friday. Including in the written apology, Dara also mentioned that the Uber must change drastically in order to turn the company into a place where “humility” and “integrity” are universal in all cities.
Days after London’s decision, the popular electronic ride-hauling app is feeling the heat from the state of New York as New York City officials consider moves to impose heavy regulations in attempt to control the industry. The city council this Monday has begun to consider implementing a six-month study on Uber and Lyft’s impact on the yellow taxicab industry. The reason being is that the value of medallions, which are licenses to operate, has dropped almost 90% according to a recent study.
Taxi owners have been pushing for stricter regulations on behemoth ride-hauling apps such as Uber and Lyft for years now stating that the same types of rules and regulations are not aptly applied to them. The last attempt to regulate these ride-hauling apps within New York City a few months ago was an utter failure in which Mayor Bill De Blasio failed to reduce the amount of Uber and Lyft drivers that were clogging the streets of the city. Before the conception of Uber specifically, there were about 40,000 vehicles for hire on the streets of New York. Now, there are well over 100,000 vehicles cars competing for customers and city officials expect over 30,000 more vehicles within the next year or so. As a result of the exponential increase of vehicles competing for the same customers, there has been a significant reduction in the average income of taxicab drivers and owners alike. Losing London was a massive setback for Uber, and as we see what the fallout so far has been brought upon Uber, it seems as though that they may just be the beginning.