Responding to a report by Bloomberg claiming Uber had discussed shutting shop in India, a company spokesperson has vocally and categorically denied any such intentions.
In a statement, Uber spokesperson Ruchica Tomar said, “Bloomberg’s reporting is categorically false and that they have never explored exiting India — not even for a minute. India is as important to Uber today as it was when we launched nine years ago. We are serving riders and drivers across more than 100 cities, hiring Indian talent aggressively, and planning for the next decade and beyond.”
Uber’s shares have been on a downward course since 2019. According to Bloomberg’s report, the company had come to realise the limited potential for growth in India and had explored multiple options, including a sale, but didn’t go ahead with plans as tech startup valuations started to plummet in India. Uber continues to be one of the market leaders for ride hailing in India, competing Chiefly with SoftBank-backed Ola cabs, and a newer startup InDriver.
Off late though, and specially post pandemic, both Uber and Ola have seen a significant reduction in the number of drivers that work with them. With pandemic enforced lockdowns shutting shop for most of them, a lot of these driver partners have sold off their vehicles or have surrendered to banks due to inability to pay off loans. Uber and Ola, based on several customer accounts, are unable to service even their most lucrative markets — Delhi and Bangalore — efficiently.
It is noteworthy that Uber’s food delivery arm, Uber Eats, was acquired by Zomato Ltd. in 2020, a deal which gave Uber a stake in Zomato.