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29 November 2019

Uber loses its London licence

Earlier this week, Transport for London (TfL) stripped ride-hailing app Uber of its London licence, following concerns that a number of drivers had faked their identity on the app, affecting at least 14,000 trips. Uber has said that they will appeal and continue to operate pending the outcome.

TfL has admitted that Uber has made positive improvements since it was granted a licence in 2018, however the issue above has not been sufficiently addressed, compromising passenger safety and security as a result.

Stuart Thomson, head of public affairs at BDB Pitmans, comments on this development in PR Week:

‘Uber has undertaken a massive charm offensive since it originally ran into trouble with TfL. It changed everything from its advertising through to its engagement with stakeholders, and the new CEO took personal ownership to address the company’s failings. It has been trying to show that it has listened and changed. The external communications have been impeccable. But the decision shows that fundamentally, actions speak louder than words. There remain issues to address. Uber’s competitors may be celebrating, but they need to learn the lessons and think about their continued strategic engagement now, not wait for any potential trouble they may encounter in the future.’

The full article is available to PR Week subscribers, here.

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