Uber CEO Remarks That India Is One Of Its Healthiest Markets

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Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has recently commented that India is one of its healthiest markets, as per media reports. The US-based cab aggregator intends to ramp up operations in the country as it is among top three markets for the company, the other two being the USA and Latin America



Uber in India

Uber has been investing huge sums of money in India to foster their growth in the country. In 2015, Uber announced an investment of USD 1 billion in the country to expand its services. A response and support centre in Hyderabad with an investment of USD 50 million by Uber.

Speaking about a prospective merger with Ola Khosrowshahi said,

“The company will look at any deals that can add value to its partners and shareholders, but we believe in controlling our own destiny in India”.

There have been reports about Uber and rival Ola joining forces in the Indian market. The speculations got stronger after SoftBank – an investor in Ola – joined Uber as an investor committing over USD 1 billion. Ola is also a competitor for Uber in Australia after it launched its services in Perth and Sydney.

According to the reports close to the development, the talks which were facilitated by the largest investor Softbank in both the companies, have been going on for approximately a year. Though, in the past few days, this call for Ola and Uber merger has gathered a lot of publicity.

Sources claim that  the two have had multiple rounds of discussions, including one just before Khosrowshahi’s visit in February this year but the two parties are yet to strike a deal.

Both Uber and Ola have not commented anything about the expected merger, as of now.

An Ola spokesperson claimed that the taxi-hailing company is all set to stay and make a mark of its own in this market; its investors are helping it to do so.


Future plans of Uber in India

India accounts for 10% of Uber’s trips globally and the firm shall be looking into making its business in the country eventually profitable.

“I can tell you that India is a key component of our growth plan. In fact, it is one of our healthiest markets in terms of growth rates. We have over 3 lakh active driver and we currently do over 10 million weekly trips. We think, we can increase that by 5X or 10X over the next 10 years,”

he said.

Uber is also ready to make the necessary investments in India to make this plan a success. It is investing heavily in research and resources in the Indian market to build solutions for the local market.

Call to Ride‘, a feature being piloted in Pune allows customers to make a voice call to book rides (instead of the usual practice of booking rides through the app) from popular locations by providing a code displayed on a sign at a booking point.

The company is also actively exploring the use of electric vehicles in India on its platform.

“Outside the US, we know that many riders have lower-end devices and are in areas with poor networks. Historically, we’ve not done a great job building for riders with those needs. That is changing, and we are committed to doing more,”

he added.


Uber’s tryst in Southeast Asia

It was only in last week, when Uber had decided to sell its Southeast Asian business to regional rival Grab. Uber will take a 27.5% stake in Grab and Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi is to join the Singapore-based firm’s board, as per the deal signed between the two companies.

alks of consolidation in Asia was in the air once the Japanese Internet and telecom conglomerate SoftBank Group Corp in December 2017 acquired a stake in San Francisco-based Uber. SoftBank has also invested in Uber rivals like that of Grab, along with  Didi Chuxing, India’s Ola.

“IT WAS REALLY A VERY INDEPENDENT DECISION BY BOTH COMPANIES,”

Grab president Ming Maa said, adding that SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son was very supportive.

Uber had sold its China business to local rival Didi Chuxing in August 2016 and then exited Russia in July last year.


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