Uber will cut 3,700 jobs and close 180 driver service centres as cost-cutting measures in the next two weeks amid coronavirus outbreak. The job cuts will impact mostly the profiles in support and recruiting, and impact 14 per cent of the staff around the world.
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi wrote in an email to employees on Wednesday that the company is freezing hiring. Khosrowshahi said that coronavirus has significantly brought down ridership.
The cab aggregator will shut down 40 per cent of the 450 driver service centres worldwide. These centres, known as Greenlight Hub, assists people in signing up on the platform and teach them how to use the app. They also show how to address issues that arise on the job. In March, Uber had shut down all the hubs in US and Canada temporarily.
"Days like this are brutal," he wrote, as he alerted his employees that more "difficult adjustments" would be made in the coming couple of weeks.
Uber's latest job cuts come after it laid off more than 1,000 employees over multiple rounds from July to October last year. This came on the back of a disappointing initial public offering a year ago. The last round of dismissals were termed by Khosrowshahi as a "last wave" in October. Uber was expected to move towards profitability by the end of this year but coronavirus marred their expectations.
Uber had also withdrawn its financial forecast and wrote down around $2 billion worth of investments in April. It will also shut down its food delivery app, UberEats in seven countries.
In the wake of such financial crisis, CEO Khosrowshahi waived his salary for the remainder of the year. Uber is scheduled to report its first-quarter financial results on Thursday.
Uber's job cuts come a day after Airbnb announced that it will slash 25 per cent of its workforce or nearly 1,900 employees. "Airbnb's business has been hit hard, with revenue this year forecasted to be less than half of what we earned in 2019," said founder Brian Chesky to employees.
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