As Uber lays off 6,700 employees globally, in India 600 employees across business functions and levels have lost their jobs. This comes at a time when rival Ola too, let go 1,400 employees as COVID-19 has curbed the use of cabs.
Uber announced in the first week of May that it would be letting go 3,700 employees from across the globe. This was followed by another round of layoffs where 3,000 more employees were let go, along with the ride hailing platform closing 45 offices globally. In total, Uber has now laid off 25% of its global workforce.
In India, Uber was operating with nearly zero rides over a month, and then with minimal rides in green and orange zones. Even though Uber is now allowed to function in most places in the country, the volume of rides remain significantly low.
As a result, Uber India is letting go people across its driver and rider support teams, among other functions.
Every laid off employee will receive a minimum 10 weeks pay-out, medical insurance coverage for the next six months and outplacement support.
Pradeep Parameswaran, President, Uber India and South Asia said in a statement that they will also be allowed to retain their laptops and will be given the option to join the Uber talent directory.
â€śThe impact of COVID-19 and the unpredictable nature of the recovery has left Uber India SA with no choice but to reduce the size of its workforce. Around 600 full time positions across driver and rider support, as well as other functions, are bring impacted. These reductions are part of previously announced global job cuts this month,â€ť Pradeep said in a statement.
â€śToday is an incredibly sad day for colleagues leaving the Uber family and all of us at the company. We made the decision now so we can look to the future with confidence. I want to apologize to departing colleagues and extend my heartfelt thanks to them for their contributions to Uber and the riders and driver-partners we serve in India," Pradeep added.
During the layoffs, Uber said in a regulatory filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that the current hiring freeze and significantly lower trip volumes has resulted in it having to cut down on its customer support and recruiting teams to rationalise costs and pare down losses.
Apart from closing around 45 offices globally, Uber will reportedly also begin moving its Asia-Pacific headquarters out of Singapore to a new location "in a market where we operate our services," according to the company.
Uber will reduce its costs by over US $1 billion a year by these actions, the company said.