Sunday 4 August 2019 1:29 pm

Uber quest for long-term London licence faces rejection

London’s transport bosses are set to snub Uber’s bid for a long-term licence in London when its probationary period runs out next month.

The ride-hailing giant has been seeking a five-term licence to operate in the capital but is instead likely to be granted a shorter one that will run for less than two years, Sky News reported.

Read more: Uber lays off 40 marketing staff in drive to trim IPO bloat

Uber has been running on a temporary licence ever since its permanent licence was revoked by Transport for London (TfL) in 2017.


TfL took away Uber’s licence on the grounds it was not a “fit and proper person” to hold a licence in the capital. The transport body took issue with Uber’s approach to safety and regulation, including insufficient background checks on its drivers and its refusal to report criminal incidents to the police.

Uber appealed the decision in June last year and was granted a 15-month probationary licence which forced it to make a number of changes to its business model. The probationary period runs out next month.

It has since introduced a 24-hour hotline for passengers, driver hours limits and actively reports serious incidents to the Metropolitan police.

TfL recently awarded Indian start-up Ola a 15-month licence while car-sharing service ViaVan was given a three-year licence renewal.

Uber now has 91m users worldwide and generated $9.2bn (£7.5bn) from its taxi business last year.

Its food business also saw a 149 per cent rise in revenues to $1.5bn, but also endured losses of $3bn last year.

Read more: Uber and rival Ola sniffing around London’s Addison Lee


Uber is set to post its second quarter results later this week, the first since it became a publicly listed company.

Uber declined to comment. TfL has been approached for comment.

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