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Uber to cut costs, slow down hiring, CEO tells staff

CNA – Uber Technologies will scale back hiring and reduce expenditure on its marketing and incentive activities, CNBC reported yesterday, citing a letter from Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi.

The ride-hailing company becomes the latest to rein in costs to have a lean investment model, after Facebook-owner Meta Platforms said last week it would slow down the growth of its workforce.

Khosrowshahi said Uber’s change in strategy was a necessary response to the “seismic shift” in investor sentiment, according to the CNBC report.

“The least efficient marketing and incentive spend will be pulled back. We will treat hiring as a privilege and be deliberate about when and where we add headcount,” the report quoted Khosrowshahi as saying.

Uber said last week its driver base is at a post-pandemic high, and the company expects this to continue without significant incentive investments, a sharp contrast to rival Lyft which has said it needs to spend more for labour.

The company will now focus on achieving profitability on a free cash flow basis, rather than adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation, according to the CNBC report.

The ride hailing giant expects to generate “meaningful positive cash flows” for the full year, according to its latest earnings report.

Khosrowshahi added in his letter that Uber’s food delivery and freight businesses need to grow faster.

Uber did not respond to a Reuters’ request for comment.

An Uber SUV waits for a client in Manhattan. PHOTO: AFP
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