Uber’s new CEO accepts mistakes after London license revoke

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New Uber CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi. Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Barely a month after appointment of new Uber CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber is dealing with regulators after Transport for London (TfL) revoked the company’s license and was quick to agree that the company had got things wrong along the way.

Mr. Khosrowshahi apologized in an open letter to London for the mistakes the company had made but swore to appeal the TfL ruling appreciating the support Uber received from Londoners on the Uber-initiated online petition calling for a reversal of TfL’s decision

In a leaked email to Uber employees, Mr. Dara Khosrowshahi said, “…while the impulse may be to say that this is unfair, one of the lessons I’ve learned over time is that change comes from self-reflection. So it’s worth examining how we got here. The truth is that there is a high cost to a bad reputation. Irrespective of whether we did everything that is being said about us in London today (and to be clear, I don’t think we did), it really matters what people think of us, especially in a global business like ours, where actions in one part of the world can have serious consequences in another.”

…while the impulse may be to say that this is unfair, one of the lessons I’ve learned over time is that change comes from self-reflection. So it’s worth examining how we got here. The truth is that there is a high cost to a bad reputation. Irrespective of whether we did everything that is being said about us in London today (and to be clear, I don’t think we did), it really matters what people think of us, especially in a global business like ours”.

Dara Khosrowshahi , CEO Uber

According to London local media reports, Uber has been operating in the country for five years, with a huge impact to the locals compare to its counterparts Lyft or Juno though the Transport for London (TfL) authority said that Uber’s “approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to a number of issues which have potential public safety and security implications.”

Uber has until Friday, October 13th to appeal the TfL ruling.

Here’s the full internal email from Dara to employees:

Thanks Pierre, and thanks to everyone working on this issue.

Like all of you, I’m hugely disappointed in the decision by London’s Mayor and Transport for London. It could have profound negative consequences for the 40,000 drivers who depend on Uber for work and the 3.5 million Londoners who rely on Uber to get around.

It’s particularly discouraging that this is happening in the UK, where the team has led the way on partnerships with local groups to increase the number of

While the impulse may be to say that this is unfair, one of the lessons I’ve learned over time is that change comes from self-reflection. So it’s worth examining how we got here. The truth is that there is a high cost to a bad reputation. Irrespective of whether we did everything that is being said about us in London today (and to be clear, I don’t think we did), it really matters what people think of us, especially in a global business like ours, where actions in one part of the world can have serious consequences in another.

Going forward, it’s critical that we act with integrity in everything we do, and learn how to be a better partner to every city we operate in. That doesn’t mean abandoning our principles—we will vigorously appeal TfL’s decision—but rather building trust through our actions and our behavior. In doing so, we will show that Uber is not just a really great product, but a really great company that is meaningfully contributing to society, beyond its business and its bottom line.

Thanks for everything you’re doing to make Uber the best company it can be, and particularly to our teammates in London and across the UK.

Here’s the letter in full:

We want to thank everyone who uses Uber for your support over the last few days. It’s been amazing to hear your stories of Uber improving lives across the city – from drivers who use our app to earn a living, to riders who rely on us to get home safely after a night out.

While Uber has revolutionised the way people move in cities around the world, it’s equally true that we’ve got things wrong along the way. On behalf of everyone at Uber globally, I apologise for the mistakes we’ve made.

We will appeal the decision on behalf of millions of Londoners, but we do so with the knowledge that we must also change. As Uber’s new CEO it’s my job to help Uber write its next chapter.

We won’t be perfect but we will listen to you; we will look to be long term partners with the cities we serve; and we will run our business with humility, integrity and passion.

Here in London we’ve already started doing more to contribute to the city. Wheelchair accessible vehicles are on the road and our Clean Air Plan will help tackle pollution.

You have my commitment that we will work with London to make things right and keep this great global city moving safely.

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