American ride-hailing giant Uber has reportedly laid off an additional 3,000 workers after closing over three dozen offices amid the global coronavirus pandemic, according to a WSJ report.
The jobs cut, announced by Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi, is part of Uber’s effort to re-evaluate its investments and operations in self-driving technology and freight.
Two weeks earlier, the company chief announced it would cut about 3,700 jobs to save more than US$1 billion in fixed costs.
Uber employed 28,600 people before the pandemic crippled its business, according to a regulatory filing at the end of the first quarter. The company’s initial wave of layoffs affected less-costly customer support and recruiting teams, while Monday’s announcement affects 3,000 employees across nearly all departments.
Ride-hailing firms worldwide, including Grab in Southeast Asia, are suffering losses due to shutdowns of operations in areas where strict stay-at-home orders are being implemented.
Uber’s core ride-hailing business accounts for three-quarters of the company’s revenue before the coronavirus pandemic struck. As of April, that business was down 80 percent from a year earlier, according to the report.
Uber Eats, the company’s food-delivery arm, has been a bright spot during the crisis, said Khosrowshahi, as people turn to food delivery, while restaurants are closed and authorities are strict in getting people to stay at home.
Before the pandemic struck, Uber said it would become profitable on the basis of adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization by the end of this year.
The company withdrew that guidance as global stay-at-home orders to curb the virus pummeled its ride-hailing business.
“We are seeing some signs of a recovery, but it comes off of a deep hole, with limited visibility as to its speed and shape,” Khosrowshahi said in his note to employees.
In Southeast Asia, Singapore-headquartered ride-hailing giant Grab slashed the pay of its senior management by up to 20 percent and encouraged its staff to take voluntary no-pay leave in April.