Thursday, December 8, 2022

Uber abandons its growth-at-all-cost strategy in Pakistan - Rest of World

Last updated Wednesday, November 23, 2022 07:05 ET , Source: TopWireNews

Fierce local competition in the ride-hailing sector and economic uncertainty have forced Uber to scale back its presence in South Asia.
After six years of jostling with local competition and aggressive expansion, Uber seems to be finally abandoning its growth-at-all-cost strategy, and is shifting gears in Pakistan.
On October 11, the ride-hailing giant notified its users in Karachi, Islamabad, Faisalabad, Multan, and Peshawar that it was discontinuing service in the cities; it continues to maintain a presence in Lahore. To continue getting rides in the places it has exited, Uber said, its drivers could switch to Careem, the local ride-hailing company that it acquired for $3.1 billion in 2020.
The move was “a long time coming,” Natasha Uderani, co-founder of Data Darbar, a Pakistan-based data intelligence platform, told Rest of World. “Some people were surprised that Uber was still relevant because it has always been operating on the fringes of Pakistan.”
The decline of Uber’s direct presence in Pakistan is part of a series of prolonged reassessments of how it operates its businesses in South Asia. In India, the company discontinued Uber Eats in 2020, selling it to local rival Zomato in a deal eventually worth $376 million. The company also appears to have ceded hard-fought ground to Ola, which now leads the mobility business in India with a presence across more than 200 cities, compared to Uber’s 100 cities. In October, local authorities in Bengaluru ordered cab...

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