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Will Uber join the layoff phenomenon? CEO Dara Khosrowshahi answers

Dara Khosrowshahi said that Uber will be taking a conservative stance on hiring and other investments

Uber Technologies Inc. isn’t considering cutting jobs amid an uncertain economic outlook, Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi said.

“No, we’re in a good place,” Dara Khosrowshahi told Bloomberg News, while responding to a question about whether the United States-based ride-hailing giant will go for a staff downsizing.

Uber’s rival, Lyft has already announced about reducing its headcount by 13%. Food-delivery giant DoorDash too will cut some 1,250 jobs.

However, Dara Khosrowshahi said that the company will be taking a conservative stance on hiring and other investments. The ride-hailing company had its last big staff downsizing in 2020, as it dismissed over 6,000 employees, during the COVID pandemic.

In November 2022, Uber reported a 72% revenue jump to USD 8.34 billion, as it announced its third-quarter results.

Dara Khosrowshahi also added that his company has been the beneficiary of a shift in consumer spending from retail to services.

He also expressed optimism about the supply of drivers on the platform, despite a protracted shortage that has raised fares and wait times. He said that periods of economic uncertainty typically spur people to seek out side hustles in ride-hailing or food delivery.

“Our driver base has increased substantially,” Dara Khosrowshahi said.

Talking about Uber’s rival DoorDash, the US-based food delivery company went on a hiring spree during the pandemic. With a drop in demand from inflation-wary customers, now it is facing rising costs.

“We were not as rigorous as we should have been in managing our team growth … That’s on me. As a result, operating expenses grew quickly,” Chief Executive Tony Xu said in a memo to employees.

“Given how quickly we hired, our operating expenses – if left unabated – would continue to outgrow our revenue.”

DoorDash, which has delivery partnerships with Walgreens Boots Alliance and Shake Shack, has about 20,000 employees.

It has now joined the list of multinational American firms, including Amazon.com Inc, Meta Platforms Inc, and Twitter Inc, in terms of employee layoffs.

Layoffs.fyi, a crowdsourced database of tech layoffs, has said that some 853 tech companies have laid off about 137,492 employees to date and the tally is rising.

Around 1,388 tech companies have fired a total of 233,483 workers since COVID-19 began, but 2022 has been the worst year for the industry.

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