With just one day ahead of its Thursday IPO, Uber has hit a pothole of driver unrest.
Uber drivers in major cities across the United States and the UK are set to go on strike Wednesday over both lower wages and unstable working conditions, according to Bloomberg. What do they want? More concessions from the money losing ride sharing giant, which has already warned it will need to pay its drivers less in order to shift toward profitability. To be sure, the timing is no coincidence – the international protest is planned in advance of the company's IPO this week, expected to price on Thursday. Drivers in cities like London have said that they would collectively turn off their apps at 7AM on Wednesday, while driver groups in Boston, Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco have all said they would participate in the strike as well.
That said, the grassroots effort failed to attract much interest in early going, with the London strike appearing to fizzle as the app showed "numerous rides available around the capital's financial district". But the threat of protest caught the attention of politicians, prompting UK opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn to tweet: "Uber cannot be allowed to get away with huge payouts for their CEOs while refusing to pay drivers a decent wage and respect their rights at work."
Uber cannot be allowed to get away with huge payouts for their CEOs while refusing to pay drivers a decent wage and respect their rights at work. Stand with these workers on strike today, across the UK and the world, asking you not to use Uber between 7am and 4pm. #UberShutDown— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) May 8, 2019