Deprived of its London licence since last September, Uber is determined to get it back. A new appeal trial opened on Monday.
Last September, the American firm Uber disappointedly discovered that its request to renew its user licence had been refused by the Transport for London (TfL).
This appeal trial, opening on Monday, is determining for the ride-hailing firm’s future: Uber representatives have three days to convince Westminster magistrates court, in London, of their request’s merit.
The outcome is dreaded for the Californian group, for which the English capital represents 40,000 drivers, 3.5 million users and some significant revenues.
If they do not reach that point, Uber could still refer to the Superior court in order to obtain a new licence. In the meantime, as long as legal appeals remain, the ride-hailing firm is still able to fulfil its function in London.
Using fine words to convince
The Californian giant wants to reassure and convince because, more than Uber’s future in England, this lawsuit could directly impact the company’s image worldwide. Already being tarnished in various lawsuits throughout the world, the ride-hailing firm can’t afford to lose this battle, especially with its new IPO goal in mind.
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Uber tries to reassure the local authorities in order to coax them. Many diverses announcements were made, as well as many promises, including more transparency between drivers and passengers or the establishment of a privileged relation with the police.
Uber’s lawyers affirmed that the company had understood and approved the TfL decision, and made various changes to please the city. The strategy seemed to work, or at least for the moment since the judge decided to grant the group a new 15-month probationary licence, according to strict conditions and under TfL supervision.