Uber is reopening offices in San Francisco with a 20% occupancy on March 29, with the option for its staff to return to work on a “voluntary basis”. The ride-hailing app had previously extended its WFH policy until Sept 13. The employees returning to work are asked to strictly adhere to COVID-19 protocols — wearing a face mask, maintaining social distancing, wiping desks etc. Employees or those with sick family members are required to stay at home, Uber said.
Uber Chief People Officer Nikki Krishnamurthy informed the employees that the work from the home policy has been extended through Sept 13. Moreover, the company is encouraging its employees to take off and get vaccinated. She also added that even though, IT or other roles require physical presence the employees cannot be forced to go into the office due to medical concerns. Uber is likely to announce a hybrid work model, post -Covid, which is still a work in progress.
Uber is in talks for selling its self-driving car division to rival Aurora Innovation. The car division was recently valued at $7.25 billion following a $1 billion investment from Toyota and DENSO. With this deal, Uber Advanced Technology Group (Uber ATG) would make a bumpy ending as the venture is suffering from several issues. The terms of the deal are still unknown. Aurora, founded by veterans from Google, Uber and Tesla worth at $2.5 billion.
Uber said is working to hire 225 engineers in India, strengthening its tech team in the key overseas market months after it eliminated thousands of jobs globally. The ride-hailing firm, which competes with Ola, said it has hired Manikandan Thangarathnam, who spent nearly 13 years as a director of engineering at Amazon, to lead the company’s rider and platform engineering teams in Bangalore. Uber announced it would hire 140 engineers in India last month.
Ride hailing app Uber has launched two new commute specific services – employee group rides and business charter. The two services are aimed to help businesses support their employees’ daily commute. Employee group rides will enable employees from the same organization to book rides together to travel to work. To ensure safety, the company has introduced tech-driven solutions like Go Online Checklist, a mandatory mask policy etc.
Just 6 days after Uber won its appeal against London transport regulators to continue operating in London for another 18 months, one of its biggest rivals – Ola – has failed to get its licence renewed. TfL discovered multiple failures in Ola’s operations, like the use of unlicensed drivers and vehicles. Ola plans to appeal the decision, as was the case with Uber, under TfL’s rules, a company is allowed to continue operating while appealing a decision.
The US DoJ has charged Joseph Sullivan for deliberately keeping the FTC from learning about the 2016 cyberattack that exposed the personal info of 57M of Uber’s customers and drivers. Joseph was the Chief Security Officer in Uber Technologies and this is the first time a security officer is charged for concealing an attack. Sullivan paid hackers with $100K under Uber’s bounty programme and made them sign NDAs that falsely stated they had not stolen data.
Uber Technologies said that it will recruit 140 engineers for its tech teams in Bangalore and Hyderabad. With the new hires, the company will strengthen services in areas such as rider and driver growth, delivery, marketplace, customer service, digital payment, risk and compliance, safety and finance technology, said a statement. They’re looking for tech-enthusiast engineers who are passionate about complex problem-solving in mobility and delivery space.
India, in a bid to govern the digital economy, is drafting a new set of rules to regulate non-personal data via legislation. The committee, headed by Infosys co-founder Kris Gopalakrishnan and NASSCOM President Debjani Ghosh, proposed to regulate the collection, analysis, sharing, distribution of gains, and destruction of data. The draft named Facebook, Amazon.com, Uber, Google as the first movers’ beneficiaries who may have squeezed many start-ups.