Category Archives: Transport

Uber – Technology Firm or Cab Firm?

We’ve all seen the news reports that various Governments are doing what they can to thwart Uber. They either refuse licences or they launch a competing service, but now the European Union is going to decide, once and for all, whether Uber is a platform provider (a tech company as they call themselves) or a transport company (a cab firm basically).

This is actually very simple, and I don’t need to have a lot of lawyers and politicians to explain this. Uber is a cab firm. When Uber started it may have been simply a platform provider, a marketplace, but the moment they took it upon themselves to acquire their own licences they became a cab firm.

The way to stay a tech company, a platform provider, would have been to only provide the space and bring together drivers and the public. Drivers would have to have an operator’s licence (O Licence) to work as an independent driver, or to work for an Uber supplier/partner company (a cab firm) that has it’s own O Licence. Uber would just earn commission on bookings completed and maybe have a membership fee payable by their partners for use of this marketplace. That would have kept Uber as a tech company and there wouldn’t be all of the legal challenges.

And if I can see this, then it should be ultra simple for legislators Worldwide to tell the difference..