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Uber loses licence to operate in London


Uber Technologies Inc.'s license to operate in London was revoked, a surprise decision that will affect the 3.5 million people and 40,000 drivers who use the app in the city.

Transport for London said the conduct of Uber, which has around 40,000 drivers and 3.5 million customers in the British capital, had raised concerns.

Khosrowshahi, brought in to steer the company after a string of scandals involving allegations of sexism and bullying, later appealed to the city on Twitter with a self-deprecating style.

"As such we are lobbying for a stronger national licensing and enforcement approach to this issue".

According to a report by Bloomberg, the petition published on the website Change.org is addressed to the #Mayor Of London Sadiq Khan and asks him to overturn the decision taken by TfL.

"But blanket ban will cause massive inconvenience to millions of Londoners, showing that the mayor is closed to business & innovation", Hands tweeted.

Khosrowshahi reiterated that the company will "vigorously" appeal the Transport for London's decision to revoke the company's license but that it should also build trust through its actions and behavior in order to become more acceptable, given is very bad track record so far.

Uber has always been a target of complaints from taxi drivers and companies.

Uber's current license expires at the end of September, but the company has 21 days to appeal and can continue to operate until there is another ruling.

'As Mayor of London I welcome innovative new companies that help Londoners by providing a better and more affordable service - but providing an innovative service is not an excuse for not following the rules.

In backing the decision to strip Uber of its licence, Khan said: "All private-hire operators in London need to play by the rules. This immoral company has no place on London's streets".

It came as half a million people signed a Change.org petition asking for the decision to be reversed, making it the fastest growing petition on the United Kingdom website this year.

A petitioner from London told the BBC that he added his signature because: "Uber provides a much needed alternative to minicabs and black cabs".

He went on: "Providing an innovative service must not be at the expense of customer safety and security".

Uber said it meant to challenge the decision immediately in the courts.

Uber's general manager in London Tom Elvidge claimed users of its app "will be astounded by this decision".

Uber, which operates in hundreds of cities and more than 80 countries, last month announced that it hired former Expedia boss Khosrowshahi as its new chief executive in an attempt to steer the ride-sharing service away from the string of controversies it has faced in the past year.

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