Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi offers help to govt on mobility

From giving access to traffic data for better vehicular management to integrating technology with city’s public transport to working on smart cities projects, Uber under their new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi is making an all-out effort to work closely with the government. 

The change in the strategy has been made in an effort to help government understand the cab aggregating segment as well as the company better so that whenever the policy on cab aggregation is out, it is balanced for all players involved. Globally, too, experts believe that Uber under its new leadership has changed its tact dealing with public policy, to be more inclusive to the ideas and laws of the local as well as federal governments and not be at loggerheads as the case was under its founder Travis Kalanick. 

Uber on Monday announced insights from its proprietary platform, Movement, as part of the country’s single largest comprehensive data-sharing exercise on traffic patterns to improve urban mobility in the cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad. The company plans to over the next few months roll out this initiative across 31 cities it operates in India as well.

Movement offers anonymised, aggregated Uber data to show travel conditions across different times, days or months and how travel times are impacted by things like big events and road closures in a city.

The company in its efforts to understand the Indian market better which is now its most important country outside of US has been periodically sending its senior management team. 

According to Ann Lavin, Senior Director, Public Policy and Government Relations, Asia Pacific, Uber, the cab aggregating giant is working with the central as well as the state governments on various issues.

“Dara is very engaged in public policy discussion. He really understands that the big piece of our success would depend on our relationship with the governments it would be the key. He has articulated the vision that for multi-model transportation, not just coordinating with the government but also civil societies is needed,” Lavin said. 

While Uber has not bid for any smart city projects, the company is working with a host of state governments to provide intelligent multi-model mobility solutions, which in turn would help the company in pitching in its products across various categories. 

“We are not bidding for any smart city projects per se but we are working with both the centre as well as state governments to see what are the potential use cases. If they have some additional requirements from our end we will work with them,” Lavin said.

One of the areas the company partnering is with Metro Rail service in cities it is present. The company has been given designated pick up and drop spots as well as setting up kiosks so that people can book cabs there. The company is in constant dialogue with the state as well as central transport ministry to provide solutions for last mile connectivity as well as make help provide data to streamline public transport system.


Amit Jain named regional general manager

Uber on Monday announced that it has elevated its India Head Amit Jain as regional general manager for Asia Pacific region. “Amit Jain, currently, president of Uber India and South Asia, will be stepping up to lead our ride-sharing operations as the new regional general manager, APAC,” an Uber spokesperson said. With this elevation, Jain will be responsible for the APAC region, which includes Australia, New Zealand and North Asia, in addition to India and South Asia. Jain had joined Uber India in May 2015 from rent.com. South Asia, which includes India, is an important market for Uber. The company, which competes with rival firm Ola in India, has said that it would continue to invest in the country as it looks to grow business in the “incredibly important and core market” by up to 10 times in a decade. BS Reporter