Cab hailing firm Ola to launch services in United Kingdom

Marco Green
August 7, 2018

Ola has obtained licences to operate in South Wales and Greater Manchester, and will launch operations in South Wales within the next month.

ET recently reported that Ola is inching closer to profitability as it started making money on each cab ride, after taking into account expenses such as driver incentives and customer discounts.

The launch means a major investor in both Ola and Uber, SoftBank, is effectively going to war with itself. "We look forward to our continued engagement with policymakers and regulators as we expand across the country and build a company embedded in the United Kingdom", said Ola CEO Bhavish Aggarwal.

Uber, Ola's main rival in India, dominates the Australian market and will offer competition in Britain as well. The company claims to have 125 million customers across the globe.

"This could put pressure on Uber and cause them to possibly merge in India", said Shah, adding that Ola could use its worldwide expansion strategy into Uber territories as leverage.

After Ola's lead investor, Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, became the largest investor in Uber following a large secondary share purchase a year ago, speculations were rife that Uber could eventually merge its India operations with Ola.

Like every similar service, Ola has come in for criticism for the way it treats drivers in terms of pay and their employment status.

Ola states that it places drivers at the heart of its approach, providing the industry's leading commissions, resulting in higher earnings and daily payments. That, of course, could change, and whether a driver earns more will also depend on how much Ola decides to charge passengers when it fully launches. "We look forward to our continued engagement with policymakers and regulators as we expand across the country and build a company embedded in the UK", Bhavish Aggarwal, Co-Founder and CEO of Ola said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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