Uber plans to lay off another 3,000 employees

In a matter of weeks, the company has slashed nearly a quarter of its workforce.

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August 21, 2019 San Francisco / CA / USA - UBER headquarters in SOMA district; Uber Technologies, Inc. is an American multinational transportation network company (TNC)
Andrei Stanescu via Getty Images

Less than two weeks after Uber shared plans to lay off 3,700 employees, the company announced that it will let another 3,000 workers go. In other words, in the course of a month, Uber has made plans to get rid of roughly a quarter of its workforce.

Uber will also close 45 offices and re-evaluate some of its experimental, non-core activities, The Wall Street Journal reports. Uber Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi announced the changes in an email to staff.

The company is reeling from the blow dealt by the COVID-19 pandemic. According to WSJ, Uber’s ridesharing business was down 80 percent in April, compared to the previous year. Prior to the pandemic, ridesharing made up about three-quarters of Uber’s revenue. While UberEats has provided some relief, it’s not enough to make up for the drastic drop in ridesharing. Uber is now requiring riders and drivers to wear masks and developing tech to make sure drivers comply, but whether that will lead to more rides is hard to say.

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Khosrowshahi said the company will wind down its product incubator and AI lab and that it’s reevaluating its freight and autonomous driving businesses. Uber is exploring “strategic alternatives” for Uber Works, its tool to help drivers find work at other companies, and it’s reportedly in talks with Grubhub about an acquisition.

Of course, Uber is not alone. Lyft plans to lay off nearly 1,000 employees, or about 17 percent of its workforce. And non-transportation companies have made deep cuts too. Airbnb recently laid off 25 percent of its workforce, about 1,900 employees. Those numbers don’t account for the drivers and hosts who have lost income as well. Meanwhile, Uber is still facing a lawsuit for allegedly misclassifying drivers.

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