Despite the apparent issues it is facing with the government, Uber maintains that India is its most important market outside the US. To better compete with its closest rival Ola, Uber today announced that it plans on investing $1 billion or Rs 6,400 crore in the country in the coming nine months. Also Read - Uber cab service resumed in 31 cities in India with new Lockdown 4.0 guidelinesAlso Read - Uber launches 'Uber Connect' package delivery service to rival Dunzo and Swiggy Genie
The taxi-hailing company plans to use this investment to compete against Ola, which is said to be in talks with its current investors to raise $500 million. With the $1 billion investment, Uber plans on expanding operations to new cities, develop new products and payment solutions, as well as touch a million trips per day in the next six to nine months. Also Read - Uber to operate 'Essential' cab service to hospitals and pharmacy stores in 4 cities
“We are extremely bullish on the Indian market and see tremendous potential here. India is one of Uber’s big priorities, along with China and uberPOOL. All three have the ability to significantly improve people s lives, as well as build a great business, Amit Jain – President, Uber India said.
This is why Uber is committing an additional $1 billion to India in the next nine months so we can expand and improve our operations, expand into newer cities, develop new products as well as payment solutions, and establish a great support network. With this investment and the strong rate of growth we are seeing, we expect to hit over 1 million trips per day in the next six to nine months,” Jain added.
The world s most valuable startup has seen an exponential growth in India, since making its debut in 2013. Starting its services in Bengaluru, Uber is now present in Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Pune, Kolkata, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Kochi and Chandigarh. Recently, it expanded its services to seven new cities including Bhubaneswar, Coimbatore, Indore, Mysore, Nagpur, Surat and Visakhapatnam.
Uber has grown exponentially in India, a global priority market for us, which has also quickly become the largest market geographically for Uber outside the US. We are continuing to see robust 40 percent growth MoM and with more investment in product, hiring, and payment solutions, we expect to grow at an even faster rate, Jain said. With this investment and the strong rate of growth we are seeing, we expect to hit over 1 million trips per day in the next six to nine months.
Despite its growth, Uber s journey in India though has been anything but smooth. It has been embroiled in an ugly court battle involving one of its drivers allegedly raping a passenger, while issues regarding operating license in the national capital refuses to go away. It has also Indianized itself by introducing services like cash payments and mobile wallets with Paytm, UberAuto, UberGo, and an emergency SOS button among others.