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Uber to buy 200,000 cabs

Uber to buy 200,000 cabs

Uber Technologies is charting a major expansion in India, and it is going to open up big business for the automobile industry. The company is planning to buy as many as 200,000 passenger vehicles over the next two years and lease them out to drivers who want to join its cab-hailing platform, a top executive said. The vehicle purchase, likely the largest ever by a single buyer in India, will be in addition to Uber’s programme to help driver-partners acquire their own cabs by arranging finance and negotiating deals with automakers.

The vehicles will be purchased by Uber’s leasing unit, Xchange Leasing. Maruti Suzuki and Tata are likely to gain the most as the San Francisco-based company already has pacts with the two for driver skilling programmes, vehicle purchase and finance solutions.

Meanwhile, rival Ola recently signed a deal worth Rs 2,600 crore with Mahindra & Mahindra to purchase 40,000 vehicles in two years for its driver-partners. Going by that valuation, the Uber plan could translate into a Rs 13,000-crore opportunity for automakers.

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