Uber CEO ‘not happy’ with driver supply and prices

Uber Technologies CEO Dara Khosrowshahi off the New York Stock Exchange ahead of the company’s IPO on May 10, 2019.

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said Tuesday afternoon that while the supply of drivers is improving as more people get vaccinated against the coronavirus, there is still a lot of room to go as demand for travel outstrips the offer.

“ETAs are higher than we want, prices of the increase level have increased because we have not seen the supply of drivers keep up with the growth of demand in the United States,” Khosrowshahi said at the Conference of JP Morgan Technology, Media and Communications.

“The supply position is something we are still working on. It is definitely improving, but we are not happy with the ETAs and the price levels that we see and that is something we are going to invest in to improve, ”he added.

With Americans getting vaccinated and governments easing pandemic restrictions, people are ready to travel and leave their homes again, turning to ride-sharing companies. However, Uber and Lyft are still dealing with a slow return of drivers. If companies can’t bring in enough drivers to meet demand, they could face annoying customers who have to shell out more cash and wait longer.

Uber said last month it would spend $ 250 million on a one-time stimulus aimed at getting drivers back on the road. In their first quarter earnings call earlier this month, Khosrowshahi said they would “continue to support each other with specific incentives for new and existing drivers.”

Lyft also said earlier this month that it would use its high price cut to fund investments to bring in more drivers. In terms of generating more incentives, Lyft president John Zimmer told the same conference Monday afternoon that the company would be “smart.”

“We are very confident and have already started to see significant improvement,” Zimmer said.

Both Uber and Lyft said this month that they expect supply and demand issues to put pressure on businesses in the second quarter, and would see a recovery in the third.

“We are confident in our ability to execute,” Khosrowshahi said.

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