Uber’s impact on the Toronto taxi industry

Caterina Fake explains why she’s not happy about Toronto’s decision to freeze new taxi licenses.

Uber’s hoping drivers can raise fares and restrictions on its services can be lifted so new drivers can join.

“Uber will argue that Uber has made it possible for more people to own a car and make a living out of the taxi industry,” Caire says. “With new drivers allowed to get on the road, it will force taxi commissions to lower their fees and fees will fall to a point where consumers will see lower fares, and there will be more choice.”

Uber’s not alone in its disappointment about the decision.

“We’re committed to driving more innovation in this space and will urge other cities to take a look at taking a different approach with their own transit infrastructure,” she says.

The decision is a setback for Uber, but it’s not a huge loss.

For one, for drivers it could push prices up because fewer drivers will come onto the road. And the legal decisions gives time for Canada’s largest taxi service to address safety concerns over its app.

That’s about as much as the company can do in the meantime, Caire says.

“When you disrupt an industry there are losers. For that reason the smart ones can move fast to try to find ways around that,” she says.

One of those ways includes trying to rebrand itself as a ridesharing company instead of a taxi company. The company is spending millions of dollars to plaster the Toronto subway stations with signs saying “Find Us!”

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