Uber to close Asia-Pacific HQ in Singapore as virus impact worsens

SINGAPORE – Uber will be moving its Asia-Pacific headquarters out of in the next 12 months as the Covid-19 outbreak continues to rattle its business. The Asia-Pacific hub will be relocated to another place in the region.

The US-based firm will also lay off about 3,000 more people globally and stop some of its investments unrelated to its core businesses of ride hailing and delivery.

As a result of the latest layoffs and the eventual closure of the Singapore office, around 120 roles will be impacted, Uber told The Business Times.

The company launched its Asia-Pacific hub in Frasers Tower in April last year to support its operational markets in the region. Those markets comprise India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand.

Uber had on May 6 announced it will cut its customer support and recruiting teams by about 3,700 full-time employee roles, which will cause it to incur about US$20 million in costs related to severance and other termination benefits.

Coupled with the latest round of layoffs, global headcount will be slashed by about a quarter.

Dara Khosrowshahi, chief executive of Uber, said: “Given the dramatic of the pandemic, and the unpredictable nature of any eventual recovery, we are concentrating our efforts on our core mobility and delivery platforms and resizing our company to match the realities of our business… As I said to our teams today, we are making these hard choices now so that we can move forward and begin to build again with confidence.”

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