What chances Uber turning over Transport for London’s licensing decision in the courts? Bookies have their say

  • Uber set to appeal Transport for London’s decision not to renew its private hire licence
  • William Hill make it 4-6 that Uber will lose any appeal

UK bookmakers are already pricing up the chances of Uber losing any appeal against Friday’s decision by Transport for London (TfL) not to renew its private hire licence.

And the odds don’t look good for the US-based company.

William Hill has priced up their chances of losing their appeal at 4-6 while fellow UK bookmaker Ladbrokes gives the company only a 3-1 shot at getting the decision overturned.

According to TfL, the decision not to renew Uber’s private hire licence was made after they concluded that the company was not sufficiently ‘fit and proper’ to hold one.

TfL pointed to what they described as ‘a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to a number of issues which have potential public safety and security implications’.

Needless to say, social media has been in meltdown.

London mayor Sadiq Khan stated in a Facebook post that he supported TfL’s decision, reiterating that all companies operating in London should adhere to expected standards, particularly relating to the safety of passengers.

Legal challenges

Uber was first licensed in 2012, but its fortunes have taken a dip in recent months with a string of negative press stories and a general backlash against some of its business practices.

TfL renewed Uber’s licence in May, despite widespread opposition and legal challenges from the Licensed Taxi Drivers’ Association and the GMB union, the renewal was only for a period of four months, and will now expire on September 30.

In reaching its decision, TfL highlighted a number of problems, including the way that the company reported criminal offences, its conduct of background checks on drivers, and its explanation for using software that could potentially thwart regulatory efforts.

Responding to the decision, Uber accused TfL and Sadiq Khan of giving in to pressure from a small number of people, and indicated that it would challenge the decision in the courts. But if the odds offered by UK bookmakers are any indication, they face an uphill legal battle.

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