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Dec 13, 2019

Uber files U.K. court appeal over loss of London licence

Ubers will still be on the road in London despite losing licence

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Uber Technologies Inc. appealed a U.K. regulator’s decision to revoke its licence in London, fighting back against a move that could put its biggest market in Europe at risk.

Transport for London last month denied Uber a new operating licence, saying the firm had failed to adequately verify drivers’ identities and safeguard the service for passengers. The ride-hailing app’s appeal could take years and it will be able to continue operating in the meantime.

“We are committed to Londoners and are working closely with TfL to address their concerns and requests, as we have since 2017,” Jamie Heywood, Uber’s regional general manager, said Friday in a statement.

“When it comes to safety on our platform our work is never done and we will keep listening, learning and improving,” he said.

At least 14,000 trips involved drivers who weren’t who they said they were, the regulator said in a statement last month. One driver found exploiting Uber’s app had already had a private hire license revoked by the regulator after it discovered the person had received a caution for distributing indecent images of children, it said.

Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi had called the decision to revoke the license “just wrong” on Twitter. Heywood had said Uber discovered a flaw in its app in May that allowed 43 people to make unauthorized trips and immediately informed regulators. Uber has since fixed the issue.

--With assistance from Amy Thomson.