Uber expands its reach abroad

Janet Nguyen Sep 22, 2015

Uber is wheeling out its UberPool carpool service in Bengaluru, India on Monday, the latest city in a series of locations that include San Francisco, New York City and Paris.

But with the ride-sharing juggernaut’s worldwide expansion has come a rapid growth in both business and legal woes. In China, Uber has experienced multiple setbacks.

Since first dipping its toe in the China market in 2013, Uber’s peer-to-peer ride business has faced government raids, police crackdowns, protests from irritated cabbies and intense competition from Chinese taxi-hailing and ride-sharing apps,” the LA Times said.

Last week, Beijing launched its own ride service app Shouqiyueche, a company that will face off against Uber and taxi-hailing app Didi Kuaidi.

George Chang, a contributor to Forbes, says he thinks the Chinese capital will use its position to boost the service.

“It is a jealous participant that will use its regulatory power to distort the market,” Chang said, citing China Daily’s report that Uber and Didi Kuaidi “have faced investigation multiple times.

In India, UberPool enters a market dominated by BlaBlaCar, a ride-sharing unicorn startup from France valued at $1.6 billion. In countries like India, the company has worked with other transportation providers to pick up the slack caused by a lack of infrastructure.

As co-founder Nicolas Brusson told Fortune, with the near impossibility of getting a train ticket, BlaBlaCar’s partnership with Indian railway to fill demand has proven wildly successful.

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.