Uber's Middle East business Careem cuts 31% of workforce

Careem employees walk past the company headquarters in Dubai. (Reuters/File)
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Updated 04 May 2020

Uber's Middle East business Careem cuts 31% of workforce

  • Dubai-based Careem swill cut 536 jobs this week
  • Chief Executive Mudassir Sheikha said business was down by more than 80%

DUBAI: Uber Technologies' Careem subsidiary on Monday announced it was cutting 536 jobs this week, representing 31% of the Dubai-headquartered company's workforce.
The announcement came hours after Uber said it was shuttering its Eats delivery business in several markets, including the Middle East, and laying off dozens of staff.
Careem, which operates ride-hailing and delivery businesses primarily in the Middle East, said it was prioritising the security of the company and that parent Uber continues to believe in its business model.
"As we have discussed several times in the last few weeks, the crisis brought on by COVID-19 has put our dream and future impact at significant risk," Chief Executive Mudassir Sheikha said in a blog on Careem's website.
Sheikha, who founded the company in 2012, said business was down by more than 80% and warned that it was "alarmingly unknown" when it would recover.
"In this new reality, the surest way to secure Careem for the long term is to drive towards self-sustainability within a reasonable time frame," he said.
Careem did not say how much it expected to save from the layoffs or which business units staff had been cut from.
The Careem BUS mass-transportation operation has also been suspended, it said.
Careem has also found "significant savings" from pausing new benefits, it said without disclosing details.
Uber earlier announced that it was closing its food delivery business in Saudi Arabia, Egypt and other countries, while its United Arab Emirates operations would move to Careem.
Global ride-hailing group Uber bought Careem in 2019 for $3.1 billion.


Philippine jobless rate hits record 17.7% in April due to pandemic

Updated 22 min 6 sec ago

Philippine jobless rate hits record 17.7% in April due to pandemic

  • The Philippines is facing its biggest economic contraction in more than three decades
  • April’s 17.7 percent unemployment rate equivalent to 7.3 million people without jobs

MANILA: The Philippines’ unemployment rate surged to a record 17.7 percent in April, the statistics agency said on Friday, as millions lost their jobs due to a pandemic-induced lockdown that battered the economy.
The Philippines, which before the pandemic was one of Asia’s fastest growing economies, is facing its biggest contraction in more than three decades after the new coronavirus shuttered businesses and crushed domestic demand.
April’s unemployment rate, which is 7.3 million people without jobs, compares with 5.3 percent in January and 5.1 percent in April last year.
“We should not lose sight of the fact that this loss in employment is really temporary,” Economic Planning Undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon said in an online news conference.
The lockdown in the capital, Manila, which was one of the world’s longest and strictest, was relaxed as of June 1 to allow much-needed business activity to resume and soften the economic blow of the coronavirus, which has infected more than 20,000 in the country.