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Ola lays off 700 employees, shuts down TaxiForSure business

Source | The Economic Times : By Aditi Shrivastava & Vikas SN

BENGALURU: Ola has shut down its TaxiForSure business and has laid off 700 employees, according to three people directly aware of the developments at India’s largest cab aggregator.

This move comes nearly a year and half after Ola acquired its crosstown rival TaxiForSure for $200 million to gain market leadership against rival Uber, the most-valuable startup in the world.

Since the acquisition, Ola has been shutting down TaxiForSure as an independent brand across various cities and integrating TaxiForSure offerings to its own app. The unit had also witnessed an exodus of senior management within months of its acquisition, including the departure of CEO Arvind Singhal.

“Since the acquisition, Ola has been unclear about the brand positioning of TaxiForSure,” said a top executive at the company. “Silently, the TaxiForSure fleet was transferred to Ola supply and even incentives were more lucrative for Ola vs TaxiForSure,” this person added.

“With all TFS driver-partners and customers coming on board the Ola app, the integration is now complete,” Ola Spokesperson said in a statement. “..We have absorbed as many TFS employees for open roles in Ola to support our growth. For positions that cease to exist as a result of this transition, we are offering enhanced severance benefits and outplacement services to help affected employees pursue new career opportunities,” the statement said.

The total cost reduction with these layoffs is close to Rs 30 crore a month, said an investor with direct knowledge of the company’s financials.

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