US-based ride-hailing giant Uber is shutting down its car leasing arm Xchange Leasing, putting hundreds of jobs at risk.
A former Uber driver got into contact with us, claiming she had been lied to about the terms of her agreement with Xchange Leasing and was promised higher earnings.
The source, who wished to be known only by her Twitter handle @ExposeUberNow, told us she was a former Uber driver from Sacramento, California in her twenties.
Verdict has contacted Uber for comment.
The former driver told us:
I was told around $1,500/week (via online ads). In the Sacramento market, I worked from about 7am-10pm and would only make about $100/day before expenses.
She said that despite being a beneficiary of the FTC-ordered redress she was still locked into the lease agreement.
She said once the lease is paid, Uber, via Xchange, requires a two-week notice period before handing back the vehicle.
Claiming she is currently being chased down by creditors, the former Uber driver decamped to rival Lyft and was using her earnings to pay off Uber’s fees to avoid having repossession on her credit record.
I am basically living in the car, to maintain possession, working with Lyft and paying down the Uber debt, all while being followed 24/7 by repo men and followers in regular cars sent by the finance company. I don’t feel people care to look at what’s being done to drivers. All they care about is getting $3 rides across town.
Xchange Leasing was established in 2015 to provide cars for Uber drivers, reportedly designed to target those who would be considered subprime borrowers.
The company miscalculated its loss per car, according to The Wall Street Journal, estimating a $500 loss per vehicle instead of the $9,000 that managers revealed to Uber executives and shareholders.
It’s not the first time Uber has got in to trouble due to its accounting.
In January, Uber was ordered to pay $20m in redress by the US Federal Trade Commission amid claims it had misreported consumer earnings.
The company was accused of charging $1,000 for drivers to enter lease agreements at higher costs and worse terms than initially advertised.
Xchange Leasing has approximately 40,000 vehicles in the US and 14 showrooms. The decision to shut down the programme places 500 staff at risk of redundancy, three percent of Uber’s 15,000-strong official workforce.