During the first four years of its operations in Bangladesh, ride-sharing giant Uber has served more than 40 lakh people – which has created livelihood opportunities for more than 1.75 lakh local drivers, according to a company statement.
The world's largest ride-hailing company issued the statement on Monday marking its four years of operation in the country.
"This anniversary reminds us of the important role Uber plays in Bangladesh, especially as a platform that can help provide convenient, affordable and safe rides – while allowing drivers the chance to earn flexibly," said Shiva Shailendran, Uber head of Bangladesh as well as North and West India.
"Uber is committed to growing its business in the country with the continued and focused market and product innovations that will help Bangladesh move forward, and further accelerate economic revival," she continued.
Uber began its journey in Bangladesh in November 2016 with car services in Dhaka, and launched its motorcycle services within one year, making the country one of the most important markets for the ride-hailing giant.
Gradually, the company expanded its operations to Chattogram, Cox's Bazar and Sylhet.
In the port city of Chattogram, Uber offers both car and motorcycle services like in Dhaka, while in the two other cities, it is currently running motorcycle ride-sharing services only.
Meanwhile, in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, the company had to stop its ride-hailing services at the beginning of the nationwide shutdown on 26 March and wait until 21 June to resume its car services.
Uber restarted its motorcycle services after the government lifted the restrictions in the first week of September.
The company said, after the nationwide shutdown was lifted, Uber launched multiple new services to support the needs of its riders.
These include Uber Connect, a package delivery service, and Uber Rentals, which allows riders to book an affordable multi-hour, multi-stop option to travel in the new normal.
In August this year, Uber announced a partnership with bKash to provide contactless payment options for riders to help sustain physical distancing.
Emerging from the global pandemic, the company sees the partnership as a step towards keeping everyone who uses the Uber platform safe, by making the payment process contactless, cashless and secure.
Over the past few months, Uber's tech and safety teams have been working to build a new product experience to help riders feel safe, every time they use Uber.
The company launched comprehensive tech-enabled safety measures that include an interactive Go Online Checklist, a mandatory mask policy, and an industry first – pre-trip mask verification selfies, for both riders and drivers.
Additionally, Uber announced the launch of its 24x7 safety helpline in November, which allows riders to get in touch with Uber's safety team for an urgent, non-emergency issue, such as reporting a dispute with a driver or a break-down, while on a trip.
The safety line is in addition to the in-app SOS 999 button already available in the safety toolkit, which allows riders to connect to law enforcement authorities in case of an emergency.
Through its technology expertise, impactful partnerships and product innovation, Uber aims to support Bangladesh's road to recovery and help the country build back better after the pandemic, Uber said.
Uber aiming to create opportunity through movement
Uber started in 2010 as a technology-based startup in the United States to solve a simple problem: how do you get access to a ride at the touch of a button?
Uber has already made more than 15 billion trips worldwide. It is building products to get people closer to where they want to be. By changing how people, food and things move through cities, Uber is a platform that opens up the world to new possibilities, the company explained in its statement.
As Bangladesh aims to transition from a least developed country and receive official developing country status by 2024, Uber remains committed to Bangladesh's socio-economic growth by creating livelihood opportunities for hundreds of thousands of Bangladeshis, the company said in its latest statement.