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India’s Ola Gets Lean to Compete Uber

NEW DELHI—ANI Technologies Pvt.’s ride-hailing service Ola is laying off hundreds of workers at a fellow Indian operator it bought last year, a sign of possible consolidation amid increased competition in the country from Uber Technologies Inc.

Bangalore-based Ola last year acquired Serendipity Infolab Pvt.’s TaxiForSure for $200 million in cash and stock, saying the two companies would continue to operate separately. Ola said at the time that it would retain TaxiForSure’s 1,700 employees.

Ola, which was valued at $5 billion in a fundraising round last year and operates in 102 Indian cities, said in a statement Wednesday that it had brought TaxiForSure’s drivers and customers into its fold and used its offerings to launch Ola’s low-cost automobile service.

The move comes as Uber now focuses on hiring more engineers in India and enhancing its mapping capabilities as it steps up efforts in the world’s second-most-populous country.

Uber, valued at about $68 billion, operates in 27 Indian cities, providing various motorbike and private car services.

 

India represents a huge growth opportunity for technology startups since many of the country’s 1.3 billion people are now getting online for the first time.

Article published by WSJ

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