Nov 12, 2019

Uber CEO apologizes to employees for Khashoggi comments

Photo: Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi apologized to employees Tuesday after his interview with "Axios on HBO" garnered immense criticism over his suggestion that the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi was "a mistake" by the Saudi government, the Washington Post reports.

The big picture: After the interview, during which Khosrowshahi compared Khashoggi's murder to the death of a woman in a self-driving Uber accident, he called Axios' Dan Primack to express regret for the language he used. He later provided an official statement disavowing the comments and apologized on Twitter, but not before the interview sparked the hashtag #BoycottUber.

The Post obtained information and excerpts of Khosrowshahi's remarks from a weekly all-hands meeting.

“I don’t believe that the Khashoggi murder is something to be forgiven or forgotten, and I was plain wrong to compare it to anything that we have been through. That was absolutely wrong.”
— Dara Khosrowshahi told employees, per the WashPost

Go deeper:

Go deeper

CEOs' allergy to geopolitics

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

If CEOs are the new politicians, many of them don't seem to have thought carefully about foreign policy — particularly about working with autocratic regimes.

Why it matters: Corporate America continues to do business with the Saudi crown prince, Mohammad bin Salman, who allegedly oversaw the beheading of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and to court business in places like China and Turkey.

Go deeperArrowNov 12, 2019

Uber CEO: More cars "not the answer"

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. Photo Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo by PHILIP PACHECO/AFP via Getty Images

In an interview last week with "Axios on HBO," Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said its business has to "radically shift how it grows" to avoid wearing out its welcome in cities.

Why it matters: That means investing in fleet electrification and convincing people to take alternative modes of transportation like Uber buses, electric bikes and scooters are key goals for the company — which doesn't have a history of playing nice with cities.

Go deeperArrowNov 13, 2019

Uber's driverless technology strategy

Uber self-driving test vehicles in Pittsburgh. Photo: Angelo Merendino/AFP via Getty Images

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi says the first AVs could be deployed on the ride-hailing network within three to five years, but other companies will bear the cost of owning and maintaining those self-driving cars.

Why it matters: Driverless technology is a key to profitability for Uber, which has warned investors to expect losses of almost $3 billion this year. But if all it does is replace the cost of a human driver with the overhead from managing its own fleet of self-driving cars, it won't be any closer to achieving a profit.

Go deeperArrowNov 15, 2019