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Latest news about Uber in the UK and around the world. Uber Technologies Inc. is a peer-to-peer ridesharing, food delivery, and transportation network company headquartered in San Francisco, California, with operations in 633 cities worldwide.


ViaVan: Ride sharing app launches in London

Uber has a new rival in London following the launch of ride-sharing platform, ViaVan. The joint venture between Via and Mercedes-Benz will connect numerous passengers heading in the same direction with a chauffeur-driven vehicle.

Initially launched across zones 1 and 2, the new service is expected to provide a cheaper alternative to Uber whilst maintaining a strong corporate ethos.

Chris Snyder, CEO of ViaVan, explained:

Londoners deserve innovative transportation solutions that are safe, convenient, and affordable. ViaVan is a different kind of company: we have social responsibility built into our DNA. Our mission is to power truly dynamic mass transit systems, which reduce congestion in our cities while offering drivers the opportunity to earn a decent living. We are delighted to launch in London and to finally give Londoners an alternative to expensive and inefficient private car services

Via was initially developed in New York City and has now provided more than 30 million ride shares globally. Using Via’s dynamic peer-to-peer car-pooling technology, ViaVan has now been launched across two cities, London and Amsterdam, with further expansion planned.

Numerous ViaVan benefits

ViaVan predict that their car-pooling service will help bridge the gap between public transport and private hire services provided by firms such as Uber. Ride-sharing will inevitably command lower rates than an individually-hired vehicle. Furthermore, the reduction in traffic congestion and lower emissions offered by car-pooling will be welcomed across the globe’s major cities.

What does the future hold for ViaVan?

The ongoing partnership between Via and Mercedes-Benz is expected to see their innovative car-pooling services rolled out across numerous cities globally. Working closely with public transport providers, ViaVan will complement existing public transport infrastructure.

So, will combining Mercedes’ ingenious engine ability with Via’s sophisticated technology be a cause for concern for Uber? Let us know your thoughts.


Wales Online: Anything for Hire is amongst ’30 Welsh firms aiming to make it big’

This week, we at were featured in a leading Welsh publication, Wales Online; found in a list of “30 Welsh firms aiming to make it big”. Positioned next to some of the greatest Welsh companies out there, our team were thrilled to have their name celebrated in this prestigious listicle. Seeing their incredible efforts recognised in such a way, this article is one of many stories posted about the wonderful things we are doing for the UK hire industry.

Reviewing the platform, Wales Online wrote:

“New Cardiff-based tech start-up Anything for Hire is aiming to follow in the footsteps of success stories like Uber and Airbnb by shaking up the UK hire industry. The idea behind Anything for Hire came to technology entrepreneur Tej Randeva when he noticed there was no easy way to compare different quotes from various hire companies during the hiring process.”

Other businesses featured in the listicle include Bushbox, Paperclip, Sorbet, She Moves, University Cribs and many more.

Whilst a national business, the team is headquartered down in Cardiff; being an amazing city full of startup talent. As seen in the listicle, the capital city homes some of the most innovative technology startups and SMEs of the UK, with Cardiff now existing as the fastest-growing digital economy outside of London. Due to its bustling technology scene, we at thought Cardiff would provide the perfect backdrop to their success story; and we were not wrong!

Tej Randeva, the Founder of says;

‘Cardiff is a wonderful place to do business. With a growing community of technology talent paired with its reasonable business rates when compared to London, for us, Cardiff fitted the bill. In addition, Wales boasts some incredible hire businesses that we have enjoyed forming partnerships with over the course of the last few months. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Wales Online for this article and look forward to sharing many more updates with you all very soon.”

Here’s the full list of the 30 Welsh firms aiming to make it big, reviewed by WalesOnline:

  1. Brushbox
  2. Paperclip
  3. Sorbet
  4. Credas
  5. Doze
  6. Pedalcover
  7. She Moves
  8. enModus
  9. Anything for Hire
  10. Codeherent
  11. SOS Athletic Excellence
  12. University Cribs
  13. QuoteOnSite
  14. What’s It Like?
  15. POW! Virtual Running
  16. JOT S
  17. Ginhaus Deli
  18. BIBaDO
  19. Aspire2Be, Swansea
  20. Hoowla
  21. Clydach Farm Group
  22. Get Wonky
  23. Trwffl
  24. Eco Home & Commercial Clean
  25. Banter Cards
  26. Recyclabox
  27. Fightwear Store UK
  28. OxyOse
  29. Jecca
  30. The Tidy Kitchen Co

Read the full story:


Ryde enter Singapore private hire market as Uber departs

It’s less than a week since Grab purchased all of Uber’s South East Asian operations and another major rival has emerged in an ultra-competitive space. Singapore-based tech giants, Ryde, have confirmed they are to move into the private hire market, describing it as a “natural extension” of their original carpooling business.

Eager to capitalise on Uber’s departure from the Asian market, Ryde confirm that their new venture, RydeX, have already started accepting sign-ups via the app, aiming to have more than 5,000 full-time drivers signed up in the near future.

Terence Zou, founder and CEO of Ryde Technologies, explains why entering this new market is a natural progression for the brand.

“Offering private-hire car services would complete our mobility suite to serve our users better. We’ve always been planning to enter into the private-hire space to complete our mobility suite, but right now I think is also an opportune time.”

Whilst a highly-competitive space, Zou believes that there is still room for a fresh, innovative company to thrive.

“I think the market needs more competition and that’s where we can provide consumers and drivers with an alternative platform and way to get around” he adds.

Experts sceptical of Ryde’s chances

Dr Park Byung Joon from the Singapore University of Social Sciences is sceptical of RydeX’s chances of breaking into a saturated market. Now, with the backing of Uber, Grab seemingly monopolise.

Pre-empting the struggles Ryde may face, he says:

“They will have great difficulty in terms of the driver availability, because Grab has far more vehicles under them. So, if they are simply seen as another app, then of course Singaporeans will not use them that well, so it really depends on what kind of service they can provide for commuters.”

As RydeX attempt to gain a competitive edge over their bigger, more established rivals, Grab, driver’s commission rates are set to be cut to 10%, with savings passed onto customers.

Mr Zou added:

“We hope to provide commuters a cheaper alternative to get around and drivers a way to make a decent living. Ultimately, our mission is to make a positive social impact in people’s lives.”

“Having run our carpooling business for close to three years, we also understand what the riders and the drivers want, what features they would like, what are the things that work for them, so we have been collating feedback all this while.”

“Definitely putting the consumer first, listening to what they want, giving them a good fare option, that would be our core focus.”

Concluding an incredibly busy week for the Asian rental market, what does the future hold for this ever-growing space? Leave your thoughts with us.


Uber sell South East Asian operations to Grab

Over the past few months, we have seen Uber make some rather huge announcements, eager to tighten their belts and operate a clean, flourishing business. Expected to float on the Stock Exchange next year, Uber has this week made yet another surprise move, selling its South East Asian operations.

In a plea to cut losses, Uber sold their ride-hailing app and food delivery business to regional competitor; Grab. Having left China back in 2016 and recently exited from Russia, it appears it is a significant time of change for the technology company.

Cutting ties with Asia almost completely, Uber’s CEO recently said that ventures on the continent were not looking “profitable any time soon”.

As part of the sale, Uber will now take a 27.5% stake in Asia-based Grab; with Uber’s CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, also sitting on the business’ board.

According to recent reports, Uber lost a substantial $4.5bn (£3.2bn) last year as a result of too much direct competition in Europe and across the globe. Enhanced by tough regulatory crackdowns on the business, removing side projects and distractions certainly makes sense.

Announcing details of the deal in a blog, the CEO reiterated this point:

“One of the potential dangers of our global strategy is that we take on too many battles across too many fronts and with too many competitors.”

However, many analysts and researchers are placing this move down to Uber’s overaggressive nature, suggesting that the company ran before it could walk when it came to global expansion.

One Singapore-based researcher has been very vocal on the subject. In a statement, Corrine Png of Crucial Perspective said:

Uber is seeking an IPO but that might be delayed depending on whether Khosrowshahi is able to address Uber’s cash burn problem as well as countering rival Lyft’s renewed strength in the US.

Uber has been expanding overaggressively and assumed that it would be able to outspend Yandex in Russia, Didi Chuxing in China and Grab in south-east Asia but it turns out that Uber’s rivals were equally well-resourced. Uber would have been better off simply investing in Yandex, Didi Chuxing and Grab from the start.”

A step in the right direction for Grab

However, this is an immensely positive step forward for Grab, with the company’s Co-Founder, Anthony Tan, saying the following:

“We are humbled that a company born in SEA has built one of the largest platforms that millions of consumers use daily and provides income opportunities to over 5 million people. Today’s acquisition marks the beginning of a new era. The combined business is the leader in platform and cost efficiency in the region. Together with Uber, we are now in an even better position to fulfil our promise to outserve our customers. Their trust in us as a transport brand allows us to look towards the next step as a company: improving people’s lives through food, payments and financial services.”

Let us know what you think, is this a good meeting of minds?

File illustration picture showing the logo of car-sharing service app Uber on a smartphone next to the picture of an official German taxi sign

Uber parks self-driving plans following fatal accident

Whilst boasting their own issues here in the UK, it seems that Uber are facing more problems overseas. In a fight to be the first to roll our driverless technology to the masses, Uber have been aggressively researching and testing new autonomous driving models. However, with a lack of human presence comes a lack of control, with such technology still not perfected. This is something that has been proven by Uber, this week suspending their pilot programme due to a fatal accident.

The accident took place in Arizona on Sunday after an Uber vehicle in autonomous mode hit a pedestrian, killing the victim when they were crossing the street. Causing the CEO of Uber to pass comment, Dara Khosrowshahi said in a tweet:

“Some incredibly sad news out of Arizona. We’re thinking of the victim’s family as we work with local law enforcement to understand what happened.”

Seeing many call into question just how developed our autonomous technology is, this fatality has seen many pass comment on who is to blame for the incident. However, many are reiterating the fact that this is the first death caused by a fully autonomous vehicle.

Responding to the crash, Dr Jenifer Baxter, head of engineering at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, sheds light on the dangers of introducing new technology into our societies.

“This tragic event serves to draw attention to the challenges of incorporating autonomous vehicles into an incumbent system operating with manned vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians and other road users” he says.

“In 2016 the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in our Case Study on Autonomous and Driverless Cars raised the need to address societal questions before highly and fully automated cars are both accepted and legally able to be positioned on our roads; this will include having the right regulatory framework in place.

So, what is the solution?

The solution seems to be both patience and putting safety first. Although we have seen some testing taking place on open roads, brands are expected to implement further safety precautions, going back to in-house testing for the time being.

“Engineers will need to create an environment where connected autonomous vehicles can operate safely with or without an operator during the transition period to a fully autonomous vehicle system. This transition period could last for several decades” Baxter continues.

What are your thoughts on this accident. Is this part and parcel of welcoming autonomous driving or should more be done to prevent injuries in the future? Let us know what you think by leaving your comments below.


Uber to sell driverless technology to Toyota

Many of the world’s largest brands have been competing to launch the first driverless car. From the technology giants that are Google, to car manufacturers such as BMW and Audi, everyone seems to be working on autonomous driving in some way shape or form.

Successful ride-hailing application, Uber, are undoubtedly one of the key players in this forever-in-development space, having been working on their technology for some time now. However, recent rumours suggest that Uber are set to sell their technology to car manufacturers, Toyota, another brand putting autonomous driving as a priority.

Focusing primarily on their van division, Toyota look to utilise Uber’s technology for their minivans. Wanting to offer self-drive functionality; a deal is apparently under negotiation.

Whilst nothing has been set in stone, rumours filled the tech world after Shigeki Tomoyama, a Toyota executive Vice President, met with Uber CEO; Dara Khosrowshahi. Meeting in Pittsburgh, the get-together was held at the same location as Uber’s research and development team.

“We regularly exchange information about automated driving with Uber for some time now,” a spokeswoman for Toyota told.

Driving ahead of the competition

In addition to Toyota, Uber are also reported to be in talks with a range of other businesses, wanting to sell their driverless technology to a collection of third-party partners. By doing so, Uber leap in front of the competition; constantly making movements to outshine Google’s Waymo project.

Waymo is a driverless taxi service that Google have been given kudos for across the globe. Having proven the concept in Phoenix, Google now look to develop a driverless truck option. But, who will win the race to roll out complete driverless car technology to the masses? Let us know what you think by leaving your comments below.


You can now hire a ‘human Uber’ to wear on your face

With the ‘anything goes’ nature of the modern hire industry, we at Anything for Hire are seeing some pretty fabulous ventures unfold across the world. Just this week, we came across the ‘Human Uber’. This is a hire business that uses VR to enhance social experiences. While apps and other technology creations have stunned us, this product cleverly combines high-tech with the arguably unparalleled human being.

Entitled ChameleonMask, the business encourages people to hire individuals to wear a mask. This is no ordinary mask; it features a live stream to you! This means, you can attend events such as parties, concerts and even business meetings from the comfort of your own home. Giving a sort of illusion that you there, it’s basically Skype, but much more complicated!

So, where has this idea come from? As the brainchild of Jun Rekimoto, Deputy Director of Sony Computer Science Laboratories, the ‘human Uber’ has been created to fill in for us at prior engagements.

“To do this a surrogate user wears a mask-shaped display that shows a remote user’s live face. A voice channel transmits a remote user’s voice” he wrote.

Seeing Twitter go into a slight tech frenzy, many users made valid points. Where we have seen robots and droids take a front seat of late, this is the first time someone has married such video technology with a good old-fashioned homosapien. As the intention for the product, Rekimoto continues:

“This design is based on our hypothesis assuming physical and social telepresence can be embodied by such a surrogate human who imitates the remote user”.

“It also eliminates many difficulties of teleoperated robots wandering in the environment. Our pilot study confirmed that people could regard the masked person as [the remote operating] person.”

Initially unveiled at the MIT Technology Review’s EmTech conference in Singapore, an official launch date is yet to be revealed.

Will you be hiring a face?

Let us know what you think about the human Uber. Will you be investing in one? Leave your comments with us.

Mark and Daisy Davidson Zeffer

Australian Couple Launch Uber Alternative for Limo Hire – Zeffer

While the battle between Uber and traditional taxi drivers rages on in the UK, a couple in Perth, Australia, have come up with an innovative way to remain competitive in a changing market.

Mark and Daisy Davidson, who work in the chauffeur industry, first saw the impact that Uber was having on their market five years ago in San Francisco. With the ride-sharing app on the rise, the income of people like the Davidsons, who deal mainly with corporate travellers, dropped by a staggering 70 percent.

However, the Davidsons didn’t admit defeat, and instead began talking about how they could create something like Uber specifically for limousine chauffeurs and their clients. The result is Zeffer, and it’s set to take the industry by storm.

Although it’s inspired by Uber, however, the Davidsons’ app has some clever features that are all its own. Rather than offering on demand services, it allows users to pre-book their limousine ride with a Zeffer driver – meaning there’s no waiting around to get picked up on a busy night.

“With Uber you can either get lucky or you’ll be waiting for 20 minutes,” Mark told The West Australian. “We are saying you want a car, the car will be there when you want it.”

Ultimately, the Davidsons hope that their app will assist limousine drivers still trying to recover from the blows that Uber has dealt their trade. According to Mark, Zeffer has been developed with them in mind. And because it offers pre-booked jobs, they will be able to plan their working days around the app.

Furthermore, Zeffer offers excellent interactive opportunities, with drivers able to create their own networks within the app. And once users get to know who’s who, they can choose their favourite driver to collect them.

Whether Zeffer will transform Perth’s limousine hire industry remains to be seen, but with prices coming in at lower than Uber Black – their closest competitor – they’re certainly one to watch.


Uber’s London License Hits £3M

Having hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons of late, ride-hailing app, Uber, are having a disastrous month. Just today, it was announced that their London license will soar. Going from £3,00 to a substantial £3m; this is a fee that many drivers, authorities and individuals are eager to share their opinions on.

Announced by Transport for London (TfL), it will be applied for the next five years, revising the fees they charge private hire operators. With the industry changing shape as innovative technology takes center stage, regulatory bodies such as TfL are more in demand. This mean they are having to find more money to deal with the rising costs of regulation.

Helen Chapman, TfL general manager of Taxi & Private Hire, said:

“There has been a huge growth in the industry in recent years and it is only fair that the license fee reflects the costs of regulation and enforcement.”

But, just how many more private hire operators are we seeing on the roads of the city? Well, according to TfL there were just 65,000 in 2013-14. Today, more than 116,000 occupy London, and in the next five years, regulatory costs to keep drivers operating in a legal manner will hit £30m.

Implementing a new 8-tier structure, TfL will charge operators based on their size, with the bigger the fleet; the more they will inevitably pay for their license. Fees will now start from £2,000 for a five-year license for those operating between 1 and ten vehicles. At the other end of the scale you have operators working with 10,000 vehicles which will be charged close to £3m. This will apply to Uber, the US business that currently has 40,000 drivers in London.

Ms Chapman said: “The safety of Londoners is TfL’s top priority, and the changes to fees will help us fund additional compliance officers who do a crucial job cracking down on illegal and dangerous activity.

“We have listened to the views of stakeholders in the consultation and have amended the fees structure to give small and medium-sized operators more flexibility in how they manage the size of their fleets.”

Though Uber hare yet to issue a statement regarding the increased fees they have previously said that they support any increase that makes the city a safer place; constantly being criticised for bringing more pollution and traffic to the city.

Addison Lee

Addison Lee, Uber’s competitors, did however pass comment:

“We recognise that these measures need to be paid for and are grateful that TfL has listened to our consultation response and developed an equitable framework for the charges necessary to cover the enforcement work they will undertake” they said.

In addition, TfL are expected to keep an eye on ride-hailing apps, adjusting various feed as they see fit.

Looking to hire something?

Share your thoughts with us by leaving your comments below.

Whilst specialising in vehicle car hire, we at Anything For Hire can also be used for the following:

  • Wedding car hire
  • Tool hire
  • Equipment hire
  • Venue hire
  • Staff hire
  • Property hire
  • And even pet hire!

Whatever it is you are looking to hire, we can help.




Lyft and Uber grab extra business from taxis and rental cars

New data revealed has shown that business travellers are increasingly turning to Uber and Lyft whilst taking fewer rental cars out onto the road.

A travel management firm, Certify, who handles corporate travel transactions have analysed more than 10 million receipts filed in the second quarter. It has since found that the amount of money which is spent on rental cars and taxis have fallen by two per cent. Rental cars controlled approximately 29 per cent of the ground-travel expenses for business travellers and taxis had eight per cent.

Meanwhile, both Lyft and Uber grew their share of the ground transportation market by approximately two per cent. Uber controlled 55 per cent of the ground travel expenses for business travellers had eight per cent.

“The revolution in ground transportation we’re seeing today led by Uber and Lyft has far reaching implications for the future of corporate travel,” said Robert Neveu, CEO, Certify.

For numerous corporate travellers, the swap from renting a car to catching an Uber or Lyft helps to understand why companies such as Hertz have found it difficult in recent years. During the second quarter, Hertz lost $28 million. The stock, which traded at roughly $125 in August 2014 dropped to roughly $17.

Additionally, taxi operators in large cities are reeling due to the rise in the popularity of ride sharing. In the early months of this year, a New York City taxi firm sold for $241,000. In comparison, four years ago one sold in the same location for $1.3 million.

Overall, the usual cost for a taxi business ride is $31.06 in the second quarter. In comparison, the charges for Uber and Lyft were $24.49 and $21.28, respectively.