Uber plans to ditch cabs for e-bikes and scooters

Lime scooters

Lime scooters

Uber says it plans to focus more on its electric scooter and bike business, and less on cars, despite the fact it could hurt profits.

Uber's chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi admitted drivers would be making less money at first, but said it would help them pocket more cash in the long run.

The move is part of a longer-term strategy from the company to find ways of improving inner-city travel, with scooters and bicycles better-suited than cars, according to Mr Khosrowshahi.

He also forecast users would make more frequent shorter journeys in future.

"During rush hour, it is very inefficient for a one-tonne hulk of metal to take one person 10 blocks", Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi told the Financial Times in an interview published Monday.

NY and Washington are two of the eight U.S. cities where Uber has added e-bikes to its app, while Berlin is set to become the first European city to receive the function.

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Last year Uber lost £3.5billion ($4.5billion), creating pressure on the giant to make up the lost revenue after funnelling money into Uber Eats and its self-driving auto project.

"Short-term financially, maybe it's not a win for us, but strategically long term we think that is exactly where we want to head".

An Uber spokesperson said there was "nothing to share" about possible United Kingdom expansion yet.

They said the growth of ride-hailing apps has also worsened traffic congestion.

Mr Khosrowshahi said Uber makes less money from a bike ride than the same journey in a vehicle, but that he expected this to be offset by customers using the app for more journeys more frequently.

Uber said Berlin would be the first European city to see its Jump e-bikes, with others to follow. Investors would need to be prepared for short-term losses to achieve long-term goals, he signalled, with Uber's flotation on the stock market - valuing the company at up to $70bn - anticipated soon.

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