Uber is back at it again. The digital ride-sharing is appealing a decision made by a Kenyan court that would cap the commission it can take from drivers in the country at 18%, which is down from the usual 25% the company charges.
Love it or hate it, Uber is here to stay. The ride-hailing service has its paws in nearly every market across the planet and has successfully baked itself into out world’s transportation infrastructure. New court filings obtained by TechCrunch have revealed that Uber is petitioning to annul a cap on its commission set by the government of Kenya. Uber takes a percentage of a driver’s earning as commission—charging a current rate of 25%—and Kenya wants to set a hard ceiling of 18%. Uber is not happy about the decision and claims that the cap would cause the company’s earnings to take a hit and would prevent further investment in Kenya.
“The introduction of 18% as the ceiling for allowable commission has the potential to stifle innovation and reduce the petitioner’s economic feasibility of investing in the market,” the court files said, filed by Coulson Harney LLP and quoted in TechCrunch. The filing continued:
The Kenya Revenue Authority is presently in the process of finalizing digital service tax regulations as well as VAT regulations that would impose additional taxes of 1.5% and 14% on the petitioner’s (Uber) service fees. This coupled with the proposed cap in the commission, will have a major impact on the petitioner’s revenue from the Kenyan market which in turn will have an adverse impact on the Kenyan market prioritization for investments.
Uber did not immediately return Gizmodo’s request for comment.
Uber has tried sneaky methods of milking its users and drivers before, such as raising fares in the wake of a shooting at a Brooklyn subway stop, which left citizens of the city seeking alternative methods of transportation. Jalopnik also reported that Uber was keeping an average of 29.6% of driver revenue in a 2019 investigation.