Uber Technologies Inc. signage stands inside the company's office prior to Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican from Florida, speaking in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, March 24, 2014. Rubio addressed the need to adapt antiquated government regulations to increase economic opportunities for the 21st century and outdated regulations limit consumer choice. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Privatisation of city governance – Is it Uber’s ultimate goal?

It’s been a busy summer for Uber. In San Francisco, the app-based transportation service and world’s richest startup is testing on-demand mass transit with its Smart Routes offering – essentially carpools running bus-like routes. Elsewhere, Uber is expanding into China, raising $1.2bn to back a push into 100 Chinese cities over the next year.

To build its Eastern empire, Uber is maintaining its infamously aggressive tactics by hiring an “elite team of launchers”. The job advertisement sounds like Uber is looking for CIA operatives, not brand ambassadors: “At base, this job entails being dropped into a city or country where Uber has zero brand and physical presence, quickly figuring out who and what make that city run, and then building a new business from scratch – in a matter of weeks – which sets Uber up for long-term success”.

With a well-financed combination of rapid roll-out and local infiltration, Uber hopes to overcome rival services and strict regulation.

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Is Uber’s ultimate goal the privatisation of city governance? | Technology | The Guardian.