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Uber imposes engineer hiring freeze as losses mount: Exclusive


Uber isn’t letting tech workers join the ride, at least for now.

The ride-hailing giant has been canceling scheduled on-site interviews for tech roles this week, and job applicants have been told positions are being put on hold due to a hiring freeze in engineering teams in the U.S. and Canada, according to multiple people who received the communications. Uber didn’t respond to repeated requests for comments.

In emails sent to job interviewees, Uber recruiters explained “there have been some changes” and the opportunity has been “put on hold for now,” according to emails reviewed by Yahoo Finance.

The hiring freeze comes after 400 layoffs in its marketing department last week, which raised concerns and fears company-wide. During a recent all-hands meeting, a question about potential layoffs in the engineering department was also raised, but executives didn’t provide any timelines. The number of hiring posts for software engineer roles at Uber peaked in March, according to data tracking firm Thinknum.

BERLIN, GERMANY - MAY 10: A sign stands outside an Uber drivers registration office on May 10, 2019 in Berlin, Germany. Uber, the U.S.-based ride-hailing, food delivery and bicycle-sharing company, is due to launch an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange later today.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Uber is having some hard time since its IPO in May. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

The move highlights the challenges that Uber faces as it scrambles to prove to Wall Street, since its IPO in May, that it’s on the right track to achieve profitability. The company, with 100 million monthly active users, reported $5.23 billion in losses for the second quarter on Thursday. It attributed the massive loss to a $3.9 billion stock-based compensation charge due to restricted stock units that vested during its IPO. Meanwhile, revenue growth dropped 14%. Uber shares fell 6.4% on Friday, below its IPO price of $45 per share.

On an earnings call with analysts, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi reiterated his confidence in the business with its global footprint and network effect. “I think that myself and my team are well prepared, but I think we're very, very early in this incredible journey,” Khosrowshahi said on Thursday.

Have any thoughts to share about Uber? Email Krystal Hu at krystalh@yahoofinance.com or follow her on Twitter.

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