job fairy

Controversial app Uber to create 300 jobs in Limerick

Taxi drivers have protested against the app in other countries.

THE TAXI-SHARING app Uber is going to create 150 jobs in Limerick by the end of the year.

The company has announced it is setting up a centre of excellence in the city – its first premises of this kind outside the US.

The centre will create 150 jobs by the end of 2015 and around 300 when it’s fully up and running. Uber said it is investing €4 million in the city this year as it aims to make Limerick one of its “growing network of customer service hubs”.

Uber is already advertising for an initial 50 jobs and it plans to start operations in the city by the end of August, having signed a ten-year lease on a site on Thomas Street.

The app uses a phone’s GPS to detect a person’s location and connect them with the nearest available driver.

Uber has expanded rapidly throughout the world and is currently in 329 cities in 59 countries. However, it’s not all been smooth sailing.

Taxi drivers on both sides of the Atlantic have protested against the app, claiming it’s unfair competition. The European Parliament is currently looking into how to regulate it and similar services.

Under the Taxi Regulation Act 2013, drivers who use apps such as Uber in Ireland must be licenced in the same way all taxi drivers are.

‘What better place?’

Jobs Minister Richard Bruton said the company’s investment “highlights the talent of the Irish workforce”.

“The unemployment rate recently hit a new six-year low and the jobs on offer will help to reduce this even further. Ireland is proving to be a hugely attractive country for foreign investment and we looking forward to working with Uber,” Bruton stated.

Kieran Harte, General Manager for Uber Ireland, said the company is “thrilled” to be setting up shop here.

What better place to launch our first Centre of Excellence outside the US than in Ireland? We are so thrilled to be here and setting up our operations in this city which has a tradition of welcoming innovative technology companies.

Martin Shanahan, Chief Executive of IDA Ireland, noted Uber is “fast becoming one of the world’s most recognised brands and the company’s presence will provide a huge boost to Limerick”.

Originally published: 6.01am

Read: ‘Thuggery disguised as protest’: Why are so many people against Uber?

Read: Why ridesharing has run into some major roadblocks in Ireland

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