Uber could face a price surge of £2.1m if it wants to travel in the capital, in the latest salvo in the war between Transport for London and the disruptive ride hailing service.
According to the Evening Standard TfL's plan is to change how minicabs are licensed. At the moment, cab firms with more than two cars pay a flat rate of £2826 for a 5 year license - money that if Uber were a person, it wouldn't bother bending down to pick up.
Under the new proposals, this would be replaced with a sliding scale. This could see tiny cab operators with up to 10 vehicles pay £2500 for five years - and mega-firms like Uber, which has 30,000 drivers in the capital pay £166,000 instead - plus £68 for every vehicle registered.
The company that is probably Uber's biggest competitor, Addison Lee, would also be stung with the big fees, because it has 5000 registered drivers.
TfL's intention is that the cash windfall this would generate would be spent on employing 250 new compliance officers, who would be tasked with making sure Uber drivers have their insurance in order, and so on. So this move could conceivably make a lot of sense.
If you're an Uber user though, don't be surprised if you get an email in the next couple of days urging you to protest the proposals to the Mayor, which is a tactic the regulation-phobic company has tried in the past to stop TfL bringing down a hammer on it's business. [Standard]