Industry Update
Press Release17 October 2017

London’s Uber ban could spell bad news for AirBnB

Last month it was announced that controversial carpool site Uber would be banned from operating in London

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Last month it was announced that controversial carpool site Uber would be banned from operating in London. Transport For London refused to renew the ride sharing site's operating license, saying that "Uber's approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to a number of issues which have potential public safety and security implications," and that the ban would come into place on September 30th. However, as predicted Uber immediately moved to appeal the ban under the court's 21 day appeal procedure, and it will continue to operate while the appeal is being processed. This was a major blow for the taxi-alternative, who have faced controversy worldwide for their business model, staff treatment and ruthless behaviour, sparking protest in cities all over the world from London to Buenos Aires. The ban prompted the abrupt resignation of the Uber's UK and Ireland director Jo Bertram at the beginning of October, just ten days after the ban was announced.


As the prevalence of the sharing economy has grown, big names in this revolutionary yet polemic industry have faced significant backlash from regulators, unions and local councils. While the public will always be on the side of a bargain, traditional industries are scratching their heads as to how to compete with this new models, and the hospitality industry is one such sector that has had to seriously think outside the box when it comes to competing with sites like AirBnB who appeal to the tricky millennial demographic.

What implications will the Uber ban in London have on sites likeAirBnB? AirBnB has already made moves to placate British regulators in London, with the site limiting rentals to a maximum of 90 days unless they have been granted permission from the city council. Since they have started to enforce the ban, 90 day-plus bookings have drastically decreased. However, unlike cities like Barcelona, which is suffering from an over-saturated tourism market that is angering locals and forcing a crackdown on AirBnB's rental properties, London has seen a 6% increase in tourism in the past year, and with tourism contributing £127 billion annually to the British economy, crackdowns like the one inBarcelona are less likely to happen in the English capital. Increasingly it seems like councils and business owners alike will have no choice but to embrace the sharing economy instead of trying to fight it.

The following projects in London should be on your radar:

Park Regis Shoreditch London

The 70,000 sqft project for Seven Capital will create a 125 bed boutique hotel on a stand alone island site and utilising in part the original facade of a late Victorian warehouse [MORE INFO…]

Westin London Queensbridge

This is a major development in the City of London facing the river Thames [MORE INFO…]

Arundel Great Court

The Hotel would be part of the development – it will be a last minute decision if there will be a hotel or not [MORE INFO…]

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Jule Grass
Marketing Manager
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