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Uber to Renew Push to Expand in Japan With Taxi Partnerships

Uber to Renew Push to Expand in Japan With Taxi Partnerships

"It's clear to me that we need to come in with partnership in mind, and in particular a partnership with the taxi industry here, which actually has a very, very strong product", said Khosrowshahi, who is making his first trip to Asia as Uber's CEO.

Sony announced partnerships with several taxi firms to start a ride-hailing service in Japan on Tuesday. Didi plans to stick to taxi-hailing in Japan for now as well.

Uber early a year ago hired Mark Moore, a former engineer at NASA, to lead its exploration of flying auto technology, showing how serious it appears to be about the for now nascent technological prospect.

The major obstacle is the tough regulation in Japan for companies like Uber.

Uber stops Morocco service from 23rd of February, in efforts to bring the business in to the local regulators' line for assisting ride hailing based on its app.

Sony isn't alone in wanting to grab a bigger share of the ride-hailing pie in Japan; Uber has announced that it will expand further into the Japanese market.

Flying taxis may sound like something from 90's sci-fi hit The Fifth Element, but that'll be the reality in 5-10 years if Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has his way. The new approach might hold more promise, but Sony will likely pose some serious competition.

Uber says it has 300 drivers using its app in the market and "nearly 19,000 regular users". That's a turnaround from previous boss Travis Kalanick who largely left the country in the hands of a country manager.

In January, SoftBank became the largest single shareholder in Uber. The goal is to launch the new ride-hailing company this spring. "We're very early in our relationship, but we're already having very good dialogue, both about the Japanese market and the ecosystem that SoftBank has created".

The Uber CEO also said that he hopes to expand businesses aggressively under tie-ups with SoftBank Group Corp., which has become the company's largest shareholder after acquiring a roughly 15 percent stake in the US ride-hailing giant for $9.3 billion last month.

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