Uber and Lyft Consider Franchise-Like Model in California
New York Times
Uber and Lyft, which are facing mounting pressure to classify their freelance drivers as full-time employees in California, are looking for another way.One option that both companies are seriously discussing is licensing their brands to operators of vehicle fleets in California, according to three people with knowledge of the plans. The change would resemble an independently operated franchise, allowing Uber and Lyft to keep an arms-length association with drivers so that the companies would not need to employ them and pay their benefits. The idea would effectively be a return to the days of how groups of black cars were run. Lyft has presented the plan to its board of directors, one person said. Uber, which already works with fleet operators in Germany and Spain, is also familiar with the business model. The companies have not committed to the franchise-like plans, said the people with knowledge of the discussions, who asked to remain anonymous because the details are confidential.