FOI request detail

Uber driver numbers

Request ID: FOI-2331-1617
Date published: 16 May 2017

You asked

could you supply me with the number of drivers working for uber, I have the figures of all the other mini cab operators just not uber

We answered

TfL Ref: FOI-2331-1617


Thank you for your email received by us on 27 February 2017 requesting information about Uber driver numbers.


Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our Information Access Policy. I can confirm we do hold the information you require. You asked:


The number of private hire drivers that are working for Uber.


In accordance with the FOI Act we are not obliged to supply this information as it is subject to a statutory exemption to the right of access to information under section 43(2) and section 41 of the FOI Act.


In this instance section 43(2) exemption has been applied as disclosure would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of private hire operators. Disclosure of this information would enable rival companies to have an insight into any operator’s business model and undermine their position in the competitive market place. Whilst we make no suggestion that you would use this information for anything other than you own personal interest, disclosure of this information to you has to be regarded as a disclosure to ‘the public at large’.


The use of this exemption is subject to an assessment of the public interest in relation to the disclosure of the information concerned. We recognise the need for openness and transparency by public authorities, but in this instance feel that the balance lies in favour of withholding the information to ensure that private hire operators can continue to be able to operate effectively without being placed at a commercial disadvantage.


Section 41 has also been applied as this information was provided to us in confidence by each operator. We consider that this information possesses the necessary quality of confidence as it was submitted under an understanding that it would be held in confidence. As stated above, the information could undermine every operator’s commercial interests if it were to be released into the public domain. It could also have an adverse effect on the flow of accurate information to TfL as private hire companies could be reluctant to provide us with the number of drivers and vehicles registered to them given the likely commercial repercussions to their trade.


Since section 41 is an absolute exemption, as such we have not gone on to consider the balance of the public interest, except to the extent of noting that there is no special public interest in disclosure of this information that would justify a breach of confidence in this case.


If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you are unable to access it for some reason, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.

Yours sincerely,

Melissa Nichols

FOI Case Officer

FOI Case Management Team

General Counsel

Transport for London

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