Eight promoters have accused an outsourced firm under transportation company Uber Hong Kong of allegedly changing its contract terms and cutting commission fees without seeking their approval.

The promoters, who are in their 20s, were employed by an outsourced company under Uber Hong Kong, according to Ming Pao. They were tasked with registering driver information for Uber Hong Kong. Commission fees would be awarded for each “successful registration.”

File photo. Photo: Apple Daily.

Conflicts arose when the promoters argued that the company had allegedly changed the method of calculating commission fees unilaterally in July. Ming Pao reported that the outsourced company suddenly stated that promoters would only receive commission when they recommend drivers who actively take orders from the Uber mobile app.

Previously, commission was awarded once promoters submit information on drivers. The employees hence argued that the company changed its employment terms without bilateral agreement.

Apple Daily also reported that the promoters accused the company of withholding their commission payments, which were worth HK$8,500. They lodged a complaint to the Labour Department on Friday, August 7.

An Uber vehicle. Photo: Apple Daily.

Speaking to Ming Pao, a spokesperson for the outsourced company denied that it had amended the contract documents. He said the conflicts only arose due to disagreements over the term “successful registration.”

The spokesperson also accused the promoters of “making false registrations” by submitting information on drivers who showed no interests in taking orders, adding it would be “against logic” for promoters to receive allowances by simple submission of personal information.

Uber is a transportation company that provides services similar to metred taxis. Users submit trip requests through a mobile app developed by the company, after which its drivers provide the service with their own vehicles. Uber sets up independent contracts with local drivers to provide the service. Local taxi unions have protested against the company, and accused it of providing illegal taxi services.

Update (15:59): In a written reply to HKFP, Uber Hong Kong’s representative said it was “unable to comment,” adding that it was only a matter concerning the outsourced company.

Eric Cheung

Eric is currently a Bachelor of Journalism student at the University of Hong Kong. Eric has his finger on the pulse of Hong Kong events and politics. His work has been published on The Guardian, Reuters and ABC News (America).