Ok, so Uber won its appeal against TfL refusing to renew its license, so what has changed from the day before the court case?......nothing, nada, nicht, not a flaming sausage.
The taxi industry is still in the Red corner and the PHV industry are still in the Blue corner, with Uber still studying their sat-nav, trying to find which arena we are fighting in.
Let's not forget, it wasn't the taxi industry taking Uber to court, it wasn't TfL taking Uber to court.....it was Uber taking TfL to court, whilst the taxi industry was merely an interested party.
Whatever has gone on in the past regarding TfLs involvment in what can only be described as a scandal, involving Uber, it's pretty clear that they are trying to remedy the situation, albeit a little late.
From the varying accounts over social media Helen Chapman was most certainly no shrinking violet in the courtroom, going toe-to-toe and blow-for-blow with Uber's QC.
Uber's 15 month license really is the "last chance saloon" for them, one false move and they could be in serious trouble.
Let's not forget, had Uber lost this appeal, it's a racing certainty that they would have appealed to a higher court. This could potentially have dragged out the whole process for many more months, possibly years, before any conclusion.
Uber's license being renewed is not the fault of TfL, the LTDA or any other entity, this was solely down to the British legal system. A decision could only be made on current and future conduct, not past indiscretions, which is surprising given that Uber were deemed not fit and proper based on past indiscretions. Let's be clear, this does not finish the taxi industry, not even close. Uber still have a VAT battle and an employment tribunal to deal with, both potentially more damaging than having their license in London revoked. Had Uber lost their appeal, they would have continued operating via the murky world of cross-border hiring, the status-quo would have still remained....and still does. Uber remain the darlings of the millennials and those on very low pay, but these are men and women who would never usually set foot in a taxi, prior to Ubers arrival they would use their local minicab firm. It is true that Uber has damaged the licensed taxi industry, but it has also decimated the PHV industry and is slowly crippling the bus network, which has a massive financial Black hole. The taxi industry's battle-lines are not straight forward, the guns are perpetually aiming at the wrong targets like a wayward machine-gun. The industry's problems lay firmly at the door of Government, more specifically the secretary of state for transport. Add into the mix the taxi industry's public image, something that has never really been grabbed by the throat and shaken up, and also how The Knowledge is marketed, the industry does have problems......but none of this is insurmountable, its a sharp learning curve. In this modern era the industry needs to be more sophisticated in how it operates and portrays itself. Uber ? They are a sideshow, a distraction at best, they are a symptom of the taxi industry's problems. The taxi industry has spent six years with Uber perpetually punching away with blow after blow, and yet the taxi industry is still here, standing, bloodied....yes, beaten.....no! As we stand at the moment Uber could have a lot more problems than the licensed taxi industry. Nil desperandum.