Drivers for Uber and Lyft won’t be entirely shut out of the ride-hailing companies’ anticipated blockbuster IPOs this year. According to the Wall Street Journal, both firms are planning to offer longtime drivers access to their public offerings through cash awards that can be used to buy shares in the IPOs.
The move would be the latest effort by both companies to address claims that their drivers, who are contractors rather than full-time employees, wouldn’t share in the potential wealth generated by the public stock offerings. Still, the arrangement is likely to affect only the longest-serving drivers. And with both companies headed for IPO with heavy losses on their books, it is far from guaranteed that the shares will gain value when they hit the public markets.