One of the UK’s largest private hire firms has had its operator’s licence renewed for a further five years.
Addison Lee, the second biggest private hire operator in London, was granted a five-year licence in 2012, which was extended in 2017 for six months until the end of February this year.
Transport for London extended its licence until 2023, and at the same time charging the company £700,000 for the privilege, compared to £2,800 charged on its last renewal.
In 2017, TfL announced massive hikes in operator fees to fund enforcement within the industry. Firms with between 1,001 and 10,000 drivers, such as Addison Lee, pay £700,000 pounds compared to the £2,414 charged in 2012 for its original licence.
TfL estimates over the next five years enforcement costs alone will reach £30 million from a previous estimate of £4m. The total projected cost for licensing, enforcement and compliance for the taxi and private hire trades over the next five years is £209m.
An Addison Lee spokesman said: “Addison Lee looks forward to continuing to offer Londoners a high quality, reliable service in getting around town. We are fully supportive of TfL’s efforts to enhance the standard of regulation in the private hire industry.”