Almost all locations fall victim to Deutsche Bahn’s austerity measures

App-based shared taxi: With Clevershuttle, an algorithm automatically creates the most effective carpools possible. (Photo: Clevershuttle)

The railways have to save and therefore cut four of the six Clevershuttle locations to date. The unprofitable startup, in which Deutsche Bahn holds the majority, will in future only be available in Leipzig and Düsseldorf.

The Clevershuttle ride pooling service will soon only be available in Leipzig and Düsseldorf. The locations in Berlin, Dresden, Kiel and Munich are to be closed. With this move, Deutsche Bahn, which holds 76 percent of Clevershuttle’s shares, wants to save money in the corona crisis. Manager Magazin reports, citing corporate sources. The location reduction is expected to cost around 850 employees the job.

It is not the first time that Clevershuttle is reducing the number of locations. The service had already discontinued its services in Hamburg, Stuttgart and Frankfurt am Main in October 2019. In addition to economic causes, the startup at least justified the withdrawal from Stuttgart and Frankfurt at the time with bureaucratic hurdles. According to information from the manager magazine, Clevershuttle is said to have made a loss of almost 100 million euros.

Deutsche Bahn receives government aid – but must also save

Due to the corona crisis, Deutsche Bahn expects a financial gap of EUR 13.5 billion. The federal government wants to support the state-owned company with billions in capital aid. At the same time, the railways are also supposed to save money themselves. However, there should be no job cuts. Railway chief Richard Lutz, Minister of Transport Andreas Scheuer, the railway works council and the railway union EVG agreed on this.

The Federal Audit Office, on the other hand, doubts that the railways really need billions of dollars from the federal government at short notice. The financial control body also doubts that the EU Commission would approve the planned capital aid in its current form. Especially since the money is apparently not only used for local rail operations, but also to finance subsidiaries such as the British Arriva.

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