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Tuesday Ticker: August 17, 2021

Toronto, Ontario —Uber faces a new Ontario class action suit, Boyd reports 44.4 percent higher sales numbers for Q2 2021 and ABCDall in this week’s edition of the Collision Repair mag Tuesday Ticker.

Uber caught in class action

Ontario’s Superior Court of Justice has certified a class-action lawsuit against Uber, which furthers a fight for the platform’s drivers and food deliverers to be recognized as employees as opposed to independent contractors.

The class action stems from a court filing made by Samfiru Tumarkin LLP and its client David Heller, an Uber courier, in 2017. The firm argues that Uber’s workers should be entitled to minimum wage, vacation pay and other protections as they see the definition of “employees” under Ontario’s Employment Standards Act.

“Uber has complete control over these drivers,” said lawyer Samara Belitzsky, who works in Samfiru Tumarkin LLP’s Ottawa office.

Uber has refused to recognize couriers and drivers as employees in the past, instead likening its workers to independent contractors, given they have the flexibility to drive and deliver as little or as much as they desire.

If the class action results in a driver/courier win, Belitzsky said it could be a “landmark decision.”

“There’s nothing like it in Canada. It will be a first for sure,” she said.

Uber still has a chance to appeal the case, and said it would “review the ruling more closely in the coming days.”

“We remain focused on creating a better future for app-based workers that provides the flexibility and independence they want, with the benefits and protections they deserve.”

Getting better at Boyd

Boyd Group Services reported its second-quarter financial results last week, with 44.4 percent higher sales and same-store increases of 34.5 percent compared to 2020.

“Although still estimated to be below pre-pandemic levels, demand for collision repair accelerated meaningfully in most U.S. markets, as the second quarter of 2021 progressed, in stark contrast with the second quarter of 2020,” wrote Boyd Group in its accompanying press release.

The Winnipeg, Manitoba-based company did however note that “same-store increases in Canada were much lower than same-store sale increases in the U.S.”

South of the border, Boyd group added 39 new locations throughout Q2—35 of which previously operated as Collision Works facilities in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri.

“Looking to the balance of 2021 and beyond, we continue to be confident that we will maintain progress toward our long-term growth targets and operational plans,” O’Day said.

Toyota Canada plays it cool

While Canadian new vehicle sale numbers dipped 5.7 percent during July 2021, marking either average-or-below results for most automakers, Toyota Canada touted record sales for the month with 23,845 vehicles sold.

The Canadian-made RAV4 crossover marked the OEM’s bestselling vehicle with 6,702 new units sold. The Highlander marked 2,070 sales, marking another make record.

Overall, 155,657 new vehicles were sold in Canada during July 2021.

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