A familiar sight in the world of food delivery services – drivers taking to the streets to protest their working conditions. This time, it’s the turn of Finnish company Wolt to face accusations of unfair treatment. According to a detailed report from the business magazine Capital, Wolt has cheated its riders out of several hundred thousand euros by working with a dubious subcontractor who has failed to pay workers.
The subcontractor, known as “Mobile World”, has been accused of failing to pay 120 Wolt employees between November 2022 and January 2023. Many of these workers, who primarily hail from Pakistan, India, and Turkey, were employed without proper contracts. When Wolt employees called for a protest on social media, they were highlighting the issue of exploitative subcontractor systems and calling for permanent jobs.
Capital has confronted the operator of “Mobile World” with these allegations, but the company denies any involvement with Wolt or any unpaid workers. Wolt, for its part, denies that any wages have gone unpaid and claims that subcontractors were only used temporarily to hire riders. However, due to “obvious irregularities,” the use of personnel service providers was stopped in January 2023.
Wolt admits that there were 29 cases of unpaid workers, but it remains unclear who is responsible for these employees of the subcontractors. In response to the allegations, Wolt has stated that it is examining how it can support those affected.
These protests are not unique to Germany. In recent days, similar events have occurred in Athens and Tbilisi, where issues of subcontracting and fair wages were raised. Meanwhile, in Prague, hundreds of drivers took to the streets in February to protest their working conditions.