AUGUSTA, Maine — Uber, Lyft and Airbnb have all announced they are leaving Maine, saying the state is too expensive for them to operate.
Uber, which had previously said it was leaving the state, said Thursday it will lay off 30 percent of its workforce in Maine, and Lyft and its parent company, Nextel, announced they will layoff 50 percent of their workforce.
The companies, which have been in the news for their struggles to attract drivers, said they will all seek other jobs outside of Maine, including the one that’s available to them in the rest of the United States.
“We are leaving because of the cost of living, the lack of jobs, and the lack in opportunities,” Lyft’s chief operating officer John Zimmer said.
“The only way we can make this happen is to find other ways to grow the business, to find more opportunities outside of the state.”
Lyft said its employees will be paid an average of $14 per hour, up from $13, and Nextel said it will pay its employees $13 per hour.
Uber has also announced it will offer its drivers a $2 hourly wage, up $1 from the current rate.
Nextel said its total workforce would shrink to 25,000 employees, down from 30,000.
Uber said it is also laying off its full-time drivers in Maine.
The company said it would lay off 50 percent in the state.
Uber did not respond to a request for comment.
Uber and Lyft are all headquartered in San Francisco, where the companies said they plan to build a larger presence.
The two companies have also announced plans to hire as many as 2,000 workers to be based in the Portland metro area, where they have invested billions of dollars.
Uber, which has more than 400,000 drivers in the United State, has been in Maine for years.
Last month, the company said the state would have a better tax base than San Francisco.