Uber paid for meals, a two nights' stay at the swanky Hotel Nikko and gave them each $500 in ride credits to get around town.

That effort includes convincing the company's more than 3 million drivers that the privately held company, which investors say is worth $72 billion, really does care about them.

They've staged protests over pay, filed lawsuits for being classified as contract workers instead of employees, and switched to rival Lyft.

That's added up to abysmal driver retention over the past couple of years.

Uber last March pledged to "overhaul" its relationship with drivers -- well before Khosrowshahi joined the company in August.

In June, it instituted a program called "180 days of change," adding 38 new features -- including tipping and 24-hour phone support -- aimed at helping drivers.

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