San Francisco-based ride-sharing giant Uber may soon be offering small loans to its drivers, as the company reportedly sent an in-app survey to its drivers this week on the issue. 

Uber drivers were asked this week whether they had received loans of $1,000 or less in the last three years, with the survey saying it is looking at offering "a new financial product" to help drivers in a "time of need."

Uber has yet to comment on the survey and it's not clear if or when the service will be available for drivers. 

Although the company previously offered cash advance programs to drivers in California and Michigan, the move could be controversial. Consumer advocates compared the cash advance programs to payday loan schemes, which are known for their notoriously high-interest rates and strict terms for borrowers.

Uber recently has been expanding into the fintech industry, with the company launching a fintech outpost in New York that could exceed 100 employees. The company already has a digital wallet called Uber Cash which could be used by consumers to purchase rides or food delivery.

Although the company continues to expand abroad, the firm has struggled to be profitable and lost $5.2 billion in the second quarter of 2019. The company also had mixed results following its initial public offering earlier this year. 

Some investors are concerned about the company's direction from the top. Uber's former CEO Travis Kalanick had pioneered a "growth-at-all-costs" mentality at the company, which might have led to its popularity. Kalanick resigned in 2017 due to company scandals and was replaced by Dana Khosrowshahi, the former CEO of Expedia.