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11 Agosto 2017, 01:13 | Dolorita Barahona
One Of Uber's Largest Investors Just Sued Former CEO Travis Kalanick
Along with fraud, Benchmark is also suing for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty.
Though Kalanickresigned as CEO in June, he remains on the company's board. The search for his replacement has deeply divided Uber's board and the company, with a small but vocal faction of employees petitioning for Kalanick'sreturn to an operational role.
The venture capital firm claims Uber's former CEO concealed material information from investors when he created three new board seats in 2016 and gave himself the right to appoint people to those seats.
"It is apparent that Kalanick has attempted to acquire the power to pack the Board to facilitate his desired re-appointment as Uber's CEO", the suit alleges. But Kalanick has reportedly been telling friends that he's "Steve Jobs-ing it" and wants to finagle his way back into the CEO position.
This action, Benchmark Capital claims, was taken by Kalanick to protect himself from the repercussions of the numerous black marks against the company that have been accrued in recent years. After a former Uber employee wrote a story detailingsexual harassment and an environment that discriminated against women, former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder oversaw an investigation into the company's culture. Benchmark has about 20% of total Uber's voting power.
Uber declined to comment on the lawsuit. "Kalanick does not have the right to hold any seat on Uber's Board". Benchmark and Kalanick are amongst the largest shareholders.
The examples listed offer a neat summation of the scandals and legal fights that have beset the Silicon Valley giant and links Mr Kalanick to all of them, arguing that he was aware of encroaching trouble but did not disclose that to investors. Reports have already said that the recent brace of scandals and rumors about Uber's culture has made it hard to hire talent, which will make it even more challenging to fill those roles.
Benchmark Capital is attempting to wrest control of Uber from ousted CEO Travis Kalanick.
A spokesman for Travis Kalanick described the lawsuit as "completely baseless" and "riddled with lies", but stopped short of pointing out specific inaccuracies.
The letter, signed by five investors who account for as much as 40 percent of shareholder votes, cited the Waymo trade secrets suit and Uber'sGreyball technology, used to protect drivers from facing fines or arrests by filtering out ride requests from law-enforcement officials.
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