Published: Sun, August 13, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

'Destructive' lawsuit looms over scandal-hit Uber

'Destructive' lawsuit looms over scandal-hit Uber

Benchmark's suit, filed in Delaware Chancery Court, seeks to have Kalanick removed as a director by reversing the board-expansion decision.

Accusing Kalanick of being "selfish" by packing Uber's board with "loyal allies", Benchmark alleges that the ousted CEO broke the law by trying to pave the way for his own return.

Benchmark's suit comes on the heels of another lawsuit from Waymo, Google's self-driving vehicle unit, which had also sued Uber.

A representative for Kalanick said the lawsuit is "completely without merit and riddled with lies and false allegations".

Kalanick's control over those three seats has allowed him to stay so actively involved at Uber that it's been hard for the company to find a new CEO, Benchmark claims in its suit. The other two are still unfilled.

Benchmark wants to remove the three additional seats and return the board to eight members. Uber, on the other hand, expressed its disappointment in Benchmark, citing the possibility of an argument between its investors.

The letter's lead author Pishevar, a close friend of Kalanick, griped that Gurley filed the Thursday lawsuit "on a few hours' notice and within weeks of a personal tragedy, under threat of public scandal".

'Travis will continue to act in the interests of Uber and all of its stakeholders and is confident that these entirely baseless claims will be rejected, ' the statement said.

"We would request that Benchmark help the company realize its full potential by allowing the necessary work to be done in the board room rather than the courtroom", the disgruntled investors wrote.

Whether someone is in Manila or some other part of the world, they may have encountered unpleasant news regarding the company that lets them ride more conveniently: Uber.

Kalanick announced an indefinite leave of absence in June, following the recommendation of an independent report from former attorney general Eric Holder regarding the company's culture.

When Kalanick resigned, he took one of the three new board seats, while giving up the one that's reserved for the company's CEO, according to the suit.

Kalanick is yet to respond to this allegation but the charges against him are many varied.

"It's time for a new chapter, and the right leader for our next phase of growth", he told employees.

But while he is no longer chief executive, he remains on Uber's board and has the power to appoint three members. Graves said he plans to focus on his role as a member of the board, which includes choosing a new CEO. He will still remain on the board.

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