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Ex-Uber CEO Travis Kalanick sued for fraud by major investor

Tyrone Stewart

Travis KalanickFormer Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is being sued by one of the company’s biggest investors for fraud, breaches of trust, and breaches of contractual obligations to “increase his power over Uber for his own selfish ends”.

The complaint filed at the Delaware Chancery Court by Benchmark Capital, which owns 13 per cent of the ride sharing firm and pushed for Kalanick’s resignation in June, relates to Kalanick obtaining control of three new seats on Uber’s board through misinformation last year. It is one of these seats that the former CEO now lays claim to on the board, as he gave himself absolute right over which directors make up the expanded 11-person board.

Benchmark claims that it and other investors were unaware of Kalanick’s “gross mismanagement and other misconduct at Uber” at the time of the vote to give Kalanick three new seats and stresses that the vote no longer has bearing because this.

The filing brings up Kalanick’s failings including the harbouring of “trade secrets stolen from a competitor; an Uber executive’s alleged theft of medical records of a woman who was raped by her Uber driver in India; a pervasive culture of gender discrimination and sexual harassment that ultimately prompted an investigation by former US Attorney General Eric Holder; and a host of other inappropriate and unethical directives issued by Kalanick.”

Due to the revelations since the vote took place, and Kalanick’s subsequent resignation, Benchmark wants to see the former CEO removed from the board, along with his extra seats, as well as removing Kalanick from any involvement at all in the company – removing him from the race to one day reclaim his CEO spot.  

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