More Woes for Uber: Exec Resigns, Investor Sues Ousted CEO

Uber shareholders revolt against venture firm after surprise lawsuit

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has been accused by one of his company's biggest investors of dishonoring the terms of his resignation.

The suit, which calls on a DE court to bar Kalanick from tinkering with the Uber board in any way, argued that Kalanick saw his resignation as unavoidable and finagled to "pack the board with loyal allies in an attempt to insulate his prior conduct from scrutiny and clear the path for his eventual return as CEO".

Benchmark claims that Kalanick is attempting to fill Uber's board with "loyal allies" to help him return to his former position.

The lawsuit says Kalanick stacked the board to pave a "clear the path for his eventual return as CEO - all to the detriment of Uber's stockholders, employees, driver-partners, and customers".

The suit revolves around a decision previous year to increase Uber's board from eight seats to 11, with those additional three seats in the sole control of Kalanick. In fact, it was during such an investigation of harassment cases that Kalanick found himself stepping down as CEO. The other two seats are still vacant, notes TechCrunch.

A group of Uber shareholders is calling for venture-capital firm Benchmark Capital to be removed from Uber's board.

A representative for Uber declined to comment on the lawsuit.

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While including Uber, the company, in the lawsuit seems a mere formality, the claims stated therein will undoubtedly hurt Uber too and not just Kalanick because it details past actions performed while Kalanick was still the CEO.

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

"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.

Uber has dealt with several problems this year, including issues of gender bias and harassment in the workplace and a trade-secret-theft lawsuit from self-driving vehicle company Waymo.

Travis Kalanick is accused of not honouring the agreements he reached with other investors following his ouster from the post of the chief executive. Uber has vowed to implement the recommendations prepared for it by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

Kalanick is yet to respond to this allegation but the charges against him are many varied. The firm says that Kalanick is trying to manipulate the board to get the maximum advantage for himself. "We are committed to hiring a new world-class CEO to lead Uber".

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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