UBER CEO resigns amid sexual hara

Uber Founder Travis Kalanick Resigns As CEO Under Investor Pressure

Uber founder and CEO Travis Kalanick has resigned as chief executive of the ride-sharing company. The 40-year-old entrepreneur announced he was stepping down from the firm he founded in 2009 that revolutionized the taxi industry and challenged transportation regulations worldwide.

According to the New York Times, on Tuesday, the newspaper reported that five of Uber’s major investors demanded that the CEO resigns immediately.

Kalanick then announced his resignation in a letter, titled, “Moving Uber Forward.”

“I love Uber more than anything in the world and at this difficult moment in my personal life I have accepted the investors request to step aside so that Uber can go back to building rather than be distracted with another fight.”

The chief executive’s resignation comes after he took a leave of absence in the wake of an investigation into various sexual assault claims that have been made against the ride-sharing company. In an email to staff, Kalanick said he was taking “time off from the day-to-day” and gave no time of end to his widely anticipated hiatus.

The company has been valued at $68 billion and is currently the largest private firm backed by venture capitalists in the world, according to Reuters.

After giving himself time to grieve for his mother, Bonnie, who died in a boating accident on May 26, 2017, Kalanick made his decision. However, the former CEO said he would also use the time away to reflect on his leadership in light of various reports of Uber’s cultural problems, according to the Daily Mail.

Trouble began when an engineer detailed what she said was sexual harassment at the company. The report opened the floodgates for more complaints, which in turn spurred internal investigations.

A report was then created after the ex-attorney general, and a team at Covington and Burling LLP was asked to investigate claims made by a former employee. The claims were made in February of 2017.

In addition to this, two ex-employees also claimed that there were incidents of homophobia and racism, which took place in an environment fostered by Kalanick, according to the Daily Mail.

Travis Kalanick has resigned as Uber's chief executive officer.
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigns following his leave of absence. [Image by Evan Agostini/AP Images]

A list of 10 recommendations was featured in Holder’s report that included tips that could help fix its culture. Some of the suggestions included a ban on alcohol at work parties and staff members having sex with each other.

A Texas resident who was raped by an Uber driver in India filed a lawsuit accusing the company of invading her privacy and defaming her character, according to the Daily Mail. The woman, identified in litigation as “Jane Doe,” had settled an earlier lawsuit with the on-demand ride service stemming from the 2014 sexual assault.

The firing of Eric Alexander brought on a new case filed in San Francisco federal court. Alexander was named as a defendant in the litigation, along with Kalanick and former senior vice president Emil Michael, according to a copy of the court filing posted online by Wigdor law group, which is representing the woman.

UBER CEO resigns after shareholder revolt
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigns from the troubled ride-hailing company. [Image by David Ramos/Getty Images]

This past Wednesday, Uber announced it would be enabling passengers to tip its U.S. drivers with a single tap. Besides the new built-in tipping, Uber is giving drivers an opportunity to make more money in additional ways.

The ride-hailing service is also is reducing the time riders have to cancel a ride to avoid being hit with a $5 fee. The fee for an Uber car’s wait time was reduced from five minutes to two minutes after requesting a driver.

Also, any tip money would not be dispersed to Uber. The San Francisco company will continue to collect part of ride-cancellation fees, as well as charges for waiting times.

The tipping option has long been available in the app of rival on-demand car service, Lyft, will not begin on Tuesday in Seattle, Houston, and Minneapolis. Uber wants it to be in all U.S. cities by the end of July. The other features will take effect in August.

Rachel Holt, a regional general manager in the U.S. and Canada, is currently on the leadership team running Uber while CEO Travis Kalanick was on leave.

She said, “These drivers are our most important partners, but we haven’t done a very good job honoring that partnership.”

The expanded earnings opportunities are the first step in what Uber is billing as “180 days of change” for its U.S. drivers. Holt wouldn’t reveal the rest of the campaign.

[Featured Image by Evan Agostini/AP Images]