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More Uber internal problems surface in lawsuit

More Uber internal problems surface in lawsuit

Benchmark is suing Kalanick over allegations of "fraud, breaches of fiduciary duty, and breaches of contractual obligation", according to a complaint filed in Delaware Chancery Court.

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".

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

A spokesperson for Mr Kalanick said the legal action is "completely without merit and riddled with lies and false allegations". The suit calls for an invalidation of Kalanick's position on the board. The other two are still unfilled. Benchmark says it never would have voted to allow for those extra seats had it known about Kalanick's "gross mismanagement and other misconduct at Uber".

The shareholders said they had investors ready to acquire the shares "as soon as we receive communication from Benchmark that they are willing to withdraw their lawsuit and sell a minimum of 75 per cent of their holdings". Control of those seats is determined in part by the voting rights that go with Uber's common stock, not its preferred shares, which is what Benchmark primarily holds, according to the lawsuit. "Benchmark's lawsuit is a transparent attempt to deprive Travis Kalanick of his rights as a founder and shareholder and to silence his voice regarding the management of the company he helped create".




Pishevar did not immediately respond to Ars' request for comment. Meanwhile, other Uber investor did not appreciate Benchmark Capital's move to sue Travis.

The investors are opening a new front in a highly unusual public battle for Silicon Valley, illustrating the difficulty Uber is having recovering from a series of scandals.

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.

Benchmark, in its lawsuit filed on Thursday, is seeking to force Kalanick off the board, and accuses him of concealing a range of misdeeds and scheming to retain power at the company even after he was forced to resign as chief executive in June. Eight days later, under pressure from the board, he resigned. "We are committed to hiring a new world-class CEO to lead Uber". Graves said he plans to focus on his role as a member of the board, which includes choosing a new CEO.


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