The claim of one of the largest investors to Uber Travis Kalanick led to conflict between the owners of the project. August 10, 2017, the venture capital firm Benchmark Capital has filed a lawsuit against Uber and a former CEO of the company Travis Kalanick, accusing him of fraud. The plaintiff demands to cancel the decision in 2016 on the extension of the companys Board of Directors from eight to 11 people, and also to remove from it, Kalanick.
After the expansion of the Board of Directors added the place remained vacant, and the right to appoint new people remained the CEO, says Axios. One of the seats had been reserved for himself Kalanick — he exercised that right when he decided to leave the company in mid-June of 2017 after a series of scandals. At Benchmark Capital, said that Kalanick deception pushed through the decision, and the company would never have supported the expansion of the Board of Directors, if they knew about management errors and other issues with Uber.
The investor believes that Kalanick pursues its own selfish goals and wants to appoint to the Board of Directors loyal to itself people, which ultimately would lead to problems for shareholders, employees and drivers of the company. If the court sides with the plaintiff, the Board of Directors will again remain eight people, Kalanick will lose time and most likely will lose the chance to participate in the companys future and return to it. Benchmark Capital is one of the largest owners of Uber, the company owns approximately 13% of all shares of the service and has about 20% of the vote when making the decision.
Kalanick controls about 10% of all shares he owns about 16% of the vote. The next day, August 11, the group of other investors, Uber has opposed the demands of Benchmark Capital, calling them questionable from the point of view of ethics. They are reminded that Benchmark Capital, demanding the resignation of Kalanick after the scandals.
Investors said that the lawsuit could further harm the reputation of Uber, as well as to prevent the search for a new CEO and raising funds (group published by CNBC). In their opinion, Benchmark Capital needs to sell most of its stake and withdraw from the Board of Directors. Benchmark Capital invested $27 million in Uber, now the companys share is worth $8.4 billion. You are trying to sue the founder of the company, the company itself and its employees that provided this growth. We ask you to think about the lives of these employees and give them the chance quietly to continue to develop this company.
Your actions that do not contribute. In light of the lawsuit, we request Benchmark Capital to remove its representative from the Board of Directors Uber and deprive themselves of the right to participate in the Board of the company. We have investors who are ready to buy your share as soon as you decide to withdraw your claim and sell at least 75% of its shares. The letter says that against Benchmark Capital is ready to act, many investors Uber.
The authors, among them Sherwin pishevar from the Sherpa Capital, Ron Burkl of the Yucaipa Companies and Adam Leber from Maverick, asking supporters to officially confirm its position in the coming days. The representative of Axios Kalanick announced that Benchmark Capital lawsuit “is riddled with false allegations”. According to the former CEO of Uber, the investment company acts in its own interests, which are contrary to the purposes of the service and its employees. Kalanick hopes that the claim will be rejected, said his spokesman.
Uber has officially stated that the company had been disappointed by the disagreement between the shareholders, and asked the parties to the conflict as soon as possible to resolve all disputes. The statement was signed by all members of the Board of Directors Uber with the exception of Benchmark Capital and Kalanick indicates Recode.