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Uber CEO Travis Kalanick Resigns

Kalanick 2What will I write about now? Five large Uber investors have forced CEO and Founder Travis Kalanick to resign. He had already taken a leave following the latest embarrassing news: a negative report from outside counsel and a "sex letter" to employees from 2013. His mother died in a boating accident recently, which may have made it easier for the board to convince Kalanick to go—or maybe he realized it was finally time.

In a statement to The New York Times (not yet posted on the website), Uber's board said Kalanick "always put Uber first." That's true, and possibly to the company's own detriment. Employees, drivers, and shareholders seemed to take a back seat (sorry) to Kalanick's ambitions.

Kalanick said in a statement, "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."

An Uber spokesperson told Reuters that Kalanick's decision "was a surprise to everyone." First, it doesn't sound as though it was his decision. Second, really?

Image source.

Discussion:

  • Is this the right time for Kalanick to go? How do you think the board fits into the decision? Why did shareholders instead of board members force his resignation?
  • We don't see a full statement yet from the board. What should the company say?