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Benchmark Capital just accused former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick of fraud

Benchmark Capital just accused former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick of fraud
[Photo: Mike Coppola/VF17/Getty Images for VF]

The dumpster fire at Uber HQ rages on. Benchmark Capital, one of the company’s investors with members on its board, has filed a lawsuit against former CEO Travis Kalanick accusing him of fraud, violation of his fiduciary duty, and breach of contract. Uber is listed as a nominal defendant in the filing.

The lawsuit, uncovered by Dan Primack at Axios, says Kalanick attempted to ensure his return to Uber’s upper ranks by stocking the board with allies. (Last June, Kalanick asked the board to add three new seats of his choosing. Kalanick has since taken one of those seats after he left his CEO post. Two are still empty). Benchmark says it never would have agreed to this ask had it known about Kalanick’s gross mismanagement of Uber. The complaint references Kalanick’s relationship to the culture of gender discrimination at Uber, the mishandling of a rider’s rape records, and the acquisition of a self-driving car company that “allegedly harbored trade secrets stolen from a competitor.” All this is to Uber’s detriment, says Benchmark.

The firm is seeking to have the agreement related to those three seats voided, returning the board to eight members and effectively kicking Kalanick off the board.RR