Uber CEO resigns from ride-sharing startup

Travis Kalanick, CEO of the global ridesharing service Uber. (Pic: File, AFP)
Travis Kalanick, CEO of the global ridesharing service Uber. (Pic: File, AFP)

San Francisco - Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has resigned, capping a series of controversies that have rocked the world’s largest privately backed startup.

The company confirmed Kalanick’s departure from the top executive’s role Tuesday, after the New York Times reported major backers including Benchmark Capital demanded he resign. Kalanick will remain on the board of directors, the newspaper said.

While Uber has become the world’s most valuable startup, it’s been dogged by drama including allegations of sexual harassment and the use of software to bypass regulators.

The ouster of the man who founded Uber in 2009 comes after a series of controversies shone a light on problems with the famously aggressive startup’s culture and governance.

As Uber’s public face, Kalanick has embodied the startup’s success. Earlier this month, he told staff of plans for a leave of absence, leaving the company to be run by a management committee. Despite recent turmoil, Uber’s business is growing. Revenue increased to $3.4bn in the first quarter, while losses narrowed - though they remain substantial at $708m.

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