- Dan Primack
- Aug 17
Travis Kalanick hits back at Benchmark in Uber lawsuit reply
Sam Jayne / Axios
Former Uber CEO on Thursday filed his reply to a fraud lawsuit brought against him last week by venture capital firm Benchmark, which was designed to get him removed from the embattled company's board of directors. Here are the highlights, per a filing in Delaware Chancery Court:
Urgency: Benchmark has asked for a preliminary injunction that would effectively kick Kalanick off the company's board and out of its CEO search process. Kalanick argues that the dispute should be settled by an arbiter but, if it must be dealt with in court, then there is no need for a preliminary injunction because the current board is managing the business just fine: "There is no uncertainty regarding the validity of actions approved by a majority of the board. Nor is there any other independent, impending source of potential harm to the company or its stockholders."
Under duress: Kalanick alleges that Benchmark took advantage of him while he was in mourning for his mother, who was killed in a tragic boating accident that also seriously injured his father. "It executed its plan at the most shameful of times: immediately after Kalanick experienced a horrible personal tragedy."
Deal dispute: Benchmark has argued that Kalanick agreed upon resignation to give up three unfilled board seats that he controlled, but later refused to codify such changes. Kalanick contends that he had agreed that the seats would remain, with him receiving one and the entire board approving the two other directors. Either way, however, Kalanick seems to believe the agreement he signed the night of his resignation is invalid as it was not co-signed by any other party to the company's voting agreement, nor did he receive any consideration for giving up sole appointment power over those seats.
Prove it: Kalanick says that Benchmark's fraud claims rely heavily upon "information and belief," rather than explicitly detailing fraudulent statements.
Below is the full reply: