Travis Kalanick lashes back at major Uber investor in new filing

The Uber logo is seen on a screen in Singapore

Travis Kalanick, the former CEO of Uber, says a lawsuit filed by one of the startup's early investors is a "public and personal attack" without merit.

Venture capital firm Benchmark Capital, claims it owns 13 per cent of Uber with 20 per cent of the voting power.

Benchmark Capital is suing Kalanick to force him off the board, citing fraud and deception.

Uber's board (excluding Kalanick and Benchmark) has issued a statement regarding the lawsuit saying that it was "disappointed" that Benchmark was taking action, while a vocal group of investors has also called for Benchmark to sell of its shares and remove itself from the board, calling its actions "ethically dubious and, critically, value-destructive rather than value enhancing". Kalanick stressed that the firm was well aware of and even agreed to add three additional seats after Saudi's Public Investment Fund put $3.5 billion into the company in June 2016.

Yesterday, Kalanick's legal team filed documents positing that Benchmark's claims are subject to mandatory arbitration, and that the Delaware Chancery Court, where the complaint was filed, doesn't have the jurisdiction to settle them. However, this case has surprised the venture capital community and made a separated Uber board and tensions among shareholders, out of many were criticizing Benchmark for suing.

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"The search for a new CEO started over 50 days ago".

"Indeed, in the 14 months since the challenged amendments were signed, Benchmark never suggested that the amendments were 'fraudulently induced, ' or in any way unenforceable", his lawyers wrote, "although all of the events on which it bases its claim of fraud were well known to Benchmark". They already knew about incidents that could be considered "mismanagement" and "misconduct" at the time, including the Waymo lawsuit, Greyball and Uber's unethical investigation of the passenger who was raped by a driver in India.

Kalanick said in the court filing that the lawsuit is part of Benchmark's larger scheme to oust him from the company he helped found, and take away his power.

It said a week-and-a-half after the funeral of Kalanick's mother, two Benchmark partners went to his hotel room and demanded he step down.

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