The wheels finally fell off.
Kalanick’s exit came after a shareholder revolt reportedly made it untenable for him to stay at the company he founded in 2009. Investors called for the change in leadership in a letter that was delivered to Kalanick in Chicago and obtained by Times reporter Mike Isaac.
“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,” Kalanick said in a statement to the Times.
He will remain on Uber’s board of directors. In a statement to TechCrunch, the board called Kalanick’s decision “a sign of his devotion and love for Uber.”
The embattled former CEO built the ride-hailing company from a scrappy startup into a taxi-killing behemoth valued at nearly $70 billion. But as today’s news demonstrates, valuation only gets you so far.
Uber suffered several turbulent months in early 2017. The rise of #DeleteUber in response to the company appearing to break a taxi picket line in early February drove more than 200,000 people to delete the Uber App from their phone in protest, and was only quelled once Kalanick announced he’d resign from President Donald Trump’s economic advisory council.
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