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VC firm, Uber ex-CEO put lawsuit on hold so investment deal can go ahead

VC firm, Uber ex-CEO put lawsuit on hold so investment deal can go aheadEnlarge[1] / SoftBank Group Corp Chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son attends a news conference in Tokyo, Japan, February 8, 2017. Son has spearheaded the new round of investment in Uber.On Sunday, Uber’s board of directors formalized a new arrangement that enables SoftBank and the Dragoneer Investment Group to purchase at least 14 percent of the ride-hailing startup. The move expands[2] upon negotiations and related moves that took place over a month ago.

Notably, Benchmark, a venture capital firm that had sued former CEO Travis Kalanick won’t pursue its lawsuit[3] for now so that the SoftBank deal can go forward, per the Wall Street Journal[4].

Back in August, Benchmark, which holds about 13 percent of the company’s stock sued[5] former CEO Travis Kalanick in August 2017, accusing him of “gross mismanagement and misconduct” during his tenure at chief executive.

“We’ve entered into an agreement with a consortium led by SoftBank and Dragoneer on a potential investment,” Matt Kallman, an Uber spokesman e-mailed Ars in a statement on Sunday. “We believe this agreement is a strong vote of confidence in Uber’s long-term potential.”

According to Fortune[6], Kalanick, who still controls three board seats, including his own. Part of the new deal includes the fact that the company’s founder must get a majority of the now-17 member board to approve any future changes to who holds those seats. SoftBank did not immediately respond to Ars’ request for comment.

SoftBank has been making notable acquisitions and deals amongst American tech companies recently. Earlier this year it acquired[7] Boston Dynamics, the robot company that Google had once nabbed. In 2016, SoftBank snapped[8] up ARM Holdings, the British firm behind the popular low-powered microchips.

Way back in October 2012, SoftBank purchased[9] Sprint, a move spearheaded by its CEO, Masayoshi Son.


  1. ^ Enlarge (cdn.arstechnica.net)
  2. ^ expands (arstechnica.com)
  3. ^ lawsuit (arstechnica.com)
  4. ^ Wall Street Journal (archive.is)
  5. ^ sued (www.documentcloud.org)
  6. ^ Fortune (fortune.com)
  7. ^ acquired (arstechnica.com)
  8. ^ snapped (arstechnica.com)
  9. ^ purchased (arstechnica.com)

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