Travis Kalanick may temporarily step down from his role of Uber Chief Executive Officer, with the company’s board set to discuss such a measure later today, one source with knowledge of the matter said on Sunday. The possible management change is said to be part of a broader set of internal policy and leadership shifts at Uber that the ride-hailing giant is trying to implement following numerous scandals that saw the firm garner a lot of negative publicity in recent months due to a number of legal issues and concerns regarding its practices and general corporate culture. The San Francisco, California-based company reportedly hired an independent law firm Covington & Burling to investigate its internal practices, with its legal experts being set to present their findings at a meeting later today.
While Uber hasn’t publicized the upcoming meeting with Covington & Burling’s attorneys, the conclusions of the company’s investigation are said to be announced to the public no later than Tuesday, two people close to the ride-hailing giant have said. Uber’s board is expected to discuss Kalanick’s future with the company at their Sunday meeting, though it’s currently unclear whether Covington & Burling will suggest the firm’s top executive takes some time off from work due to the recent scandals and a personal tragedy, with his mother having died and his father severely injured in a boating accident that occurred in late May. The ultimate decision on whether Kalanick takes a leave of absence will fall on him as the 40-year-old still has voting control of Uber, despite the company’s venture capital-backed valuation of almost $70 billion and the fact that it’s yet to post any profit.
Provided that Kalanick temporarily steps down from his role of Uber CEO, the entrepreneur might return to the company in a more limited role, or reassume his executive duties with more oversight, one source said. The firm’s board has been looking for a Chief Operating Officer to help Kalanick lead the company for three months now but has yet to find a suitable candidate. An update on Uber’s internal affairs and efforts to implement significant policy and management changes is expected to follow in the coming days.