Date
26 March 2017
Uber has been battered with multiple controversies over the past several weeks that have put the company's future into question. Photo: Reuters
Uber has been battered with multiple controversies over the past several weeks that have put the company's future into question. Photo: Reuters

Uber president quits amid turmoil

Uber Technologies Inc. is reeling from the departure of company president Jeff Jones, a marketing expert hired to help bolster its reputation.

Jones quit less than seven months after joining the San Francisco company, Reuters reports, citing an Uber spokesman.

The reasons for his departure were not immediately clear, but Jones’ role was put into question after Uber earlier this month launched a search for a chief operating officer to help run the company alongside chief executive Travis Kalanick.

Jones had been performing some of those COO responsibilities. He joined Uber from Target, where he was chief marketing officer and is credited with modernizing the retailer’s brand.

“We want to thank Jeff for his six months at the company and wish him all the best,” an Uber spokesman said in an e-mailed statement.

Jones is the latest in a string of high-level executives to leave the company.

Last month, engineering executive Amit Singhal was asked to resign amid a sexual harassment allegation stemming from his previous job at Alphabet Inc’s Google. Earlier this month, Ed Baker, Uber’s vice president of product and growth, and Charlie Miller, Uber’s top security researcher, resigned.

Technology news site Recode first reported Jones’ departure on Sunday.

Uber, while it has long had a reputation as an aggressive and unapologetic start-up, has been battered with multiple controversies over the past several weeks that have put Kalanick’s leadership capabilities and the company’s future into question.

A former Uber employee last month published a blog post describing a workplace where sexual harassment was common and went unpunished. The blog post prompted an internal investigation that is being led by former US Attorney General Eric Holder.

Then, Bloomberg released a video that showed Kalanick berating an Uber driver who had complained about cuts to rates paid to drivers, resulting in Kalanick making a public apology.

And earlier this month Uber confirmed it had used a secret technology program dubbed “Greyball,” which effectively changes the app view for specific riders, to evade authorities in cities where the service has been banned. Uber has since prohibited the use of Greyball to target local regulators.

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CG/RA

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