Travis Kalanick has been on quite the ride these past few years: he founded a Silicon Valley company now valued at nearly $70 billion, and he did it despite being mired in near constant controversy.
But the executive’s immunity to media scrutiny and public criticism may be waning. One of the company’s more recent controversies—the exposing of a toxic corporate culture rife with sexual harassment and other misbehavior—has dragged Kalanick as deep into the mud as he has ever waded.
Uber directors are now considering a temporary leave of absence for the founder, according to sources cited in the New York Times. Kalanick has been leading Uber aggressively since it was founded in 2009, but critics argue that for the company to truly change, that change must start from the top.
Beyond accusations of sexual harassment, Uber is embroiled in a legal battle with Google’s autonomous driving spinoff, Waymo, in addition to a string of other falters, such as a self-driving car incident in San Francisco and another in Arizona, as well as mistreatment of its drivers.