Sometimes it’s impossible to separate the company from the founder. Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook. Steve Jobs and Apple. Elon Musk and Tesla. And for better or worse… It’s hard to see anyone thinking about Uber without quickly thinking about Travis Kalanick.
But...that’s not always a good thing for the company That’s Eric Newcomer. Kalanick has become a lightning rod of controversy in the tech industry over the past few years. axe body spray sprayed into a suit until it became sentient.
And right now, Kalanick and Uber, his 69 billion dollar brainchild, are at an inflection point. This is the story of how Travis Kalanick built one of the most successful -- and controversial -- tech companies in the world.
Travis Kalanick was born in 1976 in Los Angeles. He attended UCLA to study engineering, and he also started his first company an online file exchange service called Scour, with some of his UCLA classmates.
Months before graduating, he dropped out to work on scour full time Scour ended up getting sued by almost every major entertainment label to the tune of 250 billion dollars. --and the company went into Chapter 11 Undaunted, Kalanick started another company called Redwoosh, another peer-to-peer file sharing service.
the company akamai bought it for $19 million which was obviously a nice success for travis I think from his perspective, he never built the empire that he’d hoped to. Flush with cash after selling Redswoosh, Kalanick was looking to make his next move.
The story goes he was in Paris with his friend Garrett Camp, who had founded the social site StumbleUpon, and they started talking about... The idea of calling a car with the push of a button. He started Uber in 2009, and it was originally thought of as a luxury service.
And it was a black car business. It wasn't this sort of peer to peer, ride-sharing, it was nice black cars, and this was meant to get a nice car when they wanted and get a nice car But when its main competitor entered the marketplace in 2012, Uber had to pivot.
Once it was obvious that Lyft was going to be successful and be able to do this peer-to-peer ride-sharing business, he was savvy enough to launch his own products. So Kalanick, well known as an extremely strong salesperson, raised a huge amount of money… They raised you know hundreds of millions from a round of Google Ventures and TPG.
And created Uber X. Which was really the defining product. Which lets people sign up with basically the car they have without having to have been this legacy black car worker. Almost singlehandedly, Kalanick created what we now call “the gig economy.
” Paying independent contractors through an app for a service, whether it’s cleaning a home, delivering food, or being a chauffeur. Even though the company is 12,000 people now, he very much has a reputation for trying to cut through bureaucracy and keep it like a start-up.
But Kalanick has also been criticized for a number of incidents. In a 2014 GQ profile of Kalanick he referred to his company as “Boob-er” because of his increased success with women AS the CEO of Uber.
Then the PR missteps kept coming. In just the first 3 months of 2017 alone there were enough gaffes, leaked videos, and negative headlines that could easily sink a company. There’s this constant clamor for him to grow up.
The company is sort of in the middle of trying to decide whether he can really be their identity both publicly and internally. So whether Kalanick changes Uber's culture or hires a COOto do it for him, he's not going anywhere He'll either steer uber's ship back on course, or go down with it.
sometimes it's impossible to separate the company from the founder Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook Steve Jobs and Apple Elon Musk and Tesla for better or worse it's hard to see anyone thinking about you were without quickly thinking about you know Travis kalanick but that's not always a good thing for the company that's our new company and cover ember and startups for uber Callen ik has become a lightning rod of controversy in the tech industry over the past three years Seth Meyers said he's what happens when you wear act body spray into a suit until it became sentient and after a series of scandals Callen dick is now going on a leave of absence from the 69 billion dollar brainchild this is the story of how Travis kalanick built one of the most successful and controversial tech companies in the world Travis kalanick was born in 1976 in Los Angeles he attended UCLA to study engineering and he also started his first company an online file exchange service called scour with some of his UCLA classmates months before graduating he dropped out to work on scour full-time I was back in sort of the Napster days and it was sort of a failed effort Scour ended up getting sued by almost every major entertainment label to the tune of 250 billion dollars and the company went into chapter 11 undaunted he started another company called Reds Rouge which was another peer-to-peer file-sharing service the company Acme bought it for 19 million which was obviously a nice success for Travis but I think from his perspective he didn't build the Empire that he'd hoped to flush with cash after selling red swooosh Callen ik was looking to make his next move the story goes he was in Paris with his friend Garrett camp who had founded social sites StumbleUpon and they started talking about this idea of calling a car with a push of a button he started uber originally called uber cab in 2009 and was first thought of as a luxury service it was a black car business in the beginning it wasn't that sort of peer-to-peer ride-sharing it was you know nice black cars and this was meant to get a car whenever they wanted to get a nice card but when ad main competitor entered the marketplace in 2012 uber once it was obvious that lift was going to be successful and be able to do this peer-to-peer ride-sharing business he was savvy enough to launch his own products so Callen ik well-known as an extremely strong salesperson raised a huge amount of money they raised you know hundreds of millions around from Google Ventures in TPG and created uber X which is really the defining product which lets people sign up with basically the car they have without having to have Bendis legacy black car worker almost single-handedly calendar created what we now call the gig economy paying independent contractors through an app for a service whether it's cleaning a home delivering food or being a chauffeur even though the company is twelve thousand people now you very much has a reputation for trying to sort of cut through bureaucracy and keep it like a start-up mcallen dick has also been criticized for a number of incidents the Boomer incident comes up sort of so often in a 2014 GQ profile of Callen ik he referred to his company as uber because it has increased success with women as the CEO of uber then the PR missteps kept coming in just the first three months of 2017 alone there were enough gaps leaked videos and negative headlines that could easily think of a lane everything like in Outlook there's this constant clamor for him to grow up the company is sort of in the middle of trying to decide whether he can really be their identity both publicly and internally in February of 2017 the board hired former attorney General Eric Holder to investigate the company following a bombshell blog post from a former uber employee accusing the company of systemic sexual misconduct several days after uber released the 13 page report Callen dick announced he would be taking a leave of absence so while the question used to be who will Cal anak hire SS number two the question now is how will the company successfully navigate while he is away you