Uber appoints Expedia’s Dara Khosrowshahi as new CEO

Uber Technologies has selected Dara Khosrowshahi, the chief executive of travel company Expedia Inc, as its new CEO, according to two sources with knowledge of the matter.

Dara Khosrowshahi (Credit: The New York Times / Board of Directors)

Reuters reported that Khosrowshahi, 48, would take on the challenge of leading the ride-services company out of a nearly year-long crisis. Jeff Immelt, chairman of GE, and Meg Whitman, CEO of HPE had also been rumoured candidates for the job.

Khosrowshahi is now faced with the daunting task of mending Uber’s image, repairing frayed relations among investors, rebuilding employee morale and creating a profitable business after seven years of losses.

The company’s previous CEO and co-founder, Travis Kalanick, was ousted in June after shareholders representing about 40 percent of the company’s voting power signed a letter asking him to step down amid growing concern over his behaviour and the behaviour of senior managers under him.

The Uber board of directors has been meeting daily and deliberated on its pick for CEO throughout the weekend. A spokeswoman said on Sunday that the board had voted but was declining to disclose its choice publicly until after informing employees.

Reuters reported that an Uber spokesman and an Expedia spokeswoman declined to comment, while Khosrowshahi did not immediately respond to requests for comment through email and on Twitter.

Khosrowshahi, who has run travel company Expedia for 12 years, was not known to the public to be among the top candidates for the job.

Under the Iranian-American’s leadership, Expedia more than doubled its annual revenue since 2012 to nearly $8.8 billion in 2016. The company reported net income of $281.8 million for 2016.

One of Khosrowshahi’s first tasks in his new position will be to fill a number of executive vacancies, such as chief financial officer, chief operating officer and general counsel.

While Kalanick remains on the company’s board, his role in the company going forward remains unclear. He said in a previous statement that he would support the new CEO “to guide Uber into its next phase of growth and ensure its continued success.”


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