Uber’s Head Of Corporate Development Resigns Over Sexual Misconduct

More than a year after Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick resigned as Uber CEO following a string of sexual harassment scandals and general chaos, on Monday afternoon Uber’s head of corporate development, Cameron Poetzscher, resigned shortly after a Wall Street Journal article revealed more allegations of prior sexual misconduct in the office. An Uber spokesman on Monday confirmed Poetzscher’s departure to the WSJ.

Poetzscher’s resignation is effective immediately with the Journal reporting that Uber’s new CFO Nelson Chai is assuming Poetzscher’s responsibilities while the firm seeks a replacement. “We thank Cam for his four and a half years of service to Uber,” a spokesman said.

Last month, the WSJ reported that following complaints, an investigation by an outside law firm found the former biz dev head had engaged in “a pattern of making sexually suggestive comments about other co-workers, including describing which ones he would like to sleep with.”

In addition to making suggestive comments, Poetzscher had a consensual affair with a colleague, violating company policy because he took part in her annual review, the Journal reported, based on unnamed people said to be familiar with the investigation.

After the law firm reported on Poetzscher’s behavior, some members of an Uber internal panel called for his head, the WSJ reported. But Uber’s leadership elected to give him a formal warning, cut his annual bonus and put him through sensitivity training, according to the paper.

Then, after a number of months, Poetzscher was promoted to acting head of finance, reporting to Khosrowshahi, according to the paper. The company has since hired a new chief financial officer who is now Poetzscher’s superior.

Poetzscher was a trusted adviser to Kalanick’s CEO replacement Dara Khosrowshahi, and oversaw Uber’s biggest deals, like the $7.7 billion investment from SoftBank as well as the sale of its Southeast Asia operations.

In November 2017, Uber gave Mr. Poetzscher a formal warning, reduced his annual bonus, and mandated sensitivity coaching, according to the people.

In a statement to the Journal for that September article,  Poetzscher said he was “rightfully disciplined” by Uber. “I deeply regret and have learned from this error in judgment, and I am proud of how hard everyone at Uber is working to ensure our company is a positive, respectful, and inspiring place to work,” he said at the time.

An Uber spokesman told the Journal that Poetzscher’s behavior at the company had been fully investigated by the outside law firm, and that “appropriate actions were taken as a result.”

A few weeks later Poetzscher tendered his resignation.

In a separate matter, in 2015, a live-in nanny sued Cameron Poetzscher and his wife, Airbnb head of global operations Varsha Rao, claiming the power coupled sexually-harassed and under paid her for years while working at their $7 million home. Julieta Yang, 45, sued Poetzscher and his wife, alleging that she was the victim of sexual advances and innuendos when looking after their two children.

The Filipino mother-of-three, who moved from Singapore to continue working with the couple in 2013, has also suggested Poetzscher exposed himself, masturbated and asked for ‘handwork’ at the luxury San Francisco property.

According to the lawsuit, Uber’s head of corporate development repeatedly asked the housekeeper to rub his back with lotion and offered her extra cash for ‘massage services’.

The document added that Poetzscher, a former investment banker at Goldman Sachs, allegedly wanted to keep his alleged lewd behavior secret from his wife, while Yang cooked, cleaned and did chores for a flat weekly rate of $450.

Poetzscher and settled with the nanny later that year, with the couple not admitting to any wrongdoing, court records show.

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