19:50, August 30 440 0 law.com

2017-08-30 19:50:04
Action to Oust Kalanick From Uber Board Sent to Arbitrator

Uber headquarters, located at 1455 Market St. in San Francisco, CA.

A Delaware Court of Chancery judge on Wednesday sent to an arbitrator Benchmark Capital Partners’ lawsuit seeking to oust Travis Kalanick from Uber Technologies Inc.’s board, avoiding for the moment a public battle over the former CEO’s acquisition of three new board seats.

Vice Chancellor Sam Glasscock III issued the “rough-and-ready” ruling following more than an hour of sometimes heated argument in his Georgetown courtroom. Speaking from the bench, Glasscock said that a 2016 voting agreement between Kalanick and Uber’s other directors contained a clear provision that prevented the judge from granting Benchmark’s request to fast track the case in state court.

Glasscock did, however, retain jurisdiction over the case, pending the possibility of further challenges from Uber shareholders who were not a party to the contract.

“It seems to me that I have no choice but to send the matter of arbitrability to the arbitrator,” Glasscock said.

Kalanick, who resigned as CEO in June amid pressure from Benchmark and other investors, has criticized the suit as a “public and personal” attack. On Wednesday, a Kalanick spokesman said he was vindicated by the decision.

“Mr. Kalanick is pleased that the court has ruled in his favor today and remains confident that he will prevail in the arbitration process,” the spokesman said. “Benchmark’s false allegations are wholly without merit and have unnecessarily harmed Uber and its shareholders.”