Travis Kalanick
Get Travis Kalanick essential facts below. View Videos or join the Travis Kalanick discussion. Add Travis Kalanick to your topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.
Travis Kalanick
Travis Kalanick
Travis Kalanick at DLD Munich 2015 (cropped).jpg
Kalanick at DLD in March 2015
Born Travis Cordell Kalanick
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Residence San Francisco, California, U.S.
Education University of California, Los Angeles (withdrew)
Occupation Internet entrepreneur
Known for Co-founder of Red Swoosh and Uber
Net worth US$7.1 billion (June 2017)[1]
Angie You
Gabi Holzwarth (2014-2016)
Relatives Allisyn Ashley Arm (half-niece)

Travis Cordell Kalanick is an American businessman.

He is the co-founder of the peer-to-peer file sharing company Red Swoosh and the founder of transportation network company Uber.[3][4]

In 2014, he entered the Forbes list of the 400 richest Americans at position 190, with an estimated net worth of US$6.3 billion.[5] In June 2017, he was forced to resign as the CEO of Uber amidst mounting allegations of workplace culture and sexual harassment rampant at Uber, which he was accused of having done little to stop.[6]

Early life

Kalanick grew up in Northridge, California.[7] Kalanick's parents are Bonnie Renée Horowitz Kalanick (née Bloom) and Donald Edward Kalanick. Bonnie, who is Jewish,[8][9][10] worked in retail advertising for the Los Angeles Daily News.[11] Donald, who hails from a Slovakian-Austrian Catholic family whose grandparents emigrated to the United States,[12][8][9][10] was a civil engineer[11] for the city of Los Angeles.[13] Kalanick has two half-sisters, one of whom is actress Allisyn Ashley Arm's mother Anji, and a brother, Cory, who is a firefighter.[13][14]

Kalanick studied computer engineering and business economics University of California, Los Angeles.[7][15][16] While studying at UCLA, Kalanick started his first business, an online file-exchange service called Scour. In 1998, he dropped out of UCLA to work at the start-up full time.[17]


Kalanick speaking at the LeWeb conference in December 2013

Scour (1998-2000)

In 1998, Kalanick, along with Michael Todd and Vince Busam, dropped out of UCLA to help Dan Rodrigues found Scour Inc., a multimedia search engine, and Scour Exchange, a peer-to-peer file sharing service.[18][19][20] In 2000, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) brought a $250 billion[21] lawsuit against Scour, alleging copyright infringement.[22] In September of 2000, Scour filed for bankruptcy to protect itself from the lawsuit.[23]

Red Swoosh (2001-2007)

In 2001, with Michael Todd, Kalanick started a new company called Red Swoosh, another peer-to-peer file-sharing company.[24] Red Swoosh software took advantage of increased bandwidth efficiency on the Internet to allow users to transfer and trade large media files, including music files and videos. The company also got much help from former Scour employees.

Kalanick has an archived blog, Swooshing, where he shares struggles during this time. This included living over 3 years without a salary,[25][26][27] moving into his parents' house in 2001 (which he told the Failcon 2011 audience and commented that he "wasn't getting ladies. It sucked."), owing "$110,000 to the IRS in un-withheld income taxes, which is a white-collar crime that pierces the corporate shell, and it doesn't matter whether you knew or not. If you're an officer of the company you're going to jail," witnessing "all but one of the company's engineers" leaving (who eventually also departed), and moving to Thailand as a cost-saving measure.[21] In 2007, Akamai Technologies acquired the company for $19 million.[28][29][30][31]

Uber (2009-2017)

In 2009, Kalanick joined Garrett Camp and gives him "full credit for the idea"[21][32] of Uber, a mobile app that connects passengers with drivers of vehicles for hire and ridesharing services.[33][34][35] Camp, co-founder of StumbleUpon, spent $800 hiring a private driver with friends and had been mulling over ways to decrease the cost of black car services (meaning, taxis that are dispatched by a central service rather than hailed directly on the street) ever since. He realized that sharing the cost with people could make it affordable, and his idea morphed into Uber.[21] "Garrett is the guy who invented that shit", Kalanick said at an early Uber event in San Francisco.[21][32] The first prototype was built by Camp, and his friends, Oscar Salazar and Conrad Whelan, with Kalanick being brought on as a "mega advisor" to the company.[21] In December 2010, Kalanick succeeded Ryan Graves as CEO,[21] who had held the position for ten months.[36]

Uber operates in 66 countries and in more than 507 cities around the world.[37][38][39] Uber faced some controversy[40] in some cities in North America,[41] such as Portland, Oregon,[42] Washington, D.C.,[43] Chicago,[44] Toronto,[45] and New York City.[46][47] The company faces fierce competition from similar services[48] and "clone companies"[49] in cities such as London.[50][51]

On June 13, 2017, it was announced that Kalanick would take an indefinite leave of absence from Uber. His responsibilities would be assumed by his direct reports in the organization.[52][53]

On June 20, 2017, Kalanick resigned as CEO after multiple shareholders reportedly demanded his resignation.[54] Despite his resignation, Kalanick will retain his seat on Uber's board of directors.[55]

Economic Advisor to Trump Council

Despite CTO Thuan Pham's 2016 internal email to employees commenting, "I will not even utter the name of this deplorable person because I do not accept him as my leader" on the election of U.S. President Donald Trump, which was widely circulated and published by the media,[56][57] in December 2016, it was announced that Kalanick joined other CEOs, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, General Motors CEO Mary Barra, Disney CEO Bob Iger, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, and former General Electric CEO Jack Welch, as an economic advisor on Trump's Strategy and Policy Forum,[58] organized by Blackstone's Stephen Schwarzman.[59] Kalanick vocally opposed President Trump's executive order banning travel from select countries and believed that remaining on Trump's advisory council would provide him with the opportunity to directly address his concerns with the President and advocate for immigrants. In an Uber blog post, Kalanick stated that he wanted to use his position on the council to "give citizens a voice, a seat at the table."[60] However, after continued pressure, Kalanick announced in an email to Uber employees that he would step down from the council.[61]

Corporate culture

In 2017, it was reported that Kalanick had knowledge of sexual harassment allegations at Uber and did nothing.[62] In the same week, he asked his direct report,[63] Uber's SVP of Engineering Amit Singhal, to resign after a month for failing to disclose a sexual harassment claim during Singhal's 15 years as VP of Google Search, after Recode reported about it in media.[64][65][66] According to Reuters, he has "a reputation as an abrasive leader".[67][68]

In February 2017, a video was released where Kalanick was shimmying between two women in an UberBLACK, before arguing with an Uber driver during a heated debate in which he berated the driver.[69][70][71]

In March 2017, Uber VP of Business, Emil Michael contacted Kalanick's ex-girlfriend in an attempt to silence her into hiding an HR complaint. This backfired, with her speaking to The Information as a source present during an executive team outing with Kalanick, where Michael and four more Uber managers selected numbered women at a Korean escort bar, prompting a sexism complaint - one year after the event - by the female manager who attended.[72][73] She also has since spoken to Businessweek about Uber's India rape case.[74]

On June 21, 2017, he stepped down as the CEO of Uber because of the pressure from a majority of the investors as he was seen as a liability but will continue to stay on the company's board.[75]

On August 10, 2017, Axios reported that Benchmark is suing Kalanick for "fraud, breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty." The suit is based on Uber's decision to expand the number of board seats, with Benchmark arguing the decision is invalid due to withholding of material information prior to the vote.[76]

Personal life

Kalanick and Angie You, his then-longtime girlfriend, bought a townhouse in the upper hills of the San Francisco's Castro section, which was nicknamed "the Jam Pad" and had its own Twitter account.[77]

From 2014-2016, Kalanick dated Gabi Holzwarth.[78]


  1. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ Isaac, Mike (April 23, 2017). "Uber's C.E.O. Plays With Fire". New York Times. Retrieved . 
  3. ^ Tomiwa (2017-03-20). "Uber President Jeff Resigns Over Leadership Beliefs. - Biznespreneur". Biznespreneur. Retrieved . 
  4. ^ Isaac, Mike (2017-06-21). "Uber Founder Travis Kalanick Resigns as C.E.O". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved . 
  5. ^ "Forbes Announces Its 33rd Annual Forbes 400 Ranking Of The Richest Americans". Forbes. 29 September 2014. Retrieved 2014. 
  6. ^ Isaac, Mike (2017-06-21). "Uber Founder Travis Kalanick Resigns as C.E.O". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved . 
  7. ^ a b Lagorio-Chafkin, Christine (July 2013). "Resistance Is Futile". Inc.
  8. ^ a b Kalanick-Larson, Brooke (November 21, 2011). "Lessons From My Grandma On Love, Life & Hard Work". Better By Dr. Brooke.
  9. ^ a b "Obituary - Steve Kalanick". Havre Daily News. Retrieved 2016. 
  10. ^ a b "Mike A Kalanick in the 1940 Census". Retrieved 2016. 
  11. ^ a b Anthony, Andrew (20 December 2014). "Travis Kalanick: Uber-capitalist who wants to have the world in the back of his cabs". The Guardian.
  12. ^ "Zakladatel Uberu ma Sloveske korene" (in Slovak). Retrieved 2017. 
  13. ^ a b Independent Press-Telegram: "BETROTHALS TOLD". Long Beach, California · Page 118 · January 16, 1966 | Two engaged couples reveal wedding plans Veth-Kalanick. A spring wedding is being planned by Eileena Marie Veth and Donald Edward Kalanick whose betrothal news is being told by her parents, Mr. and Mrs.' Frank J. Zaffke of Long Beach: Mr. and Mrs. Michael A. Kalanick of Los Angeles are parents of the-future bridegroom. The bride-elect was grad- ualed from Jordan High School and LBCC. The future bridegroom attended Glendale Junior College, served two years in the U. S. Army and is now a civil engineering draftsman for the city of Los Angeles
  14. ^ "Alyson Shontell: All Hail The Uber Man! How Sharp-Elbowed Salesman Travis Kalanick Became Silicon Valley's Newest Star". Business Insider. January 11, 2014. 
  15. ^ "Innovator Under 35: Travis Kalanick, 25 - MIT Technology Review". Retrieved . 
  16. ^ "Travis Kalanick - DCWEEK 2012". Retrieved . 
  17. ^ "Travis Kalanick". Forbes. Retrieved . 
  18. ^ Richtel, Matt (May 22, 2000). "Agent's Role In Music Site May Be Shift In Rights War". The New York Times. Retrieved . 
  19. ^ Wall Street Journal: "Travis Kalanick: The Transportation Trustbuster" by Andy Kessler January 25, 2013
  20. ^ "Search, Share And Transport By Travis Kalanick". Eyerys. Retrieved 2017. 
  21. ^ a b c d e f g Shontell, Alyson (January 11, 2014). "All Hail The Uber Man! How Sharp-Elbowed Salesman Travis Kalanick Became Silicon Valley's Newest Star". Business Insider. 
  22. ^ Richtel, Matt (July 21, 2000). "Movie and Record Companies Sue a Film Trading Site". The New York Times. Retrieved . 
  23. ^ Borland, John (September 7, 2000). "Well-scrubbed business plan not enough for Scour". CNET. Retrieved . 
  24. ^ "The life and rise of Travis Kalanick, Uber's controversial billionaire CEO". Business Insider. Retrieved . 
  25. ^ "The Ultimate Guide to Hacking CES". Swooshing, Travis Kalanick's (Archived) Blog. December 30, 2008. 
  26. ^ "Tweet from @TravisK Verified Twitter". @TravisK Verified Twitter. 
  27. ^ "Tweet from @TravisK Verified Twitter". @TravisK Verified Twitter. 
  28. ^ "Payday for Red Swoosh: $15 million from Akamai". TechCrunch. 
  29. ^ "April 12, 2007 - Akamai Acquires Red Swoosh". 2007-04-12. Retrieved . 
  30. ^ "Uber CEO Travis Kalanick on Failure and Red Swoosh - Liz Gannes - News". AllThingsD. 2011-11-08. Retrieved . 
  31. ^ Om Malik. "Gigaom - Akamai goes P2P, buys Red Swoosh". Retrieved 2016. 
  32. ^ a b "Uber Event, SF Video (00:01:45)". Uber. 2011. 
  33. ^ Goode, Lauren (June 17, 2011). "Worth It? An App to Get a Cab". The Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company. 
  34. ^ "Travis Kalanick on Leading Uber, a Car Service". Businessweek. 2012-08-09. Retrieved . 
  35. ^ "Travis Kalanick : Startup Mixology Conference - D.C. - June 16, 2011". 2011-06-16. Retrieved . 
  36. ^ "Ryan Graves - LinkedIn". Retrieved 2016. 
  37. ^ "Uber CEO Travis Kalanick". SPLASH. Retrieved 2016. 
  38. ^ "Uber Tests Cash Payment in Hyderabad; Other Cities to Follow Soon". Tech-Portal. 
  39. ^ "Where is Uber Currently Available?". Retrieved 2015. 
  40. ^ Mangalindan, JP (February 2, 2012). "The trials of Uber". 
  41. ^ John Cook. "Uber could take flight, CEO dreams of helicopter and jet rides". GeekWire. Retrieved 2016. 
  42. ^ "Uber pays $67,750 in Portland fines as taxi recommendations go to City Council". The Oregonian. 
  43. ^ "". Fortune. Retrieved 2016. 
  44. ^ "Under new rules, Uber faces Chicago closure". VentureBeat. 
  45. ^ Christine Dobby (December 6, 2012). "Uber Toronto facing new licensing charges related to taxi business". Financial Post. Retrieved 2016. 
  46. ^ "App-Powered Car Service Leaves Cabs in the Dust". WIRED. April 5, 2011. Retrieved 2016. 
  47. ^ D.C. official retreats on fare measure aimed at San Francisco limo firm, San Francisco Business Times
  48. ^ "Uber CEO: Bring On The Cheap Competition". Business Insider. 
  49. ^ "Look Out, Lyft: Uber CEO Travis Kalanick Says It Will Do Ride Sharing, Too". TechCrunch. 
  50. ^ Adrian Melrose. "Taxi Tech at Le Web London". Archived from the original on May 19, 2014. 
  51. ^ "LeWeb London: Uber and Hailo". Licence to Roam. 
  52. ^ Wong, Julia Carrie (13 Jun 2017). "Embattled Uber CEO Travis Kalanick takes indefinite leave of absence". The Guardian. Retrieved 2017. 
  53. ^ Bensinger, Greg (13 Jun 2017). "Uber CEO Travis Kalanick to take a leave of absence". MarketWatch. Retrieved 2017. 
  54. ^ Isaac, Mike (21 Jun 2017). "Uber Founder Travis Kalanick Resigns as C.E.O". The New York Times. Retrieved 2017. 
  55. ^ "Travis Kalanick resigns as Uber CEO". Business Insider. Retrieved . 
  56. ^ Carson, Biz (January 24, 2017). "'I do not accept him as my leader' -- Uber CTO's explosive anti-Trump email reveals growing internal tensions". Business Insider. 
  57. ^ Taylor, Harriet (January 25, 2017). "Uber CTO calls Trump a 'deplorable person' in staff email, says report". CNBC. 
  58. ^ Milliken, Grennan (2016-12-14). "Trump Critic Elon Musk Chosen for Presidential Advisory Team". Motherboard. Vice Media LLC. Retrieved . 
  59. ^ Molina, Brett (December 14, 2016). "Elon Musk, Uber's Kalanick join Trump's business adviser team". Democrat and Chronicle. 
  60. ^ Kalanick, Travis (January 28, 2017). "Standing up for what's right". Uber. 
  61. ^ Isaac, Mike (February 2, 2017). "Uber C.E.O. to Leave Trump Advisory Council After Criticism". The New York Times. 
  62. ^ Isaac, Mike (February 22, 2017). "Inside Uber's Aggressive, Unrestrained Workplace Culture". New York Times. 
  63. ^ Townsend, Tess (January 20, 2017). "Uber has hired two significant Google veterans". Recode. 
  64. ^ Marinova, Polina (February 27, 2017). "Uber Exec Resigns After Sexual Harassment Allegations Surface From His Time at Google". Fortune. 
  65. ^ Isaac, Mike (February 27, 2017). "Amit Singhal, Uber Executive Linked to Old Harassment Claim, Resigns". New York Times. 
  66. ^ Swisher, Kara (February 27, 2017). "Uber's SVP of engineering is out after he did not disclose he left Google in a dispute over a sexual harassment allegation". Recode. 
  67. ^ "Uber board to discuss CEO absence, policy changes: source". Reuters. 2017-06-11. Retrieved . Kalanick has developed a reputation as an abrasive leader, and his approach has rubbed off on his company. The 40-year-old executive was captured on video in February berating an Uber driver. 
  68. ^ "Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigns under investor pressure". Reuters. 2017-06-21. Retrieved . 
  69. ^ "Uber CEO Travis Kalanick: I need to 'grow up'". CNN. 1 March 2017. 
  70. ^ Bloomberg (February 28, 2017). "Uber CEO Kalanick Argues With Driver Over Falling Fares" - via YouTube. 
  71. ^ Newcomer, Eric (February 28, 2017). "In Video, Uber CEO Argues With Driver Over Falling Fares". Businessweek. 
  72. ^ Efrati, Amir (March 25, 2017). "Uber Group's Visit to Seoul Escort Bar Sparked HR Complaint". The Information. 
  73. ^ Lawler, Richard (March 25, 2017). "Uber CEO linked to escort bar visit that resulted in an HR complaint". Engadget. 
  74. ^ Newcomer, Eric (June 7, 2017). "Uber Workplace Probe Extends to Handling of India Rape Case". Businessweek. 
  75. ^ "Travis Kalanick: Uber CEO resigns following months of chaos". The Guardian. 21 June 2017. 
  76. ^ "Scoop: Benchmark Capital sues Travis Kalanick for fraud". Axios. 2017-08-10. Retrieved . 
  77. ^ Isaac, Mike. "Uber C.E.O. Plays With Fires". New York Times. Retrieved 2017. 
  78. ^ Smith, Emily. "Uber CEO Splits With Beautiful Violinist Girlfriend". Page Six. Retrieved 2016. 

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Top US Cities