Uber CEO's right-hand man is out

Uber under fire over harassment allegations
Uber under fire over harassment allegations

The ongoing crises at Uber just led to its most high-profile executive departure yet.

Emil Michael, Uber's SVP of business and a right-hand man to CEO Travis Kalanick, has left the company. A spokesperson for Uber confirmed his departure to CNN Tech.

The announcement follows reports over the weekend that Michael might leave the company after an investigation into sexual harassment and workplace culture at the ride-hailing startup.

Michael's fate at the company was said to be one subject of debate during a board meeting Sunday that lasted about seven hours. Uber is also reportedly weighing a leave of absence for Kalanick following the death of his mother in a boating accident last month.

Related: Uber's CEO is under fire. Can he hold onto his job?

Michael was a controversial figure inside and outside Uber.

He made headlines in 2014 for suggesting Uber could do opposition research on journalists who were critical of the company. Kalanick later described Michael's comments as "terrible," but kept him at the company nonetheless.

More recently, Michael's name was mentioned in multiple PR crises plaguing the company.

Michael visited an escort bar in South Korea with Kalanick and other employees in 2014. He was also said to have been one of the executives who viewed medical records of a woman who had been raped by an Uber driver in New Delhi.

emil michael

Yet, Michael also played a key role overseeing Uber's efforts to raise billions from private investors, which helped propel Uber to being the world's most valuable startup.

Uber said last week that it fired 20 employees after an investigation into reports of sexual harassment. On Tuesday, Uber will announce recommendations from a parallel review overseen by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

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