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Published: Sat, September 02, 2017
Research | By Jennifer Evans

Expedia Chief Dara Khosrowshahi Accepts Uber CEO Job

Expedia Chief Dara Khosrowshahi Accepts Uber CEO Job

Now, ex-Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has been appointed as the new leader of the $70bn-valued company and he took his opportunity to talk to staff members on Wednesday, assuring them that he "is a fighter".

"Uber is a company that is redefining the transportation industry on a global basis; to be part of that story is something that is interesting and would be a real privilege", said Khosrowshahi.

The company has gone from about $16 billion in bookings and $700 million in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization in 2005 to $72 billion in bookings and $1.6 billion in EBITDA in 2016, according to Mahaney.

Uber has been beset with scandal after scandal this year, starting with a Medium post by former engineer, Susan Fowler, who detailed sexual harassment, a toxic macho culture and inept human resources practices, to news Tuesday that the U.S. Department of Justice has started investigating whether Uber broke U.S. laws against foreign bribery.

Earlier this month, Kalanick's lawyers filed a motion to dismiss the case or send it to arbitration, noting in the brief that letting the lawsuit play out in court "would expose the company to significant and unnecessary harm for no reason other than Benchmark's desire to use this forum to publicly slander Mr. Kalanick with its fabricated allegations".

Somewhat embarrassingly, a leaked audio recording of Khosrowshahi's first all-hands talk was published by Yahoo News.

Uber gave a few details of Khosrowshahi's speech in a series of tweets. The recording does not mention an IPO. As Marshall put it, "You can't have me go into a fight with one arm tied behind my back". "We're in a battle here". On Wednesday, Khosrowshahi set a timeline for an initial public offering in the next 18 to 36 months-giving himself a rather wide berth but also likely appeasing investors and employees of the eight-year-old company who are eager for a payoff.

He said, however, that Spotify founder Daniel Ek convinced him over a drink at an investor conference that he should apply for the job.

Okerstrom, now chief financial officer and executive vice president of operations, will also join Expedia's Board of Directors.

"He spun this web, this dream, of transforming cities and the transportation grid and deliveries and robots taking food from the street corner to the home. And I'm like, 'Well, I sell airline tickets and you can download them onto your phone'".

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