Uber founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick plans to sell nearly a third of his shares in the company, reports Bloomberg. The transaction would be part of the tender offer in which SoftBank Group agreed to buy shares in Uber valuing it at $48 billion, a huge discount from its last fundraising valuation. According to Bloomberg’s sources, Kalanick wants to sell 29% of his stake and would make about $1.4 billion.
Kalanick, who resigned as CEO in June but remains on Uber’s board of directors, currently owns about 10 percent of the ride-sharing company. Bloomberg’s sources say he originally wanted to offer up to half of his Uber stake, but couldn’t because of limits in the tender offer agreement.
Kalanick stands to become a billionaire if the sale goes through, but the deal is also notable because he claimed during the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit in October 2016 that he has never sold a single Uber share, even though he was still paying the mortgage on his home. Of course, a lot has changed in the past 15 months, including accusations of a toxic workplace culture that led to a internal investigation over sexual harassment at the company, Kalanick’s resignation and, most recently, SoftBank’s investment in Uber, which is expected to close later this month. SoftBank agreed to buy at least a 14% stake after years of backing ride-sharing rivals around the world, including Didi Chuxing.
SoftBank’s deal with Uber will reportedly scaled back Kalanick’s power, including blocking him from being appointed chairman of its board in the future. Benchmark Capital, which sued Kalanick over his power to appoint board seats, will also drop the lawsuit once SoftBank’s investment is completed.