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Uber Offers Expedia Head Dara Khosrowshahi CEO Gig

Ride-sharing company pulls a surprise to replace founder Travis Kalanick

Uber has chosen Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi as its new chief executive, according to multiple media reports.

Khoshowshahi was a surprise choice to take over the ride-sharing company that has been leaderless since founding CEO Travis Kalanick resigned under pressure in June.

There had been much speculation on who would take over Uber. Former GE CEO Jeff Immelt tweeted on Sunday that he was taking his name out of consideration.

The board had also been talking to former Hewlett Packard boss Meg Whitman but decided to go with Khoshowshahi.

Khoshowshahi, an Iranian immigrant who has headed Expedia since it was spun off from IAC’s travel division in 2005, will have a tall order ahead of him overseeing a company with challenges have included a toxic internal culture, an exodus of top executives and mounting legal bills over claims of discrimination and sexual harassment.

And that’s not to mention the increase in competition and mounting financial losses for a company once considered a disruptor with an almost monopolistic hold on a category it helped invent. For the quarter ending June 30, Uber reported that it had lost $645 million, despite increasing revenues 17 percent to $1.75 million.

Khoshowshahi has also been an outspoken critic of President Donald Trump and his ban on travel from six Muslim-majority countries.