Former Uber CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick today announced a new investment fund he’s calling 10100, pronounced “ten-one-hundred,” that will focus on his “passions, investments, ideas, and big bets.” The theme of the fund, he says, will be large-scale job creation with a focus on real estate, e-commerce, and innovations from countries like China and India. “Our non-profit efforts will initially focus on education and the future of cities,” Kalanick writes. The announcement was made on Twitter this afternoon with a prefaced note from Kalanick that read simply, “Some news...”
Since Kalanick stepped down from Uber in July of last year, he’s remained an outsized influence in the day-to-day operations at the ride-hailing giant thanks to board seats Kalanick controlled as part of the deal he cut with the company alongside his resignation. The company, under current CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, has only continued to weather controversy after controversy related largely to the way Kalanick and his lieutenants structured and ran the company since its founding in 2009. Those incidents include a trade secret theft lawsuit from Alphabet-owned Waymo that reached a surprise settlement last month, and an cover up of a massive cyberattack that exposed the data of 57 million riders and drivers.
However, in a recent deal with Japanese telecom SoftBank, Uber’s power structure shifted, diminishing Kalanick’s control of the Uber board by diluting his shares and giving SoftBank control of two board seat appointments alongside a change to the voting power of shareholders.
So while it’s unclear how long Kalanick has been planning the launch of 10100, it seems in some ways to suggest an admission on the Uber co-founder’s part that his role as a Machiavellian behind-the-scenes player at the ride-hailing company may be coming to a close. Without the voting power and board control he enjoyed in the immediate aftermath of his ouster, Kalanick can’t maintain a grip on Uber as it carries on without him, especially not as its current CEO pledges to turn the company around.
Here’s Kalanick’s announcement message in full:
Over the past few months I’ve started thinking about what’s next. I’ve began making investments, joining boards, working with entrepreneurs and non-profits. Today I’m announcing the creation of a fund called 10100 (pronounced “ten-one-hundred”), home to my passions, investments, ideas and big bets. It will be overseeing my for-profit investments as well as my non-profit work.
The overarching theme will be about large-scale job creation, with investments in real estate, e-commerce, and emerging innovation in China and India. Our non-profit efforts will initially focus on education and the future of cities.
For anyone who wants to get to work, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.