Add a Potential Bribery Investigation to The List of Things Uber’s New CEO Has to Worry About

By Melanie Ehrenkranz on at

“I’m in it to get my hands dirty,” Uber’s new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi told Bloomberg on Tuesday. Lucky for Khosrowshahi, he could have a foreign bribery scandal on his hands. Sounds plenty dirty to me.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Uber is cooperating with the US Department of Justice on a preliminary investigation into whether the ride-sharing company violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The federal law prohibits the bribery of foreign officials. The Wall Street Journal’s sources did not know how many or which countries were involved in the probe. A Department of Justice spokesperson declined to comment on the reported investigation to Gizmodo, saying that “as a matter of policy, the department generally neither confirms nor denies the existence of an investigation.”

Reports of the investigation come just hours following Khosrowshahi’s first public statement on the CEO job at Uber.

“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,” Khosrowshahi told Bloomberg. “Are there difficulties? Are there complexities? Are there challenges? Absolutely, but that’s also what makes it fun. I am not in this to coast. I’m in it to get my hands dirty and build a team and do something that people will look back on with tons of satisfaction.”

Khosrowshahi already has a number of scandals and issues to grapple with coming in. The company is severely lacking in executives after it suffered a mass exodus just this year. Khosrowshahi will need to hire new faces into leadership while also dealing with the messy Benchmark Capital and Waymo lawsuits, as well as building a more diverse and inclusive work culture. It’s certainly not a recipe for coasting, but for inheriting these controversies, Khosrowshahi is about to make bank.