Startup Fires CEO for Strip Club Spending

The board of logistics software firm Turvo accused co-founder Eric Gilmore of expensing $76,000 at strip clubs over three years.

Bloomberg reported earlier this month that Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Turvo — a real-time collaborative logistics startup — has implemented an important new company policy that essentially says employees aren’t allowed to entertain clients at strip clubs, and certainly not to expense such bills to the company.

Why caused this new policy? Well, the company’s most recent CEO was fired for doing just that — to quite a degree. Bloomberg cited legal filings that show Turvo’s board accused co-founder Eric Gilmore of expensing $76,000 at strip clubs over a three-year span, leading to his firing this past May. Even over three years, I’m sure 76 grand could get you and your business clients plenty of sub-par strip-joint food, some great booze and a lot of … entertainment?

The court filings show 39-year-old Gilmore didn’t deny the accusations, but sued the company with the claim that Turvo didn’t follow proper protocol for his termination, which Turvo refuted before the two parties settled in September.

The company, which makes software that helps logistics companies track freight and has about $85 million in investment backing, has since replaced Gilmore with new CEO Scott Lang, who joined Turvo just before Thanksgiving and implemented the no-strip-club rule.

Lang told Bloomberg that he’s focused on helping the company move past the scandal, and when asked about the idea of buttering up potential clients at strip clubs, he said, quote, “Never have. Never Will.” End quote.

Despite his firing in May, as of Dec. 18, Gilmore’s LinkedIn profile still lists his position as founder, board member and special advisor to CEO at Turvo — perhaps indicating that the company hasn't completely severed ties with him after all.

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