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Wanted: a co-pilot for Uber chief executive Travis Kalanick.

The trouble car-hailing company, which has been rocked in recent weeks by a series of embarrassing revelations, said on Tuesday that it was looking for a chief operating officer to work as Mr Kalanick’s number-two.

“This morning I told the Uber team that we’re actively looking for a Chief Operating Officer: a peer who can partner with me to write the next chapter in our journey,” Mr Kalanick said in a brief statement.

There is currently no COO at Uber, and the creation of the position – which some have compared to Facebook bringing in Sheryl Sandberg in 2008 – is seen as an attempt to help recover its image following a spate of negative headlines.

These include revelations that Uber has been using a controversial programme to side step regulators and competitors, allegations of sexual harassment from employees and a video that showed Uber’s chief executive berating a driver.

Mr Kalanick was forced to issue a rare apology after the video was published, saying: “I must fundamentally change as a leader and grow up.” Two senior executives quit the company last week, adding to the sense of uncertainty at the company.

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