9 entrepreneurs that were fired from their own businesses

When a founder comes up with a business concept, he invests his heart and soul into making it a success. He treats the firm as though it were his child, nurturing it.

Many people eventually join this trip. Investors, the board of directors, and staff all contributed to his success. But just because he started the business doesn’t imply that he’ll always be in charge.

Many founders are later ousted from their firms for a variety of reasons. You are mistaken if you believe this is not a regular occurrence. Here are ten well-known entrepreneurs who were fired or forced to quit their companies.

Founder of Tinder – Sean Rad

Founder of Tinder - Sean RadSean Rad was one of the original co-founders of the renowned dating app Tinder. The dating app changed the way young people met and dated forever.

He was also the business’s CEO until 2014 when the corporation began searching for an “Eric Schmidt-like individual” to succeed him.

Why was Sean Rad removed from his position as the CEO?

After Whitney Wolfe, one of the company’s co-founders filed a lawsuit against CMO Justin Mateen, Sean Rad was demoted. Wolfe alleged that her ex-boyfriend, Justin Mateen, had removed her from her co-founder position due to her gender.

She also claimed that following their split, he sent her “horrendously sexist, racist, and generally improper comments, emails, and text messages.” Sean was accused of dismissing her grievances. In August 2015, he returned to his post as CEO.


Founder of Microsoft – Bill Gates

Founder of Microsoft - Bill GatesIn 1975, Bill Gates and Paul Allen co-founded Microsoft. Bill Gates led his firm as CEO until 2000, and then as chairman until February 2014.

Why did Bill Gates resign from Microsoft?

Following an investigation into Bill Gate’s intimate involvement with a former Microsoft employee, the board of directors decided that he should resign.

Before the inquiry could be completed, he resigned from the board in March 2020, stating that he wanted to dedicate more time to philanthropy.

Bill Gates’ spokeswoman dismissed the claims and stated that the stepping was unrelated to this. These assertions are bogus, repeated rumors from individuals with no direct information, and in some cases have severe conflicts of interest,” the spokesman stated.


Founder of Blackberry – Mike Lazaridis

Founder of Blackberry - Mike LazaridisMike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie launched Blackberry, then known as Research In Motion Limited, in 1984. The Blackberry smartphone was formerly quite popular among celebrities and business leaders.

Why did Mike Lazaridis leave Blackberry?

After a year of struggle with Android and Apple progressively gaining market share in the smartphone business, Mike Lazaridis chose to stand down as co-CEO and vice chairman, and director in 2013.

He stated that quitting would allow him to devote more effort to his Quantum Valley Investments company.

Founder of Yahoo – Jerry Yang

Founder of Yahoo - Jerry YangIn 1994, Jerry Yang and David Filo co-founded the online directory Yahoo! The firm, formerly known as “Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web,” offered information, online services, and links to other websites.

Yahoo had a lot of success under its leadership, especially in the 2000s. The company’s market capitalization was about $22 billion.

Why did Jerry Yang quit Yahoo?

Jerry Yang turned down a $44.6 million offer from Microsoft to purchase Yahoo in 2008. This decision was questioned, and the corporation was also shaken by Google’s growing dominance.

Yang stepped down as CEO and returned to his previous role as “chief of Yahoo.” Jerry Yang resigned from Yahoo four years later, when the company’s shareholders were considering selling it.

Founders of Flipkart – Binny Bansal and Sachin Bansal

Founders of Flipkart - Binny Bansal and Sachin BansalSachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, two former Amazon workers, launched Flipkart in 2007. Initially, the firm concentrated on selling books across the country, but as it developed, it began to get roughly a hundred orders every day in 2008.

Why did Binny Bansal and Sachin Bansal exit Flipkart?

During the Walmart purchase discussions in 2018, it was stated that Sachin Bansal desired a bigger position in the firm. Sachin Bansal then sold his shares and left the firm.

Later, Binny Bansal left when the parent corporation Walmart launched an inquiry into severe “personal misconduct” charges against him. Binny Bansal has categorically disputed the charges leveled against him.

Founder of Uber – Travis Kalanick

Founder of Uber - Travis KalanickUber was started by Travis Kalanick in 2009. Former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is currently the CEO of City Storage Systems, which redevelops troubled real estate. Before Uber, he created two internet companies.

Why was Travis Kalanick asked to resign from Uber?

In 2017, the globe witnessed an outpouring of complaints about the firm ranging from sexual harassment to gender discrimination.

The issues began when an ex-Uber employee published a blog post alleging gender discrimination and sexual harassment at the corporation.

Despite the company’s best efforts to address the issues, pressure from Uber shareholders intensified, and Travis Kalanick was requested to resign as CEO.

Travis Kalanick resigned as CEO but remained on the board of directors until 2019.

Founder of BharatPe – Ashneer Grover

Founder of BharatPe - Ashneer GroverBharatPe was formed by Ashneer Grover, Bhavik Koladiya, and Shashvat Nakrani in 2018. Ashneer Grover, a Shark on the Indian version of Shark Tank, recently resigned from the firm after being accused of financial wrongdoing.

Why did Ashneer Grover quit BharatPe?

Ashneer Grover first made headlines when he was embroiled in a telephone scandal. On January 19, 2022, the firm requested that the co-founder take a leave of absence. Ashneer Grover, on the other hand, did not leave for this reason.

Later, the personality’s name was linked to corporate financial malfeasance. The board was looking into it, and the financial misdeeds were estimated to be in the millions of dollars.

The corporation is being sued by the former MD and co-founder at the Singapore International Arbitration Centre.

He resigned from his firm and stood down as a board member after losing this. Madhuri Jain, his wife, was also fired from the firm.


Founder of Twitter – Jack Dorsey

Founder of Twitter - Jack DorseyIn 2006, Jack Dorsey, Biz Stone, Evan Williams, and Noah Glass co-founded Twitter. In 2008, Evan Williams, one of the company’s co-founders, ousted Jack Dorsey from his position as CEO. In 2011, he returned to the organization.

Why was Jack Dorsey fired?

Shortly after he was appointed CEO, criticisms began to surface about his bad management style, failure to address crashing systems, and lack of contact with the board.

He also spent more time learning about his hobbies than operating Twitter, according to reports.

He returned to the corporation as CEO in 2015, and he stepped down from the role in 2021. “My faith in Parag as Twitter’s CEO is profound,” he stated in a statement as he stepped down. “His work has had a profound impact during the last ten years. I owe him a debt of gratitude for his talent, heart, and soul.


Founder of Zilingo – Ankiti Bose

Founder of Zilingo - Ankiti BoseIn the fashion sector, Zilingo is a B2B commerce and technology platform. It was started by Ankiti Bose and Dhruv Kapoor in Singapore. Ankiti Bose, the company’s co-founder, and CEO was just suspended. Ankiti Bose was also included in Forbes Asia’s list of 30 Under 30.

Why was Ankiti Bose suspended from Zilingo?

Zilingo has a market capitalization of nearly $1 billion and has been seeking funding since last year. After an internal financial probe into the company’s accounting methods, Ankiti Bose was suspended.

Bose has rejected the charges and referred to the probe as a “witch hunt.” It’s also been suggested that she was wrongfully suspended as a result of her harassment charges against numerous senior team members.


Steve Jobs – Founder of Apple

Steve Jobs – Founder of AppleApple was created in 1976 by Steve Jobs and his collaborator, Steve Wozniak. We all know how Apple began in his parent’s garage and has progressed to the heights of success it has today. Steve Jobs deserves credit for this.

He was noted for his quick wit and brilliance, as well as his short temper. Finally, in 1985, the board of directors sacked him because he was too young to lead the corporation.

Why was Steve Jobs fired from Apple?

John Sculley was chosen by Steve Jobs and persuaded to join the firm and work with them. John Sculley worked for Pepsi and was instrumental in turning the company’s deficits into profits.

However, after some time working together, tensions and conflicts between the two increased, and the board eventually agreed with Sculley to remove Steve Jobs. In 1977, Jobs returned to the business.

I didn’t realize it then, but getting fired from Apple turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to me,” Steve Jobs stated at Stanford’s commencement speech in 2015.

The burden of achievement was replaced by the lightness of being a novice once more, uncertain about everything. It allowed me to embark on one of my most creative times.”


A co-founder may be compelled to resign or be ousted from his firm for a variety of reasons. The reality is that it is feasible, and there are many more co-founders who may have been removed inequitably or for doing something they knowingly wanted to do.



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Peter Graham
Peter Graham
Hi there! I'm Peter, a software engineer and tech enthusiast with over 10 years of experience in the field. I have a passion for sharing my knowledge and helping others understand the latest developments in the tech world. When I'm not coding, you can find me hiking or trying out the latest gadgets.


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