HomeTechnologyGravity Funds CEO Dan Worth resigns amid assault allegations

Gravity Funds CEO Dan Worth resigns amid assault allegations



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The Seattle CEO who rose to nationwide prominence for setting a $70,000 minimal wage for all his staff — and slashing his personal to match — has resigned from the corporate he based throughout faculty amid accusations of misdemeanor assault.

Dan Worth stated he stepping down from Gravity Funds, a bank card processing agency, to dedicate extra time to “combating false allegations.” Earlier this yr, he was accused of trying to kiss a lady in opposition to her will, the Seattle Occasions reported.

“My No. 1 precedence is for our staff to work for the very best firm on the planet, however my presence has grow to be a distraction right here,” he wrote in an e-mail to employees that he additionally shared on Twitter on Wednesday night time. “I additionally have to step apart from these duties to focus full time on combating false accusations made in opposition to me,” including, “I’m not going wherever.”

Worth didn’t elaborate on the allegations or instantly reply to a request for remark. Gravity Funds didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

Worth was charged in February with fourth-degree assault and reckless driving after Prosecutors stated he tried to kiss a lady in his automotive after a dinner assembly, in keeping with the report. When she refused, Worth allegedly drove to a North Seattle car parking zone the place he did “doughnuts” together with her within the automotive.

His legal professional entered a not responsible plea in Seattle Municipal Courtroom in Might.

A frequent critic of company executives and the huge pay hole between them and their employees, Worth gained nationwide acclaim in 2015 after asserting he would elevate each worker’s wage to at the very least $70,000. At the moment, his 120 staff have been paid a median wage of $48,000 a yr, in keeping with the Occasions.

He additionally diminished his personal $1 million compensation to that flooring, taking a greater than 90 p.c pay lower, and tapped roughly three-quarters of that yr’s income to cowl the upper wages, the report added. Worth stated on the time that he would hold his wage low till the income have been earned again.

Worth usually turned to Twitter to tout the success of his firm’s mannequin. His posts are breezy, in contrast to the usually stilted posts of enterprise executives, providing his 770,000 followers a web-based persona that mixes labor activist with work-life-balance influencer. He evangelizes on fair-minded bosses and firms. The minimal pay for Gravity employees is now $80,000, he has famous, and the employees acquired a $10,000 baseline elevate this yr. It additionally affords limitless paid day off. Job openings usually entice greater than 300 candidates, he stated.

Earlier than the resignation announcement he tweeted about layoffs, proclaiming, “An precise good CEO would by no means do layoffs ever.”

The unique wage flooring was set the identical yr Worth gained a authorized battle in opposition to his brother, Lucas Worth. A three-week court docket battle ensued after his older brother, Lucas Worth, alleged that his rights as a minority shareholder have been violated when Dan Worth upped his personal wage. A King County court docket disagreed, and ordered Lucas Worth to pay his brother’s authorized charges, totaling $1.3 million.

Worth’s profile rose as a broader dialog was enjoying out round pay disparity and financial inequality, with company America and its extremely compensated executives usually catching the brunt of the criticism.

In 2015, the yr Worth lower his pay, the nation’s CEOs have been gathering 276 instances the annual pay of the everyday employee, in keeping with the Financial Coverage Institute. A 2021 evaluation discovered that hole has widened, to 351 instances as a lot as the typical employee. Compensation for high executives has soared almost 1,300 p.c in he previous 4 a long time, after adjusting for inflation. The research discovered that common pay for high companies leaders on the nation’s 350 largest corporations was $24.2 million in 2020, when the realized worth of inventory choices are factored in.

In the meantime the minimal wage on the federal degree has remained unchanged since 2009, at $7.25 an hour. Though some state governments have taken the lead on elevating the ground to upward of $15.

Worth was 19 when he began Gravity Funds in 2004 out of his dorm room at Seattle Pacific College, utilizing seed cash from Lucas Worth, in keeping with the Occasions. The now 38-year-old has authored a 2020 guide entitled “Price It: How a Million-Greenback Pay Lower and a $70,000 Minimal Wage Revealed a Higher Method of Doing Enterprise.” That very same yr, he wrote a perspective piece for The Washington Put up, championing his firm’s therapy of employees as a mannequin that allowed employees to resolve the best way to confront the financial shocks in the course of the early months of the pandemic.

He additionally wrote that 98 p.c of Gravity Funds staff volunteered to quickly lower their pay from 5 to 100% to keep away from layoffs. On Wednesday Worth stated that the corporate has by no means laid off a single worker in its 18-year historical past.

The corporate’ chief working officer, Tammi Kroll, has stepped in as CEO, Worth stated in his announcement.

“The corporate helps his resolution to step apart,” Kroll stated in a press release. “I’m grateful for the chance to steer Gravity by this new chapter.”



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