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Square exec Keith Rabois resigns amid sexual-harassment claim

January 25, 2013|By Jessica Guynn
  • Keith Rabois, far right, in 2008, interviewing entrepreneurs as an Internet investor.
Keith Rabois, far right, in 2008, interviewing entrepreneurs as an Internet… (Randi Lynn Beach / For the…)

Square Inc.'s chief operating officer Keith Rabois abruptly resigned from the mobile payments company on Thursday after accusations were made that he sexually harassed an employee.

The mobile payments company said the allegations first came to light two weeks ago when a New York attorney representing the male employee contacted Square.

In a blog post, Rabois vigorously denied the allegations and said the relationship was consensual. He said he resigned to avoid causing a distraction at the company.

Square did not identify the employee or say if he still works for the company.

"We took these allegations very seriously and we immediately launched a full investigation to ascertain the facts. While we have not found evidence to support any claims, Keith exercised poor judgment that ultimately undermined his ability to remain an effective leader at Square. We accepted his resignation," spokesman Ricardo Reyes said in an emailed statement.

Rabois' sudden departure deals a major blow to Square's ambitions to expand its business and take on rivals in the highly competitive mobile payments space. It recently raised a large financing round that valued the company at nearly $3.3 billion.

The news shocked Silicon Valley, where Rabois is a veteran Internet executive.

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Follow me on Twitter @jguynn

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