Welcome

Uber’s Ex Legal Chief Joins Quantum Computing Company IonQ

March 8, 2021, 8:53 PM

Uber Technologies, Inc.’s former top lawyer Salle Yoo has joined quantum computing company IonQ as chief legal officer, four years after departing the ride share giant.

Yoo was announced as the new top lawyer at College Park, Md.-based IonQ on Monday, shortly after it confirmed it would go public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company , dMY Technology Group III.

IonQ was founded in 2015 and produces quantum computing hardware using ionized ytterbium atoms as its quantum bits, or its smallest unit of computation. It boasts partnerships with Microsoft Corp. and Amazon Web Services.

Yoo will manage the company’s legal and regulatory functions, according to a Monday statement. She told Bloomberg Law in an email that she expects intellectual property issues to be “of top importance” to IonQ as the company grows.

“As an investor and advisor, I know what it takes to build an impactful business,” Yoo said in the statement. “It comes down to leadership and execution. IonQ has unmatched technical depth and the right team to commercialize and deliver quantum computing at scale.”

Yoo joined San Francisco-based Uber as its first general counsel in 2012. The company grew quickly but developed a reputation for pushing legal and regulatory boundaries often attributed to the leadership of its founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick.

During Yoo’s tenure, Uber had to fend off claims of sexual harassment within the company and multiple criminal probes from the Justice Department over privacy and intellectual property violations. Uber was also sued for alleged theft of trade secrets by Alphabet Inc’s autonomous vehicle unit, Waymo, in a case that eventually settled.

Yoo announced in September 2017 she’d be leaving the company, a few months after Kalanick was ousted from the chief executive role by investors.

Yoo was eventually succeeded as chief legal officer by Tony West, a former Obama administration Justice Department official and legal chief at PepsiCo.

Since leaving the ride share company, Yoo has joined the boards of food industry staffing platform Qwick, Inc., and wireless infrastructure company Helium, Inc. Yoo is also a limited partner of venture capital companies Construct Capital, Operator Collective, and January Ventures, according to her LinkedIn profile.

Yoo began her career with Davis Wright Tremaine, where she worked for over 13 years before joining Uber.

IonQ on Monday also named Thomas Kramer as chief financial officer and plans to add former Google executive Craig Barratt, dMY chairman Harry You, and dMY CEO Niccolo de Masi to the company’s board of directors following the merger.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ruiqi Chen in Washington, D.C. at rchen@bloombergindustry.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebekah Mintzer at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com; Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com

To read more articles log in.

Learn more about a Bloomberg Law subscription.