Former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick will not be returning to head the embattled company in his prior role, co-founder and board member Garrett Camp reportedly told employees on Monday (7 August). In an email, Camp weighed in on multiple reports that Kalanick has been telling people that he is "Steve Jobs-ing it" and will return to the helm of the company, in reference to the deceased Apple co-founder who was once fired but later returned to the firm in the 1990s.

"Our CEO search is the board's top priority," Camp said in the email, Recode reports. "It's time for a new chapter and the right leader for our next phase of growth. Despite rumors I'm sure you've seen in the news, Travis is not returning as CEO. We are committed to hiring a new world class CEO to lead Uber.

"Uber must evolve and mature as we improve our culture and practices, to achieve our mission of bringing mobility to everyone. We are dedicated to making Uber successful, and keeping everyone informed of our progress. Thank you for all your hard work."

Camp's statement comes as the company continues its search for a new chief executive to steer the ride-hailing firm. Kalanick, who co-founded the firm in 2009, resigned as Uber's CEO in June after a group of top investors demanded an immediate change in leadership.

Kalanick's resignation came after months of controversies surrounding the firm including allegations of sexual harassment, descrimination and a toxic work culture that led to an internal investigation, revelations of secret software used to deceive law enforcement and track its rivals, a high-stakes lawsuit with Google's Waymo over its self-driving technology and an exodus of top executives.

Last week, Uber's general counsel Salle Yoo also reportedly addressed rumours of Kalanick's possible return to the firm during an all-hands meeting. According to BuzzFeed, who cited an employee who attended the meeting, Yoo said that Uber's current search for a new leader is not focused on the past.

"The future is bright and we are looking forward," she said.

Sources recently told The Washington Post that Uber's shortlist for a new CEO is down to three people - all of whom are men. Jeffrey Immelt, the outgoing chief executive officer at General Electric, is reportedly one of the top candidates for the post.

Uber's co-founder and CEO Travis Kalanick resigned in June following months of controversies. Reuters/Shu Zhang