Uber has recently filed a lawsuit against Fetch Media, which is a mobile ad agency that already has claims against it for committing fraud. The suit claims that they have billed Uber improperly for fake online ads, and also took credit for app downloads that they did not contribute to in any way. Reports say that Uber is seeking at least $40 million in damages against the company.
Not surprisingly, Fetch denies these allegations and even came out in a comment saying that the claims were, “unsubstantiated, completely without merit, and purposefully inflammatory so as to draw attention away from Uber’s unprofessional behavior and failure to pay suppliers.”
This lawsuit has the potential to really turn into quite the soap opera thanks to the drama and other problems currently plaguing Uber, and the major issues with fraud impacting most ad networks and agencies. When Uber executives investigated the issue they allegedly discovered that website placements, including Magic Puzzles and Snooker Champion, were not carrying anything while ads for Uber continued to appear on Breitbart. In response, Uber pulled its ad budget from Fetch in March this year.
But worse was to come. Not only did Uber allegedly uncover Fetch taking credit for downloads that were not driven by its advertising but the ads that Fetch charged for were not what they seemed either. Uber has accused Fetch of creating non-viewable ads, ads that only appeared on sites populated by bots, or on sites that simply did not exist. Uber claims Fetch bought ads that consumers never saw and claimed these non-viewed ads were responsible for sales that Uber would have achieved anyway. Fraud, in other words.
RexDirect, a company which represented Uber online is not part of lawsuit, and still has a good relationship with Uber.