Another woman alleges sexual misconduct at 500 Startups, claiming venture partner groped her in Taipei


In the photo, five hundred Startups venture husband or wife Tristan Pollock appears to be holding Catherine Shu by the hand, pulling her alongside guiding him down a sidewalk.

The hand-holding, allegedly unwelcome to Shu, preceded an incident that still left Shu, a TechCrunch writer based mostly in Taipei, Taiwan, suffering from symptoms very similar to article-traumatic pressure disorder, Shu wrote in a July twenty report that contained the photo.

A ask for sent to five hundred Startups, which is headquartered in Mountain See, for a reaction by Pollock to the claimed incident did not get an speedy reaction. The enterprise is a popular startup accelerator and venture money company whose site property site invitations viewers to “Meet our badass, worldwide family members of startup founders, mentors, and traders.”

Shu’s allegation will come in the wake of the highly publicized resignation of five hundred Startups founder Dave McClure, a self-explained “creep” accused of hitting on a girl even though she was making use of for a work at his company. And her declare lands as Silicon Valley grapples with allegations of popular sexual harassment and sexual assault in the tech marketplace.

Shu, writing in TechCrunch, explained a 2015 night time out in Taipei, right after she and a pal satisfied Pollock and two other men outside a startup hub exactly where Shu’s pal worked.

Pollock stated he wanted to go to a bar, Shu wrote.

“I was having all set to depart since my husband had just termed to permit me know he was accomplished with get the job done, but my pal requested me to be part of them, so I explained to her I’d stay for a consume,” she wrote.

Although strolling to a bar, Pollock stated he wasn’t obtaining substantially luck on Tinder in Taiwan, Shu wrote.

“My pal explained to Pollock I’m not accessible since I’m married. Then she additional that I like white adult males, since my husband is white. I was dismayed to listen to her explain my marriage like that, specifically since it seemed to intensify Pollock’s fascination in me,” she wrote.

“He put his arm all over my shoulders and whispered ‘Can’t you pretend you’re single?’ in my ear. I shrugged him off.”

Not very long right after, Pollock grabbed her hand and requested her all over again if she could pretend she was single.

“His conduct was escalating swiftly and I was frightened. I tried out to pull away repeatedly. I splayed my fingers and twisted my hand, but he held on. I appeared for the other two adult males in our group, but they had been as well much ahead,” she wrote.

Her pal snapped a photo, which appears to exhibit Pollock holding Shu’s hand as if pulling her alongside. When he and Shu had to cross a street, he dropped her hand, Shu wrote.

“I noticed a taxi queue a block away and explained to my pal that it was late and I wanted to go property,” she wrote.

“She walked up to me and playfully tugged at my arm, asking me to stay. Pollock came up to my other facet and grabbed my other hand, all over again.

“He slid his hand down exactly where my pal could not see and grabbed my butt, as if to pull me in towards him.”

Shu backed away, acquired into a taxi and fled, she wrote.

Her editor contacted five hundred Startups to report the incident, and the firm’s HR supervisor emailed Shu asking for her account of the alleged incident, Shu wrote.

“I sent it to her. Afterward, I was explained to that five hundred Startups carried out its own investigation and internal reaction,” she wrote.

“I was perplexed that he wasn’t fired right after groping me and I wish I had requested why, but I felt overcome. I had included many five hundred Startup investments in advance of in my time as a contributor at TechCrunch and read founders communicate perfectly of McClure, so I determined to get it on religion that he and his colleagues would cope with Pollock properly.”

Pollock’s conduct still left her with “PTSD-like symptoms,” Shu wrote, referring to article-traumatic pressure disorder.

“I was already experiencing intrusive thoughts. They began a number of weeks right after my come upon with Pollock, when the initial shock had worn off, and would carry on for about a yr,” she wrote.

“During my being pregnant, I found my prenatal exams tense, since I did not want to be touched by nurses or my health practitioner. I startled quickly when persons approached me, even if it was my husband and I hadn’t noticed him 1st, specifically at night time.

“Once I was rocking my new child in a swaddle, trying to soothe her, and I began crying since I felt that I was holding her against her will and it brought back again negative emotions even though it was the only way to get her to rest.”

Shu wrote that she isolated herself, declining invites for tech events and conferences.

“During my maternity depart, I deemed leaving tech reporting since I did not know how I could do my work efficiently if I was as well nervous to network with probable resources. I was scared and have been for practically two decades.”

The bearded, bespectacled Pollock, who designed the Forbes magazine “30 Underneath 30” listing of climbing business people in 2015 and statements as his personal motto Facebook’s “move speedy and crack factors,” remains a venture husband or wife and entrepreneur-in-home at five hundred Startups.

In a reaction to TechCrunch about Shu’s allegations, five hundred Startups stated it investigated them as soon as they discovered about them just about two decades ago.

“We spoke to her, Mr. Pollock, and many other witnesses,” the company stated, according to TechCrunch.

“Although the many accounts had been inconsistent and the investigation was inconclusive, we took internal motion that we felt was responsive and reparative, and we communicated that motion to TechCrunch’s Editor-in-Main, Matthew Panzarino.

“Mr. Panzarino stated in a subsequent textual content concept that Ms. Shu was ‘satisfied’ by our internal steps including that ‘At this place I think we can shut the guides on this a person … Many thanks for having the time and managing it seriously.’”


Picture: Tristan Pollock’s LinkedIn site (LinkedIn screenshot)


Tags: five hundred startups, Catherine Shu, groped, sexual harassment, techcrunch, Tristan Pollock