Dentsu-owned Fetch CEO shoots back, says Uber "misconstrued facts"

Fetch has responded to allegations made by Uber in a lawsuit against the Dentsu owned ad agency for "improperly billing it for fraudulent ads", as well as "taking credit for app downloads that it had nothing to do with".

Founder and CEO of Fetch, James Connelly told Marketing in an email statement that Uber's allegations are "unsubstantiated, without merit, and purposefully inflammatory to draw attention away from Uber’s failure to pay suppliers." He said:

It is unfortunate that Uber would misconstrue facts and use an industry-wide issue as a means of avoiding its contractual obligations.

"We deny the allegations from Uber and will be responding robustly to ensure we set the record straight," said the statement.

Read more: Uber sues Dentsu’s Fetch over alleged ad fraud

Connelly added that the advertising company had terminated its agreement with Uber after Uber stopped paying invoices for services provided by over 50 small business suppliers, all which were part of Fetch's mobile advertising plan for Uber.

"Following months of non-payment, Uber eventually raised unsubstantiated claims relating to ad-fraud as a reason not to pay its invoices, but there is no basis to these claims," he said, reassuring that the company had delivered Uber's strategic goals by helping it acquire over 37 million new users since 2014. He added that the company achieved an outstanding rating from Uber throughout the two-year relationship.

The company had also advised Uber on tactics to reduce ad fraud in mobile advertising in the same period, according to Connelly. The lawsuit, which was filed on Monday, alleged Fetch for improperly billing Uber for fraudulent ads.

The ride-hailing company is seeking at least US$40 million in damages, which is half of what the agency was paid (US$82.5 million) between 2015 and 2017 March.