Portland tech entrepreneur Scott Kveton out as CEO of Colorado cannabis company

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A Colorado company developing technology for the cannabis market has replaced Portland entrepreneur Scott Kveton as interim chief executive, just two months after promoting him to that job.

MassRoots replaced Kveton with founder and former CEO Isaac Dietrich, whom the Colorado company had fired in October. MassRoots then sued Dietrich, accusing him of misconduct, and Dietrich launched a proxy fight to vote out the company’s board.

Late Wednesday, MassRoots said it had reconstituted its board and reinstated Dietrich. That apparently puts an end to the struggle for control of the business, but MassRoots is in extreme financial distress and its business is faltering.

Kveton, who still lives in Oregon, joined MassRoots in July when the company bought his Portland startup, Odava, which was developing software to facilitate financial transactions in the emerging legalized marijuana market.

MassRoots’ shares, which trade over the counter, were at 52 cents when it bought Odava in a transaction worth about $1.6 million, primarily in the Colorado company’s stock. The stock fell sharply while MassRoots’ former board fought with Dietrich for control of the company, dipping to 13 cents at one time.

Shares have rebounded somewhat since, but fell 5 cents Thursday morning to 26 cents a share.

MassRoots remains in desperate shape. In its last quarterly report, the company said revenue had plunged from $209,000 a year ago to just $11,500 last quarter. MassRoots said it was spending far more to operate than it was taking in, raising “substantial doubt” about its ability to stay in business.

MassRoots said it will pay Kveton $20,000 for his time as interim CEO, immediately vest 1.55 million shares of stock he received from the company, and pay him $25,000 in severance.

“Never a dull moment,” Kveton wrote on Twitter Wednesday evening.

He is co-founder and former CEO of Portland mobile marketing company Urban Airship. Kveton left that company when a former girlfriend accused him of sexual assault. Kveton denied the accusations and never faced criminal charges.

Last weekend, the Oregon State Bar dismissed a complaint Kveton brought against the woman’s attorney.

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