A former Spotify sales executive has filed a lawsuit against the streaming giant for gender discrimination and defamation, according to a report from Variety. In the lawsuit, Hong Perez claims that her former boss, Brian Berner, took only male employees on business trips to Sundance Film Festival in 2016 and 2017 that turned debaucherous. Variety describes them as “drug-fueled ‘boys’ trips’”, and Perez alleges that on one trip, some of the employees got into a physical altercation.
Perez also claims that Berner played an unfair role in her firing. According to Variety:
Perez alleges that in March, Berner got in hot water with his supervisors for a discounting arrangement with a buyer and his acceptance of free tickets to Madison Square Garden. She claims that Berner managed to evade culpability by blaming her for the situation. Berner then fired her for purported violations of the company’s Code of Conduct.
A representative from Spotify denied the allegations to Variety:
At Spotify, we do not tolerate discrimination of any kind at any level. While we cannot comment on the specific details of a pending litigation, these claims are without merit.
Among other things, Perez also alleges in the lawsuit that the chief financial officer of the company once said “he does not care about diversity at the company” in a town hall meeting, and that another executive was promoted, despite receiving warnings for sexual harassment. According to the Guardian, this executive was also accused of taking a group of male sales employees to strip clubs in Atlantic City.