Today, Bloomberg published a story about Gurbaksh Chahal, the cofounder and CEO of Gravity4. You might remember him as the dude who got kicked out of his previous company, RadiumOne, in 2014, for domestic violence. On a security-camera video, he was caught kicking his girlfriend 117 times.
Since his reputation was shot, Chahal decided to come up with an alter ego. Naturally, he decided to draw from literature. More specifically: Fifty Shades of Grey.
He created an alter ego named Christian Gray, according to a half dozen people familiar with the situation. The character, who shares a very similar name with one from Fifty Shades of Grey, has his own LinkedIn page featuring a head shot of Josh Dallas, an actor who appears on the ABC fairytale drama Once Upon a Time. Chahal would email marketing professionals as Gray, and when he hooked a potential customer, the CEO would berate staff for being outsold by a fake person, said the people, who asked not to be named for fear of retribution. Two people said Chahal had at times used Gray's sales leads as an excuse to fire workers.